The Ultimate Guide To 38 Of The Best Cafes In The East Worth Visiting
Chock Full Of Beans
If nothing else, this cute cafe’s 3D latte art alone warrants a visit. Not to say that the food won’t tempt you — its Eggs Benedict is topped with rich Hollandaise sauce that marries the perfectly poached eggs and thick crusty homemade toast perfectly. Not a coffee person? Kick back with a pint or two at the alfresco dining area with some cheesy nacho fries.
At #01-2090, 4 Changi Village Rd, Singapore 500004.
Singaporeans stepping into Sinpopo Brand will be filled with a sense of nostalgia as it is fitted out in a retro theme with familiar-yet-different food dishes. For expats, it’s a welcome curiosity, even more so once diners have browsed through the menu — locally-inspired fare like Sinpopo Sliced Wagyu Horfun to sinfully rich beverages such as Kopi Affogato and Horlicks & Maltesers.
Yes, Forty Hands is not quite unknown nor hidden, but its latest cafe (opened in May 2018 as its only second outlet in SG, after eight years) occupies a former chicken rice shop along East Coast Road is new and hence, can be considered somewhat hidden from the general public — for now that is.
Given how its signature roasted cuppas and tau sar pau (steamed buns with red bean paste filling) are available here too, plus the added attraction of smashed avocado on toast and har cheong gai (shrimp paste chicken) waffles, will surely make this the go-to-cafe on the East side.
What began as a collective events space still holds the same beliefs — that the best form of nourishment is forging relationships. And second-best? At this tucked-away cafe reminiscent of a cosy Brooklyn roost, dig into comfort food like Crispy French Toast (pictured; available on weekends), Pumpkin Pancakes, and more.
#01-11 Katong V, 30 East Coast Rd, Singapore 428751.
While this is more of a gelato shop rather than a cafe, we have to give this place a shout out. The ice cream is made with natural botanical flavours like Strawberry Basil or Pandan, and they taste delicious. The interior is also extremely pretty and will provide a gorgeous backdrop for your Instagram snaps.
An artisanal cafe born out of a love of coffee discovered in London, you can’t justify not getting yourself a cuppa while you’re here. For the adventurous, try the Gula Melaka affogato — along with specialist cakes and breads freshly made by local bakers, healthy brunch fare, or not-so-healthy ones like the eponymous Penny Mac and Cheese. Tip: It’s also halal!
Head here for TCS’ versions of local fare. For mains, take on its fiery XO Prawn Aglio Olio, add one a side of sweet potato fries sprinkled with parmesan shavings and end the meal with a scoop gelato or ice cream (choose from durian, peanut butter & jelly and more) served in a wafer bowl.
Here, desserts and even mains like pastas are served in adorable mason jars. A favourite: the Bulbous Oriental, spaghetti tossed with in-house olive oil, smoked duck, crunchy fish roe, parsley and sea salt garlic powder.
Even if you don’t have a sweet tooth, FatCat is bound to convert you with its mouth-watering array of desserts. They have creative ice-cream flavours like Butter Beer, Watermelon Soju and White Peach Sangria, while the Gourmet Charcoal Waffles, drizzled in salted egg yolk sauce is legendary.
FatCat’s plated desserts change depending on the season, and right now, you can try their Reverse Smores – a banana caramel sorbet with a cookie base and lightly torched marshmallows on top – a fancy treat that’ll bring back memories of having them right by the campfire. Mmm!
#01-25, 416 Bedok North Avenue 2, Singapore 460416.
This coffee roaster is a coffee addict’s dream: It stocks quality beans around the world – from London to San Jose. As expected, the coffee is exceptional and if you’re adventurous, you can savour creative desserts like Thai Coco Black (chilled Thai coconut with a shot of espresso).
Also on the menu are sesame yuzu cake, organic granola and brunch items like French toast and croissants.
Kings Cart Coffee Factory was established in 2017 as a mobile pop-up coffee cart, but as of the end of 2020, made its transition into a brick-and-mortar café.
Apart from the standard cups of joe, the coffee-centric café has refreshing concoctions such as the Coconut Cold Brew and Coconut Affogato. The coffee theme also extends into its cocktails (available on Friday and Saturday nights), some of which also feature espressos.
Have your drink with a Pandan Kaya Souffle Pancake, or go for the more substantial Mentaiko Carbonara featuring thick bacon strips, furikake, and a raw egg yolk.
The C Café was founded by two friends Ashley Cho and Nicholas Wong, both of whom share a common passion for magic and food. What sets it apart from its competitors in the area is that diners may also be treated to a magic performance while tucking into their meals.
