The popular stretch of bars and restaurants lining Club Street make the area one of the top hot spots around Singapore for enjoying some good food and drinks… lots of drinks. However, with so many great options and enticing street tables one can forget to look up.
Among the crowds and noise of Club Street proper sits a tiny rooftop gem, FRY Rooftop Bistro & Bar. If you survive the steep climb of what seems like an infinite number of stairs getting to the top, FRY provides excellent views of Club Street, Ann Siang Hill and the surrounding areas, as well as a more private, chilled out environment set atop the madness below.
FRY Rooftop Bistro & Bar is a relatively small space with only a handful of proper tables and wrap-around counter seating, all set within the open air of the roof deck. FRY does have a small indoor studio space on the third level, but it is reserved for private events.
The vibe of the space is very relaxed with a slight vintage sentiment, but is set up to show its patrons a good time. I love the small space. It is a welcome departure from the sprawling, more commercialized rooftop bars you often find at the bigger hotels and the view is just as enjoyable.
Enough talk about the landscape, over to Sally for the important stuff – a review of FRY’s food and beverage offerings…
Sunset Cooler ($12)
Our fruity mocktail comprised of cranberry, orange and lime juice topped up with ginger ale. The ginger was the prominent flavour ensuring this wasn’t overly sweet. It was super refreshing and you’d never know it didn’t contain any alcohol.
This short drink was a nod towards Thailand and contained ginger, lemongrass and gin. It actually reminded me a little of a long island iced tea. The ginger was a little too overpowering for my taste, I prefer my gin based drinks to be fresh and clean. Whilst I finished this one, I’m not sure I would have ordered another.
Auntie Ang’s wings ($16)
These wings are a house favourite and I can understand why. The batter was crisp and dry with no sign of any grease. The chicken inside delivered two surprises. Firstly, there was actually quite a lot of it. My biggest pet peeve is being served a skinny chicken wing. These, however, were positively obese. Secondly, the meat was so moist it was falling off the bone. We scoffed the lot #sorrynotsorry.
The belachan dip was H O T. Whilst I approved the heat level, I’m generally not a fan of the acerbic aftertaste of this dip. The wings were so good anyway they didn’t need an accompaniment.
Pig trotter bee hoon with shiitake mushroom and roasted chestnuts ($14)
This giant bowl of noodles was actually a chef special that rotates daily. You can check their Facebook page to see whats currently on the menu, or just roll up for a lucky dip.
Everything on the plate was cooked well, the meat had been braised slowly so was nice and tender, the vegetables had a crisp bite to them, and chestnuts and mushrooms added some contrasting textures. I would have liked a little more seasoning to bring it all together, but aside from that it’s a great value hearty meal. The spicy belachan made another appearance here. I refrained from adding it to the dish as I found it to be so overpowering it masked the more subtle flavours that were present.
Kimchi with pork belly mac & cheese ($24)
As a self proclaimed mac & cheese aficionado, I was delighted to spot not one, but four varieties of mac & cheese on the menu. Having never heard of kimchi being used in this dish before, naturally that is what we opted for.
Served with a fried egg on top, this mac & cheese was a revelation. Cheddar and parmesan were used in the sauce to coat the pasta, whilst a nice thick layer of mozzarella coated the top. The kimchi added a welcome sour tang which cut through the rich cheese and made it less cloying to eat. Whilst I didn’t actually spot any pork belly, I didn’t realise until after we’d demolished the entire plate. It didn’t need it though as the kimchi was a welcome solo addition. What a great invention – though it totally needs to be renamed as ‘Mac & Kimcheese’.
Salted egg fries ($16)
I’m a fan of salted egg so it was great to see this twist on everyone’s favourite bar snack. Though at $16 a pop, in my book this is a pretty expensive bowl of fries. The sweetness of the salted egg was good, though again it was lacking just that little bit of seasoning. Add in some salt and these would have been far more addictive. Eat them quick however, the fries were getting a little too soggy for my liking as we saved them to the end.
FRY is a nice spot for both a casual drink after work, or a raging birthday party on the weekend. In my opinion the view and drinks are the primary driving forcing bringing patrons to FRY, while the food – although tasty – is secondary. The cocktails and beers are priced a little higher than your average bar, but rooftop locations often are more expensive.
If you are looking to mix things up, or are entertaining an out of town guest, FRY is an excellent spot to grab and drink and some small bites while enjoying an evening out on the town. I would return for a drink or two and check out more of their varied Western-Asain fusion menu. With the space being so small, I can image you would want to head there early to ensure yourself a table on the weekend.
Expected Damage: $25 – $40 per / pax