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Dawson Tan

Dawson Tan

Food & Drink Writer

Dawson is an absolute enthusiast for food and travel, especially when exploring different cultures and their cuisines. Calling Singapore home at the moment, he enjoys indulging in craft beer, cult films, trekking, beach-going or simply kickin' about in a game of footy. Whenever possible, he assumes the role of a part-time "vandal" painting captivating murals that are often larger than life around the community.

Articles (31)

Quick Bites: what to eat and other happenings in Singapore this week

Quick Bites: what to eat and other happenings in Singapore this week

Tired of hearing this question: what should we eat today? Well, us too. With new choices popping up every month, deals dropping every week, and cravings that fluctuate daily, choosing just what to eat can be a challenge. To help you decide on what's worth eating, we round up some of the latest food drops and happenings in town in this easy, bite-sized list.  RECOMMENDED: Hot new restaurants and cafés to dine at in Singapore

Staycation spotlight: The Barracks Hotel Heritage Safari Experience

Staycation spotlight: The Barracks Hotel Heritage Safari Experience

Ever wondered what it’s like to stay in a charming colonial building previously occupied by the British Army? Well, The Barracks Hotel, located within idyllic Sentosa, treats you to a balanced retreat of tranquillity and exploration of Singapore’s storied past with its newly launched Heritage Safari. Proudly poised as a part of Far East Hospitality’s luxury portfolio, it truly lives up to its name where tailored care and attention to detail are immaculate. Here, tranquillity is the main takeaway. Pampered with the truest of luxuries, guests will relish with ease of mind while every need is taken care of.   Every stay in The Barracks Hotel is an exclusive heritage getaway steeped in rich history as you luxuriate in the tastefully decorated quarters that showcase a mix of vintage and modern décor for a warm and timeless ambience. Here’s what you can expect. Recommended: Staycation Spotlight: The Clan Hotel

The best restaurants and cafés in Katong

The best restaurants and cafés in Katong

There's no shortage of things to do in the eastern neighbourhood of Katong but eating definitely steals the limelight. The heritage district is rich in local Peranakan culture and also features incredibly varied cuisines, with Vietnamese and European communities making it their home. Then, there are the ultra-hip cafés that have sprouted up in recent years to check out too. Here's our guide on how to eat your way through Katong. RECOMMENDED: The best cheap restaurants in Tanjong Pagar

The best hidden cafés in Singapore for a quiet brunch sesh

The best hidden cafés in Singapore for a quiet brunch sesh

Singapore has a ton of good cafés – we’re not denying that. But with snaking brunch queues and at least 30-minute wait times, it’s hard to enjoy a coffee when you're spending a substantial portion of your weekend waiting to chope a table. We’ve rounded up the best unknown cafés in Singapore for a hole-in-the-wall experience – some don’t even have seats, so you’ll need to take away or head over to the nearest park for a picnic date.  RECOMMENDED: The best cafés in Singapore and the best brunch spots

The best rooftop bars in Singapore

The best rooftop bars in Singapore

Nothing beats the feeling of the wind in your hair and a tipple in your hand at the city's swankiest rooftop bars. Take drinking to the next level (literally) as you enjoy your favourite cocktail on cloud nine. There are institutions like Smoke & Mirrors, which offer an unrivalled view of the Padang and Marina Bay Sands or climb higher to LeveL33, the world's tallest urban micro-brewery for a fresh pint and great bites. You get a pretty neat view of our gorgeous city skyline from up here too – we suggest heading up during sunsets – so whip out your phones to immortalise the moment on the 'gram. RECOMMENDED: The 50 best bars in Singapore and the most romantic bars in Singapore

The best cafés in Singapore for brunch and coffee

The best cafés in Singapore for brunch and coffee

Whether you're looking for the perfect Instagram shot, a new weekend brunch hangout, or a mean cup of joe, these cafés in Singapore deliver on all those fronts and more. Need more than one cup of coffee to rev your engines? Go café hopping in Tiong Bahru or pop into the various coffee shops along Amoy Street that keep the caffeine-hungry CBD folks going. RECOMMENDED: The best cafés with free Wi-Fi and the best cafés for dessert

The best Mother’s Day meals and treats in Singapore

The best Mother’s Day meals and treats in Singapore

If you’re fretting about how you can celebrate Mother’s Day, here are some delicious meals to treat the most important woman in your life. Take her out to experience a new cuisine or stick to her favourites, no matter the gesture, she's gonna appreciate it regardless. Avoiding the crowds? We've also got a couple of sweet surprises you could deliver or bring home to celebrate the leading woman in your life.  RECOMMENDED: The ultimate Mother's day gift guide or The best florists in Singapore for any occasion

The best bakeries in Singapore

The best bakeries in Singapore

We're always up for a good carb-fix any time of the day, whether it's pizza or a plate of pasta. But most of all, we're always in the mood for loaf. Thankfully, we have plenty of choices when it comes to quality baked goods in Singapore. Croissants, baguettes, flatbreads, sourdough bread, brioche buns, pastries and rolls, here is where to get some of the best bread in Singapore. Fresh out of the oven, of course.  RECOMMENDED: The best kueh shops in Singapore and the best traditional bakeries and cake shops in Singapore  