The day menu offers brunch items such as chicken toasties, truffle fries, and a superfood salad for the more health-conscious. Meanwhile, a dinner menu is available on Friday and Saturday evenings, where a good chunk of it is dedicated to pastas and pizzas.
This charming café doubles up as a local coffee roaster, as well as a retail outlet for coffee aficionados to pick up their monthly supply of beans or filters. It is also worth noting that the owner is none other than Elysia Tan, a Singapore Brewers Cup 2019 Champion, which means coffee here is serious business.
The menu here is an interesting mix of stalwarts such as granola yoghurt and soufflé pancakes, as well as fancy brunch dishes like Avocado Caviar Toast and Umami Hei Mee (spaghetti and tiger prawn cooked in prawn bisque, white wine and homemade prawn oil) to take your lazy Sunday brunch up a notch.
The Whole Kitchen is the brainchild of two Singapore-based Australians, Anne Swain, a nutrition health coach and Susan Soulard, a professional chef. Their aim was to create gourmet and healthy food that is natural, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and free of additives and preservatives.
Aside from their online store, their brick-and-mortar café serves up wholesome granola bowls, smoothies, wildflower honey scones, and the good old Avocado on toast. If you can, visit after 11.00 in order to snag one of the Truffle Brie Toasties – a perfect marriage of De Meaux Truffles, house-made pickle, and oozy Emmental cheese.
The brightly-lit, 70-seater Taiwanese cafe features beautiful wall murals in white, blue, and red, depicting various destinations in Taiwan such as Alishan.
Go for their signature dish, none other than the savoury Hakka-style Braised Meat Rice (Lu Rou Fan), a must-have when visiting Taiwan. Other items that scream Taiwan include the Braised Beef Noodles, Golden Fried Chicken, and Din Tai Feng-esque Egg Fried Rice covered with a slab of marinated pork chop. Then wash down the meal with – you guessed it – an ice-cold cup of Brown Sugar Caramel Pearl Milk Tea, or another Taiwanese drink that tickles your fancy.
Choice Cuts Goods is a coffee joint and vinyl record shop rolled into one, and offers stacks of records for music aficionados to browse through. Saunter in and linger over a cup of joe or bottle of beer. An all-day food menu is available, but the choices are generally more snackish than an actual meal. Regardless, the Bjorn’s Truffle Egg Mayo Hot Dawg (a crunchy bratwurst topped with truffle egg mayo poised comfortably in a fluffy bun) comes highly recommended and, trust us, was extremely satisfying.
The café scene in Katong shows no signs of slowing with the recent addition of Neptune, opened by the team behind Atlas Coffeehouse at Bukit Timah and Columbus Coffee Co. at Upper Thomson.
Their morning menu starts at 09.00, afternoon menu at 11.00, and dinner menu at 17.00. Café hoppers can expect to find Japanese-inspired plates such as Big in Japan (grana panado scone with three different condiments – yuzu jam, honey mascarpone and shrimp & salmon in dill sauce) in the mornings, a Summer Chicken Stew at noon, and Seafood Somen in the evenings.
An offshoot of the original Brawn & Brains at Guillemard, this minimalist café oozes a laid-back, easygoing vibe, perfect for that lazy Sunday brunch meetup.
Menu options include hearty dishes like the Fiery Meatball Spaghetti, as well as more healthy options such as a Hearty Grain Bowl and Grilled Chicken and Avocado on Rustic Sourdough. Drinks wise, they have an extensive list of strong coffees done however you like it, freshly squeezed juices and beer.
Mod Cafe is a relatively new cafe in the East – it’s decked in a pretty pink exterior that looks like you’re being transported to Korea. We’re not surprised to see cafe goers taking photos in front of the cafe in Stylenanda (a popular Seoul fashion brand)-inspired poses.
The cafe carries the famous Cheesecake Factory cheesecakes and a simple menu with all-day breakfasts, wraps and pies.
There’s also a hair salon specialising in hair colouring, so you can plan an entire day of pampering and indulge at Mod Cafe.
Part of The Yards – a hodgepodge of art studios, drama spaces and enrichment centres – in Joo Chiat, this brunch spot is an elegant glasshouse complete with exposed beams and hanging plants. The alfresco deck also offers extra seating for those out with their furry friends.
We highly recommend the Avocado & Ricotta Tartine, an even more souped up version of smashed avocado on toast. On top of the avocado, we found globs of ricotta, sweet cheery tomatoes, pickled radish slices, and almond flakes, all of which danced perfectly in sync upon our tongues. The burrata and tomatoes tartine is another delightful option.
Taking up two shophouse spaces in Tanjong Katong, this Melbourne-inspired café’s name was inspired by the owners’ cheeky and playful characters. In addition to F&B, there’s a small play area for children, and a community library that encourages customers to exchange books.
