Never heard of this place? Probably because it just opened today. Yes, the famous E-Canteen is gone and we’re all deeply sorrowed of its departure, my brother will especially miss the delicious Seafood E-Fu Noodle Hot Pot and me, the Thai Chicken Fried Rice. It will never die because it will always live on our memories. Now, onto the “new kid on the block.”
Enjoy Cafe 1+1 is the name and upon walking in, the place looks very refined and a tad cleaner than usual. The inside has a nice fresh coat of vibrant yellow, as opposed to the darker shades of blue and orange that was there previously. Apparently, to prevent confusion from E-Canteen employees, they hired entirely new waiters as I couldn’t recognize any of them, and I’ve been there countless times.
The managers who ran the place obviously were quite stressed as we were not seated immediately when we arrived. However, we got seated and they took our order rather quickly, although was very loudly telling us that we should order Chinese style dishes because the western style dishes ( like mix and match grill sets) would take longer.
The menu, surprisingly, stayed pretty similar to the E-Canteen menu, offering Chinese style (fried noodle/rice, regular Chinese dishes) and western style (baked pasta/rice, grill sets). What we didn’t apparently notice was that during 6pm-9pm, it was +$1 for each set meal. Not a huge surprise considering E-Canteen also did this very cleverly.
Since we were extremely curious on whether the chef of E-Canteen had left town or not, we decided to try out some old favorites of ours, the Thai Chicken Fried Rice which was $7.50 and the Shredded Pork Chow Mein which was $7.25. For those prices, it seems like a pretty good deal, right? Well not exactly.
It seemed to take the kitchen 30 minutes to make our Thai Chicken Fried Rice, and realizing that I actually was bored enough to keep count, it does not look good for Enjoy Cafe right now. But enough with that complaint, how did the food taste???
Exactly the same as E-Canteen’s! Nice fluffy fried rice with flavorful Thai seasoning and lots of roasted chicken. On the other hand, the portion size was not up to par. They’re definitely missing the value that E-Canteen had, like portions large enough that regular people who order one dish each usually end up taking some home.
How about the Shredded Pork Chow Mein? This was essentially my mom’s order and from the looks that she had while eating it, I could tell she didn’t enjoy it. She told me it was bland and even got up to get some soy sauce. After trying some, I agreed and added that it wasn’t as crispy as we wanted to be.
Oh and as with most places that are similar to this, it came with a free drink. The total came to around $17, not bad, would’ve been a lot worse with the +$1 from 6pm-9pm!
To be honest, this was not really the experience that I hoped for, seeing my high standards from E-Canteen, and I’m glad that I gave this place a try. Although I wish that E-Canteen was still here, this will open people up to new options for dining . As for Enjoy Cafe itself, I might revisit in the later months as I realize that they need some time to develop.