When Clifford Pier opened in 1933, floating hawkers sold their wares out of sampans (flat-bottomed wood boats). Today, an eponymous restaurant occupies the pier and celebrates this hawker heritage with a menu of reimagined Singaporean favorites.
There are a few Western dishes, but the local specialities are the stars of the show, of course. Try the wok-fried carrot cake topped with prawns (not a cake at all, but a spicy white radish omelet), Wagyu beef rendang, and kong bak bao (pork belly steamed buns with chili and cilantro). Other classic, noteworthy dishes include the spicy laksa (rice vermicelli with quail eggs, bean curd puff, and prawns in coconut broth) and the comforting Teochew porridge (boiled-down rice topped with peanuts, steamed fish, a salted duck egg, and pickled mustard greens.)
The expansive dining room, with its original arches, massive chandeliers, and comfy banquettes, also makes for a lovely afternoon tea spot. With such glamorous surroundings, you'll have to pay a bit more here than in the many hawker centers around Singapore, but having a bite or a drink on the terrace while looking across Marina Bay is well worth the splurge.