Chef-owner Aaron Leow cut his knives at several esteemed establishments, and spent short stints at Michelin-star restaurants Noma and Stud!o in Copenhagen. Our picks from the all-day breakfast section would be the umami and creamy Soft Scrambled Eggs with Truffle Cream & Ikura served with sourdough toast, and the Ribeye Steak & Egg – the housemade truffle mash was heavenly. Also a noteworthy mention is the House Marinated Wings, served with a funky – but not overpowering – blue cheese dip.
Popular online bakery Tigerlily Patisserie made the brick-and-mortar leap in mid-June 2021. With just 12 tables, the décor sports a refreshing botanical theme, and serves of course, the gorgeous entremets that made pastry chef Maxine Ngooi, famous.
Must-orders – for both the Gram and your palate – include The Forest Berry Taco (a chocolate taco filled with forest berry mousse, berry jam and chocolate ganache), and the signature Beehive (a citrus-coloured hive of lemon, thyme and lychee honey jelly, light lemon sponge and honey parfait encased in a yuzu mousse.
Beyond the tempting and gorgeous pastries, the café also has a concise savoury menu featuring items like the Monsieur Kim (grilled croque monsieur with kimchi sourdough).
This multi-cuisine restaurant is an intriguing space, offering a menu that spans various international cuisines such as Japanese, North Indian, Italian-Asian, and Thai. There’s Sashimi Salad, Tom Yum Seafood Soup, Paneer Butter Masala – yep, all found under one roof.
We hear they’ve recently launched a new menu that features items such as Cheesy Gyoza, which served on a hotplate and overloaded with tobiko; the crispy Mad Pork Knuckle served with a side of Thai Green Chilli; and one of their current bestsellers, a decadent Foie Gras Chirashi Don.
This halal bistro serves innovative dishes of Asian-Western comfort food, where items like the Smoked Duck Laksa, Salted Egg Pasta with Grilled Salmon, and Squid Stuffed with Risotto immediately halted our glancing eye.
However, Walaku’s signature dish is the Nasi Lemak Bakar (bakar loosely means grilled; and Walaku grills their coconut rice that is tightly wrapped in a banana leaf), with your choice of protein; for us, it was the Garlic Cheesy Lobster. If possible, leave space for dessert, for their Steamed Ginger Pudding with Earl Grey topped with vanilla ice cream comes highly recommended.
Little Farms, a local grocer that specialises in bringing in high-quality and fresh produce from independent suppliers in Australia, Europe, and the world, opened its first full-table service bistro in Katong Point in early 2021.
The menu mainly features European fare, so expect hearty mains such as Australian Barramundi Fish, Slow Grilled Little Joe’s Striploin, and Pumpkin Gnoochi. There’s also a short and delicious-sounding list of bar bites to pair with your glass of tipple, where the Cheese & Charcuterie Board gets our nod of approval.
Stroll down memory lane with Chin Mee Chin, a renowned breakfast institution in Katong way before the Ebb & Flow Group became a business partner in the coffeeshop’s latest modern reincarnation.
Stalwarts such as Nanyang-style coffee, soft-boiled eggs, their signature aromatic kaya toast with a cold slab of butter, cream horns and luncheon meat buns are still around, albeit at slightly raised prices. New savoury additions include the otak and hae bee hiam milk buns, while new sweet treats include Chocolate Peanut Butter Tarts, Cheesecake Brownies, and Gula Melaka Coffee Chiffon Cake.
The first striking thing about this Insta-worthy café is its calming pastel blue scheme on fixtures in its alfresco area and indoor bar counter, which stands juxtaposed against orange hexagonal tiles.
A top pick from the all-day brunch menu would be the Smoked Trout Rosti, and the Spam Bagel – a thick cut of spam, sunny side up, and oozy cheese – surely a match made in tastebud heaven. Hungry? More substantial stews, pastas and burgers, are also available after noon. Take time to peruse the extensive drink list, which ranges from draught beers and cocktails, to smoothies and no less than 20 coffee choices.
The décor at East Coast Commune is simply an extension of the tropical scenery at East Coast Park – but with air-con. Commissioned local marine-themed art created by local artist Wu Yanrong adorns the brightly-lit space, while the walls have been painted in teal.
Head down on a weekday, order a pot of tea or bottle of Kombucha by Fizzicle, relax, and read. We cannot guarantee the same treatment on weekends though, as the place is a family-friendly hangout.
Situated near East Coast Park, Stamping Ground Coffee is a great cafe with nice ambience to go to after your morning run or cycle. Since the cafe shares the space with Dawn Q Floral Designs, the space has a nice mix of floral and Kinfolk-esque interior which really reminds us of a cafe in Australia. Flowers displayed at the space are for sale as well, so you can get some and brighten up your home with it.
