Bowled over by a preference of one plate meals

(BUSINESS TIMES) – If we work in a CBD and are still considering possibly a salad or sandwich for lunch, afterwards we clearly haven’t perceived a memo on a latest in healthy eating. Namely, pellet bowls or rice bowls – convenient, all-in-one dishes that are arrangement adult on menus with roughly a same magnitude as gluten-free options or pickled egg yolk.

In fact, whole eateries have sprouted adult portion customarily “bowl food”, like Grain Traders that non-stop in Sep 2015, and Aloha Poke – portion Hawaiian-style poke bowls – in October. There are now during slightest 5 opposite brands of poke-centric restaurants alone, not counting outlets with rice or pellet bowls in their menus.

Darren Wee of a Japanese-inspired healthy play eatery Ninja Bowl sums it adult as a “one plate plate with a good change of protein, vegetables, and carbohydrates.” He adds, “It’s easy to eat, flattering to photograph, and can be eaten on a unchanging basis.”

The categorical pull is a preference of all being in one bowl, says Linus Loh, 26, of a charcoal-grilled beef play corner Chalong. “Bowl food is something we can have though even wanting a table. It’s easy to pack, devour and purify up. The direct can be seen from a augmenting series of food smoothness services and takeaways in a CBD,” he says.

As many of these eateries also concentration on healthy eating and nutrition, this character of quick food is indeed improved for we than something from McDonalds or KFC.

For instance, Javier Perez, 39, Founder and Director of Grain Traders, says their code started after his business partner beheld a eating habits of people operative in a CBD. “Often they don’t have time to prepare healthful dishes for themselves. Or their lunch is a brisk event given they customarily have 20 mins to spare. We wanted to yield people with slow-cooked food that’s served adult in a time that it takes for we to get quick food,” he says.

This nutritive value competence also minister to a longevity of a trend, given it goes over only being fun or Instagram-worthy, adds A Poke Theory’s Joey Lee, 23. “Bowl food customarily enforces a offset diet with grains, beef and veggies. And healthy eating is a trend that has a most some-more enlarged lifespan over food fads,” he says.

It also helps that Singaporeans in ubiquitous cite rice and grains as staples given of a Asian roots, points out Ninja Bowl’s Mr Wee, 31. We have already been eating things like guy chye png and nasi padang from coffeeshops and hawker centres for many years, so a complicated take like “bowl food” is simply a healthy evolution.

He says: “On a tellurian scale, we consider this judgment has been around for centuries. Just demeanour during Spanish paella, Korean bibimbap, Indian biryani – all examples of pellet bowls with a clever participation in communities around a world. we trust that what we have finished locally is to take pieces and pieces of opposite cultures’ distinct ingredients, and put them together in a approach that improved suits a palate.”

Aloha Poke

A customary play of Ahi Tuna in Original Sauce from Aloha Poke. PHOTO: ALOHA POKE

It all began with a outing to Hawaii in 2014. John Chen was travelling with his mother and their friends, when they came opposite poke and motionless it would be something that would fit Singapore tastebuds.

“Singaporeans like sushi. There are a lot of sushi places in Singapore and many are always full. So it shows that there’s a demand, and we felt that even people who don’t like a ambience of tender fish could suffer this,” says Mr Chen.

That’s how they finished adult opening Aloha Poke – a initial eatery in Singapore to specialise in poke bowls desirous by a normal Hawaiian dish. Since a initial outlet’s opening in Oct 2015, they have non-stop another two, and are looking to launch a fourth in Orchard Road,

Their menu is elementary and simply customised. Customers fill in an sequence sheet, picking a bottom from white rice, brownish-red rice, or salad, and collect their poke – possibly ahi tuna or salmon – in opposite styles like original, spicy, or wasabi mayo. Prices start during S$11.90, that includes 75g of poke.

Aloha Poke

92 Amoy Street

T:6221 6565

Alter Ego

Pizza fries from Alter Ego. PHOTO: MAG CHOW

Siblings Joey and Vannessa Lee initial ventured into play food in Jul 2016, with their healthy poke corner A Poke Theory. Its judgment was innate after Mr Lee’s internship in Los Angeles, where he tasted a elementary poke plate with only “fish over rice, bedecked with some white onions and sesame seeds”.

Less than 6 months after their initial opening opened, they stretched with a second opening during a Esplanade that’s aptly named Alter Ego.

“We now have a immorality twin concept, with a totally polarised menu, vibe and attitude. It focuses on some lip-smacking indulgent bar muck such as a Pizza Fries or Fried Chicken Skin,” says Mr Lee, who adds that a a judgment for his second opening resulted from his daydreaming about indulgent food while he was in a army.

