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Eat List Labyrinth

The 50 best restaurants in Singapore you must try

We've got perennial favourites, buzzy newcomers and all of the city's best eats on one list

By Nicole-Marie Ng and Time Out Singapore editors

June 2019: Up to number one on our list is Jam at Siri House – a new addition to Dempsey Hill that serves refined comfort food with Asian flair. Other new entries include Restaurant Zén, the first international outpost of Björn Frantzén acclaimed Swedish restaurant and Basque Kitchen by Aitor, which serves food inspired by Basque Country.

Welcome to the Time Out EAT List, our handpicked best of Singapore’s food scene. These are the tastiest places to eat in this city right now: the freshest, most inventive and most memorable, ranked by expert local editors.

You don't have to look very far to stumble upon an amazing nosh in Singapore. The city is packed with boundary-pushing restaurants run by star-studded chefs as well as humble hawker finds that'll satiate your appetite for cheap. Narrowing down the best restaurants in town to a list of 50 is no easy feat – that's why we have separate lists for the best Japanese, French and Spanish restaurants among others – but these are the places we think are worth a visit for unbeatable food, electrifying ambience and genial service to boot.

Eaten somewhere on this list and loved it? Know of a restaurant that should be on here instead? Share it with the hashtag #TimeOutEatList

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1. Jam at Siri House

Restaurants Contemporary Asian Tanglin

Ever wondered what it'd be like to dine in a luxurious condo owned by Bangkok's super-rich? Jam at Siri House gives you a taste of that experience – all without leaving Singapore. The 42-seat restaurant is an intimate space that houses an eclectic range of furniture from mid-century antiques and dazzling chandeliers to plush lounge sets dressed in bright handwoven Jim Thompson silks. Settle into one of its many velvet-draped seats and expect to be blown away by food that escapes narrow definition. The food at Jam at Siri House is playful, fun to eat and outrageously delicious. The spicy potatoes ($16) are Hasselback potatoes covered in mala mayo, crispy beef lardons and parmesan; the pappardelle ($33) utilises prawn and lobster heads to make an intoxicating bisque-like sauce that's tossed in freshly made pasta and finished with smoked mussels and a roasted tiger prawn; and the cod ($38) is a novel take on traditional Chinese steamed fish.

2. Bar Cicheti

Restaurants Italian Chinatown

Can a Singaporean chef – who's never even stepped foot in Italy, we might add – make pasta better than the Italians? At Bar Cicheti on Jiak Chuan Road, the answer is yes. The mostly handmade pastas are done fresh by Aun and his team at Bar Cicheti's open kitchen. On its spring menu are creations like the bucatini ($30) a thick and hollow noodle soaks up the fragrant saffron broth it's cooked in and finished with spring peas, seared Hokkaido scallops and citron zest. Another winner is Aun's take on classic Italian pesto: spaghetti ($28) is tossed in a blend of jalapenos and basil before it's twirled together with pistachios, pine nuts and ricotta salata. The small plates are not to be missed too. Lingua di Manzo Tonnato ($18), or braised beef tongue, makes an offal eater out of any non-believer.


3. Cheek Bistro

Restaurants Tanjong Pagar

Three years, one Michelin star and plenty of other accolades later, Cheek by Jowl has run its last service. Thankfully, its replacement doesn't fall too far from what chef Rishi Naleendra initially set out to achieve. We might even like Cheek Bistro more than the original. The update is warmer and more convivial than its predecessor, with a fresh coat of paint, indoor plants and art by the multi-talented chef adorning its walls. Its à la carte-only menu is unfussy and retains some Cheek by Jowl favourites so you can put down your pitchfork and breathe easy. Try the oysters topped with smoked tomato granita ($6) but the new waffle with chicken liver parfait ($6) is a real showstopper. For larger sharing plates, we recommend the burrata and heirloom tomatoes ($22) and unctuous lamb ribs ($28) with a smoky eggplant purée.


4. Restaurant Zén

Restaurants Swedish Outram

Priced at $450 for dinner, Zén is one of the most expensive restaurants in Singapore. But look beyond the eye-watering price tag at chef Björn Frantzén first international outpost and you'll find that a meal here is well worth it. Your dinner starts out on the first floor of the three-storey shophouse along trendy Bukit Pasoh with snacks that have been perfected in the kitchen of Sweden’s first three-Michelin-starred restaurant. Before you proceed to dig into your mains on the second floor, you're presented with a table of ingredients that you'd be hard pressed to find in any other restaurant in the city – or the region. They go towards making stunning plates like beautifully cooked marron interjected with puffed Koshihikari rice, Yukimuro snow-aged wagyu covered with ramson, pickled baby pine cones flown in from Russia and the most incredibly balanced dessert of sea buckthorn sorbet served paired with oolong mousse and match meringue.


