Posts Tagged ‘Singapore Botanic Gardens’

What to eat at the Singapore Botanic Gardens

This is an updated article to the previous What to eat at the Singapore Botanic Gardens that I wrote quite some years back. A lot has changed since then. Not only has our beloved Singapore Botanic Gardens been inscribed as a World Heritage Site on 4th July 2015, it has also seen a number of significant expansions in the form of the new Learning Forest, the new Gallop Extension, newly redeveloped Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden and National Orchid Garden. If you’ve not visited the Singapore Botanic Gardens in recent years, you really should! In fact, I think it would take several days to fully cover every single aspect of the Gardens, as the area is so vast!

So, the question is, what is there to eat at the Singapore Botanic Gardens? There are quite a number of F&B options at the Gardens suiting all budgets, ranging from a Michelin-starred fine-dining restaurant, to casual restaurants and cafes, takeaway kiosks and even a food court. As the Botanic Gardens is so huge, I will segment the F&B outlets by location:

– Bukit Timah Gate (nearest Botanic Gardens MRT Station)

– Nassim Gate

– Tyersall Gate

– Tanglin Gate (nearest to Gleneagles Hospital and bus stop with buses to Orchard Road)

These are also where the car parks are located. If you refer to the Singapore Botanic Gardens map, the Bukit Timah Gate is on the far right, followed by Nassim Gate and Tyersall Gate in the middle of the Gardens, and Tanglin Gate on the far left.

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Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival (30 June–8 July 2018)

This year’s Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival will be back again in a couple of days’ time, and if you’re a plant and nature lover like I am (or I like to think I am), you mustn’t miss out on this! Even if you don’t like spending time outdoors, now would be a good opportunity to enjoy Singapore’s first UNESCO Heritage World Heritage Site, as there will be numerous activities going on:

  • Concerts at the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
  • Movie screenings
  • Guided tours of the various parts of the Botanic Gardens
  • Roving Performances
  • Activities such as mass yoga, children’s activities, exhibitions
  • Free entry to the National Orchid Garden
  • etc

This year, the Heritage Festival will also focus on plants used by indigenous cultures of Southeast Asia, including Singapore. What are some of these plants you may ask? Think Elephant yam, coconut, torch ginger, sweet potato, curry leaf and kedongdong amongst others. Learn more about these plants, and get a chance to taste them, as the Gardens’ cafes, restaurants and retail outlets will be showcasing various menus and programmes featuring these edible plants during the Heritage Festival.

I had the opportunity to have a quick media preview of what is to come. Scroll down to see what is in store for this year’s Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival! Also check out the official Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival 2018 site online.

 

Visiting the Gardens

Heritage Tours

Singapore Botanic Gardens Bandstand and raintrees

Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage  (6)

I have been to the Singapore Botanic Gardens numerous times, more often than the average Singaporean I would suppose, but I still learn something new every time. For example, did you notice that the rain trees surrounding the bandstand look particularly yellow? Those rain trees were deliberately chosen to be planted here. Only 1 in 1,000 rain trees exhibit this yellowish leaves characteristic.

Attend free guided tours available on 30 June, 1,7 and 8 July to increase your knowledge on history, ecology and plant and animal life. The tours are free but on-site registration is required. Check out my instastories for video snippets of my tour around the Botanic Gardens.

 

National Orchid Garden

Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage  (15)

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Halia at Singapore Botanic Gardens is now certified Halal!

[Media Invite]

Did you know that the Halia restaurant at the Singapore Botanic Gardens has recently been converted into a Halal restaurant as of June 2017? This beautiful restaurant which has been at the UNESCO World Heritage inscribed Singapore Botanic Gardens since 2001 can now be considered an inclusive dining destination for all. Muslims who visit the Botanic Gardens often now have the option to dine amidst this lush greenery without having to scoot off elsewhere for lunch or dinner.

It certainly makes sense to cater to the Halal market because of its unique location in one of Singapore’s most popular tourist destination.  In order to be certified Halal, a significant change they have had to make is to remove alcohol from the menu. I am told this has not put a dent on profits because now the customer base has widened! Anyway, with a name like “Halia”, which means “ginger” in Malay, the connection is now even stronger.

