California Pizza Kitchen has moved to a new location at Claymore Connect, and with additions like power bowls and new salads it’s healthier (and tastier) than ever
It’s almost a running joke amongst our friends and family how much my husband and I love California Pizza Kitchen. I have fond memories of sharing pizzas with my friends at the Boston and Harvard Square locations dating all the way back to middle school. When a location opened up in my husband’s hometown during our university days, it was cause for celebration. It was a legitimate selling point for us when we were deciding whether to move to Singapore from our previous expat assignment in Australia. And I can’t even begin to convey how happy it makes me that our 4-year-old now loves it, too (the staff is incredibly child-friendly and the kids’ menu is great).
California Pizza Kitchen (CPK, to those in the know) started in the United States back in the 80s, making a name for itself with fresh, inventive pizzas topped with things like barbecue chicken and Peking duck (not a drop of tomato sauce or grease in sight!). Over the years the menu has expanded to include hearty salads and delicious American-style appetizers (the Spinach and Artichoke Dip is a must! The Avocado Eggrolls are pretty fab, too).
So when I got word that they’d expanded the menu when they moved to a new location in Claymore Connect at the top of Orchard Road (just across the street from their old spot at Forum, and right downstairs from our co-working space, Trehaus!!!), I of course had to check it out right away.
A new addition to the apps menu is Spicy Buffalo Cauliflower, fried and then topped with Sriracha Buffalo Sauce along with celery and cilantro (on balance the cauliflower must have some healthy points, right?). All I can say is that this dish disappeared real quick; if you want your kiddos to eat their veggies and they can tolerate a little bit of heat, they will LOVE this.
As aforementioned, CPK actually has a rad selection of salads, which are available in both half and full portions and are truly evocative of “California cuisine” (think avocado, lots of zesty green veggies, and tasty proteins). In addition to classics like the Original BBQ Chicken Chopped Salad and Thai Crunch, they’ve also added a Kale Caesar and jumped on the Poké train with a succulent Poké Chop Chop featuring marinated fresh tuna, baby bok choy greens, spicy kimchi pears, fresh arugula, cucumber and cilantro. Totally hearty and wholesome, and 100% guilt-free, mamas!
Speaking of guilt-free, could I be any more excited about CPK’s new power bowls? No, the answer is, I could not. The Banh Mi Power Bowl comes in at under 650 calories, and features a colourful blend of quinoa, baby kale, grilled chicken, radishes, avocado, cucumbers, carrots, bean sprouts, and sesame seeds, all tossed with a spicy housemade dressing. It was a HUGE portion for lunch and I couldn’t get enough of all the yummy veggies (I find a lot of bowl places sometimes go a bit too heavy on the starchy fillers). There’s also a Santa Fe Power Bowl if you like black beans, corn, and poblano peppers, or you can make your own bowl by choosing your preferred veggies, toppings, protein and dressing. I have a feeling this is going to become a weekly post-team-meeting ritual!
Of course, I couldn’t write a love letter to CPK without at least mentioning their awesome pizzas. The Peking Duck – topped with juicy duck slices, hoisin sauce, scallions and crispy wontons – is my favorite pizza in the whole world. CPK’s crust is soft and slightly doughy (just how I like it), though they also offer a crispy thin crust option. My colleagues gave two thumbs up to the new Sicilian, a more traditional style pie topped with pepperoni, Mozzarella, Parmesan and fresh herbs. If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, you could always try the Philly Cheesesteak or the Sunny Side Up Bacon + Potato.
Definitely take advantage of their current $12 Hot Lunch Hour promotion, which features any of four CPK classic pizzas (Original BBQ Chicken, Mushroom Pepperoni & Sausage, Untraditional Cheese, and California Veggie) for just $12++. That is a deal, mamas! It’s valid daily from 11:30am to 12:30pm, dine-in only, and is limited to a maximum of two pizzas per table.
Like any good American restaurant, CPK’s menu is pretty massive, so if you’re feeling more like pasta, steak or salmon they’ve got you covered. For my money, though, the pizzas and salads are where it’s at. And it’s truly one of my favorite kid-friendly restaurants in Singapore, not only because my daughter loves both their pizzas and pastas (spaghetti can come plain or with meatballs, and the kitchen turns it out in about two minutes flat), but also because the kids’ menu is a mini-colouring book with word games and mazes that comes with crayons to keep kiddos entertained. We eat there A LOT and service is consistently fast, friendly and attentive (which is so not a given in Singapore). They also offer delivery through both Deliveroo and FoodPanda.
CPK isn’t the fanciest restaurant, or the cheapest (pizzas and mains range from $20-$30, and salads average about $20), but it’s outstanding value (trust me mama, you WILL be bringing leftovers home) and the tasty food and great service keep us coming back again and again.
California Pizza Kitchen, 442 Orchard Road, #01-18 Claymore Connect, Singapore 238879, Tel: (+65) 6836 0110, www.cpkgps.com