5. New Ubin Zhongshan Park

Restaurants Singaporean Raffles Place

Opening its third outlet on the island and first hotel restaurant, New Ubin Group is quickly solidifying itself as Singapore's zi char king. It's built a reputation of serving hearty local favourites as well as some unexpected creations you wouldn't usually find at your typical heartland joint. Its most famous dish is the USDA Black Angus ‘Choice’ Rib-Eye (from $80/500g) served medium-rare with caramelised onions, potato wedges and various sauces but you definitely need to have it with New Ubin's signature Heart Attack Fried Rice, which is fried with beef drippings. Aside from its star creation, other must-tries include the Foie Gras Egg Special ($10.50), pan-seared foie gras served with soft boiled eggs sprinkled with truffle salt; mud crabs (from $48/400g) baked with copious amounts of garlic; as well as the Boss Bee Hoon ($12), a wok hei bomb of just three simple ingredients: rice vermicelli, egg and chye sim.

6. Basque Kitchen by Aitor

Restaurants French Tanjong Pagar

Following his departure from one-Michelin-starred Iggy’s at the Hilton Singapore, chef Aitor Jeronimo Orive has teamed up with powerhouse hotel and restaurant group Unlisted Collection to open Basque Kitchen. Inspired by the cuisine of Basque Country, where meats are grilled over hot coals and stews are rustic and hearty – he elevates these homey dishes with techniques he’s learnt cooking at some of the top restaurants in the world. Lunch is priced from $38 while dinner starts from $85 but we highly recommend the grill tasting menu ($98) that highlights dishes that are cooked on a Josper-made Basque grill. The menu features Kokotxas, a traditional dish of desalted cod chin that's slathered in pil-pil, a rich sauce made with olive oil, back garlic and guindillas (small hot peppers) as well as the Txuleta, a showstopping grilled Angus prime rib showered with black truffle. This isn't your ordinary steak, chef Aitor specifically uses old cows that can be up to 18 years of age, which results in a flavourful, albeit slightly less tender.


7. Min Jiang at Dempsey

Restaurants Chinese Tanglin

First opened in 1982 at Goodwood Park Hotel, Min Jiang has long been a stalwart of Chinese cuisine in Singapore. And after 12 years at Rochester Park, the brand's second outlet has moved to bigger space on Dempsey Hill decked out in rustic touches made modern like weaved wooden panels, rattan chairs and large drop lanterns that emit a warm glow over the dining room. Helming the restaurant is chef Goh Chee Kong, who's spent the past 32 years cooking at Min Jiang. He specialises in both Cantonese and Sichuan cuisine, producing beautiful plates of dim sum – the steamed Goldfish prawn dumpling ($4.80) is extremely Instagrammable, as is the pretty deluxe platter ($38) of blue pea truffle vegetable dumpling, steamed crabmeat, prawn and vegetable dumpling, fried glutinous rice golden pumpkin, and scallop dumpling. Other highlights on the menu include the braised sea treasure soup in pomegranate egg white parcel ($48), where Australian abalone, bamboo pith and dried scallops are poached and wrapped in an egg white skin. There's also the legendary wood-fired Beijing Duck ($118/ordering one day in advance is recommended) carved tableside with eight different condiments.

8. Esora

Restaurants Japanese River Valley

Esora is a treat for the senses. Chef-owner Shigeru Koizumi prepares Kappo-style cuisine with utmost precision, bringing together his experience cooking at three-Michelin-starred Nihonryori Ryugin in Tokyo and Singapore’s very own two-Michelin-starred Odette. The menu changes almost every week, following the micro-seasonality of ingredients, so you never really know what you’re going to get. The only choice you get to make is if you want the seven-course ($198), nine-course ($258) or the more premium and customisable chef’s menu ($308) and if you’d like to pair your meal with alcohol ($78/$108) or house-blended teas ($38/$48).


