Singapore turns 54 this Friday, and celebrates its bicentennial anniversary to boot. Since food has become such a cornerstone of Singaporean culture, what better way to toast to our nation’s birthday than to do it with food?
But don’t fret about missing the big fireworks display. We’ve rounded up five restaurants and bars that are serving up both delectable local delights and a killer view of this weekend’s fireworks.
The Clifford Pier
It’s not a Singaporean dinner until your table is covered with dishes and you’re fending off an impending food coma just to eat a little more. And with The Clifford Pier’s staggering list of local favourites, you’ll definitely need a plan of attack when it comes to ordering.
With its slick marble finishes and lush view of the Singapore River and iconic Marina Bay skyline, the Clifford Pier looks like its been plucked straight from a Baz Luhrmann film. But make no mistake, its food is decidedly—and deliciously— Singaporean.
Feast on updated staples like wagyu beef rendang and house favourite The Pier’s Prawn Laksa. When it’s time for the fireworks, you can head out to the deck that overlooks the river, or stay inside for a front-row seat.
For the first time, the National Day fireworks will be set off along the Singapore River—that means that if you’re located along Boat Quay, like the new bar-restaurant The Sampan is, you’ll get a wonderfully unblocked view of the festivities.
The Sampan has more than just its prime location going for it. For National Day, this riverside restaurant has a special 4-course dinner set that celebrates all things Singaporean. Each course even has several options to choose from, so there’s plenty of variety. From chili chicken kueh pie tee to beef rendang chwee kueh, and hearty lamb shanks to curry fish head, you’re sure to be spoilt for choice.
If you’d rather stick to a liquid diet for the holiday, rooftop bar Mr Stork has a limited-time local snack platter that will hit the spot. And by snack platter, we don’t just mean peanuts and crackers: Think chicken rice risotto balls, salted egg calamari, and chicken satay. After all, the only thing better than bar grub is local bar grub.
Mr Stork also boasts a gorgeous location, perched as it is atop the Andaz Singapore’s 39th level.
VIP standing tables are also available on August 9. The package comes with a choice of two full-sized bottles of spirits, the above-mentioned snack platter, as well as an unforgettable view of the fireworks.
Dim sum might not be an entirely Singaporean concept, but we’ve sure embraced it as one of our favourites. Why stop at one basket of steamed goodies when you could have a dozen?
Head up to the top of the National Gallery to the slick Yan, which is offering up a special dim sum menu for National Day. You might be tempted to order seconds of the Pan-fried Singapore Chili Crab Meat Bun, but be sure to save room for the rest of the menu, which are just as delicious as they sound—xiao long baos with bak kut teh stock, deep-fried mutton satay spring rolls… The list goes tantalisingly on.
While the National Gallery itself will be closed due to the Parade, it will reopen on Sunday, August 11 with free admission to all its exhibits. Be sure to check out the exhibit on Singapore’s pioneer watercolourist in ‘Lim Cheng Hoe: Painting Singapore’, which features nostalgic depictions of Singapore’s humble roots in the 1900s.