Last Updated: March 8, 2020
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not the most well-versed in Middle Eastern cuisine. But when I got the opportunity to try out the new brunch and booze menus from Fat Prince, how could I say no?
Just a five-minute stroll away from Tanjong Pagar MRT station, this buzzy Middle Eastern restaurant has seen its share of changes in recent years.
First opened in 2016, the folks behind Neon Pigeon brought us this opulent Istanbul-themed restaurant. For the high rollers, The Ottomani was a cosy hideout serving up the best of the region with dishes that lean closer to fine dining.
But that’s old news. With the dawn of a decade, Fat Prince has taken over the space, bringing the seating up to a comfortable 90 diners. Do keep a lookout for The Ottomani—it’s looking for a new venue to settle in.
Not much has changed, décor-wise. The plush couches and candlelight glow still fill the space, though lone diners and small groups can hop up to perch at the dining counter. This lovely mosaic countertop brings together turquoise and red Turkish tiles, and offers an unobstructed view of the open kitchen.
And of course, the Saturday brunch menu is one of the highlights of the revamped Fat Prince.
Don’t expect your basic brunch items like avocado toast or eggs Benedict. Fat Prince brings us modern Middle Eastern dishes tweaked for the Singaporean palate, with the option of a la carte items, a course menu called the Royal Brunch (S$49++), and free-flow booze for S$59++.
For fuss-free dining, the course menu presents you with a mimosa, a brunch special, dips, and dessert. And the playful, adventurous cocktail selection (they call it ‘koktails’) practically demands that you order some drinks to go along with your meal.
Let’s take a look at what Fat Prince has to offer.
We started our Saturday brunch with the Cashew Hummus (S$10++), which came with Turkish flatbread that’s baked to soft, fluffy perfection. Fat Prince uses roasted cashews to minimise the unpleasant “raw” aftertaste, and tops the hummus with even more chopped nuts.
I couldn’t stop myself from mopping up every last bit of this super creamy hummus with the flatbread—it was that good.
For a more refreshing starter, the Cured Salmon Crudo (S$18++) has the freshness of sashimi, with lovely sweet and tart notes from the pomegranate molasses. The smoked date puree added sticky, smoky sweetness (just a hint, mind you) to complete this starter.
Meat lovers, Fat Prince hasn’t forgotten about you. The hand-rolled Lamb Meatballs (S$18++) actually contain minced chicken too, bringing the gamey flavour down a notch.
Dip the meatballs in the chermoula (Middle Eastern relish made from cumin, garlic, coriander oil, lemon juice and salt) for a whole new dimension to the dish. It reminded me of pesto, but packed way more flavour. The arugula on the side adds some greens to the mix.
Keep in mind that the previous three dishes are actually starters, and the four mains we tried are pretty heavy.
The Fatteh Breakfast (S$24++) is a Middle Eastern twist on the usual brunch classics. Poached eggs with perfectly runny yolks are served on a bed of baby spinach and avocado slices, with toasted pita and halloumi on the side.
This is certainly lighter than most Middle Eastern dishes, though, for someone like me who generally skips breakfast, this was more substantial than I expected. The poached eggs were well-cooked and delicious, and the toasted pita was mouth-watering (as expected).
However, overall, the Fatteh Breakfast just seemed to lack the oomph needed to elevate a brunch item from decent to stunning.
The Menemen (S$28++) was another heavier brunch option—dollops of labneh (Greek yoghurt) dotted the thick spiced tomato sauce base, and toasted pita was served on the side. This dish also came with broken eggs, and cherry tomatoes scattered across it.
There’s also the option of either lamb or halloumi to go with this tangy brunch dish, though both would go well with the spiced tomato sauce base.
I found the Shashuka Leek & Kale (S$20++) to be my favourite main so far. Baked eggs, toasted pita, dukkah (Egyptian condiment that’s a mix of herbs, nuts and spices), leek and kale ragout make up this healthy and yummy brunch dish.
Earthy and bold, the dukkah really helped to ground the lighter, herbaceous leek and kale elements. Again, the toasted pita was good down to the last crumb, and I used it to mop up the yolks.
For something truly hearty to fill your belly, the Half Fried Chicken (S$24++) will do the trick. Brined overnight with herbs and spices, the chicken then goes through a two-step process of sous-vide then flash-frying. Fat Prince ensures that the chicken meat is tender as can be, while the skin turns crispy.
The secret is in the batter too, which is made from spiced flour for that additional kick of flavour. Savour the juicy chicken with the sauces and accompanying sides (spiced yoghurt, chermoula and pickled kohlrabi, also known as German turnip).
The spices are flown in from Turkey every three months, and the chicken is reared free-range, and fed with grain—you know you’ll be assured of quality here.
We’re at my favourite part of the meal: dessert!
Fat Prince has even added a twist to the usual French toast—the Spiced Berry French Toast (S$21++) may look ordinary, but it’s a satisfying end to brunch.
Fluffy, with crispy edges, the brioche French toast was filled with overflowing tart, spiced berry jam. Pomegranate seeds sprinkled over the dish also added a slightly sour, astringent crunch with a sweet finish.
Sliced length-wise, the caramelised bananas were sinfully good—a faint hint of smoke and the familiar stickiness made for a lovely mouthful.
But the most interesting part of the dessert is the ice cream. Made with preserved lemons that Fat Prince does in-house, this creamy, citrusy ice cream held an edge of salt as well. The lemons are preserved in a half-salt, half-sugar mixture, and the rinds are used to make the ice cream.
Brunch isn’t complete without booze, so try a tipple or two from Fat Prince’s charming ‘koktail’ programme.
The signature Morning Star (S$20++) is a twist on the ever-popular Aperol Spritz. Aperol, prosecco, ginger beer and grapefruit come together to create a citrus-forward drink with a slightly bitter finish. It’s not too biting, so it retained that refreshing quality.
A popular favourite, the Gimlet 100 (S$20++) brings to mind sipping a cold drink while lazing in the summer breeze. Super refreshing and light on the palate, it had a substantial body from yellow chartreuse while fresh cucumbers mellow out the herbal notes.
Fat Prince offers two negroni drinks: Negroni Blanc (S$22++) and Negroni Rouge (S$22++). Both are made with Beefeater Gin, but the Negroni Rouge packed a much stronger, spicier punch.
Dill, Mancino Secco white vermouth, and gentianne (distilled alcohol made with gentian roots) make up the rest of the Negroni Blanc. Delightfully leafy and herbaceous, this was light on the palate with a lingering citrus fragrance.
My personal preference is for the Negroni Rouge, which comes a little sweeter than usual negroni cocktails, but gets a slight kick from the peppercorn. The Mancino Rosso red vermouth added notes of vanilla, toasted wood, juniper and orange for a darker counterpart to the Negroni Blanc.
Start your weekend right with a feast of royal proportions; Fat Prince has certainly come up with a modern Middle Eastern dining experience that’s unforgettable, albeit a tad pricey. I’m still dreaming of going back for the Cashew Hummus sometime soon.
Maybe skip the Fatteh Breakfast and share the Fried Half Chicken instead—and save some of that stomach space for the Spiced Berry French Toast!
Expected Damage: S$50 – S$70 per pax
Price: $ $
Our Rating: 4 / 5
48 Peck Seah Street, Singapore 079317
48 Peck Seah Street, Singapore 079317