Abseil is like A Warm Hug embodied by Coffee and Minimalism
When you eventually locate it, you’ll be drawn in by a prepossessing facade which seemed to hint at some manner of a quaint boutique specialised in crafts or fragrances.
Stepping past the tall glass panes and obfuscating white drapes, you’re met with a refined ambience brought on by svelte whites, balmy lights, and soothing dream pop that reverberated through the tall, cavernous ceilings.
As cryptic as “Abseil” is for a shop name, its focus is apparent as soon as your eyes meet the array of gooseneck kettles and origami drippers resting on the protracted counter.
That is Abseil’s charm. It’s a sophisticated, stripped-down pocket of space where you can unhurriedly sip on meticulously brewed coffee. It’s where you can fall into the warm embrace of a plush lull that feels a tad more profound than the overt snazziness and bustle endemic to Singapore’s cafe scene.
There’s nothing inherently wrong with chic and trendy brunch spots — this is just a different, more soothing experience for those who seek it.
Kinfolk for Keen Folks
Lest you profile me as a pretentious coffee snob — yes, yes I am. Your garden-variety, linen-shirt-wearing, silver-ring-encumbered, Comme-des-Garcons-obsessed coffee hipster.
Quite simply, Abseil’s sedate vibes feed right into my limerence for aesthetics which fit snuggly into a Kinfolk issue or Scandinavian catalogue. Moreover, the thoughtfulness in their brews is equally enchanting.
Abseil places a focus on curating a menu of filter coffee that isn’t tediously trite. Despite the clean stripped-down profile its stylings maybe allude to, the assortment does extend beyond delicate roasts. A good example is the Nicaragua Santa Maria de Lourdes.
This brew was well-balanced with touches of both funkiness and depth. There’s a pronounced juicy acidity at first that’s rounded up by a deep nutty musk that gave it an extra dimension.
On the other hand, their namesake Abseil ($8.50) is an inspired experiment of cream-drenched coffee that will suit both regular palates and those seeking some furtive intricacies in their speciality coffee.
While carrying whispers of Einspanners and Dalgona, the Abseil is a double-shotted espresso creation adorned with velvety ropes of whipped cream that was mesmerisingly balanced in a unique way.
At its base, the coffee sung with vivid citrus notes while also asserting itself with a plunging depth. But it’s that cloud-like cream layer that distinguishes it by adding a soft attenuating twang and a fuller mouthfeel, though not getting cloying at all.
All the Small Things
Speciality coffee is where the pride of Abseil mainly lay but on the side, there’s actually a fleshed-out pastry program with a keen eye for pairing with their coffee.
Built around Dacquoise, a style of Korean meringue cookie sandwiches daintily snapped onto each other, while sandwiching light buttercream fillings.
Tragically, the Injeolmi Dacquoise was sold out but the Pistachio Dacquoise ($8) was a match made in heaven for the Abseil.
When your teeth sink into the meringue layers, they answer with a meek, spongy chew almost like a weaker Macaron shell but the magnificence was in the harmonious profile, where nutty pistachio was gracefully made bedfellows with tangy raspberry.
Conversely, the Passionfruit Dacquoise ($8) also provided a good account of itself with an intense spiritedness though it felt more one-note compared to Abseil’s more layered approach to the Pistachio.
But Abseil, at its core, isn’t intrinsically about any one facet of operations. It’s a beatific reverie where thoughtful coffee, dainty pastries, and soothing minimalism meet in an immensely pleasant cafe experience. It’s a warm hug for your soul in the disarray of the CBD.
- Address: 70 Shenton Way, #01-14 Eon Shenton, Singapore 079118
- Hours: (Mon, Wed–Fri) 8:30am–5:30pm, (Sat–Sun) 9:30am–5:30pm