The best Easter meals in Singapore

The best Easter meals in Singapore

Easter's just around the corner. Spend some time during the long weekend devouring bunny-shaped chocolates, hunting down eggs and especially tucking into a homely spread of meats and seafood. Here's how to celebrate Easter in Singapore this year. RECOMMENDED: The best Sunday brunch buffets in Singapore and the best brunch spots in Singapore

The best restaurants to break fast this Ramadan in Singapore

The best restaurants to break fast this Ramadan in Singapore

Ramadan is a month for reflection and repentance but at the end of a long day of fasting, you can reward yourself with a well-deserved meal. Gather and round up your loved ones and indulge in these well-deserved hearty meals, or even order in from these restaurants for some of the best iftar meals this Ramadan. RECOMMENDED: Your guide to Ramadan in Singapore

Hot new restaurants and cafés to dine at in Singapore

Hot new restaurants and cafés to dine at in Singapore

With new dining-in measures in place, things are swiftly returning back to normal – it’s almost as if the last two years were a bad nightmare. In any case, there’s a number of new restaurants and cafés that’ve recently opened their doors as of March 2022 for us to try. With under-the-radar cocktail bars, vegan butchers, and Japanese omakase sets, cheers to finally dining in groups of 10 and having our last round of drinks after 10.30pm.  RECOMMENDED: The 50 best restaurants in Singapore you must try and the ultimate guide to delivery and takeaway options

The 50 best bars in Singapore

The 50 best bars in Singapore

Welcome to the Time Out Drink List, our handpicked ‘best of’ Singapore’s drinking scene. These are the most buzzing bars in this city right now: the most inventive and most memorable watering holes, all ranked by expert local editors. Drinking in Singapore is expensive so we did all the hard work for you – scouring the city every night in search of amazing drinks. Whether you sip or quaff, these are the city's top bars for a boozy night out. We've got joints stocked with quality vino, speakeasies hidden behind unmarked doors, dens devoted to whisky, craft beer breweries and much more in our roundup. We guarantee you won't be able to stop at one drink – just make sure you have a safe ride home. Disclaimer – the numbered list isn't a representation of any form of ranking.  Drank somewhere on this list and loved it? Share it with the hashtag #TimeOutDrinkList. You can also find out more about how Time Out makes recommendations and reviews bars here.

Listings and reviews (45)

Kanaaji Katsu

Kanaaji Katsu

Growing up in Singapore, most of us are no stranger to “food court” quality Japanese cuisine. But here at Kanaaji Katsu, expect nothing less than restaurant-grade katsu that is freshly fried upon each order. Located in a newly refurbished coffee shop in Hougang Village, Kanaaji Katsu sports a brightly lit stall with royal blue and yellow signage that is hard to miss when passing by. It’s no secret – food here revolves around katsu. Depending on your preference, each Teishoku (set meal) order is either served as a donburi (rice bowl) or simply with Japanese curry. Prices start from as low as $4.50 for a humble bowl of curry udon while the signature rosu katsu curry will only set you back $7. Seafood options include the grilled saba ($8), ebi katsu don($7), and the salmon katsu ($9).  TRY The signature Rosu Katsu Curry ($7) was served piping hot with a nice golden brown panko crust. As soon as we had our first bite, all our fears of dry and tough meat dissipated. Instead, we were greeted with fork-tender pork with a light crunchy batter that isn’t too cloying. Paired with fluffy Calrose rice and a mildly-spiced Japanese curry that came along with caramelised onion and soft root vegetables, we reckon this plate puts some Japanese chains out there to shame. A highlight that sets Kanaaji Katsu apart from typical Japanese food stalls in food courts (or even some Japanese chains) is the attention to detail as you’d notice the lack of excessive residual cooking oil hugging the crust.

Kaarla

Kaarla

Running the entire show is Executive Chef John-Paul Fiechtner aka “JP” who draws on his 20-years of experience gathered from stints all around the world and growing up on his hometown farm in Queensland. Known to inventively honour every ingredient used, expect food here to be kissed by fire, honoured farm to table, and woven from the bounty of coastal Australia as well as the rich harvests of the 1-Arden Food Forest right from the backyard. Our thoughts on the food? Read the full review.

Enclave

Enclave

Not to sound clichéd or whatever but Enclave bar is truly an enclave in its own right. Tucked between what seems to be an underpass in the downright forsaken Golden Mile Complex, you really just don't stumble upon such a spot. Beyond a doubt, it's that type of hush-hush hang out where you probably heard it from somebody that knows somebody that knows somebody. Walk too fast and you might just miss it. Behind the graffiti licked walls and black tinted glass panels lies a cosy hideaway that screams of your cool cousin’s garage band hangout where he tokes and pokes. Persian rugs, plush granddaddy couches, wooden furniture, neon signs, fanciful vintage trinkets and art frames plus a giant Bohemian-inspired mirror. No, that isn’t your hipster friend’s coming-of-age room makeover shopping list but what you’ll see when you first step foot into Enclave. Definitely not your average stiffy cocktail bars with all the pretence. What comes with the ratchery of Golden Mile Complex is soon tossed in the backseat of your mind as whiffs of wok-kissed Thai stir-fry will soon overwhelm your senses. Think familiar favourites such as Thai Basil Pork ($9), Phad Thai ($9), Pad See Ewe ($9), Fried Garlic Pork ($9), Thai-style Spicy Seafood Stir Fry ($9) and other snacks.  Our favourite was the Pork Jowl Salad ($18) where each explosive bite brought us back to the streets of Bangkok. Expect juicy pork collar fried to a crisp and served atop a bed of spicy fish sauce together with crunchy greens, onio

