[ Project Xi Bing ] Pine Gardens Cake and Thye Moh Chan (Part 2/3)


If you are new to Project Xi Bing, it is basically a personal quest of mine to go around Singapore and source for xi bings with the best deal.


If you are interested to understand how I come out with these ratings and the reviews of Gin Thye Cake HouseThye Lee ConfectioneryNeo Kian Guan Confectionery & Cake, kindly click on Project Xi Bing Part 1/3.

For part 2, I will be sharing my findings on Pine Garden's Cake and Thye Moh Chan.


  • Pine Garden's Cake
Pine Garden's Cake is quite well-known within the community now. I have heard friends, colleagues and family members who are willing to go that extra mile and travel to this considered-quite-ulu part of Ang Mo Kio just to taste their cakes. So, yes, this cake house is also one of my places to visit in Project Xi Bing!


Once you reach Pine's Garden, you will be greeted by rows and rows of pretty cakes. They cost as low as $0.80 to as high as $6.50 per piece. Yes, it's a stark difference. But generally the buttercream cakes are cheaper while the cakes with alcohol infused or premium ingredients are priced at least a $2.80 and above.

All ready for purchase
The tau sa pias are spotted once you enter the shop.


As there are no available packaging, I took photos of some packages which I thought worth considering.

The premium cake set is a good mix of Pine Garden's best selling cakes. It is also presentable and classy at an affordable price. In fact, my family received this exact same set when my cousin got married last year. My only comment is the size of the cakes. I hope they could be bigger. It's almost like paying $13.80 for 9 mouthfuls of cake (and a nice box of course).

9 Pieces Premium Cake Set
The Good Old Buttercream set! This will be my personal top choice if I were to order from Pine's Garden. The cakes are in their original sizes and the whole combination looks very colourful. I will say the price is very reasonable for such varieties and packaging.

Good Old Buttercream Cake Set
Since I'm a Teochew, I will also consider looking at Teochew sets too. To me, convenience is important. If we were to receive the sweets in 2 big packets of 1kg each, we may still need to spend time to pack into smaller quantities for distribution. So this will be a no no for me.

Traditional Teochew Set
Here's some information for the couples observing Hokkien's traditions. Similar, all the items are wrapped in 1kg.

Traditional Hokkien Set

If you like an all-in-1-stop, you can also consider ordering your dragon phoenix candles from them at a price of $16.

Dragon and Phoneix Candle
I bought a full plate of cakes and also started talking to Ah Cheng from Pine's Garden. She is as per how she is every time I see her, busy busy but still attending to your purchases and questions in the fast and efficient way. When it comes to orders for xibing, she immediately directed me to email their sales department instead of doing it over the storefront. I was also considering their cake sets and therefore, I tried to ask questions at their facebook account. They replied within the day itself. So, efficiency wise, I would say YES!

My purchases.

And once again we reach food tasting time! It feels like I'm having a mini dessert buffet at home. =)

The cakes which I got (from left to right): Citrus Drop Cake, Lychee Martini Cake, Triple Layer Chocolate Cake, Roasted Peanut Buttercream Cake, Chocolate Rice Buttercream Cake 
Pine Garden Cakes
One more on the side profile before they go into me (and my parent's tummies)


Taste wise, we find the citrus drop cake a little too sour for our liking. Triple layer chocolate cake is disappointing as the cake is relatively dry and hard. Lychee martini is still my personal favourite, yummy.  The remaining 2 buttercream cakes may look simple but they taste good and still soft.

And now to the tau sa pia,


Pine Garden's Tau Sa Pia, salted on the left, sweet on the right

I'm thinking how to describe the experience of eating Pine's Garden tau sa pia. I realised the best way to highlight the taste is : it is not tasty at all ! I only took one bite each and threw it away. It is worse than the one I had from Gin Thye and much more expensive! It is very hard and the fillings are obviously not very fresh.



In summary,
Packaging And Presentation: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Pricing: Premium Cake Box Set - $13.80 Good Old Buttercream Cake Set - $11.00
Cost per piece for trying: Sweet Tau Sa Pia ($1), Salted Tau Sa Pia ($0.60), Premium cakes collection ($2.80 per piece to $6.50 per piece), Buttercream cakes collection ($0.80 per piece to $1.50 per piece)
Customer Service: 4 out of 5 stars
Taste: 4 out of 5 stars for the cakes, 1 out of 5 stars for the tau sa pia
Additional information: Wedding basket is for rental at $8 per day. Delivery of the cakes is charged at $18 per trip and free for orders above $280. Delivery slots are on first come first serve basis.
My personal comment: Pine Garden's Cake House is known for their lychee martini and blackforest cakes. They tried to be more adventurous with their new flavors (which I have tried a few and didn't like them) so I will recommend to just to stick to their classics cakes. Price wise, it is considered on the higher end compared to other bakeries. Afterall, Pine Garden's is still quite an established brand in the market now.

If you were to ask me, the best deal will be the buttercream cake set. It is good in terms of pricing, quantity and taste. Avoid their tau sa pias, at all cost. 