9. Nouri

Restaurants Tanjong Pagar

Chef-owner Ivan Brehm, an alumnus of The Fat Duck and former head chef of Bacchanalia, has us hooked on 'crossroads cooking' – a term he coined that celebrates the similarities between cuisines and cultures. Cooking philosophy aside, the food at Nouri speaks volumes on its own. Expect deftly prepared dishes that use uncommon ingredients like wild rice stem and kanzuri to create flavour combinations that are all at once familiar and novel.


10. Jaan

Restaurants French City Hall

With breathtaking views of the Singapore skyline, Jaan is an intimate 40-seat restaurant that takes you on a culinary journey to Britain. After three years helming the restaurant, chef Kirk Westaway has hit full stride with his latest Reinventing British menu. A series of snacks like a fish and chips tart and Britain’s national dish, chicken tikka masala served to the tune of Brit-pop and rock music to set the tone of the meal. Signature mains include the Alaskan langoustine served with courgette as well as aged roasted pigeon with blackberry, beetroot and foie gras.


11. Candlenut

Restaurants Tanglin

To be the world's only Michelin-starred Peranakan chef is no easy feat, but through hard work, a passion for his heritage and unyielding dedication, chef Malcolm Lee managed to earn this badge of honour all before turning 35. Opt for Lee’s ‘ahmakase’ menu ($65/lunch, $88/dinner) if you're new the cuisine and unsure of where to start. But the brave should not miss buah keluak ($22) of braised local chicken – it's an acquired taste but you haven't really had Peranakan food if you don't give it a try.

12. Burnt Ends

Restaurants European Chinatown

A mainstay on the Asia's 50 Best Restaurant's list, Burnt Ends is well worth the hype and the month-long (or sometimes longer) waiting list. There’s just something incredibly honest about a solid slab of meat coaxed over open flames. The steak topped with bone marrow and burnt onion is something you'll find on every table, but to leave without chowing down on Burnt End's legendary sanger burger would be a travesty.


13. Odette

Restaurants City Hall

No list of the best restaurants in Singapore would be complete without our only World's 50 Best entry, Odette. The two-Michelin-star holder is really pushing Singapore's culinary landscape forwards with its Essential Cuisine philosophy.  Described as honest food with a steep respect for ingredients cultivated from his farming family in France, chef Julien Royer’s cuisine prides itself on keeping up with the provenance of its produce, which results in magnificent plates that will blow any diner away.

14. Birds of a Feather

Restaurants Chinese Chinatown

Western dishes get a Sichuan twist at Birds of a Feather. Inspired by the laid-back teahouses of Chengdu, the restaurant tastefully makes use of lush greenery and eclectic design pieces to create a space you won't mind unwinding at from morning 'til late. Try the roasted chicken and avocado salad with Sichuan pepper, oriental bolognaise and hot and sour chazuke, a light and mildly spicy broth that's poured over a bed of Niigata rice and charcoal-grilled barramundi. 

Violet Oon Singapore Jewel
Nyonya Poh Piah Party Set

15. Violet Oon Singapore

Restaurants Peranakan Changi 

Whether you’re a tourist on the hunt for local cuisine or a Singaporean craving for Peranakan comfort food when you touch down, Violet Oon Singapore is sure to hit the spot. Gather around the communal tables at the brands biggest outlet to date and make your own Nyonya Poh Piah ($58). Each platter comes with 12 different toppings including steamed prawns, Chinese sausage and braised bamboo shoots and jimaca, or as it's known here in Singapore, bung kuang. There are six skins you can gussy a roll up to your liking – figuring out how much you can stuff in there without breaking the skin is half the fun. Eating it like a burrito is the other half. Other Jewel exclusives include the Roti Violet Tuna Wala-Wala ($15) – think of it as a roti prata soft taco topped with flaky tuna tossed in spices – and the otak toast ($16), thick, spicy mackerel fish cake served on toast. Violet's signatures like the beef rendang ($23), dry laksa ($24) and ngoh hiang ($14) are also on the menu.

16. The Coconut Club

Restaurants Tanjong Pagar

When a restaurant still draws in daily queues despite charging $12.80 for a dish people typically pay $2 for, you know it's doing something right. The nasi lemak at The Coconut Club is a faultless example of the classic Malay dish. You get a fried egg, ikan bilis, peanuts, slices of Japanese cucumber, two juicy pieces of fried chicken, sambal and unlimited servings of rice flavoured with coconut milk from a single plantation in Sabak Bernam, Malaysia.