Golden Nur

Golden Nur

Humbly serving up hearty plates of fried chicken rice for over 40 years in the Central Business District, most aren’t strangers when it comes to the name, Golden Nur. Formerly operating out of the now-defunct Golden Shoe Food Centre, this family business has since grown from one to three stalls at the new Market Street Hawker Centre. While there are quite a few perennial favourites for you to work down the menu – such as Roti Prata ($1.20), Soto Ayam ($3.50), Mee Rebus ($3.50), Nasi Goreng ($3.50) and even giant Murtabaks ($6) – the Crispy Chicken Rice is without a doubt the top contributor to their lingering queues. At $5.50 a plate, it is simply great value these days. What comes along is an entire fried chicken leg (thigh in) atop fluffy white basmati rice with pickled cucumbers and sweet garlicky chilli to pair. At first glance, it’s fair game to think that the chicken looks a tad dry but you’ll eat your words as soon as you tuck in. Expect flavourful crunchy skin encasing succulent meat within. Each bite bursts with notes of cumin, lemongrass, and turmeric while a drizzle of sweet kicap manis rounds up each satisfying bite.  HOT TIP for maximum indulgence, request for more crispy batter that comes on the side. These tasty little morsels are irresistibly crunchy and add a little texture and savouriness to the dish. You can thank us later. Into spice-ladened biriyanis? Definitely try the Mutton Briyani. This no-frills dish sees the likes of a large fork-tender chunk of goa

Ming Kee Chicken Rice

Ming Kee Chicken Rice

4 out of 5 stars

Having been in the business for over 40 years, Ming Kee's got ice in its veins when it comes to serving up a satisfying plate of steamed chicken. Here, you wouldn’t find the typical display of chickens strung up behind a glass panel to attract hungry patrons instead, the birds are kept in an ice bath once they are cooked – which is why the meat is infamously cold when served. Expect to sink your teeth into consistently juicy meat encased within porcelain-like skin that glistens like none other. There’s a whole lot of science behind the ice bath technique as it shocks the chicken, forming a layer of jelly under the skin and elevating the texture that results in sheer succulence in each bite – even the breast meat. We recommend going for the half-bird ($15) when dining in pairs. The rice, however, leans towards a healthier version so don’t expect flavour explosions. Sporting a subtle sheen and aroma of chicken oil, each grain is whole and distinct with very clean flavours. We think that it serves well without overshadowing the chicken while a lightly sweet chicken bone broth is provided to help refresh your palate every once in a while.  The only fault we found is that the chilli runs a little thin and is lacking a certain punch and brightness to it. But since they don’t make their own chilli, perhaps there may be room for some tweaking behind the scenes. If you’re looking to add variety to your course, there are savoury oyster sauce vegetables ($4), chicken feet ($3), crunchy

Lomba The Gurkha Bistro

Lomba The Gurkha Bistro

4 out of 5 stars

Authentic Nepalese cuisine is pretty uncommon in Singapore and if you do chance upon it, it is usually buried away in the back pages of a restaurant menu that clearly focuses on every other cuisine except Nepalese. But not here at Lomba The Gurkha Bistro. Located in the sleepy Bukit Timah Shopping Centre, this three-table homely bistro is run by the amiable chef-owner Anushka Rana with the occasional help from her son. Sporting a full Nepalese menu and an absolutely no-frills dining experience, it has since built up quite the reputation since it first opened in 2020. Staying true to her roots, Anushka places an emphasis on strictly using naturally processed ingredients and mountain herbs such as raw oils, Himalayan crystal salt, jimbu, and unrefined sugars aka jaggery – they are said to be healthier.  First up, we had the Thukpa ($6). Reminding us of a comforting bowl of chicken noodle soup, it saw a medley of leafy and root vegetables, fragrant shallot oil, and silky noodles floating in a bed of lightly sweet and vegetal broth. Then came the juicy Chicken Momo ($6). These plump and juicy Nepalese dumplings had a warm peppery finish which is further enhanced by a piquant dipping sauce that goes well with just about anything. So what's popular you ask? All fingers point to the Jimbu Butter Chicken ($14). The addictive creaminess of this dish typically comes from the incorporation of heavy cream but the downside is that its high in cholesterol. Sticking to a healthier ethos, An

Market Street Hawker Centre

Market Street Hawker Centre

Nested on the second and third levels of CapitaSpring just two minutes away from bustling Raffles Place MRT, Market Street Food Centre (previously known as Golden Shoe) now showcases 56 stalls with capacious dining areas and thoughtful design. A short walk from the touristy hawker centre of Lau Pa Sat, this food spot has a cheaper variety — even a cup of hot teh tarik costs less than $1. Whether you’re craving for nasi lemak, hor fun, chicken biryani or fruit smoothies, you can easily find them here, under one roof. TRY: Don’t give the Market Street Nasi Lemak a miss – there’s a reason behind its long, snake-like queue. If you’re in a hurry, try out Golden Nur’s crispy, fried chicken biryani. The queue moves fast and its signature rice dish is a must-try for any Muslim food lover. Ah Liang Ipoh Hor Fun is a hot favourite for slippery-smooth rice noodles smothered in the stall’s flavoursome gravy, topped with the meat of your choice for less than $5.

