Keong Saik Snacks

The other day somebody had a burger craving. We decided to drop by Keong Saik Snacks since I remembered they had a burger on their menu. After getting through traffic and ERP and dealing with the parking problem (super limited parallel parking lots especially at dinner time), we realized they changed the menu. No more burgers! That’s bad luck right there.

Even though Keong Saik Snacks has been around for a year or so, I never had the chance to visit ┬ábecause it was always swamped with yupsters. To walk in for dinner and get a seat was impossible at this 30-seat diner. They don’t take reservations either.

It’s a lot quieter now, less than half the restaurant was occupied during our visit. So we took our seats and a look at the menu – quite limited in choices, nothing really jumped at me.

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I decided to go for the Seared Scallop & Crispy Pig Cheek ($28). Please see below for picture. It was as insubstantial in my stomach as it was on the plate. They weren’t kidding when they said Keong Saik SNACKS. This is at best a starter, not a main. It is a huge booboo to list it as a main and very deceiving.

At the very least keep the pig cheek in one slab rather than chop it up into bite-size pieces. So that it looks more decent.

And $28? This cafe seriously needs to revise its prices. It’s simply unreasonable for mainstream folks like myself to be paying so much at a small cafe. Hipsters/yupsters would but my kind is a different story.

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Below is the Grilled Lamb Chop & Shepherd’s Pie ($30). We chose to have the t-bone and it was cooked well. The shepherd’s pie felt like it was prepared halfway. They just slapped on some potato over some beef. The portion I would say is enough for a small eater. But guys would need a lot more than this. And of course, $30 is pushing the limit.

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That’s me!

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I will not return to KSS again, because I could be going to a fancier place with that amount of money. However, they do have innovative food in a small, cosy setting, if that is your thing. Good for (up to 4) girlfriends who have not seen each other in months – or a casual dinner for two.

And the biggest plus point of dining here is you get to The Library bar afterwards which is just next door! Your waiter will provide you the password to enter upon paying the bill.

49 Keong Saik Rd 089153
6223 0660

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Steph & Ging’s Infinite Bar List 3

Today my friend asked me why I’m posting so many pictures of myself up here. Am I mistaking this for Instagram? I realized I should stick to what this blog was made for. So I’m going to do one of those classic infinite bar lists right now.

The Library
47 Keong Saik Road

You must have heard of The Library by now, it is the bar that requires a password for entry. Some people complain that it is gimmicky and exclusive. But it’s just a very simple marketing strategy at the end of the day. Their password is always posted as a status on their Facebook page. So essentially they just want you to check back constantly for updates. There was one week when the password was about the newest dish on the menu at Keong Saik Snacks. Now we all know about that don’t we? Their scheme worked.

I’m also not dissing on their password gimmick because I’m head over heels in love with this place. I’ve learnt that the best seat at a bar is always at the bar counter where you watch the bartenders in action. These bartenders are serious about their drinks and really know what they are doing. Organized, orderly and in the zone. They are generous with the alcohol, use high quality ingredients and are really detailed about the presentation. It was impressive.

There was one drink I ordered that came with a banana note (currency used in WW2 in Singapore) laminated and used as a coaster. Of course, their most distinctive and signature drink is the rubber ducky drink that comes in a mini bath tub with a floating rubber ducky inside, meant to be shared among four. It’s gin based, and I usually don’t drink anything besides whisky so this was a change. But wow it was so good. If you can’t take ginger though, you might want to tell the bartender to tone the spice down by a notch.

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The decor at this place was private, dim and classy. But the funny thing is they manage all of that WHILE being young and quirky too. That’s one reason why I’m taking more to this place than 28 HKS, another top choice.

I need and want to go back again. And given that there are so many bars in Singapore, a repeat visit to any one shows how good it is!

Cufflink Club
6 Jiak Chuan Road

This is just a few steps away from The Library, but worlds apart in terms of standards. I suspect that the rejects from The Library usually end up at Cufflink Club out of convenience and resignation. The bar is pretty open, you can just walk in and plop down on a seat and no waiter would notice you. When I ordered, it tasted diluted and watered down. I paid waaaay too much for what I got.

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View the Infinite Bar List 1 here, and part 2 here.