Opened in 2015 at Pandan Gardens, Ministry Of Ribs is a neighbourhood American BBQ restaurant that sees the revered Lee family amongst its regulars.
Through the years, owner and chef Kleiser Lee has built Ministry Of Ribs fame up one rib at a time — slowly gaining a loyal following of regulars, hooked onto the meat served here like bees to honey.
He attributes his success with ribs to his fastidious character. Going through a meticulous process of sorting out the meat by size, and adjusting the perfect duration of smoking the meat.
The decor is a fuss-free with simple furnishing and a couple of posters flanking the sides of the walls. Enough about the restaurant’s details, let’s get right into the food!
Before we get started on the meats, we decided to have a plate of Sauteed Mushrooms ($9.90). The oyster mushroom slices were powdered with garlic and truffle oil.
Now, this truly whets a man’s appetite! The mushrooms had an aromatic garlic flavour but still had its distinct earthy taste, I also liked that it had a faint charred taste from being sauteed.
We then had a plate of Iberico Pork Ribeye Steak 200g ($29.90). Served with three slaps of pork, the plate also came with some greens and mash potatoes on the side.
For the uninitiated, Iberian pigs are raised solely on acorns, which causes the meat to be delicate, nutty, and a boast a melt-in-your-mouth marbling.
In addition, 50% of the fatty content in the meat is of healthy unsaturated fat, which is believed to help reduce bad cholesterol whilst raising the good kind. Which means you don’t have to feel bad stuffing yourself silly with this!
Don’t be fooled by how dry and lean the meat look, in fact, it’s juicy beyond belief. The meat is tender, and with a good amount of flavour from the fat.
Not wanting to waste a single drop of this homemade Mushroom Sauce, I poured it over the meat. The sauce was rich and creamy, I also liked how there were chunks of mushrooms inside for an added texture.
$20 may seem too steep of a price to pay for a plate of Aust Angus Ribeye Steak 200g, but it was quickly justified by its taste — I appreciated that the seasoning of the steak wasn’t too overwhelming, which allowed the natural taste of the steak to shine more prominently.
The sides of sides of pasta salad and potato salad were kept simple, without any complex piquant flavours so as to not steal the spotlight from the steak.
It was cooked medium rare, just look at the juicy red meat, does it not look absolutely tantalising?
The meat has a smoky taste that has permeated into it, and the fat well-distributed. I liked that it was a little chewy as more juice seems to ooze out with each bite
Finally! This is what we’ve made the pilgrimage to Ministry Of Ribs for. Kleiser decided to pull out the big boys, serving us a glorious Iberico Ribs Platter ($100).
We’ve got two racks of spare ribs, Honey Rum Ribs 350g ($30.90) and Spicy Barbecue Mala Ribs 350g ($30.90), a mountain of onion rings, potato wedges and twister fries, and German Sausages in the back. The portions could very well feed a large family of six.
This is is by far one of the best ribs I’ve come across in my life. It was soft enough to cut through like butter, and the marinade on the Spicy Barbecue Mala Ribs was rich with a good amount of spice, causing each chunk of meat to be a burst of flavour.
When eating ribs, you have to embrace the messiness — go on and eat them the right way, with your hands, of course.
The meat fell right of the bones, and saying the meat was tender would be an understatement, it immediately melted in my mouth.
This piece I pried from the Honey Rum Ribs tasted so good, I might have teared up a little. Not only was the exterior stickily sweet, the meat inside was permeated with sweetness throughout. If you’re looking for a rich, full-bodied rib, this is where you’ll find it.
To be honest, I thought Ministry Of Ribs was just another restaurant boasting groundless claims, but the moment those ribs landed on my table, I knew that this one was different.
The food here is definitely comparable to higher-end restaurants. Plus, the prices here are an absolute steal. I assure you, Ministry Of Ribs is a gem worth travelling to the West for.
Expected Damage: $20 – $80 per pax