Bite sized but full of gourmet temptations, welcome to the first of our monthly series dedicated to good food, great food and strong drinks. Featuring hidden gems around Singapore, look out for more delicious newcomers here and on our Instagram!
SG Darling: Froth @ Ascott Raffles Place
Talk to us about cafes, and we will tell you how they are masters of french fries, waffles and ice cream. Froth is everything cafe and more — more on a plate as displayed by the chef’s inclination to intricate fusions and unlikely combinations.
Either camp give this gem a punch of local flavour, often reinterpreted to suit the modern office gourmet.
Take the Asian Barramundi, seared white fish with tangy mango salsa and the familiar laksa sauce, served with crispy puffed rice and a side of grilled clams. This is all at once a hot bowl of laksa noodles — steamy and messy, tucked away in a humid corner of Queenstown — and the low-carbo, high-protein, self-gratifying choice for the working adult.
Finish up with their French Toast Waffle, a gratuitous offering of nostalgia deep fried and drizzled with condensed milk, clearly meant for sharing but optional for adults. As you dig into the gooey pisang goreng balls, notice how the journey for Froth ahead is akin to the banana that peeks out: bright and darling.
Cheap Thrills: Mo’mor Izakaya @ Tanglin Road
Let’s skip ahead the fact that Mo’mor Izakaya has $5 drinks every single day; and that includes beer, sake, vodka, whisky and wines. When it comes to pairing drinks with food, things can get tricky. Sometimes it is more than just the taste or ways to eat, but rather what the “finger food” can define the bar as (especially after one takes off their alcohol lenses).
Mo’mor does a good balance of the food side with a generous menu featuring Jap-Euro influences. The dish that embodies the entire place is humbly the Swordfish Belly prepared in Crudo Style — an Italian method of seasoning raw fish slices with oil and dressings. The result is an extremely tender sashimi dish, seasoned to linger around long after the alcohol becomes busy. When the swordfish’s natural body flavour mixes in with everything else, sweetness prevails, and intoxicates the body all over again.
The other dish that comes close is its Raw Oysters served with Yuzu Jelly, a sensuous treat that introduces itself with a flair for being different in terms of pairing, yet so appropriate (you’ll never want to eat oysters with normal lemon again).
Spice It Up: Saigon Alley @ Novena Gardens
The beauty of Vietnamese food is the ability to mix any combination of condiments in your pho or rice, and it will always end up tasting just right.
Saigon Alley is just right, whether in terms of flavour or its price point, and one of the ways it achieves that is by using very simple ingredients for great impact — another trait that sticks true to the cuisine.
For $14 a bowl of pho, the portion is generous enough for 2. But don’t come here and have noodles. The quiet contender is its Braised Pork Belly with Lemongrass Marinade, a melt-in-your-mouth stew balanced out by delicate lemony essence and jasmine rice. This hits the note for a kind of nostalgia, turning the dish into a homely figure bursting with the rich juices of fatty pork layers.
For lighter options, give their Lot Leaf Beef Rolls a go. The choice of skin makes it a much better option than regular rolls, and the stirfried minced beef that’s stuffed inside compensates for the texture and taste of the earlier. If you have a soft spot for spring rolls, this is a catch.