Singapore has no lack of themed eateries dominated by Sanrio characters, and now, Dreamworks has also muscled in on the action, with the opening of its pop-up KouKou Cafe from tomorrow (March 3).
What's KouKou you ask? They are "fun and adorable bite-sized plushies that come in the shape of dumplings", according to one description on the internet.
So if you love your Kung Fu Panda more than your Gudetama, but dig everything cute above all, then this cafe may be for you.
Brought to you by the same people behind the Gudetama cafe at Suntec City, i.e the founders of Soup Spoon and Joe & Dough, this 50-seater space at Bugis+ is also the world's first KouKou cafe.
The cafe promises to deliver more cuteness on a plate, or rather, dim sum baskets. Characters which make their appearance on the menu are from five well-loved Dreamworks animated movies -- Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar, How to Train Your Dragon, and Trolls.
Asian-centric mains like rice, pho and ramen are priced between $14 to $23, and sides go for up to $13, while drinks range from $3.90 for a soft drink to $8.50 for a pot of tea.
But let's be honest here, nobody really goes to a theme cafe for the food.
So with expectations in check, the main dishes that we tried managed to pass muster, just barely. We'd also go so far as to say that the cafe is probably strictly for fans only (or kids).
The Night Fury Steak Rice ($18.50) featuring the "How To Tame Your Dragon" character didn't quite look as well-presented as it was in the display, but we'll blame it on teething issues. The mound of black glutinous rice with sliced hamburg steaks on a bed of white sauce was okay flavour-wise, but nothing mind-blowing.
Never Leave A Man Behind ($22.50), inspired by Madagascar's penguins, was similarly non-descript, but the salmon was nicely done at least, with crispy skin and moist flesh. No sign of salted egg in the "bechamel salted egg sauce" though.
The drinks fared better in the taste department, with the inclusion of tiny but chewy 'golden pearls' in their signature beverages that were decidedly quite "shiok".
Expect to wait about 30 minutes for your food but our advice is, don't come when you're hungry.
The pop-up cafe will be here for a year, but the decision on whether to continue its lease is still up in the air, said a spokesperson.
Dreamworks' KouKou Cafe is located at Bugis+, 201, Victoria Street, #05-04/05/06 .