The Best Restaurants in Singapore

The best food in Singapore is often the cheapest! Try Wee Nam Kee’s incredible chicken rice or Ya Kun Kaya Toast’s coconut-infused breakfasts. For fine dining, nothing beats National Kitchen’s upscale Chinese-Malay fusion or Spago’s flashy cocktails.

172 Race Course Road, # 01-01/05 Soho @ Farrer, Singapore 218605
Raj is one of Singapore’s most popular stops for Indian vegetarian food. Its rice-and-black-lentil crepes, dosas, come in dozens of variations from onion to cheese, and there are nearly as many vegetable and paneer (Indian cheese) kebabs and curries to choose from as well. The epic menu is also flush with Indian breads—naan, roti, and paratha—and dessert options including gulab jamuns. Few can resist these deep-fried milky flour balls soaked in sugar syrup and served warm.
You can find one of Singapore’s finest Japanese restaurants inside the early-20th-century Goodwood Park Hotel on Scotts Road; just look for its distinctive pointy tower. The menu changes every two weeks, but you can count on fresh, delicately prepared sushi no matter what. Grab a seat at the counter and try the famous blowtorch-touched aburi-style sushi—served half raw and half grilled—and the popular toro tataki, lightly seared tuna belly (if it’s available). Japanese food this good will cost you: If you really go whole hog, a bill for a party of four at Tatsuya can easily run into the four digits. The set lunch menus are much more affordable.
5 Rochester Park, Singapore 139216
There are two Min Jiangs in Singapore, and both are set in lovely heritage buildings: one in the early-20th-century Goodwood Park Hotel, and the other in Rochester Park, a cluster of colonial-era black and white bungalows repurposed into restaurants. Min Jiang’s menu is packed with Sichuan and Cantonese classics, but the big star is the wood-fired Peking duck served with traditional pancakes, crispy slivers of skin and meat, and sweet bean sauce. Still hungry? The hot-and-sour soup, prawn-and-pork stir-fry, and lobster with eggplant and minced chicken in Sichuan chili sauce are also irresistible. If you’re dining with a significant other, grab a table outside on the veranda: The candlelight and tropical foliage create a romantic and cozy vibe.
76-78 Serangoon Rd, Singapore 217981
For more than half a century, this two-story, largely South Indian vegetarian joint on busy Serangoon Road has pleased palates with its tasty array of dosas—black-lentil-and-rice crepes designed to be ripped into pieces and dipped into heavenly chutneys and sauces. The restaurant’s prices and decor are humble, but the flavors are rich. Choose a tubular or cone-shaped dosa, or ask for one stuffed with potato, onion, or chilies. Other smart orders include buttery naan with a bowl of vegetable curry and Indian-style spinach with cubes of paneer (cheese). The biryani saffron-rice dish is also popular and is served with vegetable curry, dal, raita (a cooling yogurt concoction), and other accompaniments.
Finding good Italian food in Asia can be as daunting as Monty Python’s quest for the Holy Grail, which is which why Latteria Mozzarella Bar is so special. The Duxton Hill restaurant boasts nearly a dozen varieties of mozzarella to try, from burrata with roast pumpkin and truffle to smoked buffalo-milk mozzarella with porcini mushrooms. Fish, meat, and pasta mains round out the offerings; savor the homemade red tagliolini with pork sausage ragù, the gnocchi with porcini and truffle cream, or the slow-roasted lamb shanks with chickpeas and red wine. If you’re lucky, you’ll snag a seat on the gorgeous terrace.
Set in City Hall, now part of the National Gallery Singapore, this lovely dark-wood-paneled restaurant reflects the country’s rich Peranakan Chinese heritage in both design and fare. Traditional tile floors, marble-topped tables, nostalgic bentwood chairs, and vintage photos set the scene for a feast of rich dishes that mingle Chinese and Malay flavors. if you’ve never had this combination of cuisines before, prepare to be forever changed. Dive in headfirst and try the spicy chicken stew (buah keluak ayam), the zesty beef rendang, the chili crab, or the fish-head curry. If you’re with a group, order a spread of plates to share, like the fried eggplant with sambal sauce and the deep-fried tangy prawn, crab, and chicken dumplings.
126 Tg Pagar Rd, Singapore 088534
The pleasure of dining in a small family-run restaurant is all yours at Buko Nero, an intimate fusion spot with no more than 20 tables. Chef Oscar Pasinato (originally from Italy) helms the kitchen, while his wife Tracy Ng Pasinato attends to the customers. The Italian-Asian fare tastes as delicious as its beautiful presentation: Try the chilled capellini with uni, scallop, and kombu, or the seared Hokkaido sea scallops with truffle reduction. While the set menu is usually very appetizing, you can also order à la carte. Small and personal Buko Nero is a rare pleasure amid Singapore’s many loud, oversize eating establishments.
