Originating and borrowing from a wide range of cultures, Mediterranean cuisine is one of the most diverse ones out there. The fact that it’s (sorta) healthy, thanks in no small part to the generous use of legumes, yet packed with flavours, is a big part of its allure. When the mood strikes for great food and a Mediterranean affair, here are the places to go to.
Sea-to-table dining is made possible at Alati, a Greek food haven that’s worth its salt. Their seafood selection is unbelievably fresh, flown in thrice a week directly from the Aegean sea. Our usual order includes their grilled greek octopus with balsamic onions and confit tomatoes and the grilled European seabass. They also serve a killer traditional Greek salad with feta cheese, capers, and kalamata olives drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.
This rooftop CBD restaurant may impress with their views, but it’s the food you’ll keep coming back for. From the standout Hokkaido scallop crudo served with curry oil, to some of the best meat and seafood mains in town, choices are aplenty here. The many (and we mean many) vegetarian and gluten-free options are just icing on the cake. Head out to the sky bar after dinner and soak in the night vibe.
Chef-Owner Bjorn Shen’s Artichoke prides itself as the least authentic (yes, you read that right) Middle Eastern restaurant around. Ironically, its food is fun, flavourful and utterly fabulous. Order funky dishes like the falafel-crumbed fried chicken or cuttlefish shawarma. Then wash your meal down with a drink from their sizeable list.
This Tiong Bahru establishment serving authentic Greek cuisine has a loyal following. From savoury appetisers and dips to meat and seafood platters plus premium specialities, Bakalaki never disappoints. Many of the ingredients used and products (like their fragrant and smooth olive oil) are imported directly from Greece.
Not a fan of Greek food? A trip to Blu Kouzina might change your mind. Nestled amongst Dempsey Hill’s enclave of F&B establishments, the family-owned restaurant whips up tasty plates of souvlaki, mousaka and keftedes, prepared with their organic extra virgin olive oil from Messinia, Greece. Don’t miss out on their chicken, beef, or lamb kebabs and staple mezedes like the dolmades with rice, dill, mint and tzatziki. lamb kebab
This Istanbul-themed eatery serves an unconventional mix of kebabs and cocktails, earmarked with an opulent Middle-East-meets-modern-hipster vibe. The flavourful mezze and salads are worth trying, as are their melt-in-your-mouth meat dishes like the Lamb Shoulder with chilli, spiced molasses and sumac.
At Pistachio, what you’ll find are healthier and more nutritious versions of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean food, influenced by the head chef’s time at Four Seasons Resort Maldives. Have flavoursome yet guilt-free options like the Greek Style Beef Burger that features a handmade beef patty with Greek Kasseri cheese, hummus, and plenty of greens; or the Turkish Platter, that offers grilled beef kebab with fragrant saffron rice.
Now with four branches, this Mediterranean food place serves a variety of kebabs, dips, grills and stews, packed with healthful ingredients like sumac berries, yoghurt, and saffron. Head down around noon to enjoy a Gourmet Lunch Buffet at the low price of $15.
Headed by Iranian-born Executive Chef Hamid Hosseini, this cosy eatery presents authentic Persian cuisine – savoury kebabs, fragrant rice dishes and charcoal-grilled meats, highlighted with traditional Middle Eastern spices. Dine outdoors by the river for a more romantic evening.
The Butcher’s Wife is a gluten-free bistro with no compromise on taste. Its modern European-inspired menu is filled with fantastic items like their Crispy Pig’s Ears, a lettuce wrap with piquillo peppers, pickled kohlrabi and sriracha mayo. Drinks and desserts are 100 percent gluten-free as well, so feel free to indulge.
A truly hellenic dining experience awaits here, thanks to good use of traditional ingredients sourced directly from Greek suppliers. Go for the Greek Moussaka ($22) that’s a much lighter version of the classic eggplant casserole, which actually makes it more appealing and easier to stomach. The Lamb Kleftiko ($36) is also a good choice, as generous and tender lamb chunks are marinated and slow-roasted for hours before being served. Besides, the good view of the Singapore River doesn’t hurt either.