Singapore is foodie heaven. A meeting place of flavours from across Asia and the world, incredible feasts tumble out of pans and kitchens and onto plates in the streets, markets and restaurants all the way up to Michelin-star standards.
While there’s certainly no shortage of options and hunger never far from satiation, there’s nothing better than a little insider info to help find a few of the local gems.
Don’t miss these foodie favourites from well-known celebrities who have the know-how and experience when it comes to eating in Singapore.
Tetsuya Wakuda considers Singapore his “home away from home”. A culinary superstar with restaurants in both Australia and Singapore, he knows how to taste his way around a city to find the finest gastronomic pleasures.
“My real Singapore includes a healthy mix of eating, drinking and shopping,” he says. “In fact the locals claim these are their national sports."
You don’t have to spend big to eat like a king in Singapore. For something that’s locally authentic, tasty and affordable, Wakuda recommends heading straight to Maxwell Road Hawker Centre.
"Most stalls specialise in just one dish,” he says, so they must have it down to a fine art. In fact, it’s his number one recommendation for any trip to Singapore.
Wakuda's favourite go-to spot here is the Tian Tian Chicken Rice stall, but if it’s coffee you need first thing in the morning, he recommends Toast Box for its nostalgic atmosphere, reminiscent of the 60s and 70s.
Chinatown is another fabulous local dining hotspot. Wakuda claims it’s “the most authentic dining experience in the heart of Singapore”. “Being an avid food lover, I celebrate the assembly of speciality dishes available in the Chinatown Food Street,” he says.
Having recently undergone a revamp and open until the early hours of the morning, it’s a round-the-clock hub of tempting smells and flavours, from roast duck to fried oysters.
For the best dining view in town, he says Sky on 57 is the place to go, while the Wet Markets make for a fascinating wander through the rows and rows of fresh and exotic seafood.
Having lived in Singapore for a number of years, Antonia Kidman has discovered her own favourite haunts to indulge in the local flavours.
“The real Singapore is a unique blend of Malay, Chinese and Indian cultures, mixed with elements of old world colonial charm and set against the backdrop of a dynamic, vibrant and contemporary city,” she says.
A great spot to admire the colonial buildings on show whilst relaxing over a cuppa and a delicious high tea is at The Fullerton Hotel, which Kidman says is “divine”. “The Tekka Market in Little India is one of my favourite places to visit,” she says.
“I do my weekly fruit and veg shop here and regularly pop down for a kopi si (which is a tick, sweet, milky coffee) and kaya toast (kaya is a sweet coconut jam)”.
If it’s a typical Aussie breakfast you’re craving, Kidman backs Boomerang Cafe in Boat Quay for a breakfast plate full of bacon and eggs and all the usual favourites from home – including vegemite.
A finalist in the 2012 MasterChef TV cook-off, Audra Morrice was born in Singapore and says it’s where her love of food began and where she learnt to cook. “My real Singapore is in its many multicultural traditions that are reflected hugely in the food we cook,” she says.
Heavily influenced in the kitchen by her mixed Indian and Chinese heritage, she says Singapore is brimming with delicious flavours, recipes and cooking techniques that have been passed down through generations.
When it comes to dining hubs in Singapore, Morrice loves a trip to Joo Chiat for the rich and colourful Peranakan heritage and restaurants on offer, as well as the all-encompassing cultural experiences that Little India presents, from the food to the colourful buzz on the sidewalk.
The dried goods on offer on the third floor of the old wet markets at Bugis are another big drawcard. “They will even let you know what you can and can’t bring into Australia!” she says.
One restaurant in particular that she loves is Lolla on Ann Siang Road. “The food is amazing,” she says. Her top menu picks include the smoked scarmoza with preserved peaches, leek gratin, sea urchin and braised tripe.
Wondering about dessert? Morrice loves The Daily Scoop, touting it as “the best locally made ice cream in Singapore”. “They have a huge range of flavours including plenty of local favourites such as durian, lychee martini, chendol, avocado and my all-time favourite...coconut!”.
Her sweet tooth also doesn’t mind a trip to Chin Mee Chin Confectionary, with its old school setting and deliciously sweet bundles of goodness. For the best pastries in town, she assures that the queue at Tiong Bahru Bakery is well worth the wait.
Matt Stone is a leading sustainable chef in Australia and has discovered a very different side to the Singapore foodie scene - one that extends beyond the skyscrapers and into the greener pastures of the outer city limits.
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Interviews and images for this article provided by Singapore Tourism.