CALLED TO THE BAR
Bar-certified lawyer turned Masterchef Asia winner Woo Wai Leong may not call it so, but his new outfit Restaurant Ibid operates with the calm precision of a laboratory. We witness the mise en place by chance, and the sheer amount of prep per dish incites disbelief. Bite into his interpretations of Chinese classics, however, and the effort pays royal dividends.
Take the simple tea egg, remastered into a soft-boiled affair buoyed by a halo of pu-erh and tangerine broth. Slurping the wispy white leaves a fragrant, relaxing aftertaste; the gooey, sous-vide yolk is at perfect textural odds with the dehydrated mushroom and ginkgo. We enquire after the gratifying spring onion shaobing (flatbread), but they’re gratis with sets, and strictly not for sale.
18 North Canal Road.
A HEALTHY HAVEN
Healthy food has become so commonplace that you’ll be hard-pressed to find a joint that won’t make you excited for vegetables and trendy grains. So it isn’t so surprising that the Clan Cafe, located in the lobby of the exclusive Straits Clan, serves nosh that’s good for your gut and delights your tastebuds.
Mixed grain bowls, like the Miso Salmon with Carrot and Lotus Root Kinpira and Edamame, will leave you wondering why you haven’t been eating this well. Ditto that for the indulgent Grilled Angus Ribeye with Onsen Egg, Asian Mushrooms and Kinpira, or the Vegetarian Kakiage with Genmaicha Broth. The broths are designed to be had with the bowls, but they pack so much flavour, you’d be forgiven for ordering them on their own.
Despite the fact that it’s open to the public, the Clan Cafe maintains the same tranquil atmosphere as the clubhouse. The retro-style tiles and fixtures, abundant natural light and striking floral arrangements make talking shop over otah sandwiches and kombucha seem almost fashionable.
31-37 Bukit Pasoh Road.
Set along idyllic Robertson Quay is Mediterranean joint Summerlong, where guests can stretch out on sofas, nurse any of its new cocktail offerings and watch pooches and their owners pad by. We recommend indulging in a Summerlong Spritz – a piquant vermouth-based tipple that holds just the right amount of grapefruit, nothing pucker-inducing.
The chef’s also flipped the menu with memorable bites such as the Israeli lamb pita, slotted with robust chunks of meat that beg to be ground into a sludgy, smoky mass of gamy goodness.
#01-04, 60 Robertson Quay.