[Updated] Ah Bong Italian has moved to Tan Quee Lan Street and ceased operations at the Tiong Bahru coffeeshop stall.
[Original Entry] Ah Bong Italian is one of its kind in Singapore.
An Italian food stall in a Tiong Bahru coffeeshop selling pastas and crème brulee at incredibly affordable prices, and is only opened a few hours a day – though not by its own choice.
Located at the equally unique ”Two Face” at 56 Eng Hoon Street which is kopitiam by day, pizza and taproom by night.
The kopitiam remains as one of the favourite places to get my regular Yong Tau Foo fix.
Though the awesome vegetarian stall holder had to move away to nearby Blk 71 at Seng Poh, and replacing it was Ah Bong Italian. (Essential skill for a food blogger: need to be kaypoh a bit and ask around.)
The varied experienced owner Chris holds a degree from the London School of Economics, and also a Diploma in Culinary Arts from at-Sunrice.
Additionally, he has trained under three Michelin star chef Bruno Menard at La Cantine.
Ah Bong, is the nickname of his 3 year old daughter.
His fondest memory of Italian food was discovering an unassuming “hole-in-the-wall” pasta shop in Sicily.
When he first saw the kopitiam at Eng Hoon, he felt it had that “x-factor” with that retro and rustic feel, enabling him to re-create a delightful experience at an unpretentious place.
His menu changes regularly, and you may find items ranging from Comfort Pasta of spaghetti with onion jam ($5), Spicy Tuna Puttanesca ($6), Chorizo Bolognaise ($6) and crème brulee with flavours ranging from Triple Espresso, Earl Grey and Thai Milk Tea.
I can say “Take my money” for Ah Bong’s Mac & Cheese ($6 with truffle oil, $5 without), small yet filling bowl pulsating with rich strongly-flavoured cream sauce and shitake and bacon. If you want something light, this is not for you.
My friend tried the Slow Cooked Pork Ragu ($6). She, who has dined at probably 50% of the decent Italian restaurants in Singapore, said it was pretty good for its price. Cannot compare to the high-end restaurants, definitely better than the mass-market brands __________ (fill in the blanks), and probably around Spageddies standard.
Opened at only 4 hours or so a day, one can imagine the tight margins for this budding hawkerpreneur. If you come early in the morning, you can see the humble Chris preparing, who is unwavering on serving fresh comfort food.
Ah Bong Italian
103 Beach Rd, #01-02 (below Marrison hotel), Singapore 189704 (Tan Quee Lan Street area)
Opening Hours: 12pm – 2pm, 6pm – 9pm (Mon – Sun)