What’s not to like about a cafe which does all day breakfast and fantastic coffee? Tolido’s Espresso Nook is exactly this and does a roaring trade as a result.
Located on the pinggir of what we would refer to as Bugis and a short walk away from most of Kampong Glam area, Tolido’s is not one of those places which relies on location to grab customers. It relies on good quality food at a good price.The menu is quite large and features a lot of pancake options, French toast, baked eggs and omelettes.
We tried the pandan pancakes and fell in love. 3 fluffy pandan flavoured pancakes drizzled with gula Melaka and topped with coconut ice cream. A southeast Asian flavour explosion.We also tried the stout glazed bacon French toast and again, it was super delicious.But what’s really interesting about this place is that they are able to produce dishes like this at these prices. We’d normally expect to pay about 50% more for this style of food in Singapore.The cafe is laid back and comfortable and nowhere as stiff and snobby as most upmarket Singapore cafes. This suits us perfectly!Tolido’s Espresso Nook is a must visit if you love cafe food and coffee. Please note that some dishes contain pork and some don’t.
Tolido’s Espresso Nook
Cnr Jalan Sultan & North Bridge Road, Bugis, Singapore
Opening Hours: 08:00 – 18:30 (closed Monday)
Closest MRT: Lavender (green EW11)
Pandan pancake: $10.90
Bacon French toast: $12.00
Hojicha latte: $6.00
Set right in the heart of Bugis on a street famous for its wacky Asian desserts, Ji De Chi is a must visit if you love shaved ice, sago and other Taiwanese style desserts.
The menu at Ji De Chi starts off with sago puddings with mango and moves onto mounds of shaved ice in an array of flavours such as cendol, black sesame, blueberry and green tea. There’s also glutinous rice balls, waffles and Mille crepes.This place is so so crowded around 9pm when everyone has already finished dinner and is longing for something sweet. And it’s no wonder. The desserts are extremely delicious and fresh and the service is really fast. You won’t need to wait around long for your order to arrive.
Lastly, if you’re not entirely convinced of the menu here, perhaps try Dessert First next door which looks just as good, but we haven’t yet tried it.
We’re fans of Ji De Chi Dessert and we recommend it for a sweet treat if you’re in the Bugis area.
Ji De Chi Dessert
8 Liang Seah St #01-03, Bugis, Singapore
Opening Hours: 11:00 – 23:00
Closest MRT: Bugis (green EW12 / blue DT14)
Mille crepe: $6.20
Mango pomelo sago: $6.20
If you’re getting tired from walking up and down Orchard Road and desperately need a coffee, Killiney Kopitiam is great choice. Located just 200m off Orchard Road, make sure you add this to your itinerary.
Killiney Kopitiam has been operating at this same spot at 67 Killiney Road since 1919 and since 1998 has been branching out across Singapore (and the world). So if the name of this kopitiam sounds familiar, that’s because the name that started here has travelled the world.In true kopitiam style, the coffee is strong and chocolatey, the kaya toast thick and crispy and the laksa bursting with spice and flavour. But most people are going to simply pop in here for a drink so we highly recommend the lime juice. So refreshing!
Killiney Kopitiam is extremely popular because it’s the original and most famous and if you come here at the wrong time, you’ll have to wait for a seat. Turnover is fast, so you’re unlikely to have to wait more than a few a minutes for a seat.Prices here are quite cheap especially when you compare it to normal Singapore coffee shops or fancy juice places. Highly recommended.
67 Killiney Road, Orchard, Singapore
Opening Hours: 06:00 – 23:00 (Selasa sampai 18:00)
Coffee with milk: $1.60
Lime juice: $1.70
We popped into Chye Seng Huat Hardware Coffee Bar when we were staying in Little India as it’s just a short walk from where we were staying. And boy are happy we did.
The concept of the coffee shop is to have a coffee experience where you can watch the baristas make your coffee because they’re working at a bar which is completely surrounded by customers. In other words, a 360º bar. It’s really cool.Of course, the fit out of this cafe is incredible — world class. It has a bit of an industrial look which has been all the rage for almost a decade now, but it’s more modern and classy than that. Lighting is fantastic and seating is very cool. We loved our seat against the wall.
We had coffee and cake here and both were fab. The coffee is as good as any we’ve had in Singapore and the cake was an interesting sticky fig pudding. We’re guessing it’s a take on sticky date pudding.Prices for food here are reasonable for the quality you get and slightly cheaper than some other high end Singapore cafes. Coffee is the same as most other upmarket coffee shops in Singapore — overpriced! $5.50 for a cappuccino or latte.
We really love Chye Seng Huat Hardware Coffee Bar and we highly recommend coming here if you love coffee, cafe food or even if you are just in the area and feel like some cake. Awesome.
Chye Seng Huat Hardware Coffee Bar
150 Tyrwhitt Rd, Lavender, Singapore
Opening Hours: 09:00 – 22:00 (Friday/Saturday until 24:00)
Closest MRT: Lavender (green EW11) or Farrer (purple NE8)
Main meals: $18-20
A.R.C is a one of those upmarket coffee shops that Singapore is becoming more and more famous for. Serving both coffee and food, it’s a popular place for brunch and coffee with many Singaporeans and foreign guests alike.
We’ve had coffee here, but not the food so we can’t comment whether the meals here are good or not. What we can say is that the coffee is excellent. World class.Perfect temperature, smooth coffee taste and perfectly textured milk. Susan had the vanilla latte and really enjoyed it mainly because it’s much sweeter than a normal coffee.The interior design of the cafe is that typical minimalist bare concrete look with wooden benches and won’t win any design awards for originality, but it’s pleasant nonetheless.
