Tiong Bahru must be the most hip areas in Singapore now, with indie lifestyle shops, cafes and new restaurants lining the entire stretch from Yong Siak to Kim Tian. Some call this the next Holland Village. I prefer to think it still has its own old-school charm. (I am a Tiong Bahru boy by the way.)
This used to be the area where uncles ‘la kopi’, until an Aussie café called Forty Hands (or should I say Spa Espirit Group) came into the picture and revolutionised this olden town. If you haven’t heard, PS Café is also coming to Tiong Bahru too. What is happening?
Well, Tiong Bahru is also a popular area for cakes, starting with Caffe Parlet under Creative Culinaire where the famed Chef Judy also conducts baking classes at the Eng Hoon Street side. Here’s a list of 5 of my favourite places for cakes at Tiong Bahru. This is a tough one, so much so that I had to leave Forty Hands, Open Door Policy, The Orange Thimble and Social Haus out of the list. Perhaps I prefer the underdogs.
Centre Ps (Tiong Bahru)
This is truly a hidden find, where Centre Ps stands for Centerpieces, with the Ps standing for Passionately Perfecting Personalised Premier Patisserie. The man behind the counter was Chef Patissier Steven Ong whose cakes are featured in many lifestyle magazines, having helmed the pastry kitchens of the Intercontinental and Conrad Centennial Singapore collectively for the past 12 years If you need a cake in the shape of a Coach handbag, Doreamon, Angry Bird, or Hermes, he can do it for you.
78 Guan Chuan Street, #01-43 Singapore (Tiong Bahru) Tel: +65 6220 1285 Opening Hours: Mon–Sat: 10am – 8pm (Closed on Sun)
Drips Bakery Café
Drips Bakery Café has a space which reminds me of a living room space I always wanted to have. White washed wall, minimal furniture and colourful touches of decoration. While most other eateries would want to pack customers, this café has so much open space with inviting sunrays laminating the area. Their Mixed Fruit Tart with blueberries and kiwis is a pretty darling, with a soft crumply crust, cool cream cheese and very fresh fruits.
82 Tiong Poh Road, #01-05 Singapore, Tel: +65 6222 0400
Opening Hours: Sun–Thu: 10.30am – 9.30pm; Fri–Sat: 10.30am – 11pm (Closed on Tue)
Tiong Bahru Galicier Pastry
Facing the main road, this old-style bakery is as old-school as it can get, selling several retro cakes and Nyonya favourites. The vibe is friendly too, where aunties and sisters come up to chit-chat if you are willing to join in their conversations. I was highly recommend the Sweet Potato Huat Kueh ($1.00) which is unlike your usual cake which is much larger in size. This is even smaller than a cupcake, light and fluffy, and contains fillings of mashed-up sweet potatoes. Eat it while it is warm and the filling will ooze. Sweet and lovely.
55 Tiong Bahru Road #01-39 Singapore 6324 1686 Tel: +65 6324 1686. Opening Hours: Tue-Sun 9am-9pm, Closed Mon
Tiong Bahru Bakery by Gontran Cherrier
This is the most hyped-up (or overhyped) bakery café at Tiong Bahru. Of course it should be. It is opened by one of the best known marquee bakery names in Paris Gontran Cherrier, and the Spa Espirit Group (which owns Tippling Club, Forty Hands, Skinny Pizza, O My Dog, ODP). Their specialty squid ink bread and croissants fly off the shelf. The café is packed to the brim during the weekends (part of the reason why I avoid it). Try the Grapefruit and Orange Frangipane tart – it’s so strange you may like it.
#01-70 56 Eng Hoon Street, Singapore 160056, Tel: +65 6220 3430. Opening Hours: 8am – 8pm (Closed on Tues)
This new kid on the block are neighbours to Forty Hands, just two shops away. As the name suggests, it sells potatoes and tea – such a weird combination! Their desserts include cupcakes, eggless chocolate cakes, lemon meringue tart, and an earl grey made Tea-ramisu. That one I like. They offer some Sweet Potato Harvest Tarlets ($6.80). Don’t be tricked into thinking they are entirely sweet. There are chicken chunks within!
78 Yong Siak Street #01-18 Singapore 163078, Opening Hours: 11:0am – 10:00pm (Tues-Fri), 10:00am – 10:00pm (Sat), 10:00am – 9:00pm (Sun)
Share with me your favourite cake places at Tiong Bahru!