Sugarhall

Sugarhall

No, you can’t enter from Rosemead. Instead, you’ve got to take a turn into a back alley where a nondescript entrance and an overly familiar signboard greet you. If you didn't already know, the legendary rum bar kept its former signboard just for this moment – for some, it surely tugged on some heartstrings. By now, you’d have spotted a flight of stairs, take it and that’s how you transport yourself to a rum haven that is Sugarhall. The ethos pretty much remained intact with its approachability, feel-good energy and convivial hospitality. But of course, to keep up with the times, the eclectic cocktail menu, food menu and even the interiors, have all undergone a major facelift to bring us a fairly refined experience contrasting its former past before it shut its doors four years ago. Dishing out a small but fun range of pub fare, our favourite was definitely the Chicken Liver Toast ($8++) and the Fried Chicken with Sweet and Sour Glaze ($29++). The former saw creamy savoury mousse with a touch of mineral-like quality with sweet caramelised onions atop a crunchy toast while the latter oddly reminded us of the misinterpreted yet addictive Orange Chicken from Panda Express. Other highlights included the comforting Snapper & Laver Pie with peas and fennel ($38++) and the epok epok-like Curry Empanadas ($8++). In hopes to raise the bar, the team seeks to redefine classic cocktails with a rum twist. Take the classic Dark & Stormy ($24++) for instance where the combination of an 8-yea

SG Taps

SG Taps

4 out of 5 stars

Coming on to its fourth year anniversary, this quiet nook atop Duxton Hill is truly a diamond in the rough. Make no mistake, it’s a place for craft beer enthusiasts where fresh suds flow consistently out of 20 rotating taps. But what’s really special is their clear focus on pledging at least half their taps to local craft beer brewers on the daily which we thought was worthy of a shoutout.  Whether you’re people-watching while day drinking by the alfresco seats or escaping the heat indoors where you’ll find casual wooden furniture and walls plastered with beer posters, you’ll soon settle into the unpretentious space without much trouble. Owner Norihito Hirose is one of the biggest craft beer lovers around and he isn’t one to shy away from sharing about the very best that are in season. It’s a no brainer that good craft beers pair best with delicious food. Serving up a range of humble and comforting Japanese cuisine with a local twist, food here is seriously good. If your idea of good beer food pairings is typical fryer bar grub, you’re about to be blown away by the sheer attention to detail the team here puts behind the food – even for their bar snacks. The Pork Katsu Sticks and Chicken Karaage come highly recommended. The former has salt and pepper seasoned pork tenderloin strips with a light biscuity crust paired with a sweet-tangy tonkatsu sauce while the latter boasted true-to-style juicy chunks of ginger-soy marinated crispy chicken. Perfect with swigs of crisp hoppy Ind

Fatty Ipoh Noodles

Fatty Ipoh Noodles

4 out of 5 stars

It’s not every day you stumble upon a young hawker gem. It’s also not every day you stumble upon a plate of darn delicious wok-fried KL Hokkien Mee in Singapore. But if you’re willing to travel for food, you’ve really got to check this out. Tucked away in a corner of Pasir Panjang Food Centre, Fatty Ipoh Noodles is gradually becoming a hot favourite amongst regular patrons as we witnessed countless tables joyously slurping on their dishes on a Friday evening. Whipping up a medley of wok-breath Malaysian and Singaporean favourites, we instantly ordered the dark and oily KL Hokkien Mee to get a hold of our bearings.  Why? KL Hokkien Mee is pretty elusive here in Singapore and more often than not, it's all bark and no bite which always leaves us reminiscing about trips to Malaysia. Not to be confused with the typical yellow Hokkien Mee in Singapore, this Kuala Lumpur version braises the thick bouncy noodles (Tai Lok Mee) in a dark and aromatic sauce alongside slices of lean pork, prawns, fishcakes and greens. First bite in, and our eyes lit up. Think silky savoury textures that are further enhanced by the freshly fried crispy pork lard – just like how you’d have it at a street-side stall in KL. Convinced of the authenticity of the spot and with enough room for another serving, we delved into the “Yue Guang He” aka Moonlight Hor Fun. Finished by cracking a raw egg atop that resembles a painting where moonlight is cast upon a river, this is yet another local favourite that needs m

