10 best restaurants in Singapore to celebrate Christmas and New Year
‘Tis the season for festive feasting. Whether you’re indulging with family, friends or your colleagues, here are the best places with great ambience and the most delicious food to eat, drink and be merry.
by Ho Pei Ying /
November 21, 2016
We’ve rounded up 10 of the best restaurants for a festive gathering, whether it’s with your BFFs, family or colleagues.
10 best restaurants in Singapore to celebrate Christmas and New Year
WITH YOUR LOVED ONES
Ambience: Perhaps the only indication that this is a Chinese restaurant are the full-sized Chinese paintings on the wall. Elsewhere, Lan Ting is pared down, with a no-frills, fuss-free decor and a subdued colour scheme. There’s also a private room for 12.
Food: Lan Ting serves up a modest selection of Cantonese dishes at affordable prices. Go for their interesting dim sum, such as the Volcanic Lava Mushroom Buns ($5.80 for three), salted egg custard buns made to look like giant mushrooms, and the Abalone Dumplings ($9.80 for three), prawn and pork dumplings topped with a tiny abalone.
Other must-tries are the Taro Puff with Diced Chicken ($4.90 for three), and their Xiao Long Bao ($4.80 for three), where a rush of rich, savoury soup bursts through the thin dumpling skin on first bite.
For something more substantial, try the addictive Wok Fried Seafood Udon in Oba Leaf ($18) that has a robust wok hei flavour, as well as the Crispy Pork Knuckles ($28), which is deboned and sliced into strips to make enjoying it a whole lot easier.
#01-02, 907 East Coast Road, tel: 9755-0855. Open Tue-Sun, 8am-10.30pm.
Ambience: Mitzo may be a Chinese restaurant but it doesn’t look like one. What you see: sleek, modern furniture alongside dramatic stained glass panels and screens, and iridescent pendant lamps. The long, deep space is broken into smaller pockets, to offer diners a more intimate dining experience.
Food: Like the interior, the food also has a modern twist, with most dishes meant for sharing. Start with their speciality soups, such as the Clear Lobster Soup ($16) with black fungus, gingko nuts and Chinese marrow or Braised Fish Maw ($14) with shrimps and scallops in a carrot broth.
Other mainstays include the Mitzo Special Barbecued Pork ($18), a sweet and savoury dish made from caramelising the skin of pork belly, Black Truffle Crispy Roast Duck ($38 for half), which features rich duck meat atop a flavourful truffle sauce, and Oven-baked Chilean Sea Bass ($36), tender fish fillet baked in a marinade of spices including lemongrass and chilli.
Level 4 Grand Park Orchard, 270 Orchard Road, tel: 6603-8855. Open Sun-Wed, 12pm-1am and Thur, Sat and eve of public holidays, 12pm-2am (bar); Thu, Sat and eve of public holidays, 12-2.30pm, 6.30-10.30pm and 6.30pm-1am (restaurant).
Ambience: If your family likes it super casual, head to this poolside bistro that’s as secluded and tranquil as it is affordable. Here, you dine al fresco style within an industrial-themed setting with exposed pipes and light bulbs, rusty metal surfaces and dark wood tables.
Food: The menu is filled with familiar, Western comfort food, including Giant Fish and Chips ($16), Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese ($12) and Club Sandwich ($15), so even picky little eaters won’t go hungry. These
For something more adventurous, try Asian-influenced dishes such as Beef Burger with Sambal Onion Jam ($18) and the Chicken Cutlets with Thai Green Chilli Sauce ($15). The sauces and jam are made in-house, so they are really fresh.
Meat lovers will dig the Meat Platter ($32), suitable for two to four people, comprising 15 sticks of chicken yakitori, beef short ribs laced with barbeque sauce and lamb meatballs with peri-peri sauce. The skewers are handmade, and are thick and chunky to make for a very satisfying meal.
Complete the picture with their mocktail selections, such as the tart and citrusy alcohol-free Passionfruit Mojito ($7.90) or the Litchelicious ($6.90), a delicious mix of lychee and mint.
#01-06, Home Team NS-JOM Clubhouse, 31 Ah Hood Rd, tel: 6256-1484. Open daily, 11am-10pm.
Ambience: The modern European brasserie evokes a chill, laidback atmosphere with its tropical palette of greens, yellows and pinks, and chevron floor tiles. Comfortable leather booth seats make it conducive for afternoon tete-a-tetes, while the bar area is great for pre-dinner drinks.
Food: The restaurant has an all-day dining menu, with a mix of small and large plates suitable for sharing. Dishes are so beautifully plated that they are almost too pretty to eat.