Address: Blk 529 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10 #01-2369, Singapore 560529
Contact number: 6459 5507

  • Thye Moh Chan
Thye Moh Chan used to be a small cake house just like any of the other xi bing shop since 1943. It was facing a crisis of closing down. However, it was bought over by BreadTalk in 2011. Now they have 3 branches around Singapore.

Off I go to the outlet at Chinatown Point.


The shop looks like it's all ready for Mid Autumn Festival, nicely decorated with lanterns. 


There was also a full segment dedicated to wedding related stuff.



 It is also a very thoughtful gesture for them to have some information on Chinese traditions during pre-wedding, wedding day and post-wedding.


My dad found this info really useful.



Gosh, I was salivating hard when I stare at the rows and rows of freshly baked tau sa pia staring back at me. Don't they look like enlarged chess pieces? SLURPS. The biggest chess pieces of them all are the Da Lao Bing.




After talking to the staff, we realised that contrary to what is highly advertised in their brochures and websites, Thye Moh Chan do offer a few varieties of wedding boxes. 

Option Number 1: $28.80 box (the one at the website, called 'Endless Love')
-Very comprehensive box, but it is also very pricey.
-If money is not an issue, I think this will be a very nice and intimate gift.


Option Number 2: $16.80 box (They call it the 'Double Happiness' box)
-Basically you can opt to put 8 pieces of tau sa pia OR 4 pieces of tau sa pia and a set of teochew sweets inside this nice looking box.
-Box is of good material. Only flaw is the colour. It is gold with the floral prints, and dark violet by the side. I think we will usually prefer some red as xi bing box.
-If you are selecting this, I think it will be good to buy some stickers with  word and paste on space at the bottom left corner.


Option Number 3: $12.80 +$1 (for the box) = $13.80 per box.
-You can mix and match 8 different pieces of tau sa pia into this. Usually as a sign of good luck, everything comes in pairs. Therefore, we were advised to get 4 different flavours pia, a pair each to make up lucky number 8.
-Flaw would be, there are no other sweets to go along with these pia.


-One awesome thing is, the boxes comes in red! Quality of this box is definitely not as good as the double happiness box series. But I will say, still decent.


-Insides of the red box is as per seen at the below pic. (at the top half).
-The 8 xibings will be individually vacuum packed. 


The staff at the Chinatown Point Branch was very patient and attentive to our needs and budget. They also offered us helpful information for us to keep in mind, like the expiry dates of the pias and selection of flavours. We feel really thankful for their kind advice.

So now, all being said, it's back to food tasting time!

The moment I took them out from the plastic bag, I had a gut feeling they will be delicious. The exterior layer was so crumbly because its so "crispy".


 After cutting it up, you can see it. The exterior is super flaky and not too thick. Very crispy and smells really good. The sweet flavoured ones is also not too sweet. I especially love their yuan yang flavoured one, which they add in some pork floss to their original salted pia. I think that's a genius invention.




In summary,
Packaging And Presentation: 5 out of 5 stars
Pricing: 8 treasures gift box: $13.80, Happiness Set: $16.80 per box, Endless Love Set: $28.80
Cost per piece for trying: Sweet Tau Sa Pia ($1.80), Salted Tau Sa Pia ($1.60) (I love their yuan yang flavor one.)
Customer Service: 4 out of 5 stars 
Taste: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Additional information: Wedding basket rental is at a cost of $38. An additional $90 is required as a deposit if you intend to rent from them.
NOTE: THYE MOH CHAN USES LARD IN THEIR TAU SA PIAH, NOT SUITABLE FOR VEGETARIAN.
My personal comment: It is quite clear that Thye Moh Chan pays alot of attention in both the taste of their xibings and also the packaging. Rather than putting the xi bings into one box, all the xi bings were individually sealed. It certainly puts off any worries about expiry date or ants invasion. The different flavors are interesting and innovative but be sure to check if both your parents are just as adventurous or they would prefer just the sweet ones. The whole shopping experience was great too!

If you are also curious, we officially placed our order with Thye Moh Chan for our own wedding xibings. We took option number 3, something that is cheap, decent looking and not discounting on the yummy xibings. We also managed to get an overall 15% discount thanks to the Mid Autumn festival promotions. That makes our cost per box to drop from $13.80 to $11.70.  Good deal, isn't it? =)

Address: Inside Chinatown Point, #01-45, Vivocity (Inside Food Republic Level 3) and Paragon, B1-11/12
Contact number: 6604 8858, 6272 4434, 6732 8858

Although we have confirmed our purchase, I will stick to my agenda of completing my review from the 2 other xi bing shops. The last 2 shops which I will be covering in Part 3/3 is Poh Guan Bakery and Tong Heng Cake Confectionery. So stay tuned =)

Update: Project Xi Bing Part 3/3 is completed!

Falling in love with xibing,
Mrs To-Be OOPS

Comments

  1. We got the endless love and everlasting one from thye moh chan! Good choice n had great reviews from the elders on the taste!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awesome!!!! I think their tau sa piah very nice too! I have been buying it to eat whenever I have the chance to pass by the store. 😁

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