Estate

Estate

Located in the heart of Orchard Road is Hilton Singapore’s latest darling, Estate. Boasting an all-day dining experience – coincidentally signalling the revival of buffet-style dining, expect to be treated to a bountiful spread of culinary delights with flavours from all over the world while elevating familiar regional signatures that all Singaporeans have come to love.  Taking a page from the colonial-style residence of past-time Orchard Road where pepper farms, nutmeg plantations and fruit orchards are aplenty, Estate’s heritage aesthetic is fortified with a contemporary touch to exude an airy and inviting ambience that is both sleek and understated. Estate is big on guests' interactions with its residential-style open kitchens which sets a stage for love displays of culinary showmanship with certain stations placing an emphasis on serving up delectable dishes a la minute. Split into four regions, guests are the masters of their own Estate experience as they are encouraged to chart their own journey – after all, there ain’t a prix fixe menu. HOT TIP Waste no time and head straight for the Wok, Fry & Premium Barbecue Kitchen where it houses the highlight: the Black Truffle Roasted Duck. Think glorious glistening charcoal-black skin, fork-tender duck meat with an earthy truffle sweetness accompanying each bite – enough said. Can’t claim you’ve been to a buffet without having a crack at the raw seafood. Swing around to the Raw & Seafood Kitchen where freshly shucked oysters, t

Yusoff Haji Jalal aka Satay Club

Yusoff Haji Jalal aka Satay Club

4 out of 5 stars

You’ve probably heard of a legendary Satay Club that your grandparents used to frequent. Yusoff Haji Jalal is that very spot. Currently calling Pasir Panjang Food Centre its home, the humble store still serves up grilled meat sticks that are injected with tons of nostalgia. Since then, things haven’t really changed except price but hey, blame it all on inflation – we’re pretty sure that your grandparents will side with us on this.  Expect succulent cuts of meats skewered with a touch of animal fat. The skewers are then brushed with a signature sweet savoury marinate which gives it an inimitable red hue. They're worth every minute of the wait as the skewers are patiently grilled to perfection, giving it its signature smoky flavours and bits of carcinogenic char that we can’t resist – even with the faded conscious eating health promotion board posters plastered around the food centre. Paired with a luscious peanut dipping sauce that is served piping hot and raw onions to chase, each bite is heaven on a stick. Choose from a selection of chicken, mutton, and beef ($0.80 per stick). We reckon to go straight with the chicken if you prefer cleaner flavours and softer textures. But if like us, you aren’t afraid of gamey profiles and a little chew, definitely order up the mutton. Time Out Singapore reviews anonymously and pays for all meals. Read our restaurant review policy here. What the stars mean:★ Poor ★ ★ Promising ★★★ Good ★★★★ Very good ★★★★★ Exceptional 

News (41)

Revival: Loft-style bar with art-inspired cocktails in Robertson Quay

Revival: Loft-style bar with art-inspired cocktails in Robertson Quay

Robertson Quay is no stranger to fancy dining concepts, pubs and izakayas. But in recent times, there seems to be a surge in cocktail bars in this eclectic neighbourhood. The latest one is Revival, a loft-style bar that shakes up elevated art-inspired cocktails inspired by revival art movements such as Neoclassicism, Romanticism and Frescoes.  Photograph: Revival Opened by the masterminds behind The Compound Collective of Barbary Coast and Deadfall fame, the two-storey bar stars a nine-metre long marble bar countertop. This juxtaposes against a posh backdrop lined with over 400 different spirits (it was made to hold 800). The mid-century modern interiors complemented by deep jewel green and earth-tone furniture exude plush and sophistication, while blots of wallpaper by House of Hackney plaster the walls. The space comfortably accommodates 75 thirsty patrons both indoors and outdoors while the exclusive private loft could fit about 15 guests – there's even a naughty booth where a pair of sinners can head in for a "confession" but we'll leave the uncovering of that to you. Photograph: Revival The polished menu showcases 16 signature tipples, each tied to an iconic artwork of its time. Highlights include the Pathway in Monet’s Garden ($22++) – a harmonious medley of Beefeater and Hendricks Gin, St Germain elderflower liqueur, honeysuckle, jasmine, lemon, and egg white – and the Portrait of Pablo Picasso ($22++) – a blend of Beefeater Gin, Campari, Fernet, Suze liqueur, swee

LUCE by Davide Giacomelli: New Italian restaurant in InterContinental Singapore

LUCE by Davide Giacomelli: New Italian restaurant in InterContinental Singapore

Opening its doors on May 20 is LUCE by Davide Giacomelli. But all that wouldn’t have been possible without a global culinary superstar hunt to grace the stage. Edging the competition of over 200,000 hopefuls and eventually 120 other finalists worldwide, Chef Davide Giacomelli and his passion for Italian cuisine rose to the occasion. The prize? A blank canvas to bring his vision to life and his namesake all over the new bistronomic concept. With that, LUCE by Davide Giacomelli was born. Photograph: LUCE by Davide Giacomelli Flexing 13 years of culinary experience with stints at several Michelin-starred restaurants across Europe, including three Michelin-starred Le Meurice Alain Ducasse, one Michelin-starred Le Diane and one Michelin-starred Le Vistamar Restaurant, the young accomplished Italian native said, “It is an honour to take the helm of InterContinental Singapore’s flagship restaurant. I am grateful to the team for believing in my passion and vision, and giving me the opportunity to create something special for our guests while continuing the brand’s unwavering dedication to perfection.” LUCE translates to “light” in Italian as it aims to cast a spotlight on fresh, local ingredients, with a focus on seasonals that will be refreshed each quarter. Expect bright flavours – all in a warm and casual atmosphere that's coupled with authentic Italian hospitality. Photograph: LUCE by Davide Giacomelli Food here is as Italian as it gets. With a heavy emphasis on showcasing It

