When Yee Gan calls, you just have to answer, especially when he's inviting you out to try a Malaysian restaurant he swears by. Since a few of my close friends live just around the corner from this place, I'm quite surprised I've never been before. It is slightly non-descript and Swiss Cottage isn't the first place that comes to mind when I think Malaysian food, but the people behind Singapore Garden know their stuff when it comes to food.
YGO took the lead and ordered up a variety of mains: Roti Canai, Beef Rendang, braised duck, and some sort of noodle dish. The rendang was impeccable with a thick rich sauce coating such tender pieces of beef that they flaked at the touch and melted in your mouth. The sauce had that full bodied mouth feel that lingers for minutes after each bite and a deep slightly smoky spiciness that was incredibly addictive.
The duck was tender and juicy while the noodles, while good, didn't really stand out in my mind. The roti canai was absolutely fanatastic and is one of those dishes I could eat at any time. Essentially, it's a bowl of curry sauce and freshly fried flatbread (very similar to the Indian version of the roti). The curry was hot and spicy with bold flavours and just enough weight to cling to the roti. The roti itself was fresh off the pan with glistening butter soaked layers just begging to be eating .How could I resist?
Drinks wise, they do boast a full bar with some interesting options. In particular, the 25ml serving of Johnnie Walker Blue Label for £10 caught my eye. Now this stuff is usually in bars for around £40-50 per 50ml serving so this was a relatively good price. Given that bottles cost around the £100 mark, I don't see them making much profit on this but I'm not complaining. The thing I will complain about is the amount of ice they put in my glass despite my request of just one ice cube. I had to dig that out in a hurry before it diluted it beyond tasting. Now it may just be that I didn't have it the right way (or it may be such an old bottle that the flavours had faded), but I don't see the allure of Johnnie Blue when a bottle of Glendronach or Laphroaig can be had for significantly less. But that's beside the point.
Thus, come for the food, enjoy yourself, but aim to get your drink on somewhere else. Pricewise, it was reasonable with food, drink and service coming to £27/person which ain't too bad given the location and the amount we ate.
Hrm. I tried the Fried Kway Tiow (I assume that's the dish Yee gan O suggested) and it was a little above average. I felt it lacking that extra punch to make the dish perfect. It tasted quite similar to pad kee mow (a thai dish)
The dish recieves some extra credit for having hearty sized prawns..and some crispy pork fat.
In other news, the restuarant was beautiful, and the price range seemed acceptable for the portion I was given.
I'd go back..just felt a little let down overall.
Being Malaysian, I'm always searching for the perfect char koay teow, especially in a foreign land! So when Giles Coren no less described Singapore Garden's char koay teow as the best in London, I had to trek north of the river to find out.
The restaurant is in an unassuming position in a parade of shops about 10 minutes walk from Swiss Cottage Tube station. It does draw many fans from afar though.
I was able to negotiate a single table in the early evening - be sure to book at weekends as they book up fast. Service was friendly and fast.
The char koay teow was very good and although there are now a whole flurry of Malaysian restaurants opening in Chinatown, this may still be the best in London. I shall have to return for the rest of the menu - there are the usual British Chinese restaurant staples but also a good range of south east Asian dishes, including many hawker dishes.
This restaurant serves dishes from a range of regions. What these have in common are that they are delicious and satisfying.
The dishes we had that were outstanding were Hinan Chicken- a 'poached' chicken served with rice cooked using some of the chicken stock, a ginger & spring onion/ chili dip- very authentic, though the chicken was more thoroughly cooked than it would have been in China. An oyster omlette- a dish found in many Chiu Chou restaurants- small oysters fried in an omelet, lots of spring onions (scallions) and white pepper.
The place was clean and parking wasn't a problem. It deserves its loyal local followers.
Amazing food, ambience and cocktails. I can't believe such a wonderful restaurant is buried behind all the houses in Swiss Cottage. By far the best restaurant in the area for this type of food.
The Lychee Martini is now a favourite cocktail of mine - in fact i've been back twice, just to have this cocktail!
Great Chili Crab my favourite dish from this restaurant. I am from Singapore and the Chili Crab served here is almost authentic! The rest of the dishes are have a quite a lot of Malaysia influence especially the vinegar pig's throttle. This makes me wonder why it is called Singapore Garden instead Malaysian Gardens.
Overall quite a pleasant place, the price is relatively reasonable but on the high side, about £30 per person for quite an amount of food. The interior is quite sleek and modern; looks pretty new as well.
Wow - this restaurant dishes out quality like its going out of fashion. They have it just right. The Waitresses wear traditional Singaporian/Malaysian dress, the decor is lush and the food just tastes out of this world.
I ordered the ginger chicken, aromatic duck and chilli beef and two beers. Total was £33 so this restaurant will hit your wallet if you're close to pay day. However the taste was divine; it tasted healthy, with a well balanced mix of spices.
