Last Updated: April 13, 2016
With three-years of history, Siam Square Mookata is hardly a new face in the rampant Mookata scene in Singapore. Mookata enthusiasts might recall Siam Square’s first outlet at Havelock Road, but little know of the passion and dedication that went into its making.
Mr Keith Lee, owner of the Siam Square chain, is a seasoned member of the F&B industry. Passionate about his brand, he told us that the idea to open a Mookata business in Singapore came about after his six-month stint in Thailand.
Several unsuccessful predecessors (including a restaurant in Thailand) and much research and development later, Siam Square Mookata was born.
Aptly located in Golden Mile Tower, Singapore’s own ‘Little Thailand’, this Mookata joint is simple and unembellished. But don’t let that throw you off what really matters here.
Where Siam Square may lag behind in aesthetics, it quickly makes up for in substance, being equipped with Teflon pans. The non-stick pans make for a cleaner and hassle-free meal, reducing the need for excess oil and doing away with icky black carbon bits.
Seth: You no longer have the problem of burnt meats sticking to your grill, which really annoys me.
Besides that, the Siam Square chain prides itself in its three secret recipe chilli sauces: one to be paired with seafood, another with meat, and a sweeter, less spicy one for those not accustomed to the heat.
I found their seafood chilli to be my favourite. With lime juice and chopped coriander, it struck a good balance of spice, fragrance and sourness that complemented the lighter flavours of squid and cuttlefish. I enjoyed it very much, even though I had to down a whole Thai milk tea afterward to counter the heat.
The meat chilli was also delicious. It was slightly sweet, with a robust garlic flavour that went well with the rich slices of pork belly that we had, though the strength of the garlic did get a tad overwhelming.
What sets Siam Square apart from other similar establishments is its unique hawker slant, where ingredients come in small-plate servings rather than in fixed sets. In fact, Keith believes his is the first Mookata place in Singapore to introduce such a concept.
With prices starting as low as $1.80 per plate, the result is an affordable Mookata meal that just about anybody can enjoy.
We sampled a variety of ingredients, from old favourites such as Pork Belly ($1.80), Sliced Beef ($2.80) and Squid ($2.80) to more premium items like Scallops ($3.80) served either grilled on the hotplate or boiled in a savoury broth.
Besides common Mookata fare, I liked that Siam Square’s menu was quite extensive, comprising innovative ingredients such as Smoked Duck ($2.80) to cater to differing tastes.
At Siam Square, meats are marinated according to your preference, in either black pepper or teriyaki sauce. The plates of meat we ordered were tender and well-seasoned.
The Minced Pork ($1.80) came mixed with short strands of vermicelli noodles. The noodles crisped up at the ends when grilled for a long enough time, adding a unique texture and bite to the meat.
Another more novel item on the menu is Fish Pasta ($2.80). True to its name, it resembles a springy long fishball after cooking, albeit with a distinct taste of fish paste.
Though not a common Mookata ingredient, it was introduced to the Siam Square menu because Keith tried it, liked it, and thought to offer the same enjoyment to his customers.
We also tried the Thai Prawn Sashimi ($10), a Thai dish quite unfamiliar to me. While I’m usually cautious about raw prawns (unless we’re talking about fresh Amaebi served with a side of wasabi), I was pleasantly surprised.
The sweetness of the fresh prawn paired well with the zing of the garlic, while the fiery chilli sauce kicked the heat up a notch. Or twenty.
Serving up both quality and variety with a very reasonable price tag, Siam Square definitely makes it to my list of Mookata must-trys. With nine outlets located across Singapore, you don’t have a reason not to check it out.
Do make a reservation beforehand though, as they often run a full house on weekends.
Expected Damage: $12-$15/pax
Related Guide: Best Mookata in Singapore