You know the drill. When another Instagram-worthy café opens in Singapore, it will most likely be in minimalist white. If not, it will be baby / turquoise blue or millennial pink.
The irony is when minimalism is becoming more mainstream.
Part of the reasons include the general trend of bright, white, bare photos of café with natural daylight getting more likes on Instagram; and Marie Kondo’s “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” which contributes to removing items that do not spark joy.
Though I must add that there is a fine line between being stylistic-minimalist, and saving money on ID + buying cheap furniture.
White represents purity, makes you feel calm and at ease. It makes a café look more spacious than it really is, and adds that aesthetic factor.
Here are 10 minimalist (almost) white cafes of your dreams:
161 Lavender Street #01-12 Singapore 338750
Opening Hours: 10am – 6pm (Mon – Sun)
Beautiful White Cafe That Makes You Feel Like Home
This specialty coffee place at Lavender Street is called “Apartment” because the owner wanted to create the vibes of inviting people home, to have chats with coffee lovers at the counter seats, and for them to feel welcomed.
Thus, you will also find little corners such as the cosy seats where you can have more intimate conversations.
The café fulfils many requirements needed for those ‘mood’ and ‘got-feel’ shots – natural daylight, white space, Scandinavian furniture, locally-designed ceramic cups.
I was recommended the Colombia La Falda ($6.50), a single origin with notes of plum, redcurrant and grapefruit.
It was indeed a well-balanced, refreshing cup with that obvious fruitiness that made a good perk-me-up. Apartment Coffee (Lavender Street)
Glyph Supply Co
111 Somerset Road, #01-06, Singapore 238164
Opening Hours: 8:30am – 5pm (Mon – Fri), 10:30am – 5pm (Sat – Sun)
Minimalist White Café Found At Somerset
Glyph Supply Co. has been attracting quite a fair bit of customers, because it is an artisanal café with quite an “instagrammable” interior.
Although Orchard Road is peppered with mass coffee and local kopi chains, we do not get many of such indie 3rd wave coffee shops down town.
While the white was not as strong and robust as I would have liked, it had a smooth delicate texture, and not overly acidic. Overall, a decent coffee at this part of town that I won’t mind returning for.
Bakes are from Carpenter & Cook, and you get a rotational selection from Lemon Tart, Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Tart, Passionfruit Meringue Tart, Almond Croissant, Pain Au Chocolat, to savoury bites of Mushroom Quiche, and Ham and Cheese Croissant. Glyph Supply Co. (TripleOne Somerset)
1 Kallang Junction, Vanguard Campus, Singapore 339263
Tel: +65 6732 6966
Opening Hours: 8:30am – 6pm (Mon – Fri), Closed Sat, Sun
Minimalist White Café Serving Affordable Local Coffee And Food
Despite the rather ‘local’ sounding name, its décor went for white minimalist with lots of greens – high ceiling, white coloured and clean-lines.
I do need to highlight that the place has no aircon.
The menu in Banchong is like your typical Singaporean coffee chains, the likes of Yakun, Killiney Kopitiam and Toast Box.
It has a rather lean menu of the usual Mee Siam ($4.50), Laksa ($5.50), and Curry Chicken ($5.80). Perhaps they can look into expanding with 1-2 differentiating local dishes that has their “stamp” on it.
Banchong has made it happen – quality kopi + great looking space. Hopefully we will see more of such spaces, to keep out local kopi and food culture alive. Banchong Café (Kallang Junction)
The Kins’ Specialty Coffee
2 Jalan Mat Jambol, BIJOU, #01-08/09, Singapore 119554
Opening Hours: 9am – 7pm (Thurs – Tue), Closed Wed
Unique Burnt Cheesecake Found At White Minimalist Café
While the address is directed to a private condominium, the café is located at its public space, so you don’t have to get past any security gantries.
For Instagrammers, they can choose between the indoor with white minimalist décor, or the outdoor area with some greenery. Choices, choices.
The highlight of the meal was definitely their Kins’ Burnt Cheesecake ($7.50), served with a dollop of sweetened whipping cream on its side.
This Basque Burnt Cheesecake may look like a failed product from the kitchen, with a burnt and rough top layer, an under-cooked oozy layer in the middle mixed a fluffy layer of cheesecake at the bottom.
The Burnt Cheesecake was light on the palate, soft and moist at the same time, which resembled more of a Japanese cheesecake in terms of its texture. The Kins’ Specialty Coffee (Pasir Panjang)
56 Arab Street Singapore 199753
Opening Hours: 8am – 6pm (Sun – Thurs), 8am – 8pm (Fri – Sat)
Famous Kyoto Cafe Opens At Arab Street
% Arabica originally from Hong Kong technically (then Kyoto Japan), is known to be one of the best coffee shops around.
The Arab Street branch is a small 20-seater, designed in minimalist white similar to many of the other stores world-wide.
Depending on the season and availability, you can find coffees from Japan, Guatemala, Brazil, El Salvador, Ethiopia and Panama.