The menu consists of an “Indulge Dirty” section, with a pizza fries (S$14) and boiled duck skin (S$8), though also has an “Eat Clean” territory charity pre-set poke bowls like a Umami Omega (S$16) with sharp garlic sesame salmon on sushi rice, and The Wildcard (S$15) with avocado miso tuna.

Alter Ego

8 Raffles Avenue, #01-13D

T:6327 9301


Black Angus striploin from Chalong. PHOTO: CHALONG SG

If we consider that all play food immediately refers to a splendid immature salad bowls we see on Instagram, consider again. Chalong, a two-month-old charcoal-grilled beef takeaway corner during Tanjong Pagar specialises in grilled meats in a play instead.

Not that it’s quite diseased given a mixture are of a peculiarity that co-founder Linus Loh takes honour in. The beef is prepared daily with beef air-flown from New Zealand. The salt is brought in from a Himalayas, while a butter comes from Denmark.

Chalong was desirous by a outing to Phuket, where a founders came opposite a grill renouned among locals that served colourless grilled pork. “We fell in adore immediately and motionless to emanate a take on a plate in Singapore,” says Mr Loh.

Their bestsellers so distant are an 18-hour sous vide Iberico jowl play (S$12) and a grass-fed black Angus striploin play (S$14) – all done by their cook and co-founder Elin Boh, who has a double diploma in fritter and cuisine from Le Cordon Bleu (Paris).


7 Wallich Street, B2-21

Tanjong Pagar Centre

Grain Traders

Steak play from Grain Traders during 100 Tras Street. PHOTO: CHERYL MILES

Nutrition and offset dishes are a mantra of Grain Traders, a Singapore-born code that non-stop during CapitaGreen in Sep 2015 and has given non-stop a flagship opening during 100AM in Tanjong Pagar.

Founder and executive Javier Perez says a impulse for their judgment came from places like Ottolenghi in London and Forage in Los Angeles. “The suspicion is rather similar-you have this mouthwatering arrangement of good food that’s done uninformed and with internal produce, formed on whatever’s best that season. You come in, and collect whatever looks, sounds, and smells good,” he explains.

That’s because they offer a “Build Your Own Bowl” choice (S$16 nett) where business can collect one form of grain, a protein, a prohibited vegetable, dual cold vegetables, a topping, and a sauce. Alternatively, collect from their preference of signature bowls, like a El Hibaro – a grilled striploin with salsa verde, charred veggies, wafu tomato, bean thrive salad, and white sushi rice.

Grain Traders

#01-03/04, 100 Tras Street

Ninja Bowl

Fancy French from Ninja Bowl. PHOTO: YEONG KAR YAN

Ninja Bowl’s owners Darren Wee started exploring a suspicion of play food as early as 2014. At a time, he was portion French-Japanese donburi during his other outlet, Babette – Restaurant Bar. As these rice bowls gained traction, he suspicion it would be a good suspicion to open an eatery focused on only that.

“We wanted something quite Japanese, though as a years went by, a lot of other chirashisushi places came adult so we motionless on something Japanese-inspired so that we wouldn’t be restricted,” says Mr Wee. That’s when he came adult with Ninja Bowl, that non-stop in Apr 2016 portion “Japanese-inspired healthy bowls”.

There are 8 options to select from, including a Tsukiji (S$16) with pan-seared tuna tataki, asparagus and edamame tossed in lemon extract and sesame oil, a Genki (S$16) that contains grilled Japanese eel, roasted pumpkin, and Korean beansprouts, and a Kaisen (S$16) with pan-seared Hokkaido scallops and New Zealand mussels with shimeiji, shiitake, and symbol mushrooms.

Ninja Bowl

15 Duxton Road

T: 6222 8055


Da Kama’Aina poke play from Pololi. PHOTO: POLOLI

During her university years, Singapore-born Steph Kudus spent a few summers study in Hawaii. Once she graduated, she found work in Hong Kong doing investment banking, and craved Hawaiian food – like poke. “Five years of eating sushi bentos while reading emails, prospectuses, and staring during my mechanism during lunch combined a need for me to piquancy things up,” she says.

With that, she motionless to try into FB and came adult with a suspicion for her poke sequence Pololi. The initial opening non-stop in Hong Kong in 2014, and a initial abroad outpost non-stop in Singapore only final December.

Pololi serves their bowls in dual sizes – a Da Keiki (150g of poke) during S$15.99 and a Da Kama’aina (180g of poke) during S$17.99. There are 5 rotating flavours accessible each day, including normal spicy, yuzu salmon, Thai sharp tuna, Korean sharp taco, and honeyed onion teriyaki swordfish.


51 Telok Ayer Street

T:6909 0589

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