New Year, New Food
With the arrival of 2016 comes the obligation to make some new year resolutions. Pro tip: set some realistic expectations. Rather than throwing your resolution to get washboard abs out the window within a week into the new year, why not set a more achievable one: Eat happy!
This month, we’re talking meat binges, one of the best coffeeshops in the world according to Buzzfeed, Korean-Mexican food, and more - here’s our monthly guide to the newest cafes and restaurants in town.
- New Cafes -
1. The Plain Jane
Nothing screams cosy heartland cafe like good ol’ old school bakes. The folks behind the Rich And Good Cake Shop bring you The Plain Jane, serving up fresh bakes and savoury plates.
The star of the show, though, has got to be their signature Swiss Rolls ($4.90) - fluffy, creamy, rich, downright decadent. There’s Earl Grey, Matcha, Thai Milk Tea, Raspberry, you name it!
Address: Blk 211, Serangoon Ave 4, #01-10, S550211
Opening Hours: Thurs - Tues 10am - 10pm, closed Wednesdays
2. Mr Churro
Holla at ya if you’re a fan of dipping your fries into your McFlurry - but freshly made hot churros dipped in decadently creamy soft serve is a whole new level of magnificence.
An artisanal churros kiosk, Mr Churro offers all styles of churros fried to crispy brown perfection - crunchy on the outside, fluffy on the inside. Think these things of beauty paired with banana milk soft-serve ice cream ($6.50) to 50cm long churros ($4.50).
Address: Orchard ION, 2 Orchard Turn, #B4-61, S238801
Opening Hours: 10am - 10pm daily
3. Ice Lab
There are Korean bingsu cafes, Korean churro cafes… and then there’s Ice Lab, the brainchild of Korean Comedian Shin Jung Hwan, giving you the best of both worlds if you can’t decide between the two.
In this immaculately white cafe run by (good-looking!) service crew clad in white lab coats, choose from 6 flavours of bingsu (from $15.30) such as green tea or mango, generously crowned with toppings. While you’re at it, satisfy your Churros ($4.30) craving, with your choice of dip ($1.20 each) - we recommend white chocolate or cream cheese!
Address: Orchard Shopping Centre, 321 Orchard Road, #01-01/02, S238866
Opening Hours: Mon-Thurs 9.30am - 10.30pm | Fri 9.30am - 11pm | Sat 10am - 11pm | Sun 10am - 11pm (Closing time extended to 1am every day until 31 Jan 2016)
4. Sweet Monster
Korean desserts joints are like buses - you wait ages for one, and then multiple turn up in short order. But as far as these goodies are concerned, the more the merrier, so nobody’s complaining!
Originating from Korea, Sweet Monster’s gourmet popcorn and ice cream concoction is bound to satisfy any sweet tooth - crunchy goodness speckled atop rich, milky soft serve ice cream. The Cheese and Caramel Monster Popcorn with Vanilla Soft-Serve ($6.80) is a crowd favourite - and ours as well!
Address: Plaza Singapura, 68 Orchard Road, #B2-49, S238839 / Bugis Junction, 200 Victoria Street, #M01-K1, S188021
Opening Hours: Plaza Singapura: 10am-10pm daily | Bugis Junction: Sun-Thurs: 10am-10pm | Fri-Sat:10am-11pm
5. Smoothie House
With a plethora of cafes serving iced desserts popping up all over Singapore, another wondrous rendition won't go wrong.
Famous for its snowflake ice desserts, Taiwan’s Smoothie House has been pulling in the punters ever since it made a new home in Singapore. And once you’ve tried their lusciously fluffy snow ice, you’ll understand why. Go for their signature and best-selling Mango Snowflake Ice with Panna Cotta ($12.90)!
Address: One Raffles Place, #03-25, S048616 / Paya Lebar Square, 60 Paya Lebar Road, #02-15/16/17, S409051
Opening Hours: One Raffles Place: Mon-Sat: 11am - 9pm, closed Sundays | Paya Lebar Square: 11am - 10pm daily
Tel: 6532 1025 (One Raffles Place) | 6702 2221 (Paya Lebar Square)
6. A.R.C Coffee
If you’re even a smidgen of a coffee addict, you're in for a treat at A.R.C. Coffee, an Academy, Roastery, and Cafe-in-one. Brewed by award-winning baristas Andrea Tan and John Ryan Ting, champions of the Singapore National Brewers Cup 2015 and Singapore National Barista Championships 2015 respectively, it’ll be a cuppa prepared by a winner, for a winner.
While you’re there, you can sign yourself up for a latte art or coffee appreciation workshop as well!