17. Restaurant Labyrinth

Restaurants Singaporean City Hall

Labyrinth, like the city it represents, is defined by growth and change. Chef-owner Han Li Guang's "new expression of Singapore cuisine" sees him moving away from reinterpretations of classic local dishes like chilli crab and mee pok. Instead, this truly local restaurant has turned locavore: 80% of its menu is made from ingredients sourced from the city's farms presented in a 16-course dinner that echoes Singapore's past, present and future.

18. Lolla

Restaurants Fusion Tanjong Pagar

This under-the-radar restaurant on buzzy Ann Siang Road whips up seasonal Mediterranean dishes in its open kitchen. Grab a seat by the bar and order its signature sea urchin pudding – trust us, it’s that good, you'll be licking the plate clean. Order à la carte or opt for the hassle-free five course ($85) or seven-course ($110) tasting menu. The hand-torn pasta dish with black trumpet mushrooms and duck leg confit ragout is absolutely divine.


19. Braci

Restaurants Raffles Place

This tiny shophouse along Boat Quay might only be able to squeeze 20 people into its space, but this exclusive casual-luxe restaurant and rooftop bar doesn't pull any punches. Tasting menus at this one-Michelin-starred joint start at a resonable $100 and features classics like foie gras semifreddo with kumquats and fig vincotto and grass fed beef tenderloin with chanterelles and truffles.

20. Esquina

Restaurants Spanish Chinatown

With experience in Michelin-decorated kitchens like El Celler de Can Roca and Zuberoa in Spain, chef Carlos Montobbio has brought Esquina to new heights since he took the reins. The tapas-style menu is made for sharing. Start your meal with smoked mackerel delicately placed on a thin corn tuile before moving on to stunning plates of grilled Spanish octopus dressed with corn sauce, chimichurri, chorizo oil and uni and lobster paella with saffron allioli and sugar snap peas.


21. Folklore

Restaurants Peranakan Kallang

Thank goodness of restaurants like Folklore that are keeping Singapore heritage food alive. Chef Damian D'Silva is a veteran chef that's fiercely protecting the Eurasian and Peranakan dishes he grew up. These dishes are painstakingly made from scratch the old-fashioned way. Think sambal buah keluak – a fermented black seed that takes up to a week to prepare – fried rice served with a sunny side up egg and impossibly beef cheek rendang simmered for hours.

22. Les Amis

Restaurants French Orchard

Before Singapore became a hotspot for celebrity chef openings, there was Les Amis. The locally and internationally lauded French fine dining establishment has seen the likes of Justin Quek, Ignatius ‘Iggy’ Chan and Janice Wong pass through its kitchen and is now helmed by chef Sebastien Lepinoy. The French chef sources almost everything from his country of origin. His pride and joy: handcrafted Le Ponclet butter, which is so rare, it's only served in less than 20 restaurants in the world.


23. Cut by Wolfgang Puck

Restaurants Marina Bay

You go to Cut for one reason: the steaks. Grilled over hard wood and charcoal, the hunks of beef come from a menagerie of sources. You've got USDA Prime from Illinois, Angus and wagyu from Australia, Red Poll from Suffolk, wagyu from Idaho, and even more wagyu from different prefectures in Japan. Each type is further broken down into different cuts, ranging from rib-eyes to New York strips to bone-in filet mignons. 

TONO Cevicheria
Photo: daphotographer

24. Tono Cevicheria

Restaurants Peruvian Rochor

Slang for ‘party’ in Peru, Tono is characterised by lively salsa music and a maracas-wielding fish mascot. As you's expect, there’s nothing dull about the food either. Everything that hits the table is fresh, punchy and delicious – from its signature ceviche to the more traditional Peruvian dishes with names we can barely pronounce like the escabeche causas, a Peruvian take on a chicken potato salad. Don't skip out on a plate of alfajores for dessert, either.

Waku Ghin
Photo: Waku Ghin

25. Waku Ghin

Restaurants Marina Bay

Here's where to have dinner once you strike it big at the casino. Conceptualised by acclaimed chef Tetsuya Wakuda, Waku Ghin features ten-course degustation menus priced from an eye-watering $450. You'll be treated to ingredients sourced from the region and beyond – marinated botan shrimp with sea urchin and caviar, braised Canadian lobster with terragon and seared ohmi wagyu paired wasabi and citrus soya.