Outside there is a massive mural on the wall which is a tourist attraction in itself. You’ll often see people here with tongsis in hand taking selfies. And we highly recommend it because it’s simply one of the best murals we’ve seen in Singapore.Prices here are expensive when compared to a Singaporean kopitiam, but they are normal for Singapore. Definitely a place to come if you’re a coffee lover.
A.R.C (Academy Roastery Cafe)
29 Sultan Gate, Bugis, Singapore
Opening Hours: 11:00 – 22:00 (Saturday/Sunday from 09:30)
Closest MRT: Bugis (green EW12 / blue DT14)
Cafe latte: $5.00
Vanilla latte: $5.50
Located on the bustling Serangoon Road where you might end up if you’re shopping, Usman Restaurant is a Pakistani/Northern Indian restaurant with great prices and amazing food.
It’s a food stall kind of place rather than a formal restaurant meaning you’ll be eating from plastic tables and in an open air environment.
We’ve tried a range of food and drinks here and we really love the daal (lentil curry), butter chicken and briyani dishes. We especially love the icy cold and refreshing life juices and sodas. Aside from these dishes, there plenty of naan options, vegetables and assorted curries. It’s awesome!But we just can’t go past that butter chicken. It’s so tender!
It’s definitely worth coming here if you’re in the area and if you really want to eat cheaply, just order some daal and white rice. It’s possibly one of the cheapest meals in Singapore! A great place also if you need a late night meal.
238 Serangoon Rd, Little India, Singapore
Opening Hours: 12:00 – 02:00
MRT terdekat: Farrer Park (purple NE8)
Plain naan: $1.20
Chicken briyani: $5.50
Butter chicken: $5.00
Lime juice: $2.00
White rice: $1.00
Everyone knows that Little India is a haven of culinary tourism, but sometimes it’s difficult to know which restaurants are the best. Well, after trying a lot of places in Little India, we can safely say that Komala Vilas is one of the best and what’s more, it’s halal.
Started in 1947, the restaurant has been around so long that it must be good. Dishes range from dosai to mixed rice dishes which come with lots of different side dishes and mixing sauces.Some of the food here is spicy, but on the whole the food is more flavoursome rather than spicy. The mixed rice dishes are wide and varied, but we can safely say that the standard “rice meal” is awesome. Cauliflower, potato, beans, okra and dhal all in their own Indian sauces. The chutneys and sauces on the side are really interesting and full of flavour as well.
For a cheaper meal, try the dosai (Indian bread) which comes in about 60 configurations. We most recently tried the masala dosai and it was also so delicious. A 40cm long dosai filled with spiced potatoes and served with 3 different dipping sauces. It is so cheap for what you get and it’s almost enough for 2 people, depending on how hungry you are.
Also highly recommended are the mango lassis. A mango yoghurt drink that is sweet, milky and slightly sour. Perfect to wash down your dosai with.The ordering process is quite simple. Go to the counter where they have menus. Select the dishes you want and pay straight away. Take your receipt and give it to one of the waiters and your meal will arrive about 5 minutes later.
Most people here eat with their hands, but utensils are also provided if you don’t like getting your hands dirty.
If you want to try authentic Indian food while you’re in Singapore, Komala Vilas is definitely a good choice.
Komala Vilas Restaurant
76 Serangoon Road, Little India, Singapore
Jam Buka: 07:00 – 22:30
Closest MRT: Little India (blue DT12 / purple NE7)
Rice Meal: $8.50
Masala Dosai: $3.90
Mango Lassi: $4.10
Built in the late 1800s, the iconic and historical Lau Pa Sat is a modern food court located just a short 10 minute walk away from the Merlion, Marina Bay and Chinatown. Some may also refer to this food court as Telok Ayer Market which is the historical Malay name for this market.
The stunning octagonal heritage building is made from iron and sports massive fans to push the air around the structure. Packed within the building area clusters of food stalls selling a wide range of foods including Indian, Singaporean, Korean and even Western.
We’ve tried a few dishes from a few stalls here including roasted pork noodles, Mango Milk Ice and roasted chicken rice.
While we loved each one of these dishes, we could have spent day after day here trying out all the different stalls. And honestly, this food court caters to all tastes!
Those looking for halal food will find it here no problem as there are a number of Indonesian, Malay and Indian stalls. If you’re not too worried about official halal certification, but just want to avoid pork, there are also lots of stalls like this too.What’s really handy about this hawker centre is that it’s central but also open really late. This means you can stay out late near Merlion and Marina Bay and still get something to eat here. Just know that some stalls start to close at around 9 or 10 and the number of stalls still open as the night winds on does dwindle.
We really love Lau Pa Sat. Some food critics might say that this place is not authentic because it’s an odd shape, the stalls are more modern than other food centres and that there are a lot of tourists here. But we can safely say that this is a proper hawker centre. It’s just more modern than many others, but the variety of food and the prices are similar.So if you want a bite to eat late at night or are lazy to make a long trek to a hawker centre in one of the suburbs, then we highly recommend Lau Pa Sat. It really is good.
Lau Pa Sat
18 Raffles Quay, Singapore
Opening hours: 24 hours (most stalls close during the night)
Roasted Pork Noodles: $4
Mango Milk Ice: $2.90
Roasted Chicken Rice: $4