Totally recommend this restaurant for taking your partner for a date or a family meal where you know you'll get good service in an authentic surrounding.
I'm kinda baffled by the onslaught of 3-star dirt-dishings lined up here in this Qype review section. Are you sure you guys have got the right restaurant? Singapore Gardens Chinese restaurant next to the big roundabout at the bottom of the hill behind the Swiss Cottage tube station? Are you sure?
Singapore Gardens are at the top of their game. Their food is quite simply top-notch. I've tried quite a few dishes, and all of them were 10/10. Have you tried the Sweet N Sour Pork? It's almost perfect. These guys have got their act sorted, from both the decor aspect, to more importantly, the food aspect. There's supposed to be some sort of Malaysian theme going on, but I've never really delved into that side of things. Check out their specialty menu, it's loaded with the stuff. I tend to just stick to my favourites, which are consistently of high quality, each and every time.
The only real problem I have with Singapore Gardens, is their appalling delivery service. They hire this independent delivery company (so they said on the phone) who charge a fee to deliver the food. A few years ago, they had a strict mileage radius rule which I think was a 1-mile catchment area, and anything outside this entailed the extortionate fee. Now the fee is standard, even within this catchment area. It really bumps up the final bill, but more so, relegates SG to the 'special occasions' category, when it ought to be in the 'anytime' category. We've never paid anything less than like £70 for a meal for two, and that's food for 1 1/2 persons, not 2. It's expensive.
Definitely one of the best Chinese restaurants in London; straight 5 across the board; a guaranteed good meal.
What a great Chinese. I spend my time telling friends that I dont eat chinese much because I dont know any, well here you are a very good chinese. We had dumplings, prawn toast, sizzling prawns in black bean, sweer & sour chicken and singapore noodles and chinese greens with garlic. Two beers and a water - once again the bill came in £70, cleearly not cheap. But very good - even Kudu liked it.
An upmarket Chinese restaurant. It was recently rennovated and according to reliable sources (my mum and dad) it looks much better now. Always jam-packed with clientele, which you won't be surprised about once you start sampling the dishes. Everything is good, so I can't recommend one thing in particular - you can't really go wrong. Although I wasn't a huge fan of their vegetarian spring rolls - not really stuffed full of vegetables and had a bit of a weird taste - so if spring rolls are an important part of your chinese culinary experience, go to Goldfish instead. Otherwise, Singapore Garden is wonderful.
Consistently the best Nonya and Chinese food and service in London. Service is always excellent; the staff are professionals and most have been working in the restaurant for many years. Malaysian specialties are outstanding and the wine quality and service is exemplary. My partner and I have brought numerous relatives and friends to Singapore Gardens over the years and we have never been disappointed!
So many restaurant choices in London! I was given a recommendation to Singapore Garden by a local resident and wasn't disappointed. For starters, I chose the Chiew Yim Spare Ribs, bite size ribs dry roasted rubbed in salt, garlic and spices. Salty and wonderful. My main dish was the wasabi prawns, and they came in a rich, slightly hot creamy sauce, with plenty of greens. Absolutely mouth-watering. My only complaint wasn't with the food but that I was put next to a very loud couple in an otherwise empty restaurant. They also seemed concerned that I would be finished in a timely manner - 90 minutes, which is plenty for a single diner. I'd heard they fill up around 8:00 p.m. so if you want to come without a recommendation, 5:00-6:00 p.m. is best.
The food itself was 2-2.5 stars, but the service, of Are you kidding me?? levels, brought the overall rating down to one star. We couldn't get a table at Atariya next door (fresh fish and always service with a smile), so we tried Singapore Garden instead. After several attempts to reach someone on the phone (have they ever considered call waiting??), we had to resort to booking through the website. Upon arrival, we were admonished by the hostess a role that would have been better served by mute troll than this woman that we should have made our reservation over the phone. We explained that we tried several times but the lines were busy. Repeat conversation, ad nauseum. Finally, after the 5th iteration, the hostess said we were lucky we got a table and Next time, try harder to make a reservation over the phone. Had it not been so cold and were we not being joined by two friends, we would have left at that point. I have never met with such a rude attitude by a host or hostess of a restaurant. We were a party of four, and we were surprised that there were at least five tables of four empty throughout the entire evening, which made the unjustified bashing we received by the hostess even more unjustified. The food was disappointing, with a mishmash of Oriental cuisines some Chinese and Thai dishes mixed in among the Singaporean and Malaysian. The chili crab came drowned in an overly sweet sauce, and the beef radang was dessicated. The curry sauce that came with the roti chanai was decent, but service aside, we would never return here again. The best parts of the restaurant were the white tablecloths/cleanliness and the toilets. Not worth a trip, and if you happen to be in the neighbourhood, consider Atariya instead. Even KFC at Swiss Cottage will save you facing a rude beatdown by front of house staff.
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