26. Thevar

Restaurants Indian Raffles Place

We're not sure why it took so long, but Singapore finally has a contemporary Indian restaurant to call its own. Inspired by his travels around South Asia, his Penang heritage and his time working in Singapore, chef Murugan Thevar has come up with creative yet satisfyingly delicious plates at Thevar. Start your meal with plump Canadian oysters topped with rasam granita ($28/5 pieces) and spiced potato chips ($10). The star of the show is the pork ribs glazed with medjool dates ($35) best served with a plate of berry pulao ($12). Decadent and sweet with a touch of smoke, you might think the combination too rich and cloying – it isn't.


27. Rhubarb Le Restaurant

Restaurants Tanjong Pagar

Rhubard Le Restaurant proves that bigger doesn't necessarily mean better. With just seven tables, this charming shophouse space along Duxton Hill guarantees an intimate and personalised experience. The contemporary French restaurant offers a three-course lunch at $48 but splash out on its $148 dinner menu that features classics like ballotine and quail redefined.

28. Maggie Joan's

Restaurants Contemporary European Tanjong Pagar

Think of Maggie Joan's as a hipper-than-thou secret dining club hiding behind a rusty door marked by an unlit signboard along Gemmill Lane. The restaurant is the sibling of Moosehead Kitchen and Bar and father-and-son team Glen and Daniel Ballis have decided to move head chef Seumas Smith over to take over Maggie Joan's open kitchen.  The long, dark and cavernous dining room makes this restaurant a sexy spot for a date – if only because the seductive dishes match the drapes. The seasonally driven plates are refined yet hearty best exemplified by the likes of burrata paired with peas and preserved lemon ($21) and roasted carrots paired with ricotta, apricot and rosemary ($10). Mains are more than substantial, with options such as thick cuts of pan-seared barramundi ($34) cooked with sustainably farmed mussels and nage as well as spiced lamb with salmorejo ($44), black garlic and salsa verde.  Even if we're not in the mood for a full meal, we can see ourselves popping in for a drink, some tapas and maybe even lunch just to soak in the atmosphere. The ‘appetisers’ – they’re snacks, really – make good padding for drinks: try the shiso tempura topped with taramasalata ($3) and the excellent house-baked sourdough with smoked beef fat butter ($4).

Photo: Ahmad Iskandar Photography

29. Morsels

Restaurants Asian Tanglin

Morsels left its home in Little India for greener pastures at Dempsey and we think it's all the better for it. Its new rustic barnyard-style digs features an open kitchen at the back, allowing you to see chef-owner Petrina Loh and her team whip up creative fusion dishes rooted in local ingredients like her signature steamed venus clams in fig broth and Firecracker Duroc Pulled Pork, a dish that’ll keep you coming back for more.

30. JB Ah Meng

Restaurants Chinese Geylang

JB Ah Meng is another Bib Gourmand awardee, and it has the support of top local and international chefs besides. Regulars include chef Justin Quek (JustIN Flavours of Asia), chef Andrew Walsh (CURE) and chef Jason Tan (Corner House). Like them, the crowds keep coming back for its unbeatable zi char dishes like the san lou bee hoon ($7-$14). It appears simple enough, but the pancake-resembling seafood noodle dish is the joint’s star. Charred and crisp on the outside but soft on the inside, each strand of bee hoon is coated with a smoky wok hei. JB Ah Meng also does a killer rendition of white pepper crab (from $24) – the dish is only mildly spicy and lets the natural sweetness of the crustacean shine. 


31. Preludio

Restaurants Contemporary European Raffles Place

"We've already been served this," we shoot the waiter an incredulous look as he places the same dish before us. Biting into it, you realise that first two dishes of Preludio's eight-course menu – albeit plated the same way – are nothing alike. The first, Elude, is sweet with white beetroot, burrata and walnut crumble while Allude, the second course, is sour lemon-dressed bone marrow and fermented mushrooms. It's touches like this that surprise and delight, which make Preludio restaurant one of the most interesting openings of 2018.

32. Shinji by Kanesaka

Restaurants Japanese Orchard

There's a sense of hushed reverence that befalls anyone stepping into Shinji by Kanesake – you're about to worship at the altar of one of Singapore's best sushi bars, after all. Even if you're intimidated at first, give it a few minutes and you'll start to feel at home when the friendly itamae enquires about your preferences. Lunch starts from $75 for nine pieces and includes stellar slices of chutoro, otoro and anago over lightly vinegared rice with a firm bite. And dinner begins at $220 for 15 nigiri pieces, a maki roll and soup.



