The name is of most utmost importance to any F&B business. For a café, even if your food and coffee are good, having a name without a story, unique branding or retention qualities will not be able to attract customers, especially the hipster ones.
Our eyebrows raised quite a few times when we checked out the names of some of the new cafes in Singapore. No offence to the owners, yah? Clueless Goat? And Why At Bali Lane? Chew The Fat? Bell Cottage? Burp? Wilder? Tvoila?
A name is key to your identity.
For potential café owners (who still dare enter this treacherous market), here are some tips.
– Get a unique name. So that when people Google, they don’t end up somewhere else.
– It should sound hip. Complete the sentences. Let’s go ________, We should have coffee at ________. Does your shop sound good in those blanks?
– Apply for a Facebook Profile URL. You don’t want numbers on the URL. (A reminder to about half of the cafes featured here.)
– At the same time, book your website, twitter, instagram accounts etc etc first. Even if you don’t intend to set them up now, keep them first.
20 New Cafes in Singapore March 2015
Mad About Sucre
27 Teo Hong Road, Singapore 088334 (near Bt Pasoh, Outram MRT)
Tel: +65 62213969
Opening Hours: 12:30pm – 10:30pm (Tues-Thurs), 12:30pm – 11pm (Fri-Sat), 12:30pm – 5pm (Sun), Closed Mon
What’s in the name: ‘Sucre’ means ‘sugar’ in French. And Mad About Sucre is in the process of applying patent in 27 European countries. Don’t play play.
About the café: The European Cakery which specializes in customizing handcrafted wedding, birthday and celebratory cake actually cuts down 20-60% of their sweetness level.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Their cakes are LEGIT. But they shouldn’t set up 2 FB pages, it’s confusing.
Creme Maison Bakery
50A Prinsep Street #02-01 Singapore 188680
Tel: +65 81813689
Opening Hours: 12pm – 7pm (Fri-Sun)
What’s in the name: ‘Maison’ means ‘house’ in French. The bakery specialises in floral cupcakes.
About the café: Floral cupcakes ($4.80) and some with “gourmet flavour” such as Peanut Butter Jelly ($3.80) – classic Madagascar vanilla cupcakes filled with homecooked balsamic strawberry jam, frosted with roasted peanut butter cream cheese. Jams and fillings are home-cooked from scratch to add dynamics to the flavor profile.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Very pretty bakes, but why open only during weekends?
My Sister Bakes
81 Macpherson Lane, #01-55, Singapore 360081
(Updated: My Sister Bakes has stopped retail of sliced cakes and will be focusing on customised bakes.)
What’s in the name: Baker Esther bakes quite a lot for her siblings at home. When they post on instagram, they will go “My Sister Baked….”
About the café: Having been around for almost 1.5 years doing just customized cakes online, they have decided to expand into a café. Signatures include Earl Grey Cake ($6/slice), Rainbow with nutella ($7.50/slice) and Milo Cake ($5.5/slice).
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Definitely promising, but needs a lot more publicity.
27 Lorong Liput, Singapore 277738 (Holland Village MRT)
Opening Hours: 1030 am – 10pm (Mon-Tues, Thurs-Sun), 12 pm – 10 pm (Wed)
What’s in the name: Dedicated açaí superfood café.
About the café: Menu consists of açaí bowls and smoothies, prepared fresh with heap of fruits and superfood toppings. Uses Sambazon organic açaí, which grows in the Brazilian Amazon Rainforest where the berries are hand harvested by local family farmers.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: This is the healthier alternative. Can consider going.
Chew The Fat
Block 6 Everton Park #01-18, Singapore 080006 (5-10 min walk from Outram Park MRT)
Opening Hours: 11am – 9pm (Tue-Sun), Closed Mon
What’s in the name: Means to chat in a friendly, leisurely way. Their poster boy is called “Chew” too.
About the café: Homemade desserts including Royal Apple Crumble (containing fresh apple chunks ($5 without ice-cream; $7.50 with ice-cream) and Bouncy Bananas – banana cupcakes with fresh banana chunks ($2 each). All soft launch prices. You probably have the same question as me. Does that mean prices will increase?
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Prices are friendly, but portions have to be bigger to feed a hungry boy.
