Guide to Tiong Bahru

P104045995.RW2 (FILEminimizer)Last update: 12th December 2014

I never get tired of walking around Tiong Bahru estate. I love walking down the alleys, peering into people’s houses and thinking to myself: How I wished I could own an apartment here and refurbish it into my ideal living space. There used a lot of hawker vendors and old-school shophouses in and around the area but they are all slowly replace by modern restaurants and trendy cafes.

I hope the landlords stop jacking up rentals or force these iconic shopkeepers and hawker food close for good and the entire neighbourhood starts losing its charm. But from a commercial perspective, I know that’s just crazy talking. So here’s my guide to Tiong Bahru, the popular cafes, the hidden finds and the worth- your time-queuing hawker food still available~DSC_0539.NEF (FILEminimizer)Abe’s Diner

The dining concept at Abe’s Diner is all about homely Japanese food served on your table. My impression from the two visits back a year ago were very positive. Besides the standard Japanese sashimi, you must try their cold noodles, served with a half boiled egg in savory sauce. Very simplistic nothing too fancy.

42 Eng Hoon Street, Singapore 169785
Tel: +65 6222 1719
Closed on Sun

Ah Bong Italian
56 Eng Hoon Street #01-46, Singapore 160056
Tel: +65 9650 6194
9.30am to 2.30pm daily

Big Mama Korean Restaurant
2 Kim Tian Road, Singapore 169244
Tel: +65 6270 7704

Bincho at Hua Bee
78 Moh Guan Terrace #01-19, Singapore 162078
Closed on Mondays

Coq & Balls
6 Kim Tian Road, Singapore 163006
Tel: +65 6276 6609
DSC_0046 (FILEminimizer)Dough & Grains

Do not be surprised if you see ginseng wolfberry cupcakes or assorted bread with medicinal herbs. This bakery is all about healthy eating. But I would prefer grabbing their tarts on the go and at $4.80 each (I recalled) they are really worth very bite.

71 Seng Poh Road #01-35 Singapore 160071
Tel: +65 6225 5223
Mon to Sun: 7.30am to 9.30pm
P1050242.RW2 (FILEminimizer)Drips Cafe

It does get really hot taking a walk deciding where’s the next best place to chill. How about having something fruity like Drip’s fruit tart to go with your coffee and tea. Set aside the nice cuppa and chilly air-con, you wont be disappointed by their cozy interior design. The prices of their tarts might come as a shock to you. Hitting $8.00 for a slice but that’s what you pay for premium fruits tarts. Agree?

82 Tiong Poh Road, #01-05 Singapore 160082
Tel: +65 6222 0400
Sun to Thur: 11:00am – 9:30pm
Fri & Sat: 11:00am – 11:00pm
DSC_0428.NEF (FILEminimizer)Flock Cafe

78 Moh Guan Terrace #01-25, Singapore 162078
Tel: +65 6536 3938
Sun to Thur: 8am to 6pm
Fri & Sat: 8am to 10pm

Forty Hands
78 Yong Siak Street, Singapore 163078
Tel: +65 6225 8545
IMG_1069 (FILEminimizer)Galicier Confectionery

It’s really hard to find old school shops that still churns out good old school kuehs these days so you bet that I’m glad to find Galicier. I heard that they have another outlet somewhere around Serangoon but I think I will just stick to Tiong Bahru one whenever I feel like relieving the past again.

Blk 55 Tiong Bahru Road #01-39
Mon to Sun: 10am to 9pm daily
DSC_0696.NEF (FILEminimizer) IKYU

In the mood of top-notch Japanese cuisine but yet not willing to spend a couple of hundreds in one meal? Then consider IKYU along Yong Siak Street and jump straight into their omakase course!

I like the fact that Chef Seki changes the seven course meal on a monthly basis depending on what he can grab at the famed Tsukiji Market back in Tokyo. But they won’t come cheap but at $128++, this is one place to consider throwing one of those important dinner dates. If not, come back during the lunch hours where they offer an array of reasonably priced lunch sets under $35.

5 Yong Siak Street,Singapore 168643
Tel: +65 6223 9003
Lunch: 11.30am to 3pm
Dinner: 5.30pm to 11pm
Closed on Mondays

Lee Tai Fu
16 Kim Tian Rd, Singapore 169251
Tel: +65 6376 2338

Loo’s Hainanese Curry Rice
Tai Kwang Huat Coffee Shop #01-88
Blk 57 Eng Hoon Street, Singapore 160057
Closed Alt Tuesday
P1050236.RW2 (FILEminimizer)Old Tiong Bahru Bak Kut Teh

If there’s anything the Japanese love about Singapore cuisine, it has got to be the fiery pepper broth of bak kut teh. I am not sure why though. Everyone could make the simple dish mixing pork ribs, pepper and garlic together but to do it as good as the ones served at Old Tiong Bahru Bak But Teh?

Another plus point is that they make their own you char kway but that is provided you reach there after 10am. I think they get sold eat out very fast.

58 Seng Poh Road, #01-31 Singapore 160058
Tel: +65 6224 4990
Daily: 6.30am to 9pm
Mon: Closed
P106hbh0197.RW2 (FILEvdminimizer)Open Door Policy

I certainly wasn’t impressed by Open Door Policy with what they have to offer. The prices they charge are definitely much more than most places similar to what they serve. I won’t be coming back anytime soon unless I am in search of somewhere with nice coffee to go with souffle. I wouldn’t recommend this place for a simple light causal meal but maybe their much rave brunch food is more worth going for instead.

