These days, “sustainable dining” isn’t just a buzzword spouted by a niche of eco-warriors.
It has officially entered the mainstream with many restaurants in Singapore rising to the occasion. The term refers to ethical practices that show care for the environment and reduce the overall carbon footprint. It includes using local and/or organic produce, providing meat-free options, having on-site gardens and choosing sustainable sources for meat, fish and eggs.
Here are 10 places in Singapore where you can enjoy delicious dining, minus the guilt.
One of the first in Singapore to push the farm-to-table concept in Singapore and focus on local farming, there’s plenty to do here besides eat. You can also explore the fruit and vegetable orchards or take part in gardening workshops. The focus is on locally sourced ingredients and seasonal and innovative dishes, such as Cauliflower Wings (a crowd favourite) and Local Pekin Duck Rillette (served cold with homemade and homegrown roselle jam, red leaf hibiscus and sourdough crisps). If that’s not enough, the restaurant curates and hosts local farmers to showcase their produce to guests, who can then enjoy these freshly harvested ingredients and learn more about the grow-your-own-food movement.
130E Minden Rd., 248819; 6471 0306; www.openfarmcommunity.com
This modern Chinese restaurant in the gorgeous Six Senses Duxton is beautifully decorated in black, gold and yellow, and with – you guessed it – yellow pots of various sizes and designs, too. Decor aside, it is the restaurant’s sustainability efforts that deserve mention. Yellow Pot works closely with local farmers and producers committed to responsible sourcing and sustainable practices, and this can be seen in its dishes. For example, you can order items such as Steamed Kühlbarra Barramundi and Braised Tiger Prawn Crispy Noodle. Unhealthy additives such as flavour enhancers, gluten and sugar are largely avoided as well.
83 Duxton Rd., Six Senses Duxton, 089540; 6914 1420; www.sixsenses.com/en/hotels/ duxton/dining/yellow-pot-restaurant
Looking at the name of this restaurant, it’s no surprise that the “origin” of the dishes is the focus here. What you’ll find: fresh, farm-to-table ingredients with an emphasis on responsible sourcing. This includes a sustainable beef selection including grass- and grain-fed, pure-, cross- and full-blooded Angus and wagyu beef from Australia and Ireland, as well as snow-aged wagyu beef from Niigata, Japan. When it comes to seafood, the menu features line-caught sustainable seafood from marine-certified coasts – a certification given by the MSC – in Indonesia, the Philippines and New Zealand.
22 Orange Grove Rd., Shangri-La Hotel, Tower Wing, Lobby Level, 258350; 6213 4595; www.shangri-la.com/singapore/shangrila/dining/restaurants/origin-grill
Few people realise that the restaurants here – mezza9, Oasis and StraitsKitchen – all serve seafood with certifications from the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) or Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC). It also uses herbs from the hotel’s organic garden, and 70 percent of greens are sourced from the Cameron Highlands and farmers in SG. Plus, it opts for products such as grass-fed cows, free-range chickens and cage-free eggs. Sample plantbased options at mezza9 such as the Beyond Burger or the JUST Egg at Oasis. Grand Hyatt was actually the first hotel in Singapore to install (in 2016) a waste-management plant.
10 Scotts Rd., 228211; 6738 1234; www.hyatt.com/en-US/hotel/singapore/grand-hyatt-singapore/sinrs/dining
On the second level of The Summerhouse complex (the ground floor houses Wildseed Cafe & Bar, just SYK) sits this farm-to-table concept restaurant located in a unique countryside location. Here, every dish utilises harvests from the garden, whether as herbs or garnishes. The restaurant also works closely with a farming collective of growers, producers and kelongs (wooden offshore platforms for fishing or fish farming) to ensure value-added sustainability. Fun fact: On The Summerhouse’s dinner menu and for selected brunch menu items, it shares which farms key components of each dish come from – leaving diners with a little food for thought.