33. Amò

Restaurants Raffles Place

Sophisticated yet casual, Amò makes the best pies in town. The sourdough pizzas are tossed through the air before it’s baked in a wood-fired oven that’s made in Italy, of course. The result is a light and chewy base with a crisp and slightly charred exterior. But if you’re looking for variety, you’re not going to find it here. There are only eight pizzas on the menu including a creamy stracciatella buffalo cheese, prosciutto, rocket, and fig vincotto that's our fave.

34. Ola Cocina Del Mar

Restaurants Marina Bay

This laid-back Spanish eatery focuses on serving the freshest seasonal produce. An open kitchen concept, Ola’s philosophy is to source ingredients in a sustainable way while bringing simple and tasty dishes to life. Seafood takes centre-stage, sustainably sourced and very often, put through a baptism of fire in the Josper oven. Try the pulpo, meaty and perfectly tender octopus kissed with smoky aroma. Instead of the usual potatoes, the Galician tentacle rests (chopped) on a bed of silky hummus.


35. Kappo Shunsui

Restaurants Japanese Orchard

Kappo Shunsui is of the few restaurants in Singapore that serves Kappo-style cuisine – an intricate balance of five primary food preparation techniques: grilling, steaming, frying, simmering and serving food raw. Expect seasonally-driven menus priced at either $150 or $250 (there's also a sake flight of six different rice wines priced at $69) that features dishes such as owan, a clear kombu and dried bonito broth served with a homemade fishcake that's stuffed two types of clams and five types of fish meat.

36. Summer Pavilion

Restaurants Chinese City Hall

After all these years, Summer Pavilion is still one of the best Chinese eateries in town. Chef Cheung Siu Kong has been honing his craft in the same kitchen since 2003 and earning the restaurant its first Michelin star in 2016. Cheung’s signature dishes include barbecued Iberico pork with honey sauce and marinated South African abalone with roasted sesame dressing.


37. Jumbo Seafood

Restaurants Seafood Bedok

Regardless of what some Malaysian minister might say, chilli crab will always be the ultimate Singaporean dish in our hearts. Jumbo’s been serving chilli crabs at its birthplace, East Coast Park, since 1987 and has long been a favourite of many. The reason for its popularity has to be its choice of crabs – they’re all extremely meaty, with extra-large pincers. Its sauce is pretty unique, too, deploying ground peanuts for an added crunch.

Luke's Oyster Bar & Chop House
Photo: Felix Hug

38. Luke's Oyster Bar & Chop House

Restaurants Seafood Chinatown

This Travis Masiero-owned joint is your traditional American chophouse: it specialises in lots of meat and some stellar seafood. If you’re in the mood for the former, try the bone-in tenderloin au poivre, served with peppercorn crust and mustard cognac jus or the blue label burger. But make sure you start with a tray of Luke’s oysters, sourced from chef Masiero’s hometown of Boston.


39. The Song of India

Restaurants Indian Newton

Chef Manjunath Mural has created a show-stopping pan-Indian meal in a charming Scotts Road black-and-white bungalow. On the menu, which criss-crosses the sub-continent’s regional cuisines, you’ll find melt-in-the-mouth Keralan-spiced lamb shanks, tandoori prawns bathed in a pomegranate marinade, and the Lucknavi classic of Gilawat kebabs: pan-seared ground lamb patties perfumed by cardamom, ground rose petals and raw papaya.

40. Yellow Pot

Restaurants Chinese Tanjong Pagar

Chinese restaurants are a dime a dozen in Singapore but we've yet to come across one like Yellow Pot. Treading a fine line between modernity and tradition, the restaurant dishes out familiar favourites like hot and sour soup ($12) and roast duck ($32) with a twist – and no, we don't mean incorporating European techniques or ingredients. Yellow Pot prides itself in creating its sauces from scratch in-house. The soup is prepared with a housemade hot bean paste made from fermented bean paste and chillis while the duck is marinated for two days with fermented bean curd, herbs and spices before it's roasted in a traditional Apollo oven till its skin is shatteringly crisp.  

Po Restaurant
Photo: Po Restaurant

41. Po Restaurant

Restaurants Singaporean Raffles Place

Paying $28 for popiah or $32 for Hokkien mee – albeit a stellar plate with the most kickass sambal we've ever had – might seem ridiculous. Especially when you can find the real deal at a fraction of the cost at a hawker centre. But hear us out: Po serves local classics like ngoh hiang and satay made with premium ingredients such as Iberico pork to elevate the cuisine beyond its humble origins.

