A freelance writer and bargain hunter with wanderlust, recently moved to Perth from Brisbane.
Published January 7th 2013
Fiery taste of Singaporean cuisine
If you have had a tiring day shopping along Queen Street Mall with hunger pangs starting to strike, fear not as you are spoilt for food choices in the middle of the CBD. Take your pick from Asian, Australian, Mediterranean and Italian; Brisbane City has plenty of Korean restaurants, but not too many Singaporean or Malaysian dining places. When I spotted Little Singapore on Charlotte Street, I wanted to give it a try.
It is located in a small area but tastefully decorated with faded old, historical pictures of 'Old Singapore' on the walls and comfy white seats to relax on against the walls. The tables are marble shaped with wooden stands in the traditional 'Kopitiam' style (literally translated to coffee shop), adding to the Singaporean theme. Singaporean food has tasty and fiery flavours with a huge Malaysian influence and the ethnic diversity influence from Portugal, China, Indonesia and Sri Lanka to name a few.
Singapore's food obsession started from this diverse melting pot, making eating almost a national sport. Hawker stalls or food stalls are very popular in Singapore and Little Singapore has tried to bring the potpourri of variety to Brisbane.
Amongst their popular dishes are the roti canai (an Indian inspired flat-bread which is tossed and cooked in front of you), nasi lemak (coconut rice with a selection of curries, a prawn-paste type of sauce called sambal and fried anchovies), curry laksa (a curry egg noodle soup),
Little Singapore has an open concept, so that you are able to see the chefs at work, the tossing of the roti canai and other passer-bys as they walk past to take a curious glimpse at the menu and décor before deciding to give the place a try. There is a free selection of condiments if you like your food even spicier than what is served.
I ordered the roti canai with curry chicken and I was pleased with the meal, especially the size. I could only finish one of my rotis (they serve two) as the complements which included acar (salty and spicy vegetables), sweet curry potato dahl, Indian yoghurt (Raita) and spicy curry chicken were very filling. My dining partner ordered a curry laksa which looked good but not spicy enough. I guess that's where the extra condiments come in. Make sure you order a popular Singaporean dish as some of the other dishes may be a little hit and miss. My second dining partner was not particular pleased with her duck noodle soup.
They have nice milk teas available, not the extremely sweet powdery kind in some establishments but a subtle version. I ordered the hazelnut milk tea and I could actually taste the tea flavour which was what I preferred.
If you have South East Asian roots or have spent a lot of time travelling in South East Asia and have a craving for Malaysian or Singaporean cuisine, Little Singapore can satisfy your tastebuds. It is authentic enough to enjoy without needing to travel that great distance.
In 2010, Little Singapore Restaurant Group was recognised by Restaurant & Catering Queensland as the winner of the prestigious 'Best Asian Restaurant (Malaysian)'. If you don't live near the city, the Little Singapore Restaurant actually originated from Sunnybank at Sunnybank Marketplace. Opening hours are from Monday to Sunday, 11am to 10pm and 10.30pm on Fridays and Saturdays so if you have a craving for dessert you can stop by at Little Singapore as well at 42 Charlotte St. Phone: 07 3211 1177