One of the greatest struggles that I face when wanting to cafe-hop is definitely choosing where to go. With the ever-increasing number of new cafes that open every month, my to-go list is increasing exponentially, and the struggle is becoming increasingly real by the day. Oh yes, the struggle is real. Today was one of those days I felt like going to a cafe, but while on the bus to the Chinatown area, I had so much trouble deciding where to go! Initially I had plans to go to Yellow Cup, but these plans changed when my mom decided to join in the picture as I didn't think that waffles (what I was going there for, really!) would be much 'lunch' for both of us. So to Group Therapy we went, in hopes of a good coffee and the famed poached eggs.
I thought this picture warranted the use of my favourite effect on vsco, C1 - look at that beautiful sky! It's not very clear here, but up there in the corner is a sign that says 'Group Therapy' - ah, another elusive cafe, hidden in the upstairs of a shophouse. Going upstairs felt somewhat like a journey into the unknown, completed by the interesting door handle.
Upon entering, I was immediately greeted by the staff, and asked to choose a seat - I chose the window, of course. Natural light is my best friend. Bought a coffee to accompany my attempt to study a bit of geography before my mom came, and I received a shock - $7, was the price of my coffee! My expectations were definitely lifted, sky-high.
And I think they were lifted a little too high, for alas, the first sip did not live up to my expectations as I was greeted with a mild, slightly watery iced coffee. A few more sips did not do much to satiate my desire for a strong coffee as I had hoped, but these things happen.
So of course, I got the poached eggs on thick toast with smoked salmon, gruyere cheese and hollandaise sauce , the very first thing on the menu. They were generous with the hollandaise sauce (and it was good), but it was a bit too heavy and I found myself having to scrape some of it off. In Singlish terms, it was 'jelat'. The eggs were poached perfectly, and to my delight the second egg was runny even though it took me a while to get to it! Simple joys of the world. Unfortunately, I could taste a bit of the vinegar when I ate the eggs without the hollandaise sauce on them (after scraping it off). The thick toast and smoked salmon complimented the dish well, but I felt that the taste of the cheese was highly overpowered by the hollandaise sauce. I even forgot that it was there until I deconstructed my food a little. (I am not a food artist).
My mom had a piccolo latte (as seen in the picture above) and bacon and mushroom spaghetti. I tasted a sip of her piccolo and I had to say, it was much better than the latte I had - or maybe it was that my expectations had dived after that iced latte. Hmmmm.
The pasta was alright, it wasn't al-dente but I felt that it was alright. But just, alright. The bacon tasted a little like bak-kwa, interestingly enough. The flavours didn't seem to complement each other as well as in the toast. The chilli flakes that we requested for did help to improve the flavour of the dish on the whole, though! I love chilli flakes, although my tolerance for regular chilli is, well... Not the best around, I must say.
Having been wanting to go to Group Therapy for quite some time, I suppose my expectations of the place had been lifted a little too high, and maybe that's why they seemed to fall short. Although the food was okay, I don't think it would be somewhere that I would return to, especially given it's location - it's too far a journey to make.
That being said! I must say I had a pleasant lunch nonetheless for as they say, wherever you go to does not matter as much as who you're with.
Group Therapy Coffee 49 Duxton Road #02-01 Open Sunday; Tuesday-Thursday 11am-6pm Friday - Saturday 11am-10pm