Selfish Gene Patisserie
40 Craig Road, Level 2, Singapore 089678
Tel: +65 6423 1324
Opening Hours: 6pm – 10pm (Wed-Thurs), 12pm-5pm, 6pm – 10pm (Fri-Sat), 12pm-5pm (Sun), Closed Mon-Tues
What’s in the name: Cos Gene is the name of the owner, and he will not serve anyone food that he would not eat himself’
About the café: 7 different plated desserts including a Japanese inspired Soya ($14) which harmonises soya ingredients with tofu cheesecake, red beans, homemade mochi, red miso caramel and green tea ice-cream.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: We wish that the opening hours are not so restrictive, but no choice, Gene said “manpower issue”.
Bell Cottage Café
Blk 354 Clementi Ave 2 #01-233 Singapore 120354
Tel: +65 6779 3138
Opening Hours: 12pm – 9pm (Mon – Thurs), 12pm – 10pm (Fri-Sat), 12pm – 9pm (Sun)
What’s in the name: The sound of the ‘Bell’ arouses a warm welcome and attention, and ‘Cottage‘ emphasizes a compact house like the café. Okay.
About the café: Small home-style café. Their signature item is the Cottage Burger ($9.80), a charcoal burger with gelato and churros. What?
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Hmm…
Kitchener Complex Blk 809 French Road #01-50 Singapore 200809
Tel: +65 62913185
Opening Hours: 8:30am – 6pm (Mon-Fri), Check their FB for updated timings
What’s in the name: Oberstrasse is a common street name in German speaking Europe towns. It means Upper (Ober) Street (strasse). Owner met his girlfriend at 31 Oberstrasse Switzerland. Aww…
About the café: Expect Cakes, French Butter Pastries, All-day Breakfast, Pasta, Bratwurst Rosti as well as beer food such as Luncheon Fries, Buffalo Drumlets, Cheesy Melt Meat Balls and 7-inch Pizzas.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Would be good to have some distinct signatures and increase the ‘German-ness’ in offerings.
The Clueless Goat
189 Thomson Road, Goldhill Centre Singapore 307631 (Novena MRT)
Opening Hours: 8am – 6pm (Tues-Thurs), 8am – 10:30pm (Fri), 9pm – 10:30pm (Sat), 9pm – 6pm (Sun)
What’s in the name: To pay homage to an Ethiopian goat which accidentally helped discover coffee.
About the café: A humble down to earth café, selling items such as Ranchers Eggs ($8.50) – smashed avocado, fresh salsa, poached eggs and shaved parmesan on multigrain toast and Breakfast Waffles ($9). Coffee is source from Common Man Coffee Roasters.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Good coffee, decent food, but needs the X-factor to propel them to stardom.
2nd floor of 590 Toa Payoh East, Singapore 319134 (Toa Payoh’s golf driving range)
Opening Hours: 5pm – 1am (Tues-Sun)
What’s in the name: Owners feel that the greatest compliment to an awesome meal, is a loud “BURP”!
About the café: Burp Kitchen serves bar grub, burgers, hot dogs & tacos. Some of their items include Salted Egg Fries ($9), Burp Kitchen Wings ($10), Spicy Buffalo Wings ($12), Beef Burger ($14), Battered Fried Fish Tacos ($14).
Daniel’s Food Diary says: People may go after a game of golf, but tough to attract those beyond.
Good Food Heals
10 North Canal Road (Raffles Place MRT Exit G)
Opening Hours: 8am – 6pm
What’s in the name: Nutritious, health-goal based lunch boxes
About the café: A menu which features a high plant-based, fish only, dairy-free and refined flour and sugar free food philosophy.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: CBD folks have more healthy options, I suppose.
200 Turf Club Road #02- K1, PasarBella at The Grandstand, Singapore 287994
Tel: +65 6314 1034
Opening Hours: 8.30am – 11pm
What’s in the name: Means one who makes provision and supplies provisions.
About the café: Located outside the west entrance of PasarBella, the 2,000 square foot café offers all-day dining with a range of cakes and pastries that are baked on premise at the Bakery for both dine-in and takeaway. Expect some main courses such as Bomba Rice Paella ($28.5), Lobster Mac & Cheese ($25.5), Grass-fed Beef Burger ($26.5) and Spatchcock Chicken ($26.5).
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Food is 90% to that of Mandarin Gallery’s. If you take the shuttle bus, you will land right in front of Providore. If not, walk all the way to the end.
Olivo Bistro Bakery
12 Kallang Avenue #02-13, Aperia Atrium Mall, Singapore 339511
Tel: +65 6341 6933
Opening Hours: 10.30am – 10pm Daily
What’s in the name: Olivo means “Olive Tree” in Italian.