La Fez Café & Bakery is Muslim-owned café in Siglap easily identified from its exterior horseshoe arch windows. Its interiors were inspired by the Moroccan city of Marrakesh, and have been painted in an enchanting salmon pink alongside popping gold accents.
The café serves an all-day brunch, and the Majorelle Shakshuka with Feta Cheese comes highly recommended. Served in a traditional earthenware pot, dip the accompanying bread into the warm mess of poached eggs and tomato for that perfect Instagram shot. Other intriguing dishes include the Maghreb Baghrir Pancakes and Kasbah Brioche French Toast.
Having relocated from Tanjong Pagar to a large space in the east in early 2021, Five Oars Coffee Roasters now sports an industrial-chic theme anchored by a large barista island in the centre.
Open all day, the café offers a daytime menu until 5.15pm, where the Hanging Tender Steak, Corn Fritters, and Crab Scramble sounded like delicious choices to fuel us through the day. Meanwhile, the night menu is available from 6pm till 9pm, and winds down with warm, homely options like the Lobster & Prawn Ravioli, Shellfish Risotto, and Duck Confit, all of which would go well with a glass of wine or one of the craft beers on offer.
For a delicious morning cuppa, look no further than Craftsmen Specialty Coffee, an independent cafe operator with five outlets under its belt. They especially pride themselves in their coffee, sourcing their single origin coffee beans from growers in countries such as Brazil, Honduras, Kenya, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Costa Rica and Guatelama.
On their Siglap V menu are regular brunch suspects such as a Truffle Scrambled Egg Sourdough, and Black Forest Ham & Bacon Croissant. But give their fusion pasta, the Tom Yum Seafood Cremoso a whirl, where the al dente pasta tossed in the creamy tom yum sauce will provide a satisfying sour and fiery kick.
Whether you’re looking for a crisp and aromatic cup of filtered cup of joe from Colombia, or an invigorating bottle of cold brew, Dutch Colony Coffee has your caffeine fix covered.
Pair that with one of Dutch Colony Coffee’s extensive breakfast list of egg-centric options such as the Guac & Soft-Boiled Egg Toast, Shabsouka & Soft-Boiled Egg Toast, or the Avocado, Bacon & Egg Bagel. There are also salads, museli, as well as a selection of pastries and cakes at the counter if a lighter brunch option is preferred.
A 10-minute walk from Kembangan stands this casual dining concept opened by chef-owner Terence Chuah, who sharpened his knives at Michelin-star restaurants overseas.
The menu items can only be described as ingenious comfort food. Who would have thought that adding duck confit, sous vide eggs and spinach onto a golden bed of tater tots could be so delicious? The Short Rib Katsu (braised for eight hours), Squid Ink Bone Marrow, and handmade pastas are also impossible to pass up.
Opened by Gu Zao Ren Seafood Taiwan Porridge along Changi Road, this industrial-chic café – with gorgeous jade tiles lining the coffee bar – is managed by Seng’s (the owner’s) daughter.
The all-day breakfast menu comprises of stalwarts such as Crab Meat Egg Benedict, and Breakfast Feast (bacon, sausage, mushrooms, spinach, tomatoes and potatoes). Meanwhile, the mains menu is offered after 11.30am until closing, and certainly appeals with mouth-watering items ranging from the Pork Belly Risotto and Mentaiko Mac & Cheese, to the Ginger Sake Clam and Cempedak Crème Brulee.
A rebrand from Fresh Fruits Lab, Simplicité now oozes a Parisian-chic vibe, modelled after the sidewalk cafes in the City of Light. Make a beeline for their Duck Confit or Chicken Fricassee, highly-recommended items not usually found on brunch menus. There’s also an all-day brunch section one can defer to, alongside a delightful list of tipples ranging from cocktails to red wines.
Interestingly, Simplicité also serves an Afternoon Tea Set from 2pm to 6pm, which features a mix of savoury and sweet bite-sized items – think macarons and crostinis – alongside the staple coffee or tea.
The Forage Café prides itself in being Singapore’s first honey-themed café, where the liquid gold – harvested from its own farm in Malaysia – has been infused into everything on its menu. Bottles of their honey can also be purchased here.
Their signature Smoked Salmon & Eggs grilled waffle sandwich (think smoked salmon, egg mayo and mozzarella nestled between two fluffy waffles) comes highly recommended. Don’t forget to drizzle some of the honey provided for that extra oomph. There are also more substantial mains such as the St Louis Pork Ribs & Pork Bratwurst and Granchio Pasta (Crab Pasta), as well as honey-based drinks and desserts.