Situated at the entrance of Springleaf Nature Park at Upper Thomson Road, Verdure Café offers a timeout from the hustle and bustle of city life. Open since last October, we recently found out that they’re dog-friendly, so we paid a visit for dinner over the weekend.
While they don’t allow pets indoors, leashed dogs are welcome at the outdoor section, which is sheltered and equipped with multiple ceiling fans. They also provide self-service water bowls for your furkids. The furniture, like most hipster joints, is Instagram-worthy, with wooden tables and floral table decor to spruce up your food photography.
Due to the greenery around the cafe, there will be the occasional insect (think ants and crickets) buzzing around. It probably didn’t help that it rained a couple of hours before we arrived. Remember to keep a lookout for anything that might fall into your food; Polar himself almost sat on a millipede!
The food at this place was the big surprise for us; the food here not only tasted good and nutritious, but most importantly, it was decently priced! The menu has a variety of starters, sides, mains, desserts, coffee and even a selection of organic tea.
Based on recommendations from Facebook reviews, we ordered the following:
I love infused water. If you’re going to have to pay for water at a restaurant, I’d rather pay $1.80 for a jug of fruit infused water than some bottled water poured into a cup. When we finished our jug, the owner was nice enough to fill it up with cold water and ice again.
SALTED EGG FRIES
The fries were thick and chunky, but the salted egg flavour wasn’t rich enough for my taste. In my opinion, the portion was just nice for its $6.90 price tag.
SOUP OF THE DAY – CLAM CHOWDER
This was flavourful, and came with a generous serving of clams. It was served with black pepper crackers (keropok) on the side, which gave it a fusion feel. Quite decent for $3.90!
VERDURE FRAGRANT RICE
In my mind, this dish was the biggest surprise. Usually, mixed grain rice dishes don’t look particularly appetising, but the food presentation for this was lovely. It was cooked with carrots, onions and mushrooms, and then topped with fragrant chicken. You can choose from bacon, chicken or smoked black pepper duck as well. This dish tasted really wholesome and healthy. For a main priced at $9.90, this was surprisingly very filling, even for the men in the group. Great value!
SMOKED BLACK PEPPER DUCK AGLIO OLIO
This pasta dish had a rich garlic taste and the right level of spice for Aglio Olio. What amazed us was that the pasta wasn’t greasy like some bad Aglio Olio I’ve had before, and yet it wasn’t dry.
CHILLI CRAB PASTA
The Chilli Crab Pasta didn’t blow us away as it wasn’t spicy enough for our Singaporean tastebuds. The pasta was alright, with the right level of al dente-ness. More spice and crab would have made this dish perfect.
This was a group favourite – a generous serving of tender, juicy chicken, topped off with crispy skin and a delicious sauce. It came with salad and potato wedges, which were served piping hot. We ate this as fast as Polar wolfs down his meals.
To end things on a sweet note, I had my first ever rainbow cake! It wasn’t too exorbitantly priced ($5 top up on top of our main), so I decided to give it a try. It tasted like an ordinary cake to me but the colours did brighten up my existence, albeit for a few minutes. I guess people eat rainbow cakes to imagine they’ll have rainbows bursting out of them.
The food’s great, it’s decently priced, and most importantly, they’re dog friendly! The only downsides were its out-of-the-way location, and the critters buzzing around during our meal. If you’re looking for simple café fare with a relaxed ambience to have a meal with your dogs, you can check them out here.
Tel: 8692 6288
Side note: Not everyone is fully comfortable with dogs, so we recommend that all dog parents practice responsible pet owner behavior by leashing your dogs and ensuring that they do not obstruct traffic in the café.
Until next time, stay curious!
Dashie and Polar