We scour the island’s café scene to bring you the new and the noteworthy – it’s a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it! ANTHIA CHNG checks out popular café spot Open Door Policy for its dairy- and gluten-free brunch menu.
Natural lighting? Check. Wood furnishings? Check. Open kitchen concept? Check. Open Door Policy, a pioneer in the local café scene, has been serving up coffee and brunch in the hip Tiong Bahru locale for more than five years. While it was full house (and slightly space-limited) on a Saturday afternoon, the charming café scores with its rustic and cosy setting – perfect for a laidback weekend meal.
Grub on these:
Say hello to a fully dairy- and gluten-free weekend brunch menu! On offer are re-invented classics like king crab eggs florentine ($30), which came with generous chunks of king crab, sautéed spinach, poached eggs, and a torched béchamel sauce stirred with sabayon. We particularly enjoyed the earthy and nutty gluten-free bread that accompanied the dish. The crab meat was fresh too, but I wasn’t fond of the spinach or sauce – probably just a personal preference as my friend was happy with both! For something lighter, opt for the spiced avocado king prawn ($30). While the portion wasn’t exceptionally generous – you only get two grilled crustaceans– the prawns were fresh and juicy, and the spiced guac was addictive, too. I’ll definitely return to try the French toast loft ($24), which sounds like the perfect balance between naughty and healthy. Think house-made oat brioche dipped in coconut cream, pan-fried with coconut oil, drizzled in a zesty crème chantilly, then garnished with berries and whipped soy milk ice-cream. If that doesn’t sound amazing, I’m not sure what would!
Wash it down:
While Open Door Policy is known for their coffee, we weren’t in the mood for anything caffeinated. We decided to go healthy with juices – there were seven options to choose from. Sailor Man ($12) was an energising blend of spinach, kiwi, orange, pineapple and carrot, which perked me up almost instantly. We also tried Soul Sauce ($12), a unique combination of coconut, raspberries, strawberries, ginger, lemongrass and honey. If you have to choose one, pick the latter for its exotic flavour – we loved the kick from the ginger and burst of fragrance from the lemongrass!
Last but not least:
There aren’t many gluten- and dairy-free cafés in Singapore, and to be honest, whenever I hear those words, I immediately think of bland and boring – no offence to those subscribed to this diet! At Open Door Policy, however, they aim to provide wholesome, hearty grub that doesn’t sacrifice on taste, and I think they’ve done just that.
See what else there is to eat and drink in Singapore.