3 Park Ln., Seletar Aerospace Park, Level 2, 798387; 6262 1063; www.thesummerhouse.sg
Benefitting from the edible garden at sister estab The Summerhouse, Stellar can take its pick of fresh herbs and other organic ingredients to infuse its seasonal menus focused on progressive Australian cuisine. The fine-dining restaurant, perched nearly 300 metres above sea level, uses a local seafood supplier and many MSC-certified sustainable seafoods. It takes care in where it sources its proteins, too, such as with the Spanish Iberico pork used in its A Saucy Pig (shown), which is from Cinco Jotas, a 130-year-old artisanal producer of free-range ham. Insider tip: Stellar’s Chef de Cuisine Isaac Henry is set to unveil a vegetarian menu in early 2020.
Level 62, 1 Raffles Pl., 048616; 3138 8453; www.stellarrestaurant.sg
This Central Business District resto and rooftop bar’s views aren’t the only things that are impressive. Its commitment to sustainability – from the menu to the restaurant’s design – is laudable as well. A few examples: The Tulip umbrellas at the outdoor terrace bar allow rainwater to drain into the ground to be recycled within the building. And, the menu of seasonal cuisine, inspired by the Mediterranean, sees Artemis working with partners to obtain the world’s finest organic produce and responsibly sourced seafood, meats and eggs; vegetables from France, cod from Scotland and more.
138 Market St., CapitaGreen Rooftop, Level 40, 048946; 6635 8677; www.artemisgrill.com.sg
This Michelin-starred restaurant has already made a name for itself for its “new Singaporean; dining experience. But, few realise how big an advocate chef-owner LG Han is of sustainable food practices. A majority of the menu – 80 percent, to be exact – is from and around Singapore through a close relationship with local farmers, fishermen and fishery ports. This results in dishes such as Claypot “Ang Moh” Chicken Rice (a Chicken Rice Dumpling with skin made of home milled rice flour and braised chicken paired with grandma’s chili sauce), which uses chickens from Toh Thye San farm and mushrooms from Kin Yan agrotech farm, and Local Wild Caught Crab with Sustenir Farm Strawberry, which uses crabs from Ah Hua Kelong, strawberries grown in Singapore by Sustenir Agriculture and eggs from The Freedom Range Co.
#02-23, Esplanade Mall, 8 Raffles Ave., 039802; 6223 4098; www.labyrinth.com.sg
This popular cafe’s all-day brunch menu features dishes made with upcycled ingredients that would otherwise be discarded, and re-imagining them as part of a dish. Not only does this reduce food wastage, it also takes culinary creativity to the next level. Dishes include the Salmon Skin Chips, which uses salmon offcuts as well as trimmings from the cafe’s homemade coffee smoked salmon, and the Pork and Broccoli dish, which gives the side serving of broccoli stems a new lease of life, by softening, steaming then slow-roasting them. And because you know them for their coffee as much as their grub, there’s the Strangers Reunion Coffee Smoked Salmon on Toast, featuring house-cured salmon that’s cold-smoked with spent coffee grounds.
33/35 Kampong Bahru Rd., 169355; 6222 4869; www.strangersreunion.com
The mantra here is “Real Food, Full of Natural Flavours”, and the menu includes gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian and raw food options. Beyond its commitment to serve healthy food, it extends a commitment to the local communities and the environment that supports it. For example, 60 percent of seafood served here is sustainably sourced and 50 percent of the menu items use locally and sustainably sourced high-quality ingredients. Also, all chicken and eggs used are certified organic and free-range and there’s an on-site vertical garden, which provides some of the leafy vegetables for its dishes. Offerings include dedicated farm-to-table specialties such as sustainably sourced Nonya-Style New Zealand Rockling Fish (spicy sour tomato and pineapple gravy, organic okra and brown rice) as well as plant-based dishes in partnership with Impossible Foods.
Level 2, Hilton Singapore, 581 Orchard Road, 238883; 6730 3397; www3.hilton.com/en/hotels/singapore/hilton-singapore-SINHITW/dining/verde-kitchen.html
By Balvinder Sandhu, April 2019 / Updated in The Finder, Issue 302, March 2020 / Photos: Courtesy of restaurants or Facebook pages