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New Restaurants, Cafes and Bars in Singapore: February 2016

New Restaurants, Cafes and Bars in Singapore: February 2016

Now that the Chinese New Year is officially over, it's time to decide just what to spend your ang baos on! We've got our money ready for some luscious Pork Ribs at a famed Bali grillhouse and hearty Italian-American food at a chic Gemmill Lane restaurant. Saving your moolah for a rainy day? Head to the cosy cafe in Everton Park for good old cha chan teng fare, or venture over to Thomson Plaza for some super affordable Chirashi Don.
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Bali's famed temple of ribs has finally reached our shores! Unlike its original Ubud warung vibes, the Singapore outpost is a lot classier and the prices higher, although not unreasonably so. The much talked about ribs ($18.80 for half, $35.80 for full rack) come slicked in a sweet and savoury glaze, and grilled to charred perfection. Squeeze the lime over to uplift the flavours. There is also a selection of other grills like Soy Glazed Chicken Wings ($9.80) and Wagyu Steak ($23.50), along with Indonesian mains like Nasi Goreng ($11.80). Wash it all down with Nuri's Signature Martini ($19.50).
Avg price: $35 per person

One of the hottest openings this month, Cheek by Jowl is helmed by Rishi Naleendra, the former head chef of Maca. His flavourful take on Modern Australian food sees the likes of Wild Venison ($22) with fermented plums, zucchini and wasabi, and a reinterpretation of his claim to fame at Maca, Confit Duck Leg ($36) with five spice caramel, cucumber and excellent waffles. The set lunch ($30 for two-course, $38 for three-course) is great value — for dessert, try the Coconut ($15), an unconventional pairing of flavours like laksa leaf and green chilli. Pro tip: The food is fine but the vibe is super laidback, so there is no need to dress up.
Avg price: $60; set lunch from $30

Sussed out by Burpple Tastemaker Xing Wei Chua, this modest 12-seater Japanese stall in Thomson Plaza serves tasty Japanese rice bowls. The Bara Chirashi Don ($12.80) is the most value-for-money item on the menu, considering the generous heap of freshly marinated sashimi chunks. If you're ready to splurge, go for the Premium Bara Chirashi Don ($22.80). It comes with fatty salmon, octopus and even glass prawns! Add $5 to complete your meal with a miso soup, salad and three slices of sashimi. Reservations are highly recommended.
Avg price: $18 per person

Helmed by the previous head chef of Osteria Mozza, Angeleno serves up a menu of Italian-American fare, so don't be surprised to find American cold cuts alongside traditional Italian dishes. The restaurant is super proud of its red sauce, which forms the base of the flavourful Angeleno's Meatballs ($22), served with wood-fired polenta, as well as the hearty Tagliatelle Alla Bolognese ($31). In the mood for meat? Go for the Signature Veal Chop Parmigiana ($75, enough for two). Covered in a blanket of melting mozzarella, the crust is crisp golden and the veal is tender. Save space for the luscious Chocolate Pudding ($15).
Avg price: $55 per person

Taking over the defunct Late Plate in NUS Shaw Foundation Alumni House, Waa Cow! may just be reason enough to go to school. The Japanese-inspired menu features both rice bowls and small bites — perfect for lunch or a snack during those long breaks between tutorials. With thin strips of pink wagyu beef on a bed of lightly charred rice, the Wagyu Don ($17.90) is delicious and value for money; or tame the munchies with the the crispy and flavourful Soy Glazed Wings ($8.90). There are plans to roll out a dinner menu, but till then, the cafe opens only from 11:30am to 3pm. Go early as the bowls run out quickly!
Avg price: $20 per person

A welcome change from all the hipster cafes in the Everton neighbourhood, this Hong Kong style cafe serves up a compact menu of cha chan teng classics like Scrambled Eggs ($3.80), Beef Brisket Rice ($11.80) and Instant Noodles ($5.80) with your choice of topping — luncheon meat with egg, ham with egg, chicken chop or pork belly. Come early to beat the lunch crowd and you may just have a chance at scoring their Slow-Cooked Pork Belly Rice ($10.80). It is caramelised, smoky and a really tasty way to perk up your midday.
Avg price: $10 per person