17D Dempsey Road
Set in a gorgeous space with high ceilings and a relaxed colonial vibe, Cookhouse operates under the guidance of renowned chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. The focus is on intense flavors and textures from vegetable juices, herbal vinaigrettes, and broths, with lots of fish and veggies on the extensive menu. Much of the wide-ranging Continental fare has an Asian twist, from the lightly fried calamari with a citrus dipping sauce to black-truffle-and-fontina-cheese pizza; roasted cod with spicy herbal coconut broth; and kale salad with lemon, mint, and green chili. Cookhouse occupies one of the huge old buildings of the former Tanglin Barracks, a base built in the 1860s for Singapore-based British soldiers that in the past decade has become an upscale dining hub.
7 Raffles Boulevard, Level 3, Pan Pacific Singapore, 039595, Singapore 039595
Founded nearly 50 years ago, the elegant Rang Mahal offers fine dining with prices to match—a bowl of cauliflower soup runs S$20, and it’s S$40 for a plate of chicken tikka. (The lunch buffet available Sundays through Fridays is more reasonably priced.) Choose from a menu of North and South Indian favorites, from lamb kebabs to tandoori chicken or salmon, as well as paneer, the Indian cheese. There’s raarha gosht, lamb chunks in a spicy gravy, and Kadhai prawns, which are stir-fried with roasted coriander seeds and Kashmiri chilies. Vegetarian highlights are avocado kebabs, dals, and delicious dishes like clove-smoked eggplant. Rice dishes, Indian breads—including puffed-up phulkas—and classic desserts (sticky-sweet jalebi and soft spongy ras malai) round out the feast.
The tried-and-true Imperial Treasure chain of high-end Chinese restaurants includes an outlet in Ngee Ann City, a booming office and shopping complex anchored by the popular Takashimaya department store. Imperial focuses on the clean flavors of Shanghai, from hand-rolled xiao long bao (steamed pork dumplings filled with broth) to sautéed shrimp with honey peas and egg whites in black-truffle oil. Besides the à la carte offerings, the set menus are popular, with one version including seven courses of dishes like deep-fried diced chicken with chili and stewed noodle soup.
Capitalizing on the Australian predilection for barbecue, this casual dining restaurant’s open kitchen—with custom-built apple-and-almond-wood-fired ovens and grills—serves up the best from the barbie. The vibe is earthy and rustic, like the Aussies themselves. Diners enjoy fish, big juicy cuts of beef, inventive vegetable dishes, and burgers that are smoked, roasted, baked, and grilled to perfection by chef Dave Pynt. He lives by fresh ingredients and honest cooking, writing the menu daily depending on what is available. Pair your meal with nearly any drink you fancy, from craft beers and artisan spirits to some of Australia’s best wines.
101 Thomson Road, #01-08 United Square, Singapore 307591
Considered Singapore’s national dish, Hainanese chicken rice is a beloved staple for many. It’s made up of a fragrant bowl of chicken broth, a pile of fluffy rice, and tender poached chicken (skin on), as well as condiments like ginger paste, dark soy sauce, and chili sauce—and sometimes a side of gai lan (a leafy Chinese vegetable). Enjoy the traditional meal in homey surroundings at Wee Nam Kee, a casual and inexpensive restaurant that started out many years ago as a humble food stall. Though the chicken rice is the star, other favorites include cereal prawns, fish-head curry, salted-egg pork ribs, and sambal kangkong (greens).
#40, 138 Market St, 01 CapitaGreen, Singapore 048946
Artemis Grill literally takes patrons to new heights—the elegant restaurant hovers 40 stories above Singapore’s glittering skyline. Kick off your meal with a drink or two on the outdoor garden terrace, then dive into the flavorful Mediterranean menu, starting with charcuterie or a selection from the raw bar. Appetizers range from smoked eel to a mélange of wild mushrooms, and entrées include grilled lobster and slow-cooked Iberico pork with cognac-apple compote. When it’s time for dessert, get the salted-vanilla ice cream or grand cru chocolate ganache with banana cream. Insider tip: The lunch menus are fantastic, and their prices are more reasonable.
