The Coffee Academics

by - September 29, 2017

The Coffee Academics helms from Hong Kong and is renowned for their amazing coffee. So when this popular coffee place came to Singapore in 2015 and landed at a pretty spot in Scotts Square, throngs of people visited. And they're doing so well, they even have a second outlet at Raffles City.
And as usual, I'm a bit slow with the café scene (hence, visiting only in 2017) because I don't like rushing to join the crowd. I rather wait till the hype dies off. 
Truthfully, I... don't know what the hype is with this place. I really don't. I guess you can tell immediately that I'm not a fan and I'll never visit again- except maybe if I want coffee. But then I'll do a take-away for sure, or maybe I would just screw it and get good coffee elsewhere at a cheaper price. Don't get me wrong, the place is really pretty and chic and the coffee is really good. But it's not worth me queuing and I don't think it's worth the price tag. Fyi, I noticed that the prices of the mains have been increasing over the years too.
Food: 3.5/5
Price: $$/$$$
(We paid an average of $40 per person,what the heck.)
Service: 3/5
Ambience: 3.5/5
Tip: One for one main courses on The Entertainer App (but still asspensiveee). Also, pancakes take 40mins to serve so make sure you order that first!
I almost got the "world's most instagrammable coffee", i.e. coffee in a cone for $8.90. But thank goodness my senses got the better of me. (The things I do for a good picture, sigh). Needless to say, one must order coffee when one is here, so all of us got one.
Hot Manuka- $6
Iced Jawa- $7
They're all really good, and I especially like the Jawa coffee. But stay away from their new seasonal coffee, the iced sea salt latte (pictured above). It's really, really salty, waayy too creamy/foamy and we couldn't taste the coffee.
Now on to the food... :(
 Umami Pasta- $21
Their foray into pasta was interesting but given that they aren't strong on the food side, it probably should have been avoided. Umami pasta is a Japanese fusion pasta which was really spicy. Like burn-my-tongue kind of spicy. And although it comes with an onsen egg, the pasta is very, very dry. And really spicy.
Academics Breakfast - $25
 This is your average and typical big breakfast. Nothing fancy nor memorable. I didn't like how 'flat' the eggs were. I prefer them fluffier.
Crispy Fish Fillet Tacos - $23
 Probably the only decent main course thus far, the crispy fish fillet tacos is extremely refreshing with the fruity fresh flavours of mango and tomatoes. The pieces of fish were tasty and the overall combination of flavours were interesting. I like how the taco shells remained crispy throughout the entire meal (as opposed to soggy from all that "zhup").
The star however, is actually their curly fries.
Curly Fries with Dip Trio - $14
 Now this is one hell of a yummy (and expensive) curly fries. Move over McDonalds! The sauces that come with the hot crispy fries, especially the curry one, was extremely delicious, and you can actually ask for refill of the sauces!  Definitely a must have if you are there to dine.
 Le Smoked Salmon - $23
This is a smoked salmon wrapped around a pretty poached egg on top of a small bed of potato rosti. Man, this dish is tiny. Not sure how this passed off as a main dish. But this is surprisingly average tasting for something that looks really pretty. Nothing much to comment on- they all taste like what they should taste like individually, but the combination was not magical.
Academics Pancake Tower- $20
 This popular pancake tower takes 40mins to serve so make sure you order it first to avoid the waiting. This is essentially 3 layers of pancakes served with mixed berries, berry sorbet, whipped cream and syrup (the latter can be topped up).
The pancake tower makes for a pretty picture but that's just it. The pancakes were too dry and no amount of syrup was enough. Plus not all were cooked evenly. I recall that the one at the bottom was the most moist of the 3. The other 2 crumbles when cut, and I was essentially scooping crumbs to eat. Berry sorbet was good, but you can get the same at any ice cream shop.
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The space itself is really, really gorgeous. I like that it's spacious and despite the huge crowd, you don't feel too squashed together. It's really a pity that the food doesn't match up.
They conduct coffee classes as well and you can sign up for them at the café itself.
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Overall, good coffee (although pricey) and mediocre (but expensive) food. I wouldn't visit specially for the coffee even if I was doing a coffee run. The place is too crowded and you'll probably feel pressured to finish your coffee quickly to make space for the queue. I would probably head over to Plain Vanilla Bakery in Ion or say get a coffee at Kith Cafe. The Coffee Academics should perhaps refine their menu and limit themselves to a few star dishes and cut out the rest. They should also place a stronger emphasis on their coffee and perhaps have a pairing suggestion with the food they serve. #idea? 
The Coffee Academics (Scotts Square)
 #02-01/02, Scotts Square,6 Scotts Road, Singapore 228209

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