Address: 29/31 Sultan Gate, S198477
Opening Hours: Tues-Fri: 11.30am - 9.30pm | Sat-Sun 10.30am - 9.30pm | Closed Mondays
Tel: 6291 6863
7. The Coffee Academics
Hailing from Hong Kong, The Coffee Academics has enjoyed much praise, having been voted as one of the best coffee shops in the world by The Telegraph, Vogue, Buzzfeed, and the like.
These folks take not only their coffee, but their food seriously too. Try their Scrambled Eggs and Crayfish ($23), served on sourdough bread and paired with caviar, or the Academics Pancake Tower with Berry Sorbet ($19), the definition of a perfect pancake stack.
Address: Scotts Square, 6 Scotts Road, #02-01/02, S228209
Opening Hours: 9am - 9pm daily
8. Joe & The Juice
Step aside, orange juice, all that basic jazz has got to make way for Joe & The Juice and their interesting juice mixes ($6.90 for 12Oz, $8.90 for 16Oz).
There’s something for every occasion - Hangover Heaven (orange, elderflower, mint) for one of those days, or a cheeky Sex Me Up (passionfruit, apple, ginger). Yeah, every occasion ;)
Address: Chevron House, 30 Raffles Place, #01-35A, S048622
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri: 8am - 8pm | Sat: 11am - 3pm | Closed Sundays
Tel: 6221 2126
9. Fabulous Dough
You cannot not Instagram this bad boy - just look at it!
Take your pick from an array of freshly made doughnuts ($5.50) with a unique mesh of flavours such as Apple Berry Cream Cheese or Bandung with Chai Latte Cream. Or go crazy pimping your own dough - yes, you can actually do that!
Address: PoMo, 1 Selegie Road, #02-25, S188306
Opening Hours: Sun-Thurs: 11am - 10pm | Fri-Sat: 11am - 12am
Tel: 9833 1790
10. Blocs Inc.
Previously known as Kaldi’s Berry at China Square, Blocs Inc. is freshly revved up in a new space with a new menu.
Get creative and build your own toast (from $9.40) - you get to choose everything, from a cinnamon or butter toast base to your choice of sauce and ice cream.
Address: Paya Lebar Square, 60 Paya Lebar Road, #01-71, S409051
Opening Hours: 8.30am - 10pm daily
Tel: 6385 6449
With its woody interior lined with fairy lights and potted plants, Dose! is a homey cafe serving simple teatime treats such as cakes, waffles and savoury bakes, and is the perfect place to get your caffeine Dose!
Expect blends from Blacklist Coffee Roasters in Australia, as well as the Etude blend, a mix of Kenyan, Brazilian and Ethiopian beans that give their coffees a pleasantly nuttier profile. Itching for a flat white ($6) yet?
Address: 139 Tyrwhitt Road, #01-03, S207557
Opening Hours: Wed-Mon: 11am - 9pm | Closed Tuesdays
- New Restaurants -
Pine-smoked 55° Organic Egg with Forgotten Vegetables, Patrick Duler Pancetta and Burgundy Truffle Source
With Chef Julian Royer, the ex-head chef of 11th in Asia’s top restaurants JAAN, helming Odette’s kitchen at the National Gallery, you can expect no less than exemplary fare. Dat egg tho…… GASP.
Odette’s modern French cuisine promises visual and gastronomic perfection - each dish is thoughtfully put together with only the freshest seasonal produce, promising a harmonious blend of elements blessed by the tears of a thousand angels. Go for the four-course set lunch ($88) on weekdays or the luxurious six-course tasting lunch menu ($128) on weekends; indulge in all sorts of fancy with a six ($208) or eight-course ($268) dinner. This class act is worth the splurge!
Address: National Gallery Singapore, 1 St Andrew’s Road, #01-04, S178957
Opening Hours: Tues-Sat Lunch: 12pm - 1.30pm (last seating) | Mon-Sat: Dinner: 7pm - 9pm (last seating) | Closed Sundays and public holidays
Tel: 6385 0498
13. Vatos Urban Tacos
It was love at first bite with me and my virgin kimchi burrito some years back, after which I was resolutely convinced that Korean and Mexican cuisine are a match made in heaven.
So it’s about time Vatos Urban Tacos, a KoMex restaurant from Seoul, brought their grub to Singapore. Think Galbi Short Rib Tacos ($12), Kimchi Carnitas Fries ($16) and more; wash it down with a classic Margarita or their signature Makgeolitas - Tequila meets Makgeolli (Korean rice wine)!
Address: 36 South Beach Road, S189677
Opening Hours: 11.30am - 11pm Mon-Thurs, 11.30am - 12am Fri-Sat, closed Sundays
Tel: 6385 6010
14. Decker Barbecue
If you’ve ever felt like drowning in shame for ordering the full rack of ribs for 2 - for yourself - then Decker Barbecue’s got your back.