This no-frills restaurant started out as a food truck serving packed lunches to Thai workers at construction sites around Singapore. Then, in 1985, Diandin Leluk opened as a proper restaurant in the Golden Mile Complex, a quirky mall on Beach Road fondly known as “Little Thailand” for its many Thai eateries and businesses. Thai chefs helm the kitchen and turn out delicious dishes from an extensive menu, including classics like green-curry chicken with Thai eggplant cooked in fresh coconut milk. You can’t go wrong with a bowl of spicy, clear tom yum seafood soup; papaya or bamboo-shoot salad; pineapple fried rice, served in the hollowed-out rind of the namesake fruit; or steamed thai otak (fish cakes in banana leaves).
32 Maxwell Road #03-01, Singapore 069115
You know when the elegant maître d’ greets you at the door like a VIP—even if you’re not—that you’re in a first-rate Italian restaurant. Owned and operated by Italians, Otto is located in a restored heritage building, and its decor is a fusion of black glass, polished metal, and oak. The service is excellent (not always a given in Singapore) and the wine list is, too; but you’ll remember the food most of all. The mushroom-and-rosemary risotto is delicious, and so is the homemade walnut-and-ricotta tortelli with spinach velouté sauce. Savor the crispy suckling pig lacquered with honey, or the Hokkaido scallops carpaccio. Whatever your main dishes, dessert is a must. And not just the tiramisu and crème brûlée; the warm chocolate cake with Haitian vanilla ice cream and the mango-and-passion-fruit millefoglie with peach coulis are divine.
10 Bayfront Avenue, Level 57, Sands Skypark Tower 2, Singapore 018956
It’s a crime not to order a cocktail (boozy or virgin) at Spago’s terrace bar, situated next to the famous infinity pool on Marina Bay Sands’ breezy veranda. The drink menu is just as beautifully curated as the decor, featuring more than a dozen original cocktails, over 600 bottles of wine, and an extensive champagne list. Celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck put together the selection of bar bites, including Spago L.A. originals like the bigeye tuna tartare cones. For a full dinner menu in an even more refined setting, book a table in Spago’s glassed-in formal dining room to enjoy dishes like chirashi sushi from the legendary Tsukiji Market and pan-roasted snapper laksa.
#02, 20 Trengganu St, 01 Chinatown, Singapore 058479
An evergreen Chinese favorite, dim sum is great to snack on when visiting Singapore’s famed hawker centers or exploring the city’s Chinatown. Dim sum literally means “touch the heart,” and the authentic local offerings are sure to touch yours. Yum Cha has a vast dim sum menu with items at affordable prices: There’s a dizzying array of dishes to choose from, but make sure to get the soup dumplings (xiao long bao) no matter what, and order a round of egg tarts as soon as you sit down—they’re likely to run out.
01, Far East Square, 18 China St, 01, Singapore 049560
The Ya Kun experience is a must for foodies looking for an authentic Singaporean breakfast. Ya Kun Kaya Toast started as a humble coffee shop in Singapore’s business district, but it’s since morphed into a café chain with an impressive number of outlets in Singapore and other Asian countries. Ya Kun’s signature dish is its kaya toast, which consists of kaya (a coconut-based jam) spread on a thin slice of toast and served with soft-boiled eggs and freshly brewed coffee (the beans are wok-fried in butter and sugar, strained through cloth, and served with some condensed milk). If coffee isn’t your cup of tea (sorry, couldn’t resist), Ya Kun also serves teh tarik, a Malaysian sweetened-tea-and-milk beverage popular among locals.
8A Marina Boulevard
Din Tai Fung is not a Singaporean chain—it originated in Taiwan—but outposts of this restaurant have flourished all over the city, thanks to its addictive dumplings. (Seriously: addictive.) Making the perfect soup dumplings (xiao long bao) is a skill that takes years to perfect. You can see the experts hard at work in glassed-in kitchens at every DTF eatery. To enjoy, swirl a little bit of soy sauce, black vinegar, and chili in a shallow dish of thinly sliced ginger, and dip away. Din Tai Fung also serves up the ultimate comfort food: Beef noodle soup. Its restorative, deep-brown broth with thin noodles can be savored with or without beef brisket. The spicy wontons in a vinegar sauce are also top-notch.
21 Boon Tat St, Singapore 069620
Nestled on a side street off Telok Ayer in Chinatown, this unassuming 40-seat restaurant with exposed-brick walls and funky local art earned a Michelin star in 2017 for its creative and very modern Australian fare. The ethos is simple: straightforward ingredients and surprising presentation. Take the signature Duck & Waffles—confit duck smothered in a spicy caramel sauce on top of crispy waffles. The wild venison with wasabi and zucchini is something wonderfully different, and so is the cuttlefish roasted pigeon. Beets with goat cheese, barramundi with leeks, and funky desserts like coconut with laksa-leaf ice cream make an indelible impression on foodies who think (and eat) outside the box.
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