Perched on the 11th floor of Pico Creative Centre, 5 Little Monkeys Café offers a panoramic view of the Kallang area and Singapore Sports Hub. The café occupies a huge area, half of an entire storey, including an al fresco section, great for corporate events. A private function room, where you can see fireworks on National Day, is available at $80 an hour. If you stand at the exact spot at the entrance of the café, you can see 5 little monkeys at different corners, drawn by artist Jana de Villiers.
Behind the artwork, there is a white wall for event screenings.
Chef Patrick Goh, with 45 years of experience including at Holiday Inn, presents a menu that pleases both the Western and Asian palates at a really, really affordable price. For instance, egg benedict ($6.80) is 35% the price at other cafes. Besides affordability, another plus point is no pork is used in the kitchen.
From the Western side, the gourmet hamburger ($11.80) has patty that is minced by hand, and has a piquant, appetizing marinade, that William loves. The fish & chips ($9.80) is beautiful because of basa fish. This fish lives in a farm that mixes fresh and seawater, so it doesn’t have the muddy taste of freshwater fishes.
What Chef Goh is really good at is the Asian and Peranakan dishes. The Hainanese chicken chop rice ($8.80) has a layer of delicious and addictive fat but isn’t greasy. Different from other places, the ayam buah keluak ($6.50, below) has black nuts stuffed with chicken, instead of the usual bean paste.
His two best Peranakan dishes are indubitably Nyonya assam pedas fish ($6.50, above), that has a fantastic secret blend of spice and tamarind, and sambal prawn with petai ($6.50, below). Both dishes go exceedingly well with rice.
The coffee ($3.50-$6) is no afterthought. Initially, the owners wanted to open just a coffee-and-cake café, so they did lots of research on coffee. Their house blend is made from 4 different types of beans, including Columbian and Brazilian. It is smooth, not bitter, with a medium acidity, which would suit most people.
Besides a good view, and comfortable space, the selling point of 5 Little Monkeys is its price point. At this price and with the extensive menu, lunch, including a drink, can cost around $10, which means people working nearby can come here 2 or 3 times a week without feeling broke or sian with the food.
5 Little Monkeys Cafe
20 Kallang Avenue, #11-00 Pico Creative Centre, Singapore 339411
T: +65 8533 9168
Written by A. Nathanael Ho.
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