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Birdy’s is an all-day diner in Upper Thomson. Opened a month ago, it has a day menu that is served until 4pm, followed by an evening dinner menu.
Boasting ingredients that are locally sourced and mostly housemade, the restaurant recommends its Duck Confit Hash ($18 nett), which comes with pimiento peppers, onion, potatoes, poached egg and greens; and Truffle Mushroom Pasta ($18) for brunch.
Other choices for brunch include Shrooms ($14), with forest mushrooms and greens on sourdough; Cheese & Pickles Toastie ($13), comprising goat’s and emmental cheeses, beetroot pickles and wholegrain mustard; and something a bit more substantial in The Works ($19, above), with bacon, chorizo sausage, mushrooms, greens, sourdough and a choice of scrambled, sunny-side-up or poached for the eggs.
The evening menu encourages diners to enjoy the food with a glass of wine. A crowd favourite is the Slow Cooked Pork ($25), which is cooked for 12 hours and topped with kecap manis sauce (sweet dark soya sauce) and served with potatoes cooked in duck fat.
Steak-lovers can go for the Beef Ribeye ($33), a 300g Jacob’s Creek grass-fed ribeye with wild mushroom fricassee and wholegrain mustard. Birdy’s wine list features Old and New World wines, including natural, sustainable and orange wines. There is also a range of craft beers and coffee from Common Man Coffee Roasters.
Where: 215F Upper Thomson Road
Opening hours: 10am to 11pm (Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays), 10am to midnight (Fridays), 8am to midnight (Saturdays) and 8am to 4pm (Sundays)
Restaurant JAG is a fine-dining French restaurant, co-founded by Michelin-starred chef Jeremy Gillon and managing director Anant Tyagi in their first official partnership.
Located in Duxton Road, the restaurant is spread across two floors. Level 1 has seats for 25 and views of the open kitchen, while the lounge and bar on level 2 is outfitted with Chesterfield furniture and has intimate bar seating.
There are various offerings such as a five-course select and 10-course experiential dinner selections, and cocktails and teas showcasing some of the 40 indigenous herbs of the Savoie Mountains in France.
For example, the 5 Expressions menu, available for lunch and dinner, includes canapes and amuse bouche and comprises Hokkaido scallop, foie gras with smoked eel, Brittany turbot and Pyrenees baby lamb.
The 7 Expressions, also known as A Culinary Journey, and The 10 Expressions or A True Gourmand Experience, are the Discovery Degustation dinner options, in which the chefs will cook a meal built around your dietary preferences and inclinations.
On the a la carte lunch menu are starters Brittany foie gras, Hokkaido scallop and main courses such as O’ Connors grass-fed Angus striplion (250g), with baby turnip, daikon, aubepine and beef jus; and Icelandic langoustine with veal tongue, broccolini, spelt, sage and capers ($90++, pictured above).
At the bar, there are more than 200 labels of French and world wines, and sake and cocktails.
Where: 76 Duxton Road
Opening hours: Noon to 2pm and 6 to 10pm daily
Leonadi Ramli is the man behind the Muslim-owned Le Fuse, which serves Sichuan fare, bringing with him 15 years’ experience in the spicy, sweet, sour, peppery and salty cuisine, including working with many acclaimed Chinese Michelin-starred chefs.
Located in Lim Tua Tow Road, off Upper Serangoon Road, the restaurant is also revising its operating hours for weekdays. While it will open earlier for a midday lunch, Fridays will retain its 4pm opening to allow for Friday prayers.
In promoting its Mala Xiang Guo ($12.80+ to $15.80+, pictured above) signature dish, Le Fuse uses the opportunity to tell customers about its use of 100 Sichuan ingredients, especially the peppercorn spice, and even shows diners samples of the ingredient, emphasising the source of spiciness together with Le Fuse’s Sichuan chilli paste.
There is a set lunch menu and a Mala luncheon special, as well as a la carte items such as Fuse Calamari, The Best Minced Chicken Noodles and Sichuan Braised Beef Noodles.
Where: 22 Lim Tua Tow Road
Opening hours: 4 to 10pm (tomorrow and Tuesday; from Nov 7: noon to 2.30pm and 6 to 10pm (Tuesdays to Thursdays), 4 to 10pm (Fridays), noon to 10pm (Saturdays and Sundays)
Located at Suntec City, Fat Chap has a distinctively Asian menu. There are snacks such as crispy pig’s ear and fiery Asian buffalo drumlets and BBQ items like octopus. Bigger plates include the signature oxtail soup.
For something more indulgent, opt for charcoal-grilled Balinese pork ribs or grilled whole fish ($53++, pictured above).
For lunch on weekdays, there are one-bowl dishes like bakmie goreng and 16-grains Japanese rice bowl topped with pickles and onsen egg.
On weekends, dig into sharing platters such as Fisherman’s Catch ($118++ for four) – marinated fish and squid served with sambal belacan, mixed greens and grilled corn.
