Located along Sultan Road, FOMO has the same integrated food and pub concept as the indie hit Timbre+ in one-north.
I dropped by recently, braving the lunch crowds to try out Bellyphant. Judging by the snaking queue, Bellyphant has quickly garnered a reputation with the office crowd for serving up some pretty darn good Thai fusion food.
Bellyphant fits right into the overall concept with its fusion cuisine with some influence from traditional Thai cuisine.
We started off with the Thai Green Curry Chicken Burger (S$10.90). The chicken fillet was certainly tender, juicy within yet delightfully crispy on the outside. However, the thing that I was most excited to try out was the green curry sauce.
Bellyphant certainly didn’t let me down on this one. I could taste fresh coriander, basil and kaffir leaves, which created an earthy, herby base.
Shrimp paste and lemongrass are amongst other ingredients added to form a mildly spicy, subtly sweet and savoury, creamy sauce. Definitely something to try out!
The Thai Green Curry Burger (S$10.90) came sandwiched between two black sesame buns. The visual contrast between the black buns and the green sauce certainly grabbed my attention.
While it might make for an extremely Instagrammable burger, I felt that the black buns, while decently warm and fluffy, added no special value to the overall eating experience. In fact, they were a little too dry for my liking.
The Panang Red Curry Beef Burger (S$11.90) was the other speciality item we tried. I initially thought it was “Penang” and not “Panang” curry, so I’m glad to share with you a nugget of information learnt from the chef — Panang curry is a special variant of Thai red curry that features ground peanuts.
The beef was a tad overcooked, ending up slightly juicy in the centre but a little crumbly towards the exterior. But the highlight of this dish, just like the previous specialty item, was the spicy Panang curry sauce.
Most traditional recipes call for up to 20 red chillies to be added for a nice red colour. However, the chef at Bellyphant decided to reduce this number in exchange for chilli powder. This further enhanced the vibrance of the curry, as well as created a richer, deeper taste.
The Panang curry sauce was decadent and spicy, with some crunch from the peanuts. I could taste a hint of coconut cream in the sauce, which added a rich, creamy texture. The sauce paired really nicely with the beef patty, without overwhelming the full-bodied, smoky and gamy beef flavours.
Both burgers came with a side of fried banana chips. I appreciated the unique twist that kept in mind the Thai roots of the dish, however, the banana chips themselves were dry and lacked flavour.
Luckily, dipping sauces corresponding to the burger dishes’ curries were provided so you can experiment with different combinations.
We also tried the Massaman Vegetarian Curry (S$7.90). Don’t be deceived by the mild orange colour of the curry as we were — this could potentially be the most complex dish on the menu in terms of taste!
The Massaman Vegetarian Curry (S$7.90) was complex, aromatic and rich, as most Thai curries are. Combining whole dried red chilis, cloves, white pepper, galangal, lemongrass, coriander and cumin, the chef created a universe of flavours in a bowl that blew my mind.
The Massaman Vegetarian Curry had a robust flavour profile, despite not having any meat.
Thick and stew-like, the initially spicy kick dissipates to develop into a subtle sweetness. The nutty, toasted flavours of cumin and spicy, gingery galangal hit me first. I then tasted light citrusy and minty notes from the lemongrass.
This item is definitely one that you simply should not skip!
We were initially attracted to Bellyphant because of the super-Instagrammable and unique Thai curry burgers. I fell in love with the Massaman Vegetarian Curry for its depth of flavour, despite being such a deceptively simple and unassuming dish.
Bellyphant serves up delightful Thai fusion food, and equally delicious traditional Thai curries. If you’re ever in the area and craving some spice, you won’t regret dropping by!
Expected Damage: S$10 – S$15 per pax
Our Rating: 4 / 5
38 Sultan Gate, FOMO, Singapore 198486
38 Sultan Gate, FOMO, Singapore 198486