Heading to an out of the way restaurant for a good meal in Singapore might seem like a strange thing to do given how much good food is likely to be around your own little neighbourhood. But hail that Grab, or get your own car out for a spin and you’ll probably find these out of the way restaurants worth the trip (and fare). These six establishments promise Singapore’s own brand of destination dining (an hour car ride at most) with a great ambience and view. Our suggestion: visit in the evenings when it’s a little cooler to enjoy the breeze as you people watch.
For a different setting away from town, consider driving to Coriander Leaf at Singapore Polo Club. There you can choose to dine indoors, or on the outdoor verandah overlooking the verdant polo field. The two-decade-old Coriander Leaf Group launched its second restaurant at this Mount Pleasant Road location in March this year.
The menu showcases Asian flavours spanning East, South, Southeast and Western Asia. Diners can savour signatures from Coriander Leaf’s flagship restaurant at Chijmes as well as exclusive new creations. To devise the menu, founder and culinary director Samia Ahad worked closely with group executive chef Iskander Latiff, who took inspiration from his Peranakan and Malay heritage and travels through Asia.
Tuck into items such as Cambodian Beef Salad composed of citrus cured organic beef tenderloin elevated with fresh sawtooth coriander, mint, Thai basil, chillies and toasted rice. For something substantial, go for the wagyu beef rib rendang, served on the bone, and paired with a salad of ginger flower, lime leaf and ulam raja alongside turmeric saffron sticky rice. Or Samia’s signature Chicken Haleem – slow cooked chicken, dal, bulghur wheat and garam masala, served with naan. Exclusive to this outlet is the Nonya Assam Seabass perked up with aromatic ginger flower and sourish belimbing, and partnered with fried eggplant and okra. Equally robust is the Burmese Khao Suey comprising noodles bathed in chicken broth. The dish perfumed with galangal, lemongrass and coconut milk is topped with fried noodles and coriander. End the meal with the decadent Spiced Valrhona Lava Cake served with teh tarik ice cream.
The extensive bar programme unique to this outlet showcases housemade Asian flavoured infusions, syrups and spiced salts. The list also features Asian distillers, highlighting Singapore produced gins, Thai and Cambodian rums and vodkas and whiskies from India.
The restaurant is open to the public for dinner from Tuesdays to Fridays. Guests can enjoy a full view of polo practice sessions, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4.30pm to 6.30pm.
80 Mount Pleasant Rd, Singapore 298334
Another place to dine amid lush greenery is at Dusit Thani Laguna Singapore, which has direct access to Laguna National Golf Resort Club, home to two championship golf courses. Its all-day dining Greenhouse restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows offers an unobstructed view of the verdant surroundings.
The restaurant is anchored by five show kitchens offering Thai, Yue (Cantonese), Punjabi Tandoor, Mediterranean and Nikkei cuisines. Tuck into Thai flavours such as green curry with chicken, eggplant and basil, or steamed barramundi fillet scattered with spicy green chilli, garlic and lime sauce or Northern Indian meat skewers like Murgh Malai Kebab (chicken) and Seekh Kebab (mince lamb). Other dishes in the menu include dry aged steaks, sustainable seafood and apple wood fired pizzas.
After dinner, relax at Legends Bar which offers a line-up of cocktails inspired by golfing greats. Try the Daly Smash, a gin-based drink with fresh lime, spiked with chili padi tincture and finished with pink peppercorn salt rim and basil. Pair your drinks with bar bites like deep-fried chicken wings with lime leaf and fish sauce, or Moo Ping, a favourite Thai street food of savoury marinated pork skewers. The Legends Beef Sliders comes with grilled patties of ground wagyu brisket, aged cheddar cheese, caramelised onions, grilled bacon, and green tomato relish on a fluffy charcoal brioche bun.
11 Laguna Golf Green, Singapore 488047
Resorts World Sentosa has unveiled its newest restaurant, Curate Cucina Pisana, which presents an authentic dining journey through the charming province of Pisa. Head to Level 1 of The Forum at RWS for a range of Tuscan specialities prepared by Pisan native Chef de Cuisine Davide Bizzarri. The menu features traditional Pisan recipes that have been passed down through generations in Chef Davide’s family and perfected through his own philosophy and interpretation.
What’s interesting is that diners will get to experience seasonal and artisanal ingredients imported from boutique Pisan producers. For instance, white truffle, Bianchetto truffle and summer truffle, sourced from the three-generational family-owned Savini Tartufi farm, olive oil from the Pisan mountains, Tuscan cured meats and cheeses from the town of Volterra.