Marguerite celebrates the arrival of spring with a surprisingly clever seven-course tasting menu

Marguerite celebrates the arrival of spring with a surprisingly clever seven-course tasting menu

Joy and exuberance, new discoveries and new beginnings. These are the themes of Marguerite’s new Spring menu. Inspired by a garden in first bloom, Chef-Owner Michael Wilson proudly showcases craft, provenance, and produce through whimsical contemporary creations. Photograph: Nikko Pascua “Our approach to Spring was to allow the inherent beauty of the ingredients to speak for themselves through our cooking,” says Wilson. For a seven-course tasting menu, each plate seeks to surprise, delight and perhaps even evoke a little hands-on fun – stripping away the typical fine-dining pretence.  Photograph: Nikko Pascua To start, canapes. These came straight out of the culinary theatre of the open concept kitchen island. Cue the cameras as these morsels are truly exquisite. Expect four bite-sized snacks (from right to left); a velvety Foie Gras Cornetto, an intensely flavoured Steak Frites, Kingfish and Caviar, and Apricot and Comte 36. Our favourite? The Kingfish and Caviar. This bite saw seven-day aged kingfish diced and tossed with chives, olive oil, mackerel garum, seaweed vinegar – all atop a crisp algae shell. Then, a smoked cream, made from smoked salmon skin infused with milk and cream, is daintily piped and finished with a crowning glory of Amur caviar. “That looks like something that came out of a Hermès showroom but edible,” exclaimed my dining counterpart. While that remains to be disputed, the Apricot and Comte 36 showcased Wilson’s playful riff on a pairing of sweet w

Sago House announces inaugural collection of cocktail NFTs

Sago House announces inaugural collection of cocktail NFTs

Sago House opened its doors right smack in the middle of the pandemic two years ago and just did about everything right to land itself a commendable rank of No.31 in recent Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022. Riding off the coattails of its own success, the high octane cocktail bar now introduces its first collection of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to commemorate over 270 cocktails on its first year of menus. Photograph: Sago House No, you didn’t read it wrong. Yes indeed, over 270 tipples were shaken, stirred, concocted, and served in Sago House. Of course, you must be wondering how did they manage to pull off such a feat. Well, each week since the bar opened (excusing forceful closures from the pandemic), the team offers a rotating menu of novel cocktails designed with six themes in mind; strong up, strong down, daisies, highballs, sours and tropical drinks. Once that week is over, the six cocktails will be retired forever. Until now. Unlocking the cocktail time capsule Photograph: Sago House Firstly, what the heck are NFTs? The acronym officially stands for Non-fungible token. Unlike crypto where for instance, Bitcoin is fungible – trade one for another and you'll still end up with the same Bitcoin. So imagine a one-of-a-kind trading card where if you trade it with another one-of-a-kind trading card, you'd have something completely different at the end of the transaction. Here’s where it piques our interest. By owning a Sago House NFT, it warrants you the exclusive access rights t

Stellar food, killer views and a food forest at all new 1-Arden

Stellar food, killer views and a food forest at all new 1-Arden

Since the beginning of the year, 1-Group has been making moves and revitalising the F&B scene with fresh exciting concepts to boot. Riding off the recent momentous openings of Sol & Luna and Bee’s Knees, 1-Arden is the latest darling to the eclectic group’s portfolio.  Headlining 1-Arden is Kaarla, which serves coastal Australian cuisine. Worth mentioning is the 1-Arden Food Forest right outside the restaurant. It's the highest urban farm in the world boasting 10,000 square feet – to create an unparalleled symbiotic bond between urban farmers and chefs for a showcase in sustainable gastronomy. AT THE HELM Photograph: Kaarla Running the entire show is Executive Chef John-Paul Fiechtner aka “JP” who draws on his 20-years of experience gathered from stints all around the world and growing up on his hometown farm in Queensland. Known to inventively honour every ingredient used, expect food here to be kissed by fire, honouring the farm to table concept, and woven from the bounty of coastal Australia as well as the rich harvests of the 1-Arden Food Forest right from the backyard. LOOK AND FEEL Photograph: Kaarla Perched up 51 storeys high, Kaarla’s understated palettes of granite, beige, and moss green finished with natural stone and a wood veneered ceiling injects pure elegance to the interior space. Adorned with expansive floor-to-ceiling windows, you’d often find yourself gazing at the panoramic skyline. Photograph: Kaarla But upon entering the space, the ethereal green M

