Located at Clark Quay, you’ll find 八宝甜品 BaBao Dessert serving up a Japanese version of ice kachang called Kakigori, in flavours very much suited to the Singaporean palate.
It has always been a childhood fantasy of mine to have a never-ending supply of ice kachang. 90’s kids would probably have vague memories of themselves begging their parents for a bowl of the colourful shaved ice. A sweet, rainbow treat – what’s not to love?
But hey, it’s 2017 and this traditional dessert is up for a revamp and I certainly would not mind taking things up a notch.
Take a walk down memory lane as you enter the establishment that’s decorated with intricate oriental designs and bold colours. You’ll instantly be reminded of the 糖水店 (sweet soup stores) from the olden days.
When you’re there, start by ordering the much raved about Kakigori. This version is much less rainbow-like than the ice kachangs we’re used to, but the main difference lies in the texture; you’ll find a milkier and fluffier consistency in the Kakigori.
I guess I’d also liken it to Korean bingsu, but I’m getting ice kachang vibes because of the more local ingredients it uses.
Choose from six delicious flavours with some pretty unique toppings and snack your way into dessert heaven.
For something light to cool off with after a hearty meal, you might want to try the Matcha Kakigori ($8.80) with ice cream (+$1) and sago (+$0.50).
Fine matcha ice shavings are layered with a generous helping of sago, red bean, ice cream and finally topped with a sprinkle of mocha on the non-dairy whipped cream.
Check out that aesthetically pleasing white fluffy whipped cream atop the matcha ice shavings. Doesn’t it resemble snow on grassy plains?
The secret behind the snow-like texture of the whipped cream is to use non-dairy sources. Non-dairy cream not only helps create and retain this foam-like texture, but also complements the Kakigori in terms of flavour.
To deliver the natural essence of matcha, real matcha powder is infused into the shaved ice. At Babao Dessert, they’re all about delivering the original goodness of food to their customers.
This dessert might look like too much for one person but trust me, finishing an entire bowl by yourself is entirely possible.
Perhaps you might be looking for something tangy to refresh your palate. You’re not going to be disappointed by the Mango Kakigori ($11.80).
This vibrant bowl of tropical flavours is a crowd-pleaser and it’s not hard to see why. Not only do you get the distinct nectarous flavour of the mangoes, but you’ll also find a decent portion of mango chunks. Now, that’s what we’re looking for!
In an attempt to add a local spin to this flavour, roasted mung beans are scattered on top. The addition, unfortunately, didn’t do much for me, as the beans were a tad too bland and a little hard to chew on.
Nevertheless, this was one heck of an icy dessert that I was thankful for on such a warm day.
Brace yourselves for the show-stopper, the Durian Kakigori ($12.80) with Ayu Jelly (+$1).
Take a bite of this seemingly straightforward frosty dessert and you’ll instantly be swayed. The durian flavour from this particular Kakigori is so intense, it’s probably the closest thing you can get to the actual fruit.
You’ll even find yummy durian paste made from durian flesh as you work your way into the dessert. You know that they mean business when they’ve mixed D24 durians into it. We were absolutely stoked about the quality of the desserts here.
While the Ayu jelly might sound like an unusual pairing with durians, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how well they go together. The light Ayu jelly evens out the pungent flavours of the durian to give you a balanced taste.
Durian lovers, this will be worth your while.
Apart from the recently popular Japanese Kakigori, BaBao Dessert also serves up old-school traditional sweet treats.
And because we simply can’t get enough of the king of fruits, we had to go with the Durian Sago ($6.50). The intense aroma of the durian paste reached our table even before the dessert did.
Do not underestimate this ordinary-looking dessert. The freshly-prepared sago coupled with the thick and creamy taste of the durian will satisfy your cravings! 150g of durian goes into each bowl of Durian Sago, so it’s no surprise that it tasted so good.
As a durian lover myself, this is one dessert I 10/10 would recommend.
At BaBao Dessert, you’re guaranteed quality, handmade treats that definitely deliver in taste. Come for the Kakigori, but stay for the other more traditional desserts as well. And I know I don’t even have to convince durian lovers who know what’s what.
If you’re thinking of hitting up this dessert spot, note that customers are eligible for 20% off every 15 dollars spent at the store on Sundays. Good things must share!
Expected Damage: $3 – $12.80 per pax