The best cheese tarts to have right now

With new additions recently taking root, these sweet-savoury bakes are suddenly all the rage

The best cheese tarts to have right now
The best cheese tarts to have right now
26 Apr 2016

The best cheese tarts to have right now

We’ve not even begun to say goodbye to the salted egg croissant and already we are hankering after another trendy confection. The Japanese cheese tart - replete with that familiar soft, gooey and almost runny filling - has apparently found new fans here.

At least three brands have launched their version of this humble pastry in the last three weeks. The latest is Japanese stalwart Bake Cheese Tart (by BAKE Inc.), which has made its way here from Sapporo via Seoul, Hong Kong and Bangkok. Singapore will be home to only its fifth store outside Japan when its South-east Asia flagship store opens at ION Orchard on April 29.

“When we thought about where we’d like to locate our flagship store, we immediately thought of Singapore,” said Shintaro Naganuma, president and CEO of BAKE Inc. Finding the right location, explained the company’s director of marketing Yohei Azakami, had delayed its foray into the Singapore market by two years. While he has noticed the cheese tart’s current popularity, he preferred not to worry too much about the competition. “While we use the trends as a reference, in the end, we believe that we are selling something because we strongly believe in it and want to sell it, regardless of other factors,” said Azakami.

However, there are those who remain conservative about the longevity of the cheese tart fad. “It is difficult to say how long the trend would last,” said chef Pang Kok Keong of Antoinette, who launched his Japanese-inspired iterations on Wednesday. “It is too soon to say; the cheese tarts will be available at Antoinette for a limited period and the market response will determine how long we will keep them on the shelves.”

These tarts follow his recent take on the salted egg croissant, which was followed by bold local alternatives such as a French kaya and chilli crab option. The decision to offer his spin on the Japanese cheese tart, though, is a more impulsive one, sparked by his first taste of Pablo cheese tarts during a trip to Tokyo earlier this month.

It is timely, nonetheless, but with the number of adaptations launched in the last few months, the question is: Where should you go to get your cheese tart fix? Here are some of the best to dig into right now.


A patissier's cheese tart from Antoinette
A patissier's cheese tart from Antoinette
26 Apr 2016

A patissier's cheese tart from Antoinette

Address: 30 Penhas Road, Tel: 6293 3121

Keeping in mind Singaporeans’ penchant for variety, Chef Pang has five flavours of cheese tart that feature a molten mix of cream and mascarpone cheese paired with either Madagascan vanilla; matcha from Nishio in Japan; a blend of 55 per cent and 64 per cent French chocolate; salted caramel; and hand-sieved salted egg yolk. Each baked tart is encased in a puff pastry cup made by reverse lamination - rolling dough in French butter - for a flaky and crispy texture. Priced between S$2.60 and S$3 each. Available for a limited time at its Penhas Road outlet.

Traditional Japanese cheese tarts from Bake Cheese Tart
Traditional Japanese cheese tarts from Bake Cheese Tart
26 Apr 2016

Traditional Japanese cheese tarts from Bake Cheese Tart

Address: ION Orchard, #B4-33, 2 Orchard Turn

This Japanese import has its origins in Kinotoya, a long-established Western confectionery store in Hokkaido that began making these babies in 2011. While they’re put together in Hokkaido, the tarts are freshly baked in the store here. The cheese mousse filling is made with a blend of three types of cream cheese - two from Hokkaido (the milky Bekkai and the milder Hakodate) and a saltier, more savoury variety from France - and can be enjoyed fresh, chilled or frozen “like an ice cream”. Priced at S$3.50 each or S$19.50 for a box of six. The Singapore store is slated to open on April 29.

Molten lava cheese tarts from Prima Deli
Molten lava cheese tarts from Prima Deli
26 Apr 2016

Molten lava cheese tarts from Prima Deli

Visit Primadeli.com for list of outlets.

Launched early this month (April 8), this homegrown brand’s offering comes in original (S$2.40) and salted yolk (S$2.80) flavours - the latter, which features a layer of rich salted yolk custard topped with the same sweet-savoury cheese filling, is made using real egg yolks and not the powdered variety. Encased in a shortcrust pastry, these tarts are best enjoyed warm but can also be reheated. Available at all its 40 outlets, but in limited quantities.

Golden lava cheese tarts from The Icing Room
Golden lava cheese tarts from The Icing Room
26 Apr 2016

Golden lava cheese tarts from The Icing Room

Address: 23 Serangoon Central, NEX@Serangoon, B2-58/59, Tel: 6634 4486

Not to be left out, BreadTalk group’s The Icing Room launched its range of freshly baked cheese tarts the same day as Prima Deli. Priced at S$2 each for both the original and Golden Lava (with a salted egg yolk filling) flavours, these are currently only available at its NEX outlet. Besides having them fresh out of the oven, these tarts - featuring a traditional sweet pastry crust - can also be enjoyed chilled like a cheesecake.

Blueberry cheese tarts from Crusty Oven
Blueberry cheese tarts from Crusty Oven
26 Apr 2016

Blueberry cheese tarts from Crusty Oven

Address: Blk 505A Bishan Street 11 #01- 442, Tel: 8511 1005

This more affordable adaptation may look like the ones you can find at several heartland bakeries, but the owner here will tell you that there is more to this palm-sized cheese tarts. Priced at S$1.80 each, he said they use quality blueberries and a higher percentage of cream cheese from Australia. And here’s a little-known fact: It has been on the menu since they opened three years ago.

Photo: Crusty Oven's Facebook

Rin Rin ice cheese tarts from Patisserie Glace
Rin Rin ice cheese tarts from Patisserie Glace
26 Apr 2016

Rin Rin ice cheese tarts from Patisserie Glace

Visit cakeglace.com for list of outlets

This patisserie is one of the first to offer this frozen variety, which sits on a fragrant cookie base. There are now also 12 flavours (priced at S$3.50 each) to choose from, including its latest peach Ice Cheese Tart, available while stocks last.

Photo: Rin Rin's Facebook

Ice cheese tarts from Flor Patisserie
Ice cheese tarts from Flor Patisserie
26 Apr 2016

Ice cheese tarts from Flor Patisserie

Visit cakeflor.com.sg for list of outlets

This local outfit, which specialises in Japanese-inspired French pastry, has also been hawking this cheese tart alternative for a while, and it has garnered a number of fans for its fragrant almond cookie base and lightly salted cream cheese filling. There are now eight flavours on offer (priced at S$3.80 each), including one with swirls of homemade caramel sauce, and one that’s flavoured with Kyoto-uji green tea powder.

Photo: Flor Patisserie's Facebook

This story first appeared on TODAY
Story by Don Mendoza

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