Cafe Hangout: Toby's Estate at Robertson Quay, Singapore

October 29, 2011

Hailing from Australia, Toby's Estate has recently set up shop in our little island hoping to conquer some of the coffee addicts to their brand of joe. Going by how competitive our coffee scene is recently (in fact they appeared in the Straits Times Sunday Times feature on the indie coffee scene in Singapore), they must be pretty confident that they can rise up to the challenge.

First knew about this place myself 2 weeks before the newspaper article appeared from @superfinefeline's blog, Gastronomic Ruminations. I was immediately intrigued and penned it down as a must-visit. Turns out it is also just right beside Kith Cafe, which I went the week before without realizing Toby's was beside!


Wasn't disappointed when we did. That Sunday was also the Sunday that this place was featured on the papers, so all their food stuffs were sold out! At least their coffees are still brewing. I took many photos because this place was begging to be photographed with so many great scenes. Enjoy!

Left side, 5pm.

Right side

They sell their own teas and coffees, and keep cups!

Ordered an iced latte. Simple. We sat at the 'bar'.

Really like all the apparatuses they had.

Shot using Hipstamatic

Shot using Camera+

This is me.

The place and concept overall is great. You can see the effort put into decorating the place, and the bigger budget they have. However, one thing that can be improved was the service. Perhaps all the busy day got to the female servers but when we stepped in, nobody gave us any attention and we had to find our way to the counter and figure out if we order at the counter or take a seat. All the female servers seem to see right through us! There was nary a smile -- all of them look sullen-faced and grumpy. When I wanted syrup for my latte after ordering, I asked a server nicely and she just plainly ignored me even though I am pretty sure she heard me.

The baristas however were a different story. The store manager (?) took our orders at the counter, and after that a barista actually made the coffee in front of us and explained everything, from weighing the coffee to letting us smell the beans before pouring 90 deg water into the filter in a circular motion (to let the water disperse the flavour. That barista also kindly gave me the syrup.

Here's the process of the coffee making! So fun to watch it. The guy clearly enjoys making the coffee too and is real scientific and passionate about it.

Overall a great joint if you want to try great coffee in a really nice atmosphere. However it'll be great if I could have tried some of their pastries (i saw sticky bun on their menu) with the coffee. Oh and, don't expect any service from the sullen female service staff - just go to the baristas. Really, just such a damper on the otherwise pleasant coffee trip. Hopefully you guys will have better luck than us!

Toby's Estate (Asia) 
8 Rodyk St. #01-03/04, Singapore 238216
+65 66367629
7.30am-6.00pm daily.
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