Where: 01-643 Suntec City Mall East Wing, 3 Temasek Boulevard
Opening hours: 11am to 11pm (Mondays to Thursdays), 11 to 1am (Fridays and Saturdays), 11am to 4pm (Sundays)
In case you haven’t heard, this award-winning Thai Hainanese chicken rice is now in Singapore. Established in 1960 in Bangkok’s Pratunam district, the eatery was awarded a Michelin Bib Gourmand Award in the inaugural Bangkok edition of the Michelin Guide last year.
All kitchen staff of the Singapore outlet – the brand’s first overseas outpost – were trained by Go-Ang founder Sombat Pruekpaiboon at the restaurant in Bangkok.
The chicken is sold as a single portion, half or whole ($32++) and can be eaten with chicken rice or plain rice, gizzard or liver and the housemade chilli sauce. Other dishes include the signature braised pork.
There are also stir-fried vegetables, tofu and omelette, double-boiled soups and desserts, such as steamed tapioca with coconut cream and Thai chendol, all at wallet-friendly prices.
Where: B1-05/06 Nex shopping mall, 23 Serangoon Central
Opening hours: 11am to 10pm daily
Home-grown premium confectionery brand Coco & Frank has just opened its second store, this time in VivoCity, offering all-natural oatmeal and butter cookies that are freshly baked every day.
The oatmeal cookies are flourless and come in seven flavours: macadamia; chocolate chip; double Belgian chocolate chip and nut; double Belgian chocolate; Earl Grey almond; hazelnut cappuccino (pictured above) and strawberry white chocolate.
They are sold in bags of 120 g ($10 to $12) or silver horoscope tins ($20 to $24), with cookies shaped in the 12 signs of the zodiac.
The butter cookies are eggless. Flavours include matcha, strawberry, black sesame, Earl Grey and dark chocolate and they are sold in rainbow tins and thematic tins.
Where: 02-98 VivoCity, 1 Harbourfront Walk
Opening hours: 10am to 10pm daily
Arbora is a new hill-top garden dining concept at Faber Peak Singapore, offering an all-day dining menu by executive chef Kenny Yeo. It has a selection of Western favourites, with some twists in the chef’s creations.
Rack of Lamb ($36++, pictured above) is served with housemade prune sauce instead of mint jelly; and Fisherman’s Stew, a tomato-based seafood broth, includes slow-cooked tender baby abalones.
There are 10 snacks, four salads, 17 mains, five desserts and four kids’ options, with prices ranging from $8.50++ for snacks and $18++ for mains. There are also value sets for two to six people, comprising a main course, snacks and desserts.
Besides Rack of Lamb, other highly recommended dishes by the chef are Wild Mushroom Salad, Braised Beef Cheek and Smoked Duck Mushroom Ragout.
In addition to yummy food, Arbora also offers drinks like fresh-pressed juices, craft beers and botanical-inspired cocktails.
Where: Level 2 Faber Peak Singapore, 109 Mount Faber Road
Opening hours: 11am to 11pm daily
The dishes at family owned and run Empress Porridge are inspired by traditional recipes passed down from previous generations and its menu changes slightly each week, based on the fresh ingredients available at the market.
Its Signature Empress Porridge ($4/$5 nett, small/regular, pictured above) is a mixture of brown and white rice, cooked with dried scallops, cuttlefish, dried shrimp, tender pork collar and braised peanuts.
The eatery also serves local favourites such as white/black carrot cake ($2.50) and other dishes (from $5) such as pork trotter bee hoon, prawn paste chicken and lotus leaf glutinous rice and desserts such as tau suan, bubur chacha and pulut hitam.
For people starting their workday, Empress Porridge offers Grab N Go breakfast sets (7.30 to 10am) with a choice of porridge, bee hoon, lotus leaf rice, mee siam, chwee kueh plus chee cheong fun and carrot cake paired with a hot coffee, tea or barley water ($4 a set).
Take-home dinners are also available for up to five people ($8 to $9 a person) and the set comprises three dishes (at least one protein and one vegetable dish), a soup and rice.
Where: 01-15 Galaxis, 1 Fusionopolis Place
Opening hours: 7.30am to 7.30pm (Mondays to Fridays), 8am to 1pm (Saturdays); closed on Sundays and public holidays
After setting up 27 outlets in Japan, Indonesia, Spain, Thailand and Vancouver in four years, Menya Kokoro has opened its first branch in Singapore at Suntec City Mall, where it serves its best-selling signature Maze-Soba.
Its ingredients include Japanese-style slow-braised chashu, minced meat sauce made from a secret recipe, ground saba fish, poached eggs, nori, green onions, leek, bamboo shoots and chopped garlic.
Menya Kokoro says the noodles are cooked for eight minutes and 40 seconds using the chef’s fine-spun techniques to achieve the ideal texture. All noodles are made with multi-grain flour, comprising more than 35 per cent whole wheat. Japanese water-softening technology is used to remove the minerals in the water.