Time Out Eats: Street snacks at LalooLalang’s Walk Through Souq in Kampong Gelam

Time Out Eats: Street snacks at LalooLalang’s Walk Through Souq in Kampong Gelam

After a two-year hiatus, Ramadan bazaars are back and they have been popping up at each and every corner of our city. To celebrate the return of this beloved open market and of course, the love of street food, we head down to LalooLalang Kampong Gelam’s Walk Through Souq – part of Cinta Cahaya Ramadan organized by One Kampong Gelam – to experience it all. Here’s how it went down. Classic Burger Ramly Photograph: Dawson Tan Burger Ramly ($4) is truly a bazaar staple, but we are not too sure if it hits with this one. The affordable snack is known for its patties wrapped in a sauce-filled omelette, getting their reputation as a sloppily good pasar malam fare. While we had high hopes for this one, the burger royally missed the mark with its rather dry beef patty packed between stale buns. It wasn’t quite messy and juicy either. While this bazaar burger is absolutely essential when visiting the Ramadan Bazaar, we thought you’d be better off giving it a miss this time around. Mentaiko Dendeng Roll by Kream SG  Photograph: Dawson Tan KREAM serves up its rendition of coney dogs with flavours such as mentaiko dendeng, nachos, and flaming cheese. We opted for the Mentaiko Dendeng ($8), which is basically barbecued meat topped with mentaiko sauce sandwiched between sausage buns. Sounds odd? We thought so too, but one of us surprisingly enjoyed it.   Torched Beef Cubes by Bang Bang Kuali Photograph: Dawson Tan Braving the snaking queues of Bang Bang Kuali, this stall serves up thei

Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022: Jigger & Pony is still Singapore’s best bar while MO Bar soars to 8th

Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022: Jigger & Pony is still Singapore’s best bar while MO Bar soars to 8th

Singapore showed up to Asia’s 50 Best Bars with a strong showing this year. After taking home top spots on the annual Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2022 list earlier in March, our little red dot is also now home to an impressive 11 bars in Asia. This comes as no surprise. The best bar in Singapore remains as Jigger & Pony, retaining its position as second best, while Hong Kong’s craft cocktail bar Coa clings on to the top spot as the best bar in Asia twice in a row. Photograph: MO Bar MO Bar claims the No.8 spot and receives the Nikka Highest Climber Award. This happens to be the very first time the industry witnessed a bar scaling 37 positions up from its previous 2021 ranking of No.45 – time to cue out the champagne. Photograph: Analogue   This year also sees two first-time entrants. The swanky Republic Bar (No.12) at the Ritz and the fresh-faced sustainability-driven cocktail bar Analogue (No.37). Making it to the top 50 list are Manhattan (No.9), No Sleep Club (No.15), ATLAS (No.23), Tippling Club (No.27), Sago House (No.31), Nutmeg & Clove (No.36), and 28 Hongkong Street (No.49). Since 2021, the bars’ list extends beyond the top 50 and 2022 is no different. A total of nine local watering holes made it to the 51 to 100 rankings, including D.Bespoke (No.58), Live Twice (No.65), Employees Only (No.77), and Junior the Pocket Bar (No.98). Barbary Coast – formerly ranked No.29 in 2021 – shuffles away from the main list and lands itself a place at No.95 which comes as a shock

We tried a $32 Pao Fan at Native – and we loved it

We tried a $32 Pao Fan at Native – and we loved it

Well ahead of its time, Native opened as a cocktail bar back in December 2016 that futz around with intelligent fermentation and flavour extraction techniques to develop their own unique cocktails that showcase local and regional produce. Today, things remain constant except for the birth of an outstanding full-service restaurant where there’s a zealous focus to unpretentiously honour local and regional ingredients. Photograph: Native Helming the kitchen is Head Chef MJ Teoh – formerly from Pollen, Nouri and Appetite fame, the 35-year-old is excited to showcase her range of refined comfort foods that please both the adult and inner-child in you. Aligned with its sustainability promise, the menu design leans toward a plant-forward concept but don’t expect things to be bland and boring. Photograph: Native Cue in the pièce de résistance, Nose to Tail Chicken Pao Fan ($32) where every part counts. A succulent organic Lacto chicken thigh is crowned atop a mountain of fluffy rice and drowned in a flavourful broth made from roasted wings and chicken feet. Finished with puffed rice from unused cooked rice and a side of crunchy chicken gizzards to add textural contrast. Think warm soul comforting soup over a rainy day – this dish ticks all the boxes.  A medley of smoky charcoal, sweet herbal, umami-ladened flavours are deeply infused into the viscous broth. Brilliantly paired with MJ’s family jewel – Ah Moy’s Chilli Sauce, it complements with a bright zesty kick that helps balance