Small plates include Beet-cured Salmon ($16), topped with cucumber cubes and horseradish cream, and a refreshing Roasted Pumpkin Salad ($14) tossed with quinoa, shaved beets and house dressing.
For bigger bites, opt for large plates, such as the flavour-bursting Curried Blue Mussels ($24) infused with lemongrass and served with fried thick-cut soldiers. Leave room for afters and try their Warm Prune Clafoutis ($14), topped with rum and raisin ice cream, or Sticky Toffee Pudding ($14).
Then end the meal with a nightcap of Homemade Limoncello ($10), which features vodka and lemon zest or an Old Fashioned ($16), a combination of bourbon, bitters and orange peel.
They also have a standard high-tea set ($18 for two), available daily, 3-5:30pm, which consists of devilled eggs, shepherd’s pie, chocolate eclair, chicken and apple croissant, earl grey cupcake, homemade scones and selection of tea or coffee.
The Club Hotel, 28 Ann Siang Road, tel: 6808-2184. Open daily, 7am-2.30pm, 3.30-5.30pm and 6.30-10.30pm.
Ambience: Black Nut is one of the many gastropubs along Orchard Road’s Emerald Hill, but it is perhaps the only one that stays true to the Peranakan heritage of the sloped alleyway. The name itself is inspired by buah keluak, seen in Peranakan cuisine.
Inside, the two-storey bar’s dark, mysterious milieu is an eclectic mix of contemporary furniture paired with vintage pieces. For more privacy, go upstairs, which is decked out to look like a gentlemen’s club, with its high-back leather seats, a dark wood-panelled floor and dimly lit chandeliers.
Food: Black Nut celebrates Singapore’s unique blend of cultures by using Asian flavours in its cocktails and food. Tipple highlights include Sio Ah ($18), a blend of tequila, lime leaves, chilli padi and lemongrass, and the Power Chendol ($22), a concoction made from white rum, pandan leaves, gula melaka, lychee, caramel, jelly noodles and topped with whipped cream and shaved iced.
Chow down on delicious pub grub, such as Soy Good Chicken Burger ($13), comprising a sweet sesame, soya sauce and garlic crispy chicken, lemon-tinged rocket leaves and a marinade medley of crunchy cucumber, carrot and cabbages.
The gastropub is also known for their chicken wings (from $12 for four) which come in four flavours: Har Cheong Kai (shrimp paste), Swicy Hot Chick (sweet and spicy using the Korean gochujang condiment), Not A Cock Up (vodka-infused), and Soy Lickin Good (a marinade of ginger, honey and soya sauce).
2 Emerald Hill, tel: 6738-8818. Open Sun-Thu, 5pm-2am; Fri-Sat, 5pm-3am.
Ambience: 1-Altitude has everything you need for a good night out with friends. It is split over four levels: A.L.T. Cafe & Bar on the ground level for beer and pre-dinner snacks, fine dining restaurant Stellar at level 62 that serves up Australian cuisine, Club at Altimate at level 61 that plays live music, and the Rooftop Gallery and Bar on level 63 that offers tipples to savour as you admire 360-degree views of the city.
Food: A.L.T. and the Rooftop Gallery and Bar offer a variety of drinks, ranging from beer on tap, bottled beers, premium liqueurs, wines, martinis, champagnes, cocktails and shooters. Nibbles include bar favourites such as pizzas, fries and wings.
For a proper meal, there is Stellar. One of the main highlights at this upscale establishment is its Constellations Gastronomic six- and eight-course menu, which isn’t fixed and changes depending on what produce is in season. Expect the chef to use the freshest ingredients to create dishes that reflect his Australian heritage. The courses include a dessert art experience, crafted by the chef at your table. There is also an optional wine pairing add-on with every dish.
1 Raffles Place, tel: 6438-0410.
A.LT. Cafe & Bar: Mon-Fri, 5-10pm.
Stellar: open Mon-Fri, 12-2pm and 6-10pm; Sat and Sun, 6-10pm;
Club at Altimate: Fri and Sat, 10pm-4am;
Rooftop Gallery and Bar: open Sun-Thu, 6pm-1am; Wed-Sat and eve of public holiday, 6pm-4am
Ambience: It’s industrial meets oriental here. The space gives off a grungy, edgy vibe with its exposed ceilings, wacky shelves and galvanised metal chairs, juxtaposed with colourful antique Chinese pieces that hint at its Asian-inspired menu. Go al fresco to enjoy the resplendent rooftop views. Otherwise, the interior caters equally well to intimate gatherings as well as larger groups.
