This Ramadan, the Halia offers communal feasts ($220) that feed four with dishes like wagyu masala beef and pan-fried barramundi. Not up for indulging? Its all-day menu features plates like its signature chilli crab spaghettini ($26) and paperbag oven-baked halibut fillet ($33).
Set aside your utensils and put on a plastic bib, because it only gets messy from here on. The Halal Louisiana-style seafood restaurant’s second outlet at Plaza Singapura is here to satisfy all your crustacean cravings, offering an expanded menu alongside its classic seafood buckets (from $88). Go for its platter for two if you’re dining with a friend and order The Naughty Platter ($31.90), which serves sea bass, fried squid, tiger prawns with either pilaf rice or aglio olio pasta.
But it’s not just about seafood here. Sink your teeth into one of its premium beef burgers such as the Crusty Burger ($39.90), which features a juicy patty sandwiched between tomatoes, lettuce and grilled lobster. There are also additional à la carte and ocean box options, including lobster bisque ($6.90) and deep fried soft shell crab ($16.50). Don't forget to pair them with the restaurant's signature creamy sauces like Thai red curry and salted egg yolk to make the experience extra tasty.
This tiny café specialises in Japanese-French desserts like petite eclairs, macarons and plated yogurt parfaits that are made fresh on-site. For people who don't have a sweet tooth, you'll also find pancakes served with tempura and other snacks such as truffle fries.
Tingkat delivery service Dapur Ummi Abdullah brings its nasi ambeng: rice with sides like sambal goreng, beef rendang and sambal belachan, served on a massive platter and meant to be shared. Located at Upper Changi Road’s East Village, the restaurant serves up four different types of platters, including the Ambeng Classic Trio ($48/serves three) which comes with 14 side dishes such as sambal goreng Jawa, spicy-sweet sambal sotong and dried fish. For those with a smaller appetite, order a plate of dried lontong with chicken and sambal goreng ($8) or beef soup with rice ($9.90) from the restaurant’s à la carte menu.
The queue at this nasi padang restaurant stretches out the door even before lunchtime hits. We can’t blame the crowd, though, as only the early birds get the worm. Or in this case, stellar beef rendang and sambal goreng. There are only limited quantities of each item, so hot favourites like the tauhu telor sell out fast. Aside from quintessential Malay dishes, there are also rarer ones like lemak siput sedut, or sea snails swimming in a coconut-rich broth. And be sure to scream ‘yes’ when asked if you’d like a dollop of sambal with your rice.
This never-tiring after-hours joint at River Valley is a Mecca for night owls hoping to fill up their bellies. Its menu covers the greasier end of the supper scale, with classic Indian-Muslim orders like fried Maggi noodles ($7.50), cone-shaped tissue prata ($3.80) and roti john ($6). Western fare such as burgers ($7.50-$8.90) and cheese-drenched fries ($6.90) are also available, and anything you order should go down well with a tall glass of Milo Dinosaur ($3.90).
The decor of Islamic Restaurant is grander than you’d expect of a 95-year-old briyani shop. Then again, its regular patrons included the late presidents Yusoff Ishak and SR Nathan, and even the sultans of Brunei, Johor and Perak – literally providing meals fit for a king. Owner Abdul Rahiman was once the head chef for the wealthy Alsagoff family and his briyani was especially well-loved. Today, Islamic Restaurant is run by Rahiman's grandson, who still keeps the briyani recipe a secret. While there are six versions of the dish, including chicken, prawn and vegetable ($10-13), the mutton briyani ($10) – with generous chunks of fork-tender meat buried under a mountain of fragrant basmati rice – is the indisputable star. The chicken tikka masala ($8) is just as sublime: the aromatic curry is thick enough to scoop onto warm garlic naan ($2.20), without compromising its crispy texture and you’ll be dreaming of it long after you’ve finished the meal. Thankfully, Islamic Restaurant does home delivery, too.
