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    HomeLifestyleFood & DrinksFood Review: TTDI’s Common Man Night Shift Restaurant Is Uncommonly Dope!

    Food Review: TTDI’s Common Man Night Shift Restaurant Is Uncommonly Dope!

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    Looking for a spot to chill and savour good food after sundown? We’ve got just the spot for you! Common Man Coffee Roasters or CMCR, was founded in Singapore and has now made its way to Malaysia. Located at Plaza VADS, TTDI, this cafe is where you go to for good coffee and perfectly-baked goods. The spacious establishment has beautifully-designed surroundings and a coffee bar counter as its focal point (CMCR is serious about coffee!).

    The spot has a cosy but slightly upscale cafe-style ambience, making it photogenic from the moment you walk in thanks to clever combinations of wooden parts, patterned cushion seats and pillows, dark colours, geometric metal equipment, and a touch of greenery at the entrance. But CMCR regularly transforms into more than just a regular spot for coffee. Because when the sun goes down, a major shift takes place.

    In the evening, Common Man Coffee Roasters transforms into Common Man Night Shift. This place is home to an ensemble of elegant and delightful dishes that are inspired by classic Italian flavours made with a Japanese flair and a touch of Middle-Eastern freshness.

    Their menu entices guests with a variety of exciting dishes – and we got a chance to try it for ourselves (it was absolutely worth it). Read on to know what we think. 

    We kicked things off with the freshly-made Green Hummus served with freshly baked sourdough flatbread. The Green Hummus is a blend of smooth and creamy chickpea that has a local twist with flavours lead by laksa leaves and coriander. Although it contains local elements, the hummus flavour was still mild. What’s impressive is the spread of pomegranates on the hummus. You get this sweet, citrusy burst in every bite. The sourdough flatbread was super soft and paired so well with the hummus. Even if you’re not much of a veggie person, you don’t have to worry much, because this hummus still makes an ideal meal. 

    Next, we tried the Panzanella, a classic Italian tomato salad with a twist, loaded with fresh basil and chives, topped with candied peanut and sesame brittle as well as croutons. During the food tasting, someone mentioned that the tomatoes tasted like apples! Well, they weren’t wrong about it! We really enjoyed the tomatoes, especially as they weren’t overly sour, but had a hint of sweetness and a light, crunchy feeling. There are also bits of croutons, giving that crunch in every bite. The salad is tossed in a tangy mustard dressing and we loved how it gave so much flavour to a bowl full of veggies. 

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    Another salad we had was the Grilled Vegetable Salad. Flash-grilled to perfection, the flavours and crisp textures of the vegetables were accentuated with a beautiful orange miso and briny anchovy cream dressing for that contrast of sweet and umami notes. This dish highlights the versatility of vegetables, particularly the courgette, which is typically eaten raw in Asia. You can find courgette, roma tomatoes, avocado, baby romaine lettuce, soft boiled egg, parmesan crisp, orange miso sauce and anchovy cream. Even if you’re not so much of a veggie person, you would still enjoy this meal. However, we felt the courgette could have been slightly softer. But other than that, the entire dish was good. 

    Moving on to the mains. We had two mains, which were Chicken Karaage and two types of pizzas. The chicken karaage is a signature here, and it comprises a slow-marinated chicken thigh which is fried to perfection, served with a zingy kimchi mayo dip. Even when biting into it, we could hear the “crunch” sounds. Crispy on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside, the chicken was to die for. In fact, it was one of our favourites. The sauce was also good. It gave that zing to the chicken. 