Food: Classic Asian dishes get a contemporary twist so every dish feels like a surprise. You see it in their Thai-influenced Thai Basil Minced Pork Gyoza ($12) and Tom Yum Fried Rice (from $15, choose either chicken or seafood), where tom yum goong spices are incorporated into the rice, then cooked in a claypot.
Try The Bureau Signature (from $18) pasta for a blend of Southeast-Asian flavours – the pasta is mixed with copious amounts of garlic, fish sauce, the restaurant’s secret blend of Thai spices, a splash of homemade broth, chilli and sesame oil.
For something closer to home, The Local ($19) is a pasta dish influenced by the zi char staple, beef hor fun. The pasta is sauteed with sliced beef and salted black beans in a dark soya-infused sauce with Chinese cooking wine, then topped with slices of red onion, cilantro, tomato concasse and scallion.
Don’t leave without trying the desserts, such as the delicious and Instagram-worthy Menage A Trois ($18), housed inside a bamboo steamer basket, and comprising a stack of mini cream puffs, each infused with flavours such as yam, salted egg yolk and black sesame.
#03-03 (Rooftop Garden), Marina Square, 6 Raffles Boulevard, tel: 6837-0148. Open Sun-Thu, 12-3pm and 6-10.30pm; Fri, Sat and eve of public holidays, 11.30am-3pm and 6pm-1am.
Ambience: The fine-dining Malay restaurant is located inside the 173-year-old Gedung Kuning, also known as Yellow Mansion, in Kampong Glam. Inside, intricately carved solid wood furniture fills the cosy, intimate space defined by solid wooden beams and doorway arches. Display cabinets full of artefacts give it a museum-like quality.
Food: The restaurant’s long communal dining tables make it a great place for large groups. Sharing sets range from $49.90 per person to $120 per person, and consist of starters (soup and sides), a main course (rice platter with several dishes for sharing), and desserts.
You can also go a la carte with the Nasi Ambeng platter, which feeds four. The platter consists of their signature chicken rendang/beef, grilled fish with sambal, spicy tiger prawns, assorted vegetables cooked in coconut gravy and potato cutlets.
73 Sultan Gate, tel: 6396 6646. Open daily, 10am-10pm.
Ambience: In the day, light floods the dining space through the aluminium-framed glass windows, creating a warm, comforting glow. The high-ceilinged restaurant is cheery, with thin industrial-style metal frames and dark wood surfaces brightened by pops of colour.
Food: The best way to describe Adrift is as a California-influenced Izakaya – dishes use fresh Californian produce with an Asian inspiration.
The menu includes sandwiches, salads, seafood, and meats grilled over bincho charcoal on a traditional robata grill. Signatures include the Waygu Cheeseburger ($26 for the regular size), which comes with a juicy beef patty, tomato jam, gruyere cheese, pickled jalapenos, and a sunny side-up sandwiched between brioche buns. Also try the King Crab Melt ($25) – bite-sized toasties filled with Alaskan king crab meat, pimento cheese, fresh jalapenos and topped with bread and butter pickles, a sweeter version of regular pickles as they’re marinated with sugar.
You can also opt for the three-course power lunches (from $19), with a menu that changes weekly. Pair your nosh with interesting tipples such as Tuk Tuk Thief ($23), a concoction of aged rum, fresh pineapple, lemon and Fernet-Branca.
Hotel Lobby Tower 2, Marina Bay Sands, 10 Bayfront Ave, tel: 6688-5657. Open Sun-Thu, 7-12am; Fri and Sat, 7-1am
Ambience: The restaurant, housed in a restored colonial building, retains the regal, old-worldly charm of the Art Deco era, with its mirrors and gilded trimmings, without being stuffy – you won’t feel out of place here. The European fine-dining restaurant is beautiful to dine in, as it overlooks the Marina Bay and financial district skyline.
Food: The menu is mainly French and seafood-centric. Must-tries include Saint-Jacques ($22), pan-roasted Hokkaido scallops with braised leek, sugar peas, and buttered lentils with scallop emulsion, as well as Homard ($42), where a Maine lobster tail is poached in paella butter, complete with a medley of seafood and lobster emulsion.
If you want meat instead, go for the Entrecote ($35), a rib-eye steak with pumpkin cremeux, snap peas, seasonal vegetables and classic bordelaise sauce. End your meal with Pomme ($15), a deconstructed apple crumble made from Granny Smith apples, dehydrated apple chips and homemade crumbled topped with cinnamon ice cream.
There are also affordable lunch and dinner sets available. A two-course set lunch starts from $28, while a three-course dinner starts from $65.
#03-01, The Fullerton Waterboat House, 3 Fullerton Road, tel: 6538-9038. Open Mon-Fri, 12-2.30pm and 6-10.30pm; Sat, 6pm-10.30pm.