42. Alati

Restaurants Greek Tanjong Pagar

Alati is a Greek restaurant along Amoy Street that specialises in sustainable seafood caught off the Mediterranean coast. The flavours are kept clean, showcasing the freshness of dishes like the grilled Greek octopus that's served with vinegared onions and confit tomatoes, and shrimp saganaki. Not to be missed is the wide selection of whole fish – from European seabass to Gilt-Head seabream – that's served either grilled on in a salt-baked crust.


43. Sawadee Thai

Restaurants Thai Rochor

Save yourself from the two-hour flight to Bangkok when cravings strike – they're just as easily satisfied at Sawadee Thai. It gets a shipment of fresh Thai produce daily and offers an array of dishes in a relaxed setting. You’ll definitely find the standard tom yum soup and mango sticky rice on the menu, but why not try something different? Meat lovers will like the pan-seared black Angus beef rib-eye that's served with a homemade green curry sauce and the mao shan wang durian sticky rice dessert is a must.

44. Man Man Japanese Unagi Restaurant

Restaurants Japanese Chinatown

The scent of burning charcoal and chefs

killing, gutting and grilling freshwater eels behind the glass panel should clue you in on the fact that this is no regular unagi shop. Order the hitsumabushi ($26.80), an unagi don that can enjoyed in three different ways. First, try it plain; second, sprinkle over some spring onions, seaweed and freshly grated wasabi; and third, pour dashi over the rice and eel to have it as a comforting bowl of porridge.


45. Terra Tokyo Italian

Restaurants Tanjong Pagar

For a taste of Tokyo-Italian cuisine in Singapore, turn to Terra by chef-owner Seita Nakahara. Not to be confused with fusion food – what's on the menu here is an appreciation of Japanese food culture (shokubunka) in Italian cuisine and culinary traditions. Chef Seita regularly travels to Japan to source for new ingredients, establishing close relationships with his suppliers to get the best quality of ingredients which he uses in omakase sets ($168/$208/$308) that change seasonally. Lunch is also available from $48.

46. Restaurant Ibid

Restaurants Singaporean Raffles Place

It’s been three years since Woo Wai Leong won the first MasterChef Asia and he's finally opened his own restaurant. Restaurant Ibid’s story first starts with its name. It’s meant to highlight Leong’s roots as a Singaporean Chinese man and his Nanyang identity – a phrase borrowed from the realm of art where Singaporean painters like Liu Kang and Georgette Chen blended Western and Eastern painting traditions. Priced at $78 for four courses, $88 for six and $118 for eight, the dinner highlights playful twists on childhood favourites with touches influenced by traditional Chinese medicine.


47. Fat Prince

Restaurants Middle Eastern Tanjong Pagar

Let Fat Prince show you a whole new world of Middle Eastern flavours, shining, shimmering and splendid. Designed to reflect Istanbul’s opulent café culture – think velvet navy chairs and Arabic mosaic embedded in its walls – it’s grand without being gaudy. The restaurant focuses on kebabs. There are currently six types on the menu, including baharat honey chicken, smoked kasar cheese and spicy beef Adana.

48. Salted and Hung

Restaurants City Hall

Curing, smoking and fermenting are front and centre of this Drew Nocente-led kitchen. That much is clear as soon as you step into the long shophouse space, see the little piggies on the walls and pass a dry cabinet in which all manner of salami and steaks hang, their hues ranging from deep mahogany to pale pink. There’s even kangaroo loin, a nod to Nocente’s Aussie roots, lurking in there.


49. Humpback

Restaurants Outram

It might not live by the sea, but this beach shack along Bukit Pasoh Road is all about the goodness of the ocean. Slurp down fresh oysters – there are always at least three types available and if you come from 5pm to 8pm they're only $3 a pop – or tuck into plates of prawns, salmon, clams, scallops, octopus, lobster... the list goes on. There are plenty of greens to go around too.

50. Skai

Restaurants Grills City Hall

Perched on the 70th floor of the Swissotel the Stamford, Skai overlooks the civic district down from the Padang to Marina Bay. Start your meal with a series of sharing plates. The heirloom tomatoes ($22) and yellowfin tuna tartare ($24) are safe favourites. Executive chef Paul Hallett is also an expert butcher and self-professed lover of steak, so it’s no surprise to see 10 types of rare beef like the Saga Wagyu tenderloin ($170) on offer.

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