Start with an antipasti of Stracciatella cheese with vine ripened tomatoes and and fresh basil, accompanied by white clams and mussels stewed in pescatora sauce. For your carb-fix, try the more unusual Gigli – a lily flower-shaped pasta dish cooked in a saffron sauce with cured cod fish ‘Baccala’, chickpeas cream, rosemary and oven-dried tomatoes. Diners can also try traditional pasta from Martelli, a family-run pasta business located in Lari, a small medieval village near Pisa. Slurp up the Martelli spaghetti pasta served in potato cream sauce, with white clams, candied lemon, Leccino olives and parsley. Mains-wise, go for the rack of premium venison served in a shallot sauce laced with a reduction of San Giovese red wine.
Before heading back to town, round off with the Pisan dessert of Torta co’ Bischeri, a rich dark chocolate and risotto cake filled with raisins, pine nuts and candied fruits or Chianti wine poached pear with panna cotta filling.
26 Sentosa Gateway The Forum, #01-231 & 232, Singapore 098138
Another newish place to consider at Sentosa is Bedrock Origin at Oasia Resort Sentosa Hotel. Highlights here are the dry-aged steaks cooked over applewood fire grill. However, there are plenty other dishes to be had including seafood such as the kingfish sashimi with brown rice puff and ceviche soy dressing. Or aged Kühlbarra Barramundi Tail uplifted with chilli, herbs and a squeeze of lemon. Complement your meal with the signature Bedrock Mac ‘N’ Cheese or house specialty of Beef Fat Fried Rice, which is given a wholesome twist with brown rice and barley. Finish with the Bedrock Crumble composed of Granny Smith apples topped with walnut streusel and a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Sip a pre-dinner whisky-based cocktail created in collaboration with Woodford Reserve. Or ask the sommelier to recommend a whisky sourced from around the world. Find out more about the rare and special spirits made by boutique family distillers in remote places, and premium whiskies including limited edition labels like the Woodford Reserve ‘Master Collection Very Rare Fine Bourbon’.
23 Beach View, Palawan Ridge, 01-02, Oasia Resort Sentosa Hotel, Singapore 098679
Dine amid sprawling greenery at Bee’s Knees Petite, tucked away in Botanic Gardens’ Gallop Extension. This spot is within walking distance to the Botanical Art Gallery, the COMO Adventure Grove and other new attractions in the gardens. You can choose to dine indoors which offers an all-day dining menu or pick the grab & go items.
Bestsellers include Pinche Chicken Sandwich filled with smoke chicken breast, charred baby corn, avocado, and Jalapeno mayonnaise; Oriental Salad, a mix of smoked duck breast with couscous, wolfberries, tomatoes and spicy plum sauce; and Beef Cheek Bolognese. Finish off with Fluffernutter in a Jar comprising charcoal cookie crumbs, chocolate sponge and hazelnut praline, or Macadamia Brown Butter Blondie with brown butter filling and white chocolate glaze. Pick a coffee, kombucha or mix berry smoothie before you head out to the gardens for a stroll. There are plenty of sweet pastries and savoury pies to munch on too. The outlet is designed to be kid-friendly with kids breakfast and lunch set.
If you want to have a picnic outside, Bee’s Keens Petite offers picnic boxes which comes with your choice of sandwiches, salads, pastas, and drinks. The cute boxes come with take-home picnic mats. For more options, you can make your way to the original Bee’s Knees at The Garage, also in Singapore Botanic Gardens.
9 Gallop Rd, Singapore 259014
The much anticipated French restaurant by top chef Julien Royer opens this November. Located in the former White Rabbit address, this space has gone through a major revamp. Aside from the main dining hall and sizeable open kitchen, there’s a private dining room for eight persons. The old chapel’s beautiful stained glass and mosaic flooring have been carefully preserved.
The a la carte menu is extensive and eclectic. Diners can expect to savour traditional family recipes from the chef’s mother, Claudine. Signatures from the Cantal region include truffade, sauteed potatoes with Cantal cheese and garlic, or chou farci, a rustic dish of stuffed cabbage with pork. Aside from homespun regional creations from France, there will be a range of creations that Royer usually cooks for friends and loved ones. According to him, Claudine is all about offering an experience that is both convivial and generous.
Other French classics to look forward to include steak flambee au poire, steak tartare, homemade charcuterie, torchon foie gras, and a hearty bouillabaisse with fish, scallops, prawns and potatoes, with a side of rouille. There may also be some surprises like pasta with uni. End your meal with tarte soufflee au chocolat and a tipple from the stylish bar.
39C Harding Rd, Singapore 249541
Text: Rui Ying/The Peak