The newly opened Small Tables is a modern sidewalk cafe at Scotts Road serving an array of Ipoh dishes as well as Ipoh pastries and coffee.
怡 Small Tables
The Chinese character ‘Yi’ (怡) in Ipoh (怡保) comprised two parts “忄” and “台”, which can be translated as “Small” and “Table”. Hence the newly opened cafe in Pacific Plaza focusing on Ipoh specialties is named Small Tables.
It is a joint venture between Minor Food Group and Three Eats (a business of private dining chef Sandra Sim of Ladyboss Dining Club). Minor Food Group’s brands include familiar names like Go-Ang Pratunam Chicken Rice, Poulet, Sanook Kitchen and Xin Wang Hong Kong Café.
The look of Small Tables is similar to many of the Minor Food Group’s outlets, but perhaps a tad for swanky on account of its prime Orchard shopping belt location. It uses green, dark grey and brushed brass gold finishes to give the cafe a touch of old world charm.
There are three dining sections – a naturally ventilated area fronting the sidewalk; an airconditioned section with regular dining tables to the rear; and an airconditioned part with high bar tables and counter which looked out to Scotts Road.
Menu of Small Tables
The menu of Small Tables is conceptualised by Sandra Sim and includes the Ipoh curry mee which she had previously offered in Sum Yi Tai (now closed) and in her private dining menu. Hakka Yong Tau Fu, Ipoh Hor Fun and Poached Kampong Chicken are among the Ipoh specialties on the menu.
Below are pictures of the menu board and a few pages of the menu which should give you a fair idea of what to can get at Small Tables.
Lunch at Small Tables
We visited Small Tables on a recent weekend for lunch. The only seats available were at the bar counter against the glass panel facing Scotts Road. It was a good spot to people-watch. However, being seated there also meant that you and your food would serve as window display. Maybe only good looking people would be offered those seats (we like to think so).
We ordered the Ipoh Shredded Chicken Hor Fun ($16) and Pork Belly Satay ($16). We also had the Hero Gero, or kopi-O ($5.80), and kopi C ($6.80) and a piece of Brown Sugar Heong Piah($3).
The Ipoh Shredded Chicken Hor Fun was nicely presented in a big glass bowl. The thin flat rice noodles were smooth and soft. The chicken and prawn broth was rich and flavourful. It was quite a lot to pay for a bowl of Malaysian street food but it was a delectable bowl of Ipoh hor fun.
The Pork Belly Satay dish consisted of 6 skewers of Chinese style pork satay, peanut satay sauce, cut pineapples, onions and cucumber. Those that do not like the fatty layers of pork should avoid this dish as the fat contents of Small Tables’ satay are really substantial. The lean meat portion of the satay was really delicious. It was well marinated and had good smokey sweet and savoury flavours. The peanut sauce was the best part of the dish. It made everything else taste much better.
The coffee at Small Tables was rather unremarkable. The Heong Piah, Ipoh biscuits with layers of crisp pastry and sweet sticky filling, was simply delightful. We would have a few more if only it was a little cheaper.
Elevated Ipoh kopi tiam fare
Small Tables in Pacific Plaza at Scotts Road is a nice spot to enjoy Ipoh cuisine in smart casual surroundings. Expect to pay restaurant prices for essentially elevated kopi tiam fare; but if you are shopping in the Scotts Road-Orchard Road area, you should be used to paying a bit more for a better total experience.
Overall Rating: 3 TOPs
9 Scotts Road, Pacific Plaza, #01-09/10/11/12
Tel: +65 6452 9388
Mon to Thur: 11:30 am to 10 pm
Fri to Sat: 11:30 am to 11 pm
Sun: 11 am to 10 pm
Nearby MRT Station: Orchard
The Ordinary Patrons | Real Dining Experience of Ordinary People
an independent Singapore food blog