Here, meats are self-service and priced by weight (per 100g), so unleash your inner carnivorous beast! There’s Pulled Pork ($10), Spare Ribs ($19), Brisket ($16), Chicken ($8), Beef ($15), Turkey ($10) as well as sides to go with. You’ll be rolling out the door immensely satisfied at the end of your meal.
Address: The Quayside, 60 Robertson Quay, S238252
Opening Hours: Tues-Sat: 6pm - 11pm, | Closed Mondays
15. South Bronx
This bangin’ burger shack will have you throwing your new year beach bod resolution out the window. Treat yo’self to a Mac Daddy ($16), Jalapeño Mac & Cheese with a juicy beef patty, or a Sir Spam A Lot ($15), a pleasing spam burger. Have I also mentioned they’ve got an extensive craft beer menu? Go wild!
Address: PoMo, 1 Selegie Road, #01-02, S188306
Opening Hours: Sun-Thurs: 11am - 10pm | Fri-Sat: 11am - 12am
Tel: 9833 1790
16. The Chicken King
It’s hard enough resisting fried chicken, and pairing it with waffles and salted egg sauce will push anyone off the edge.
Serving fried chicken with winning tze char twists, try their Buttermilk Chicken Waffles with Salted Egg Sauce ($13), as well as Har Cheong Kai (prawn paste chicken) or Orh Nee (yam paste) dips to go with your chicken or fries. The chef’s eponymous Signature Steven Fried Chicken ($5 for 4 pcs), marinated in their special sauce to perfection, is also a must-try.
Address: Blk 190, Toa Payoh Central, #01-530, S310190
Opening Hours: 11.30am-9pm daily
Tel: 9191 8268
17. PasarBella @ Suntec
Channeling some real NYC Lower East Side vibes with its colorful graffiti walls and whimsical furniture, this new branch of PasarBella features 14 gourmet stall concepts.
There's mouthwatering yakitori skewers from Grillo or a meaty bad boy from Wolf Burgers for the carnivores; the health nuts can pimp their own salads with - you guessed it - Pimp My Salad. You’ll also spot familiar names such as Rollie Ollie serving up their sushi rolls and Sarnies brewing their signature coffee.
Address: Suntec City (North Wing), 3 Temasek Boulevard, #01-455/461, S038983
Opening Hours: 10am - 10pm daily
18. New Rasa Singapura
If you need any more reason to pig out, let this be it. New Rasa Singapura is more than a restaurant, but also a social enterprise that provides employment to people in need, including the physically impaired as well as mature and out-of-work individuals. You’ll be eating for a cause!
Get your hands dirty with the New Rasa Chicken Wings ($12 for 6 pcs, $20 for 12 pcs), a crowd pleaser. Also expect classic local favourites such as Char Kuey Teow ($12) as well as fusion dishes like Beef Rendang Pasta ($14).
Address: Tanglin Post Office, 56 Tanglin Road, #B1-02, S247964
Opening Hours: Wed-Mon: 12pm - 10pm | Closed Tuesdays
Tel: 9818 8102
Pig’s head - believe it or not! Source
Here’s one for you curious foodies - Dehesa offers inventive nose-to-tail dining in all its succulent glory, bringing not only classic cuts of meat but also alternative selections and offal to your dinner plate.
Tuck into a moreish Sauteed Duck Hearts On Toast ($10) or a robustly-flavoured serving of Octopus Wrapped In Lardo ($28). You can expect a truly one-of-a-kind gastronomic experience!
Address: 12 North Canal Road, S048825
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri Lunch: 11.30am - 2.30pm | Mon-Sat Dinner: 5.30pm - late | Closed Sundays
Tel: 6221 7790
20. Fat Saigon Boy
This contemporary Australian-Vietnamese joint is pho real - you won’t regret a steaming bowl of Pho Bo ($13) with tender beef slices and rare beef or a hearty bowl of rice topped with BBQ Lemongrass Pork ($14). Not forgetting some Vietnamese rice paper rolls on the side!
Address: 14 Ann Siang Road, S069694
Opening Hours: Mon: 11am - 2.30pm | Tues-Sun: 11am - 2.30pm & 6pm - 10pm
Tel: 6221 6784
Start the new year right
2016 is a great time to be alive for meat lovers, coffee lovers, dessert lovers… And for the human species in general. Brace yourself for one heck of an amazing year ahead - for your tummy too! After all, they say a good start is half the battle, so you know what to do, friends!
Happy new year from every one of us at The Smart Local, and here's to a great year of good food!