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Sep 17, 2012 10:14 AM

Singapore Must Try's?

Longtime Ch'er from the Toronto (Ontario) and sometimes Manhattan board and we'll be in Singapore around Christmas/New Years later this year. Have done some initial research as to some of the best restaurants there such as Iggy's, Waku Ghin (we loved Tetsuya's in Sydney) and 53, but I'm specifically looking for something that best showcases local Singapore food. We're open to recommendations in any price range from high end to street food. Thanks!

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  1. 53 at Armenian Street is closed and Michael Han has not re-opened his restaurant in another location as promised yet.

    The current hottest dining tickets in Singapore are:

    1. Catalunya at the Fullerton Pavilion, opened by a group of El Bulli alumnus. Best-tasting food I'd had in Singapore for quite a while.

    2. Pollen, by London's 1-Michelin-star chef Jason Atherton (of Pollen Street Social), which offers Mediterranean-inspired Mod-British cuisine in the lush setting of Singapore's new Gardens on the Bay.

    3. My current fave Chinese restaurant, Taste Paradise at the ION Orchard. and

    4. There's a cluster of new eateries at the Old Tanglin Post Office and Tanglin Mall area: Nassim Hill bakery-bar-bistro which opened in mid-July, 1128 Bar which serves Grimbergen abbey beer and Asian-inspired finger foods & Swiss Grill (all at the former Tanglin Post Office Building), and Brunetti from Melbourne's new outlet in Tanglin Mall across the street, which serves some of the best coffee and cakes in Singapore.

    5. For casual eats, try ex-3-Michelin-star chef, Bruno Menard's &Made at Pacific Plaza (Claymore Hill). Not to my personal liking but many Singapore foodies are raving about it.

    6. For new dining spots with great views, there's Zafferano at the Ocean Financial Centre's Level 43, and the eponymously named Level 33 at the Marina Bay Financial Centre Tower 1 (I'm going back there again next week).

    7. For a taste of Singaporeana - try the new Violet Oon's Kitchen at Bukit Timah Road. Violet Oon is Singapore's grandmama of food-writing ever since she wrote the food review column in the Nation back in 1974. She's like James Beard & Martha Stewart rolled into one.

    8. If you want modern-Singapore with a view, go to Sky on 57 at the Marina Bay Sands. It's helmed by Singapore's best-known local chef, Justin Quek.

    9. Table at 7 in Mohamed Sultan Rd, and La Barca in Katong are both drawing good crowds for their fine-tasting food and relatively reasonable pricing (S$100 per head, compared to S$400-S$500 at Waku Ghin or Guy Savoy).

    10. For street food - why don't you pop by Tiong Bahru Food Centre on one of the days (brunch/lunch) - chicken rice, fried Hokkien noodles, fried Chinese carrot cake, Teochew pig's innards soup, steamed pau & dimsum items, etc. Then, cross over the street a few minutes away to Tiong Bahru Bakery ( where French baker, Gontran Cherrier, churns out the best kouign-amann in Singapore. The coffee served there, sourced from 40 Hands' ( single origin roasts, are fab to go with the large selection of French pastries.

    I'd not been back to the oldies Iggy's or Les Amis for a while so can't comment.

    1. 'best showcases local Singapore food'


      If I have a friend who wants the above, I'll bring her or him to

      - Peramakan for Nonya food.

      - Mary's Kafe for Eurasian food (only open for lunch)

      - Hajah Maimunah for Malay nasi padang

      - Red Star for traditional Singapore-Chinese dim sum

      - Apollo Banana Leaf for fish-head curry

      - Chatterbox for Hainanese chicken rice

      - Ng Ah Sio for bak kut teh

      - Killiney Road Kopitiam for kaya toast and coffee

      - Lau Pa Sat for satay in the evening

      1. Thank you klyeoh and M_Gomez, these are fantastic recommendations!! We'll be there for 5 days, so lots of opportunity to try many of these. Also didn't know about 53 being closed.

        Did more research on Waku Ghin and it appears that while the food is excellent, it's not $500+ per person excellent, so we'll probably pass. To bad because we had an amazing experience at Tetsuya's in Sydney. Will probably go with one of klyeoh's suggestions. Thanks again.