About the café: Healthier low-sugar cakes and low-salt, no-MSG foods. Some interesting choices include Singapore Chilli Crab Burger ($23.80), Ayam & Babi Shio Peranakan Chicken & Pork Ribs Stew ($9.90) and Roast Pork Crackling Sandwich ($9.50).
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Good to know Olivo is also a social enterprise which provides training and employment opportunities to the socially under-privileged.
96 Rangoon Road Singapore 218381
Tel: +65 8685 8488
Opening Hours: 9am to 7pm (Wed-Mon), Closed Tues
What’s in the name: Self-explanatory.
About the café: All-day Breakfast Menu, Gourmet Sandwiches, Waffles, Coffee, Tea and other Beverages. The usual, with some vintage furniture.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Their brunch items were better than their waffles.
19 Lor Kilat #01-03 Singapore 598120
Opening Hours: 10am – 9pm (Tues-Thurs), 10am – 10pm (Fri), 9am – 10pm (Sat), 9am – 7pm, Closed Mon
What’s in the name: Owner sees a resemblance of Manhattan with Singapore, except the weather.
About the café: This is East Manhattan’s second shop, which specialities are its selection of of artisan bread, sourdough bread, croissant, cakes and pastries. I was recommended the Quinoa Basil Chicken ($18.50), Quinoa Salmon ($18.50), and Manhattan All Day Breakfast ($18.50).
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Is Lor Kilat getting a little too crowded?
Blk 332 Ang Mo Kio Ave 1 #01-1881
Opening Hours: 12pm – 10pm (Tues-Sat), 11am – 10pm (Sun)
Tel: +65 84842488
What’s in the name: A workbench is defined as a bench at which practical work is done. Owners treat the space as a place to create practical, honest to goodness food and hence the tagline “practical food creation”.
About the café: Owners used to open Turquoise Room Gillman Village, and Turquoise Bistro at East Coast Parkway. Expect crab meat linguine, beef burger, buffalo wings, chicken ciabatta with sundried tomato pesto, truffle fries and crispy light waffles.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Wished that they stuck to the Turquoise brand though.
181 Orchard Road #B1-15-19 Singapore 238896
Tel: +65 69666660
What’s in the name: Combination of ‘tea’ and ‘viola’ which means ‘look here’.
About the café: Specialises in organic tea, along with salads, sandwiches, desserts, and coffee.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: Their challenge, a big space considered hidden in the basement level. We hope they lose that ugly uniform too.
Tamper & Co
88 Rangoon Road #01-02 Singapore 218374
Opening Hours: 10am – 10pm (Mon-Thurs, Sun), 10am – 12am (Fri-Sat)
What’s in the name: Got its name from the coffee tamper.
About the café: Local style coffee La’Coffee has changed name and concept, now known as Tamper & Co, selling brunch items, waffles, gelato and cold brews.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: The name ‘Something & Co’ is overly used. Isn’t it?
The Oven Café Bistro
1 Irving Place #01-22 The Commerze @ Irving Singapore 369546 (Tai Seng MRT)
Opening Hours: 11am – 9pm
What’s in the name: Some oven baked items, such as pizzas.
About the café: Owner-Chef James Loh was from At-Sunrice Global Chef Academy, serving a repertoire of Pizzas ($8.80) with flavours of ham, pepperoni, bratwurst, chicken, and Spaghetti dishes. Try their Chef’s Cream sauce when you order the pasta.
Daniel’s Food Diary says: The food is not too bad, but Chef was looking visibly stressed out. Take a chill-pill Chef!
38 South Buona Vista Road, Singapore 118164
Tel: +65 64790800
What’s in the name: Has a meaning of ‘prosperity’ – abundance of rice.
About the café: Café food by day, Asian tapas by night. Food with spin on Australian-Japanese international fusion with specialty coffee & hand brew bar with selected alcohol selections
Daniel’s Food Diary says: We spot a Slayer. Good ambience and decent food (some dishes still need tweaking though).
Other Related Entries
20 New Cafes In Singapore Feb 2015
20 New & Hot Restaurants Singapore – Feb 2015
20 New Cafes In Singapore Jan 2015
20 New & Hot Restaurants Singapore – January 2015
200 New Cafes In Singapore 2014
* Compiled by Daniel Ang @DanielFoodDiary & Nicholas Tan @stormscape