Caffe Latte is priced here at $7 for short, $8 for tall, while the iced version is priced at $8.
If you prefer something sweeter, also available is the Spanish Latte ($7.80. $9.00) which is included with condensed milk. %Arabica Singapore (Arab Street)
Hvala – TripleOne Somerset
111 Somerset Road, Singapore 238164
Opening Hours: 11am – 9:30pm (Mon – Sun)
Minimalist Japanese Cafe At Somerset
Hvala’s new Japanese teahouse is what I would describe as a little oasis in busy downtown.
The space located at TripleOne Somerset (do check out Coney Donut while you are there) has got almost full-white look with minimalist touch, natural daylight, and Japanese zen-like vibes.
The teahouse is designed such that there are steps in which customers can sit on and sip on matcha latte.
What I appreciated was there are different sections with varying seating arrangements, so those who come alone can enjoy some ‘me’ time, while friends can sit around a table in a group.
I think Hvala has managed to carve out a niche for themselves, in finding that sweet spot between offering quality Japanese tea with some modern interpretation. Hvala (TripleOne Somerset)
19 #01-01 Amoy Street, Singapore 069854
Opening Hours: 12pm – 10:30pm (Mon – Sat), 2pm – 7pm (Sun)
Newest Café On The Block At Telok Ayer
While the Telok Ayer and Amoy areas are always bustling with people due to its proximity to the CBD, you may just find a moment of reprise here.
This is quite a hidden café in the corner, that hasn’t received much publicity yet.
The interior is kept quite minimal with a centre of counter and few seating areas.
One of the reasons is perhaps menu is still kept rather lean, with offerings of cocktail, coffee, and a few food items such as Charred Brussel Sprouts Salad, Bibimbap Noodles and Portobello Sandwich.
343 Jurong East Street 31, #01-59, Singapore 600343
Tel: +65 9183 8447
Opening Hours: 12pm – 6pm (Mon, Tues, Thurs, Sun), 12am – 10pm (Fri, Sat), Closed Wed
Patisserie With Delicious Matcha Cake And Lime Tart
Lee’s Confectionery has recently attracted a lot of attention on social media, and it certainly has grabbed mine with its visually satisfying in-house made pastries.
A very nice minimalist café located in the West, with quality pastries.
There are people who come all the way here to try their pastries and not regretted it.
The owner-baker Lee Yin Quan holds a Diploma in Intensive Professional Program in French Pastry from one of Europe’s most prestigious culinary institute, Ferrandi Paris.
He also had internships with Michelin Star chef, Jean-François Piège and Pastry Chef Nina Métayer and Jean-François Perret of Hôtel Ritz Paris.
The best-seller here is the Dale ($8), which includes matcha included 4 ways – in a sponge, as crumble, matcha mousse, passionfruit compote with seeds on a tart sprinkled with… matcha powder. Lee’s Confectionery (Jurong East)
Pacamara Boutique Coffee Roasters Singapore
185 Upper Thomson Road, Singapore 574333
Tel: +65 6397 5564
Opening Hours: 9am – 9pm (Mon – Sun)
One Of The ‘Pioneer’ White Hipster Cafes In Singapore
Talk about Upper Thomson’s cafes, and Pacamara may just be that most famous name that people talk about.
Part of it is due to its vibes, primary white interior (especially with natural daylight), the barista bar, relatively good coffee, and cool little people. Okay, except that it can get rather noisy and echo-y.
Pacamara Coffee was first established in Changmai, finding more fame after opening its boutique café at Bangkok. As for its name, “Pacamara” came from El Salvadorean Pacamara Arabica coffee bean.
You will find this casual café at a few minutes’ walk from the Marymount MRT station. It has a minimalist set up, with hearty servings of Western fusion cuisine. They serve a full day breakfast and coffee menu, along with lunch and dinner special entrées.
Do leave some space for the Salted Caramel Banana French Toast ($18.50), or the Blueberry Pancake ($17.50) served with fresh berries, vanilla sauce and berry compete – a dessert that satiates the sweet tooth. Pacamara Boutique Coffee Roasters (Upper Thomson)
Double Up Coffee
7 Jalan Klapa, Singapore 199319
Opening Hours: 10am – 6pm (Mon, Wed – Sun), Closed Tues
Minimalist Cafe With A Touch Of Funkiness Near Bugis
You may just walk past Double Up Coffee at Jalan Klapa, considered quite a hole-in-the-wall. It is located right opposite Kumoya known for its character cafes. Both cafes are the opposite ends in styles anyway – one known for cutesy cartoon-themed food; the other coffee focused.
Walking in, the mood changes with light grey cement coffee counter, light wooden chairs, but most customers were sitting back facing the wall on a row of concrete seats.
It almost feels there is no little between barista and customer. Maybe that is what they are trying to achieve.
The menu is lean, divided into “business” (coffee drinks), “pleasure” (non-coffee drinks), and “chow” (rotational pastry).
You sense that element of playfulness when coffee drinks are not named the conventional latte or flat white, but Spro with Milk ($5) and Double Up ($7).
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