New Ubin Seafood CHIJMES is a new outlet by New Ubin Seafood. This is currently their second restaurant in Singapore. The other one is in the Hillview area (you can read about our visit here). Hitherto, we have associated New Ubin with gritty locations – their existing Hillview outlet is in a canteen of an industrial building, having moved there from the Sin Ming car workshops area. The New Ubin Seafood CHIJMES outlet marks a departure from that impression. A Tze Char or Zhi Char (煮炒) restaurant has moved into the posh neighbourhood of CHIJMES right in the heart of the Singapore CBD.
A platypus “… is a semiaquatic egg-laying mammal endemic to eastern Australia, including Tasmania. Together with the four species of echidna, it is one of the five extant species of monotremes, the only mammals that lay eggs …” (Wikipedia). The Platypus Kitchen at Bugis Junction is a totally different animal. It is an “(a)ward winning Asian-influenced Seasonal Modern Cuisine.” It is the flagship gourmet restaurant of the Platypus Restaurant Group (Platypus Website).
We are experiencing a hot dry spell in Singapore. The sun seems brighter than normal and the dry heat is scorching. Almost like summer in Spain. The weather inspired us to search for Mediterranean food in Singapore. These days we have quite a bit of Greek and Spanish restaurant choices and we know of only one Portuguese restaurant. We ended up at the Tapas Club in Orchard Central. We have been there before but their weekday 1 for 1 tapas deal was irresistible. Unfortunately, we were told that this arrangement would end soon (I think they said 16 Mar 2018), so please call ahead if you are thinking of going. There could be other weekday offers in the pipeline.
Why do some F&B outlets in Singapore flourish while similar stores offering the same kind of food struggle? That should be an interesting business school research project topic. The factors contributing to the popularity of a food business is often hard to pin point. Like we said in our earlier post about The Hangar Cafe on Arab Street, there could be beautiful restaurants struggling to draw in the diners while places with no decor to speak of would be extremely well patronised. Perhaps a location like Kampong Glam or Little Arab has its own magic. Rich & Good Cake Shop in Kampong Glam is another intriguing case. There is almost always a queue at this laid back unpretentious bakery on Kandahar Street.
Running a food and beverage business in Singapore is not for the faint hearted. According to a SPRING Singapore website, 28% of F&B business are replaced every year. In addition to challenges like high rents and labour shortages there is also this other factor that intrigues us – the unpredictability of consumer tastes. We have seen beautiful restaurants struggle to draw in the diners. On the other hand, there are places where there is no decor to speak of and yet the crowds just keep on flowing in. The Hangar Cafe on Arab Street belongs to the latter category.
Typhoon Cafe at Plaza Singapura is an attractive contemporary Taiwanese cafe on level 4 of the popular Orchard Road mall. It offers Instagram-worthy artisan fruit teas and desserts as well as classic Taiwanese dishes like Lu Rou Fan and Oyster Omelette. Signature dishes of Typhoon Cafe at Plaza Singapura include Australian Beef Short Rib with Wuxi Maltose Glaze and Crispy Whole Pork Knuckle with Taiwanese Chilli Jam.