The Maze-Soba dishes (regular: $10.80++ to $13.80++; large: $12.80++ to $15.80++) are available in cheese, curry, vegan and spicy versions.
Two dishes have been specially created for the Singapore outlet. The Maze-Don is a new twist on the traditional Maze-Soba, using Japanese Michelin-acclaimed Tawaraya rice from Hokkaido and Niigata. The rice arrives from Japan in its raw state and is polished only upon order. The other dish is the Curry Maze-Don, a Japanese curry rice bowl topped with grilled chicken.
Where: 03-313 Suntec City Mall (Towers 1 & 2), 3 Temasek Boulevard
Opening hours: 11am to 10pm daily
This casual and modern Teochew restaurant is in Frankel Avenue, an area with a number of popular cafes and restaurants. Shao serves contemporary Chinese dishes centred on roast and barbeque items.
One standout dish is the barbecue yellow roe crab – Shao says it serves only double shell crab with yellow roe. Crabs are $45 to $60 each (450g to 600g).
Other signature dishes include barbecue squid in classic Japanese style, Teochew claypot seafood porridge, yellow roe crab porridge, steamed cod fish in Teochew style and roast items, which include roast pork belly and roast duck or both in a platter.
Other seafood dishes are white bee hoon crab, steamed lala clams, pan-fried salmon with wasabi sauce and barbecue king prawns. Items requiring pre-orders are crispy roast suckling pig, steamed bamboo clam and marinated chilled roe crab. There are also rice, noodle and vegetable dishes, soups, appetisers such as salted egg yolk yam and black pepper smoked duck.
Meat dishes include beef, lamb chop and pan-fried black pork, while desserts include yam paste (orh nee).
Where: 117 Frankel Avenue
Opening hours: 11am to 3pm, 5 to 11pm daily
Chef-owner Benjamin Tilatti’s globetrotting ignited his passion for food and cooking. The restaurant-bar on the first level of the four-in-one concept space features a menu inspired by international cuisine and is designed for sharing.
For starters, Bone To Be Wild is buttery roasted beef marrow on the bone with sourdough toast and pickled greens, served with a shot of Tennessee whiskey through the bone. Another starter to try is Kinou Prawning Spot with prawns simmered in garlic oil.
Kinou, Lost In Peru features the catch of the day; Chompchae Deopbap comprises Korean spicy tuna and rice; Kinou Signature Beef Tartar is made with black Angus tenderloin; and the Vegan Nightmare Platter comes with favourites such as wagyu ribeye, magret duck breast, wagyu and lamb merguez sausages, Kinou’s Signature Burger and mixed salad.
If you fancy dishes with catchy names, go for Tuna On The 14th Of February ($27++, pictured above), Do Not Argue With The Wagyu, A Wallop Of A Scallop and Wile E. Coyote’s Favourite Dish of pan-seared magret duck breast seasoned with Sichuan pepper-salt.
Kinou’s thirst quenchers include more than 150 varieties of wine and a large selection of cocktails. The cocktails come with the New York pour of 60 ml – double the typical 30 ml pour.
Where: 81 Tras Street
Opening hours: 11am to midnight (Tuesdays to Fridays), 3pm to midnight (Saturdays)
This concept by Miyagawa Honten, an unagi restaurant in Tokyo with a 125-year history, has just opened its second outlet in Singapore. More items have been added to the menu, two of which are available only at the new Unagiya Ichinoji Dining at Suntec City’s Eat At Seven enclave.
The new place will be the only outlet offering the XL Unagi Bara Chirashi and Unagi Gozen ($46.80++, pictured above). It also has the original Hitsumabushi, which is available at the Riverside View restaurant.
XL Unagi Bara Chirashi comprises tuna, salmon, yellow tail, scallop, takuan (radish), cucumber, egg, seaweed and the restaurant’s signature grilled eel.
Unagi Gozen comes with unagi, A1-grade Hokkaido wagyu beef, braised Iberico pork belly, tempura prawn, tempura pumpkin, sashimi tuna, yellow tail and ikura, soup and warabi mochi for dessert.
The original Hitsumabushi, a signature dish served at Miyagawa’s outlets in Japan, is Nagoya’s style of cooking eel, and you eat it by first dividing the bowl into four portions:
The first portion is eaten on its own, while the second part of the Hokkaido rice and eel is eaten with nori (seaweed), wasabi, green onion and mentaiko (spicy cod roe). For the third portion, add clear dashi to the mix. The final portion can be enjoyed any way you like.
Customers can also pair the dishes with two housemade unagi sauces. The Japanese unagi sauce is made with a higher shoyu content and has a saltier and more robust note. Specially tailored to the local palate, the Singapore unagi sauce has a sweeter note.
Where: 03-307 Sky Garden Suntec City, 3 Temasek Boulevard
Opening hours: 11.30am to 3pm, 5.30 to 10pm daily
Text: Ronald Kow, The Straits Times