19 Yong Siak Street Singapore 168650
Tel: +65 6221 9307
DSC_0708.NEF (FILEminimizer)Plain Vanilla Bakery

Plain Vanilla Bakery has always been renown among my friends for having one of the best cupcakes in town. Instead of heading all the way down to Holland Village, how about having all your sweet tooth cravings satisfied at their second outlet at Tiong Bahru? Did I mention that they serve up pretty darn good coffee (mocha) here as well?

1D Yong Siak Street, Singapore 168641
Tue & Sun: 12pm – 6pm
Closed on MondaysIMG_2719 (FILEminimizer)Por Kee Eating House

They did almost fall into the list of “extinct” eateries when the owners were considering of selling the space. But fortunately for us, the deal failed and they are back in business once more!

I’ve been here countless of times that I could just order without referring to the menu. The unphotogenic but novelty Champagne Short Pork Ribs and silky smooth Homemade Beancurd are on my top list to order here.

69 Seng Poh Lane, Singapore 160069
Tel: +65 6221 0582

78 Yong Siak Street, Singapore 163078
Tel: +65 6221 2488

PS Café Petit
78 Guan Chuan Street #01-41 Singapore 160078P1040998.RW2 (FILEminimizer)Sin Hoi Sai Seafood Restaurant 新海山餐馆

Looking for somewhere nice to throw a birthday dinner but don’t know where’s the best place to hold? You might just want to consider  the old-time Sin Hoi Sai Seafood Restaurant and their live crabs and fishes. You will see families celebrating their birthdays with cakes there or just having a simple meal too. Just come prepared as the food comes in large portion and a little pricey too.

55 Tiong Bahru Road #01-59 Singapore 160055
Tel: +65 6223 0810/ 6224 3905
5pm to 5am daily

DSC_0757.NEF (FILEminimizer)The Dispensary

The Dispensary is the latest addition to the increasingly popular foodie attraction of Tiong Bahru. Situated a couple of shophouses away from Sin Hai Shan Seafood Restaurant, this new player in the once sleepy town is slowly gaining popularity among fellow cafe-hoppers. And their speciality? The ongoing hype-danity creme cupcakes!

69 Tiong Bahru Road, Singapore 168723
Tel: +65 6536 0225
Closed on MondaysDSC_0607.NEF (FILEminimizer)The Orange Thimble

Every once in a while I like to visit somewhere nice to have my weekend crowd. Orange Thimble is just the place where you might just fall in love gazing nice artworks along the walls while sipping my favourite cappuccino. This might just be the place if you want somewhere quiet to catch up with friends as compared to the crowded Tiong Bahru Bakery next door.

56 Eng Hoon Street #01-68
Tel: +65 6223 8068
Tue to Sun: 11am to 9pm
DSC_0634.NEF (FILEminimizer)Ting Heng Seafood Restaurant

Possibly Tiong Bahru’s best kept secret. Compared to other cze char restaurant in the area, Ting Heng might be the last place you consider but don’t judge its popularity by their appearance. Come along the late evenings or nearer midnight and you’ll see their alfresco tables all taken up so reservations is definitely a must!

I’ve asked many foodie from the older generation and you wouldn’t be surprised them singing praises about their unpretentious home styled cooking dishes. Consider their cold crab which usually goes hovers along the price of $20++/crab or their steamboat which is more than enough to share within the family.

82 Tiong Poh Road #01-03 Singapore 160082
Tel: +65 6323 6093
DSC_0629.NEF (FILEminimizer)Tiong Bahru Bakery

A trip down to Tiong Bahru doesn’t seem complete if you never step into Tiong Bahru Bakery. Who doesn’t enjoy a croissant made by a Frenchman himself? The place is always crowded especially during lunch time and weekend brunch so maybe you might want to beat the crowd if you want to find a table to fit more than two.

56 Eng Hoon Street #01-70 Singapore 160056
Tel: +65 6220 3430
Daily: 8am to 8pm

Tiong Bahru Bar
3 Seng Poh Road #01-01,Singapore 168891
Tel: +65 6438 4380
IMG_3908 (FILEminimizer)Tiong Bahru Club
57 Eng Hoon Street #01-88, Singapore 267208
Tel: +65 6438 0168

P1050245.RW2 (FILEminimizer)Two Face Pizza & Taproom

This kopitam by day and pizzeria bar by night has earn quite a name for themselves as one of the more unique places in Tiong Bahru. I heard the hits and misses from my friends but I can’t say much since I didn’t try their menu for themselves. Maybe I will find one of these days, I will gather my foodie friends for happy hours over pizzas and finger food.

56 Eng Hoon Street #01-48
Tel: +65 6536 0024

IMG_1405 (FILEminimizer)Whisk Cafe

15 minutes of desserts and tea and we were off to another place. I was not enjoying my time here at Whisk. I paid almost twenty five bucks but I reckon I could get something better elsewhere. If it was not for the hot weather, I don’t mind crossing over and check out the new Tiong Bahru Bar across the street instead.

58 Seng Poh Road #01-15, Singapore 160058
Closed on Mondays

Ya Lim Mee Pok

I daresay Ya Lim Mee Pok makes one of the best mee pok or minced pork noodle in Singapore. The noodles are cooked timely making it al dente but the best of all is surely the spicy chili mixture and their generous portion which is still less than what  food courts charges. Do note that they are only open until the late evenings before paving way to Two Face Pizza & Taproom at night.

56 Eng Hoon Street #01-48
DSC_0733.NEF (FILEminimizer)So this is my guide to Tiong Bahru and I hope you will put it to good use. I will be updating regularly just in case I miss something worth sharing. So watch this space!

In the meantime, if you can’t really decide which cafes and restaurants to drop by.Rest assure for there’s always Tiong Bahru Hawker Center and the famous hawkers to satisfy even the pickiest taste buds.

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