For Halal Thai food in a lush and contemporary setting, head down to Blue Jasmine. From street food picks like the mango sticky rice to the crowd favourite tom yum soup, expect a classic Thai combination of ‘hot, sour, salty and sweet’ in the dishes. What’s more, dishes are served with four types of rice including the signature Blue Jasmine rice naturally dyed with blue pea flowers. Dine indoors or sit by the pool outdoors to enjoy Singapore’s city skyline and the surrounding greenery.
Opened by three brothers with a case of wanderlust, this people-watching spot on the corner of Haji Lane and North Bridge Road is the hippest on this list. In-house specials include charcoal-grilled beef burgers ($14.90) and lightly battered fried dory ($15.90), which comes with your choice of lemon or malt vinegar to douse on the accompanying thick-cut French fries. The one downside to I AM is its sheer popularity – you’ll have to wait for a seat and deal with the slightly frazzled service.
Opened by Haji Isrin at the corner of Kandahar Street in 1948 – where it remains today – and now run by third-generation owners, the stall continues to churn out homely platters of authentic Malay dishes to a throng of people, including celebrities like former sports personality Fandi Ahmad and musical artist Dato Ramli Sarip. 'Generous' is Nasi Pariaman's middle name. Plates are packed with rice covered in gravy of your choice – there’s chicken curry and lodeh – and an assortment of side dishes such as sambal goreng, bagedil, ikan bilis, tofu and long beans. But the star here is the beef rendang ($3.50), a tender hunk of meat that’s drenched in spices, chilli and gravy. Pair this dish with a steaming cup of teh tarik ($1.30) to complete your meal.
At this bakery-slash-café, rustic cakes are whipped up using recipes tried and tested by owner Shannon Lua's grandmother. The bakers here are quick to hop onto the minimally frosted cake trend with slices of salted caramel and red velvet ($7.90), and lychee rose ($7.90). Add on ice-cream at $4 a scoop, or pair dessert with Dutch Colony-brewed coffees ($3.50-$6.50). Standard café-issue fare takes fusion turns here: crab cakes are dressed with hollandaise and topped with poached eggs ($15), and chicken burgers ($14) are spiked with tandoori spices.
Eclectic decor and mismatched furniture dominate this casual chill-out spot along Arab Street. It does a mean double beef burger that’s topped with caramelised onions and veg ($22). Have it with a side of truffle tater tots ($5), seasoned with truffle oil and grated Parmesan. For a more localised spin, try the beef dendeng version of a burger, its patty dripping with satay sauce ($18). For drinks, sip on coffees from $3.50 or try the café’s bandung latte ($5) and for dessert, order a plate of its fancy goreng pisang ($11).
The Halal café-restaurant serves a straightforward Western menu, with the likes of sweet potato fries ($11.90), Buffalo wings ($14.90), eggs Benedict ($18.90) and smoked duck ($26.90). What Royz et Vous specialises in is coffee – try its cold brew ($8) made from freshly roasted beans, or choose from an extensive selection of Italian La Marzocco coffee, also available as a macchiato ($4.50) and piccolo latte ($4.50).
Don’t go searching for All Things Delicious at Crawford Lane – the Halal café has since moved to bigger and brighter lodgings (courtesy of the skylight) on Arab Street. Baked goods are the order of the day with sweet offerings like sticky toffee puddings ($6.90), carrot cakes ($6.90) and gula Melaka scones ($3), to name a few. And good news for fans of the perpetually sold-out Mel’s house-blend granola ($12/500g): the new location has a larger kitchen, so the café hopes to produce more quantities of the crunchy rolled oats mixed with almonds, coconut, treacle and sea salt.
For heartier offerings, try the colourfully plated wholesome breakfast ($16.90) that comes with scrambled eggs, mushrooms, Moroccan-spiced tomato relish and smoked salmon. On weekends, opt for the shakshuka – a Middle Eastern dish of eggs poached in tomatoes, capsicums and onions – topped with a dollop of sour cream and accompanied by slices of bread for dipping.
Located along Bedok Road is Badoque Café, a restaurant that serves up Asian fusion, Greek and Mediterranean fare. To try on its menu is the beef ribs ($36) that come in generous portions and are served with homemade barbecue sauce. Other dish highlights include the pan-fried salmon with mashed potatoes ($24) and spaghetti with chunks of salmon belly ($22).