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With 24 variations of sundubu (traditional Korean stew with tofu, egg, seafood and spring onion), the first Tokyo Sundubu outlet from Japan is the place to go with your female lunch kakis, especially on a rainy afternoon. Choose from three different soup bases and four levels of spiciness before selecting the type of stew — options include tomato sundubu and miso sundubu. While many places pre-slice the tofu, the slabs here are left intact, so you can mash it to your desired consistency. Try the Health & Beauty Sundubu ($18), served with chicken, lady's fingers and a scoop of collagen for a midday complexion boost!
Avg price: $20 per person

Opened by South Korean chef-owner Sun Kim, who honed his chops in Waku Ghin and Tetsuya's in Sydney, Meta serves smart French-inspired cuisine with an Asian twist — think wagyu tartare with Korean pear kimchi; fresh oyster with pomelo sacs, lemon and ginger; and amebi (Japanese sweet shrimp) with ikura, yuzu and apple bits. The five-course tasting menu ($88) is ideal for a business lunch but if you're here for a special occasion, the eight-course option ($128) is worth splashing out on. They will be rolling out their new spring tasting menu in March.
Avg price: From $88 per person

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Get your Kaisen Don fix at the new Teppei Syokudo outlet in ION Orchard. Apart from the Regular Kaisen Don and Regular Kaisen Salad ($16 each), which come with an assortment of sashimi, there is a new counter for their DIY Special ($8.80/$15.80/$19.80). Customise your bowl with different bases. seafood and toppings — it's worth your money splurging on premium add ons ($3.80) like unagi, mentaiko and negitoro, and don't forget the yummy tempura bits ($0.80)! Orders are marinated on the spot to ensure that the plush chunks of fish aren't overly salty.
Avg price: $20 per person

Located at The Cannery, Ramen Keisuke Lobster King (the 10th outlet in the Ramen Keisuke chain) is open till 5am daily — perfect for refuelling after a night of dancing at Clark Quay. The menu is compact and fuss-free: choose from four different styles of ramen, all of which come with a French lobster base broth that has been simmered for six hours. Chilli fiends will love the Spicy Miso Lobster Broth Ramen ($15.90), topped with tender pork belly, chicken char siew, black pepper prawn wantons and bamboo shoots. The tongue-numbing, flavourful broth is a blend of Sichuan sancho peppers, chilli oil and three types of miso, and is certainly not for the faint-hearted. Pro-tip: Douse the flames with the free flow of bean sprouts and boiled eggs.
Avg price: $18 per person

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From the folks behind The Plain and Ronin comes Punch, a new cafe opposite Hong Lim Park. It oozes laidback, Zen vibes with its simple, clean lines, grey tones and an alfresco backyard with a lush garden wall. As expected, the coffee is excellent, especially the filtered and batch brewed coffee from their brew bar. Don't be alarmed by the absence of a menu. Until they finalise their food choices, the waitstaff will come by your table to tell you about the day's offerings. Hopefully, their made-to-order Jam, Nutella and Custard Doughnuts ($1.20 each) are available when you swing by in the morning — they're great with a cup of Batch Brew ($4.50) made with a blend of Ethiopian coffee beans. These folks have always understood what it means to serve simple, hearty breakfasts, making the Poached Eggs with Smashed Avocado ($13) on sourdough a satisying, foolproof option. For lunch (noon onwards), the Tuna Quinoa Salad ($15) is a healthy mix of greens that won't give you a food coma back in the office. Look out for new menu options in the coming months!

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Having moved up a level from their first floor digs, Montana (previously Montana Brew Bar) now boasts a bigger shop space and a three-in-one concept that includes pastas, burgers and doughnuts, on top of a greater selection of their popular waffles. Go straight for the waffles, especially the creative savoury ones like their well-loved Jalapeño Mac & Cheese Waffle ($12), Bulgogi Beef Waffle ($16) and the much raved about Assam Crab Waffle ($18). Inspired by Kedah laksa, the latter comes topped with fresh crab meat, pineapple cucumber salsa and the pièce de résistance, assam gula Melaka mayo. The new and improved Red Velvet Waffle 2.0 ($14.50), now served with strawberry shortcake ice cream and white chocolate rose syrup, makes an excellent dessert, especially when paired with a glass of the Coconut Cold Brew (from $6.80). The coconut water cuts through the coffee's acidity while adding a hint of natural sweetness.

The top picks, popular finds and newly opened places in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, curated by Burpple editors!

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