    What’s a night without pizzas? Handcrafted to perfection using only the best ingredients, including a 161-year-old starter, each slice of pizza here embodies the perfect balance of crispy and airy, with a slightly chewy crust. There are 6 types of pizzas served, but we got to try two flavours: Umami Magic and The Lazy Brunch. Umami Magic is a pizza topped with a mushroom medley of oyster and shimeiji, creaminess from ricotta and mozzarella, richness from the poached egg, topped with ma la chilli crisps for that touch of aromatic spice. Even though there are ma la chilli crisps, this pizza isn’t really spicy. We loved how the mushrooms and oysters were super crunchy. The best way to eat them is to cut open the poached eggs and spread them on the pizza. It was definitely a flavourful pizza. Another must-try is The Lazy Brunch, a meaty pizza which promises to be a firm favourite with its timeless flavour combination – tomato sauce, housemade chicken fennel sausage, creamy mozzarella and parmesan, red onions and Spanish guindilla chillies, packing a strong flavour punch. 

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    The next dish we had can be ordered as an appetizer or even as a hearty dessert. Cut into the flaky puff pastry, and indulge in a luxurious filling of duck mince, foie gras, and black truffles, served with a fruity burnt apple puree, sweet and umami orange miso sauce, along with a side of arugula and fennel salad. We absolutely loved the Duck & Foie Gras Pie. Perfectly baked, the duck meat was so tender and flavourful. It has this sweet-savoury taste that’s a perfect way to end a meal or even start one. 

    Last, but not least, desserts. Of course, our eyes were sparkling because there’s not just one, but two types of desserts to indulge in. We started with the Okinawa Black Sugar Tiramisu. Definitely a tiramisu that caught us by surprise. This dessert has an interesting take on the Italian classic. Featuring savoiardi (ladies finger) dipped in Hojicha (Japanese green tea) and served with Okinawa Black sugar and soy sauce caramel, this tiramisu features a creamy and sweet taste with hints of saltiness. But just be careful not to pour the entire soy sauce caramel on, as it can get too salty. 

    Another dessert, which was our favourite, was the Yuzu Cheesecake. A creamy and rich cheesecake spiked with yuzu flavours and served with an earthy herb oil, there’s nothing more heavenly than this. Yuzu can be a bit overwhelming sometimes, but we loved how the flavour was so balanced, adding the right amount of zing to the entire dish. The cheesecake itself was cold, soft and extremely creamy. 

    We still couldn’t get enough of sweetness, so we decided to try their Iced Chocolate. Hot or cold, the beverage is a must-try here, besides their coffee. Super rich and milky, the iced chocolate had the right amount of sweetness and made a good pair for our food tasting session.

    Natural Wines

    On a wine budget? Not to worry!

    Common Man Night Shift’s extensive list of natural wines, starting from just RM150 a bottle, is thoughtfully curated to pair beautifully with the menu. With a diverse range of flavours and specially-curated taste profiles, there is a natural wine to suit everyone. From fresh and easy drinking, to robust, bold and earthy notes, there will always be something new and exciting to explore. 

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    All wines are ethically sourced from small-batch producers that are dedicated to the au naturel philosophy of “nothing added, nothing taken away”. Common Man Night Shift promises a fun, tasty and unintimidating adventure with loads to choose from, based on personal preference perfect for both natural wine enthusiasts and freshies. Staying true to the ethos of making natural wines more accessible, Common Man Night Shift offers a strong selection of wines by the glass at RM35 to RM45; or you could opt for a flight of 3 glasses at RM119 for a casual yet exciting session of natural wine exploration. The flights can include off menu labels – there’s something new and fun for everyone with every visit. 

    The wide selection of natural wines by the glass gives customers the freedom to choose and experiment without investing in a full bottle, while allowing the team to better ascertain their wine preference. Furthermore, debunking the myth that natural wine nights are expensive, most of Common Man Night Shift’s wine programmes are priced affordably, with a majority of the wines being priced below RM300.

    We loved everything about this cafe. The food and the ambience made our time enjoyable and we’ll definitely head back for more. With uncommon brews extending through the night, Common Man Night Shift is set to tantalize with its carefully-curated list of natural wines, and a bevy of delicious dishes.

    Common Man Night Shift opens daily, from 5.30pm to 10.30pm (last orders at 10pm).

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