Two out-of-the-box shops—Kki and The Little Dröm Store—have garnered media attention since opening in January. City News talks shop with the owners.
Situated in a cozy corner at the foot of Ann Siang Hill in Tanjong Pagar are two unique shops sharingone space. Kki offers Japanese inspired French pastry, while The Little Dröm Store is a vestibule filled with vintage knick knacks.
Kki is the brainchild of couple, Kenneth Seah and Delphine Liau, while the Little Dröm Store was conceived by their partners, Stanley Tan and Antoinette Wong, as a platform for local artists and designers to display their talent and creativity.
Just opened since Jan. 1, Kki and The Little Dröm Store have been featured widely in mainstream media such as in TODAY, Sunday Business Times, URBAN, Home & Décor, Simply Her, i-Weekly and on Channel 8’s Citybeat, hosted by Bryan Wong and Kym Ng. According to Liau, Kki and The Little Dröm Store started having regular customers within two weeks of their official opening.
These two shops are also making waves in the social networking space with a vibrant loyal group of followers that includes food bloggers.
Dröm means “dream” in Swedish. Liau shares over a warm latté how she and her husband prayed very specifically for a suitable place to start up their dream café. God answered each of their requests, from the rental cost, to location, to collaborating with The Little Dröm Store—even the display window was an answered prayer!
“When we started Kki, we didn’t want to be caught in the center of the mainstream competition; we wanted to bring cake-savoring up another level,” explains Liau. “Kki is carving out its own niche: many of the items are influenced by Japanese baking techniques and have a light flavor that’s not as overwhelming as conventional French pastries.”
Seah is the pastry chef for Kki. An experienced baker, he was a freelance food and beverage consultant who helped start another pastry shop in Holland Village. The Seahs have a desire to educate cake lovers on the joys of their Asian-infused French cakes.
Kki’s best-selling item is a white chocolate cake named “Antoinette.” The couple baked that teardrop-shaped cake for Wong on her birthday. Biting into the light pastry, Wong was delighted to discover mango fruit puree oozing out from its center.
Even the names of the cakes reflect the local flavor—“Kinabaru” combines coconut puree and passionfruit, inspired by Kota Kinabalu. This sticky layered cake is an eye-catching yellow and has proven to be another best-seller for Kki.
|PHOTO: The Little Dröm Store|
Equally artistic, though inedible, are the offerings at The Little Dröm Store. The store is an independent publisher of local creative works, and also acts as a gallery for its owners to display their family’s creativity.
“The idea was for our family to come together to display their works. The photo books you see are from Antoinette’s collection, while the comic-style sketches are doodles from my dad. My mum also pitches in to sew the handmade bags with our logo. The items you see on our shelves here—cameras, miniature dolls—it’s like a replica of our rooms at home,” says Tan.
Both couples quit their full-time jobs to run Kki and The Little Dröm Store. Seah’s fine reputation as a food and beverage expert, Liau’s past experience as an events coordinator, together with Tan and Wong’s design background in advertising, have all worked together to usher in success for the two shops.