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Jun 13, 2008 06:32 AM

A (first) weekend in Singapore-- your help needed!


Perhaps you can help-- you always have before! I've got my first ever trip to Asia next week and I'm in the process (as with any great trip!) of identifying where and how to plan my eating. Although I'll be traveling with a work contingent, I'm pleased to say I have an entire weekend in Singapore to myself! And I am looking for your CAN'T MISS dining destinations. A couple of principles:

1. I may be dining and traveling solo for these
2. I'm an English speaker which I think should be OK for dining in Singapore.
3. I don't need to eat in restaurants (though I will)-- I hear the food stalls are very worth my time...
4. I'm "reasonably adventurous" but am not interested in drinking snake blood. :)
5. Would be good to eat at someplace that is easy to get a cab to, and take a cab from, or near appropriate and fun destination.

As for kind of food-- I know there's no single "type of food" in Singapore, so I'm mostly just looking for what's best! I've never been to southeast Asia, India, or anywhere else of the like, but I love the food I've been exposed to from there. Oh, and I'd love any tips you have in general on getting around there, foodwise. I know there have been lots of posts on this board, but I did a look before posting and didn't find quite this question-- so I'll turn it over to you Hounds, who have been SO helpful to me in the past!

PS-- I'll also be traveling to China (Guangzhou, Shanghai) for several days and will have an opportunity for a meal or two in Narita Airport in Tokyo. I'll make separate posts on the appropriate boards, but VERY happy to have your opinions here, too!

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  1. Hope this is not too late. Actually, I've always found it easier to advise seasoned travellers who're already quite familiar with the Singapore food scene than first-time travellers, as they would be very specific as to what they are looking for.

    But since this will be your first visit ever to Asia (!), here are a few suggestions on what/where to eat in Singapore.

    1. To get a taste of Singapore street foods, you can either try:

    - Makansutra Gluttons Bay, 01-15 Esplanade Mall. Opens daily 6pm to 3am. It's al fresco seating & you get to try fried koay teow (rice noodles), chicken rice, satay, oyster omelette, spicy barbecued seafoods, etc.

    - Straits Kitchen, Grand Hyatt, Scotts Road. An all-you-can-eat buffet of Malay, Chinese & Indian foods. This is a good alternative if you find Singapore's hot & humid weather too enervating. Since you're travelling alone, this is also an easier place to dine at.

    2. For Indian food, any of the Indian restaurants down in Serangoon Road, Little India. It's a colorful neighborhood, but try not to go there on Sunday as it'll be jam-packed!! Komala Vilas along Serangoon Road is the most well-known restaurant for Indian vegetarian food, served on banana leaves;

    3. For Malay food, go down to Arab Street, near the Sultan Mosque. You can find good eateries along Baghdad St, Bussorah St, Kandahar St, thereabouts. One of the most well-known Malay eateries is Sabar Menanti on Kandahar St - serves nasi padang, i.e. rice with a variety of curries;

    4. You can get good Chinese food anywhere. For good Cantonese cuisine in Orchard Road (Singapore's retail/commercial hub), try Crystal Jade Palace Restaurant at #04-19, 391 Orchard Road, Ngee Ann City. Tel: 67352388. Or you can explore the large food court in the basement of Ngee Ann City (at the Takashimaya end).

    Getting around Singapore is no problem, plenty of cabs but if you have diffculty finding one during peak hours, call 65521111 (Comfort Cabs).

    Let us know if you are looking for any specific dishes or food items. Where are you staying in Singapore?

    2 Replies
    1. re: klyeoh

      Your response may be too late for the OP, but not for me! I will be in Singapore in mid August, with 3 others, for 4 days. Staying in Little India at the Perak Inn (an effort to save money on lodgings for better things - FOOD). I will happily print out your suggestions from above, and welcome others.

      BTW, we will also be traveling to KL, Melacca and Damai Beach (outside of Kuching). Suggestions for those areas are also most welcome.


      1. re: jkgourmet

        You can have alook at these threads:

        1. For Kuching & Damai Beach:

        2. For Kuala Lumpur:

        For Malacca/Melaka, what kind of cuisine are you looking for? Malacca's own unique centuries-old "fusion" food includes Portuguese Eurasian food at Portuguese Square, and Malay-Chinese "Nyonya" cuisine which can be found in various restaurants around town. Some suggestions:

        1. Sea Terrace, Stall No. 1, Portuguese Settlement, Ujong Pasir, 75050 Malacca (Tel: 06-283 2611) for baked fish or prawns topped with spicy sambal (chilli-spice mix);

        2. Sun May Hiong Satay House, 50/50A Jalan Kota Laksamana 1/1, Taman Kota Laksamana, 75200 Malacca (Tel: 06-281 7281) for very good grilled chicken, pork, offal & liver satays;

        3. Nyonya Makko, 123, Taman Melaka Raya, off Jalan Parameswara (Bandar Hilir), 75000 Malacca (Tel: 06-284 0737). One of the more popular Nyonya restaurants in town. I first went there in 1988, and it's still attracting Nyonya food connoisseurs.Crispy fried fish with spicy-sour gravy (ikan goreng geram assam) is popular, as are dishes like ayam buah keluak (chicken stew), babi pongteh (pork-coriander stew), chapchye (mixed vegetables), etc ;

        4. Ole Sayang Nyonya Restaurant, 198-199 Taman Melaka Raya, 75000 Malacca (Tel: 06-283 1966). A close rival to Nyonya Makko in the Taman Melaka Raya precinct. Their chicken with limau perut (Kaffir lime leaves) in a spicy coconut gravy is richly satisfying.