Btw, when I say “inclusive dining destination”, I do mean it also in terms of pricing. Years ago, if you thought Halia to be an expensive restaurant, you would be right. But the menu has been largely revamped and now there are many main course-sized dishes going for less than $30. Appetisers are in the $15s range while desserts are about $11. Yet when you look at the decor and the ambience at Halia, you feel like you are dining in an upscale restaurant! On the evening of our media tasting, quite a number of tables were occupied by people celebrating birthdays. I would certainly love to celebrate my birthday there, it is so romantic at night!

Anyway, on to the food. In general, I thought the food was very good, given the pricing. Quite a number of the dishes were also innovatively presented so that nothing is predictable or mundane. Also the presentation, and small touches were befitting of an upscale restaurant. It is the attention to detail that takes a dish from good to great.

Halia - Fresh Boston Bay mussel ($22  )

Fresh Boston Bay mussel $22

My favourite dish of the evening was this mussel dish, featuring a slightly spicy coconut and ginger flower broth had such an intense flavour that made me crave for more. A good thing that they provided a substantially sized slice of focaccia bread to mop up the delicious broth. This dish is listed under the “In Between” section of the menu, meaning that this may not be filling enough if you’re a large eater.

Halia -Lightly Smoked Kingfish ($17  ) Chilled cucumber & ginger shooter, almond, chilli & lemongrass oil (2)

Lightly Smoked Kingfish $17 

The fish was pretty delicate in flavour as well as texture, and disappeared all too soon. Oh you’re supposed to pour a chilled cucumber & ginger shooter onto the fish, but I quite liked it on its own.

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Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival–Lots to eat, see and do!

The annual Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Festival is back for 2 weekends from 30 June – 9 July 2017. There’s so much to see, do and eat that you might want to spend more than 1 day at the Gardens!

Check out this link for more details on the programmes and promotions lined up for the Heritage Festival, but here’s a short summary on what you can expect:

  • Performances at Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage and the Bandstand
  • Programmes such as laughter yoga to qigong to
  • Children’s craft-making activities
  • Talks such as why the Singapore Botanic Gardens gained UNESCO World Heritage status or getting to know your Kampung vegetables.
  • Guided tours of the Gardens
  • Plant sales
  • Free entry to National Orchid Garden
  • and more!

Singapore Botanic Gardens (1)

And of course, not forgetting the fooooood! The F&B outlets at the Singapore Botanic Gardens will be coming up with special heritage dishes and/or discounts to whet your appetite during this period. Scroll down for pictures of what to expect.

~~~ Halia ~~~

Check out the numerous food and drink selections that have ginger and other botanical inspirations in them. The Chilled Ginger Jive is particularly refreshing, especially after a long and sweaty stroll in the Gardens. The Lemongrass and Ginger Prawn salad is really good too. It has a zesty Asian dressing and is quite substantial as a meal actually. And of course, the Chilli Crab Spaghettini is their long standing house favourite.

Check out Halia’s Chilli Crab Sauce Cooking Demonstration approx 45min on 1,2,8,9 July 4.30pm. Demo is FREE but registration is required.

Halia’s Provisions Store will also be offering a 10% discount for various items during the Heritage Festival, such as Halia’s signature chilli crab sauce, ginger flower sauce, ginger pineapple jam etc.

Halia at SBG - Chilled Ginger Jive (Ice blend of fresh ginger, fruit punch, orange & honey) $12

Chilled Ginger Jive (Ice blend of fresh ginger, fruit punch, orange & honey) $12

These 2 glasses look like 2 birds perched on the railing!

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Bee’s Knees (cafe) amidst lush greenery at the Singapore Botanic Gardens

Bees-Knees---Lush-Greenery_thumb1

When I say lush greenery, I do mean lush greenery!

Last month, we brought Baby to check out the the latest dining establishment at the Singapore Botanic Gardens, ie the Bee’s Knees. It’s located in this conservation building called The Garage, which houses Bee’s Knees cafe on the ground floor and a more atas restaurant called Botanico on the upper floor. We thought it would be a good opportunity to expose Baby to nature and greenery.

Btw, this 1920s era Art Deco building is called The Garage because it was actually used as a garage back in the colonial times, hence its seven vaulted entrances for the parking bays back then.

Baby-and-Grandpa-at-the-Singapore-Bo[1]

Gong Gong’s bringing his favourite boy out for lunch. Did you see what he’s wearing?? Yes I bought The Bee’s Knees shirt from Mothercare SG specially to go dine at the Bee’s Knees.Sun

Bees-Knees---Cake-Display-Counter_th

 

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