Chef Dennis Lucchi serves up all hits at Buona Terra

Chef Dennis Lucchi serves up all hits at Buona Terra

A trip to the cloistered black-and-white colonial bungalow along Scotts Road always feels a little special as you revel in its privacy. This time, it was in celebration of the time-tested one-Michelin star restaurant featuring a holy trinity of milestones; Buona Terra’s ten year anniversary, Chef Dennis Lucchi’s decade long tenure at the helm, and spanking new interiors.   Photograph: Buona Terra     No one knows hard work like Chef Dennis Lucchi. Dedicating himself to Buona Terra, he has charted the choppy waters of Singapore’s dining scene with his contemporary take on fine Italian gastronomy with much success. Weaving in flavours that are complex yet essential, familiar yet exciting, he remains relevant with his creations that were heavily inspired by his childhood memories and his drive for culinary innovation. As such, to dine at Buona Terra is to experience Italian food that is living and vital while rooted in soul and tradition.   Photograph: Buona Terra     It all began with an exquisite trio of snacks to start. Featuring a delicate Japanese cuttlefish salad on a crisp Feuille de brick, a “kueh pie tee” inspired Squid Ink Tart with sweet zesty horsehair crab and clear tomato gelee, and the Just Tomato which bites into bright yet creamy cold gazpacho encased in a cocoa butter orb. Each is delightful in its own right.   Photograph: Buona Terra     Setting the tone to the main act is the Capaccio where Lucchi highlights chunky slices of creamy silky yellowtail. He

Review: Gaggan Anand's Greatest Hits at Mandala Club

Review: Gaggan Anand's Greatest Hits at Mandala Club

When it comes to the name Gaggan Anand, most would expect nothing short of an outrageous culinary affair. So when the eccentric chef decided to leave it all behind and serve up his greatest hits one last time for all at the members-only Mandala Club, one can’t help but consider splurging on such an experience. Literally dubbed as the “Greatest Hits”, Gaggan Anand sets out to serve up the dishes that cast a global spotlight on him a decade ago before retiring them for good. It all began with a bogus passport with Gaggan’s mug and emoji themed paste-ons that you can use to record your guesses of what will soon be served. At the end of the experience, the big reveal will be shared which was supposedly designed to keep diners on their toes throughout the course. Raring to go as a young buck, it was in fact my first and ironically final foray with Gaggan Anand’s cuisine – unlike my experienced dining companions whom some have even been to the now-defunct restaurant back in Bangkok. Photograph: Dawson Tan It all began with Gaggan’s signature Yoghurt Explosion where a thin leaf-like crisp is replicated from dehydrated powdered green mint chutney, holding a white opaque orb made of tangy yoghurt charred masala, then topped with spherified black salt. It came with a strict directive to pop it entirely into your mouth which we did. A multitude of sensations soon followed, most notably the pop rocks sensation most of us are all too familiar with while growing up.  Photograph: Dawson

Market Street Hawker Centre reopens in style at CapitaSpring

Market Street Hawker Centre reopens in style at CapitaSpring

After a four-year stint at its interim locale right outside of Telok Ayer MRT, Market Street Hawker Centre has finally reopened at a permanent location. Nestled on the second and third levels of CapitaSpring just two minutes away from bustling Raffles Place MRT, this stylish hawker now showcases 56 stalls with capacious dining areas and thoughtful design. Straying away from the typical stuffy hawker environment, you'd be glad that you won't be suffering from ugly sweat patches and nasty wet underarms after dining here.   Photograph: Dawson Tan   The reopening comes right in time with the further easing of workplace restrictions and the great return back to the offices. While we were there, we saw hordes of people coming in and out in waves, bravely securing seats with their lanyards and queuing up at their favourite hawker delights. Truly a sight to revel in after two years.   Photograph: Dawson Tan   Being one of the few CBD hawkers; Amoy Street Food Centre, Lau Pa Sat, and Maxwell Food Centre, we’d think that these are integral communal grounds where one could stretch their dollar and yet afford the luxury to choose from a wide variety of cuisines to fill up their bellies. Check out the generous plate of glistening roasted meats and a side of springy wonton noodles above by Tiong Bahru Roasted Noodle House, which only set you back a nifty $7.50. Photograph: Dawson Tan Expect to feast on familiar favourites such as Tong Fong Fatt Hainanese Boneless Chicken Rice, Tiong

Get a seat at new kappo-style restaurant Willow if you haven't

Get a seat at new kappo-style restaurant Willow if you haven't

Every dining experience in Willow feels strangely intimate, even if you do not personally know Chef Nicholas Tam and his fine team of young local chefs. But by the end of the course, it would have felt as if you were leaving their humble abode with full bellies. Well, at least that’s how we felt and here’s why. From the taming of the binchotan-filled Konro grill with meats dancing amongst the smoky fumes to the artful plating sequence of ingredients on one-of-a-kind ceramicware, guests can expect to witness an engaging culinary performance and the occasional cheeky exchanges with Chef Nicholas. But for that, you’ll need to opt for the chef’s counter seat which happens to be fully booked till May. Photograph: Willow The tasting journey begins with a breath of sea which saw brackish caviar, creamy bonito creme and drops of argan oil that is crown atop a crisp potato chip. Followed by a subtly rich and buttery Foie Gras “bolo” bun that was well balanced with some acidity from wild berries and aged vinegar gel to deliver a burst-in-your-mouth one bite morsel. The Pain Au Lait will satisfy every carb craving you’ll have for the day featuring three types of Nori; Wakame, Roasted Seaweed, and Shio Kombu. Paired with an airy sabayon with faint lemon zest, the end result is a fluffy umami-filled milk bun that already has an ardent following – so much so that that we found out that there’s one particular guest who pre-orders 30 pieces with each visit. Before we move on to the mains,