7 restaurants in Singapore to transport you overseas

·6 min read

By Alexandra Lin

Bali: Rumours Beach Club

Interior Rumours Beach Club (Photo: Rumours Beach Club)
Interior Rumours Beach Club (Photo: Rumours Beach Club)

We may not be able to travel to Bali at this point, but Rumours Beach Club on Siloso Beach Walk is a wonderful getaway within Sentosa, complete with a breezy beach vibe. Head there for a sizzling Jimbaran-style seafood barbecue dinner by the sea. Tuck into the seafood platter brimming with succulent grilled lobster, whole red snapper, river prawns, and squid. Other favourites include Indonesian chicken satay, authentic nasi goreng, and Balinese Rice platter laden with beef curry, spicy shredded chicken, beef jerky, beef satay, grilled sambal beef, glazed tempe and accompanying veggies. On weekends, all-day brunch is available.

Jimbaran-style seafood platter (Photo: Rumours Beach Club)
Jimbaran-style seafood platter (Photo: Rumours Beach Club)

Guests can also lounge by the pool and sip specially curated cocktails such as the Juman-Gin and Island Rum N’ Bum to complete the whole Bali beach experience. There is also a wide selection of liquors, beers and wines served at the bar. Rumours Beach Club is the only beach club in Singapore to boast three swimming pools, as well as different pockets of spaces such as the VIP area, cabana, sundeck, daybeds, and alfresco section. There’s even a pet-friendly area where dogs can chill out.

France: Café Gavroche

Café & Bar Gavroche at 69 Tras Street is one of the places in Singapore that’s undeniably evocative of a Parisian café thanks to its wicker chairs, large vintage posters and charming atmosphere. Chef-owner Frédéric Colin opened this casual space just across the street from Brasserie Gavroche, which has an equally alluring Parisian setting.

Here, you can imagine dining in a dimly-lit Parisian café and sipping French wine paired with Fine de Claire oysters. The menu includes a variety of savoury bites like charcuterie, cheeses, and tartines topped with smoked salmon or melted raclette cheese with air-dried beef. For something more substantial, there are robust cocottes filled with boeuf bourguignon or fricassee de poulet (classic chicken stew simmered with white wine sauce).

On weekends, look forward to a hearty Breakfast À La Française featuring freshly- baked croissants, croque monsieur, pastries, and egg dishes served with pork and chicken sausages and sautéed potatoes. And if you must, complete your day with glasses of champagne.

Denmark: Leckerbaer

Interior of Leckerbaer (Photo: Leckerbaer)
Interior of Leckerbaer (Photo: Leckerbaer)

Enjoy a dose of warm and cosy ‘hygge’ lifestyle at Leckerbaer café at 14 Keong Saik Road. The setting features Scandinavian-style blond wood furniture, and cushioned benches. Score a table at the cosy lounge area where natural light filter through a perforated rattan ceiling.

After you ensconce yourself in the dining area, savour this Copenhagen brand’s signature hand-crafted småkagers treats, or munch on open-faced sandwiches with smoked salmon and onsen egg. For your coffee break, try some pretty small bakes like the dark chocolate tart or almond cherry cake, a buttery financier made from finely grounded almonds stuffed with cherries, and topped with cherry curd and rose petals.

Japan: Sushiro

Photo: Sushiro
Photo: Sushiro

Founded over 30 years ago in Japan, Sushiro is the country’s largest kaiten-zushi (conveyor belt) sushi restaurant chain. There’s of course plenty of conveyor belt sushi places in Singapore, but Sushiro stands out with high quality ingredients, touches of creativity, and value for money dishes. Sit at one of the booths by the conveyor belt and grab whatever sushi that catches your eye. Or use the tablet to order other dishes that aren’t on the belt (they will be delivered directly to your table).

This family-friendly restaurant offers ingredients sourced from all around the world including medium fatty tuna from Australia, uni from Chile, soft-shell crab from Myanmar, whelk from Ireland, and beltfish from Oman prepared tempura-style. Besides the wide selection of sushi, there are hot items too like shoyu or tonkotsu ramen, miso soup, chawanmushi with scallop and sweet potato tempura. Round off with Japanese dessert like chocolate roll melba, Hokkaido mille crepe, or creamy Japanese pudding.

Vietnam: Mrs Pho House

Hotpot - Crab Bisque Soup - $38 (regular), $48 (large) (Photo: Mrs Pho House)
Hotpot - Crab Bisque Soup - $38 (regular), $48 (large) (Photo: Mrs Pho House)

Mrs Pho House at Takashimya #B2-36A serves traditional charcoal hotpot and authentic Vietnamese delicacies in a setting reminiscent of a Vietnamese home. Mrs Pho’s “abode” is furnished with patterned couches, wooden tables and matching rattan chairs. There’s also a ‘veranda’ area adorned with plenty of greenery.

Third-generation female chef Linh from Vietnam is trained in France and showcases her Vietnamese roots as well as dishes from her childhood. The menu offers Vietnamese festive specialties typically served during celebratory occasions. The chef’s favourites include five spice butter quail, lemongrass chicken claypot and signature Cha Ca de La Mrs Pho – charcoal grilled Vietnamese sturgeon served on hotplate with herbs and fresh dill.

On cooler days, go for the hotpot where the freshest meats, seafoods and vegetables are cooked over charcoal fire. There’s a range soup base to choose from, including crab bisque soup, sold by the chef’s mother at her famed crab noodle soup street stall in Saigon.

Thailand: Diandin Leluk

The popular Diandin Leluk at Golden Mile Complex was founded in the early 1985 by a Singaporean and his Thai wife. Prior to that, the couple used a lorry to go around Singapore to peddle hearty and affordable packed lunches to Thai construction workers.

Today amid the unpretentious setting, fluorescent lights and Thai music, one can still enjoy an extensive list of reasonably priced dishes here. For starters, recommended are the green papaya salad, deep-fried prawn cakes and fiery tom yum seafood soup (there are three levels of heat to choose from). Other boldly flavoured dishes include phad thai, stir-fried chicken with basil and chilli, and deep-fried seabass with spicy mango salad. When your meal is over, cool down with some cold red ruby dessert, or head over to the adjacent dessert stand to pick up some tapioca with coconut milk or assorted Thai desserts.

Hong Kong: Tsui Wah

Tsui Wah Afternoon Tea Set A (Photo: Tsui Wah)
Tsui Wah Afternoon Tea Set A (Photo: Tsui Wah)

If you are missing Hong Kong’s bustling cha chaan teng vibes and comfort food, just swing by Tsui Wah at Clarke Quay or the latest outlet at Jewel. The well-known brand founded in Hong Kong in 1967 continues to draw diners with signatures from the original Tsui Wah menu in Hong Kong.

Settle into one of the booth seats and enjoy classic Hong Kong fare ranging from addictive spam fries and chicken wings to sandwiches and hearty Kagoshima-style pork cartilage in fish soup with instant noodles. Other popular items include beef brisket curry and crispy bun laced with condensed milk. Finally, wash down your meal with Hong Kong style milk tea or iced cold yuen yeung.

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