The quest for the best beef
Singaporeans love their beef, judging from the number of restaurants here offering steaks as a main course.
They range from high-end restaurants by celebrity chefs to modest chain eateries. You can even find a decent sirloin at many hawker centre Western food stalls.
On their menus is beef from around the world – Japan, Australia and New Zealand, South and North America and Europe.
Diners here are also more than happy to reach deep in their pockets for premium meats such as USDA Prime from America and much-prized wagyu brands from Japan such as Kobe, Hida and Kagoshima.
Here is a list of some of the best restaurants in Singapore to go for a steak.
Marina Bay Sands Hotel Singapore, 10 Bayfront Avenue, tel: 6688-8517
This upmarket steak restaurant by American celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck offers the most variety of beef, including from the United States, Australia and Japan.
Expensive Japanese wagyu ribeye that costs $285 for 230g may earn you bragging rights, but I’d recommend the cheaper USDA ribeye from America that costs $99 for 395g. For me, it has just the right balance of fat and flavour. Eating more than 200g of well-marbled wagyu tends to leave me feeling sick.
Cut also has a very good bar menu. A good idea is to get a few bar snacks to go with your pre-dinner cocktail in place of an appetiser.
Photo: ST File
W Singapore, Sentosa Cove 21 Ocean Way, tel: 6808-7278
This meat-centric restaurant also offers a very wide range of beef, from Japanese Saga sirloin priced at $198 to grass-fed Hereford tenderloin from Ireland at $79 for 250g.
So you should be able to find something to your liking, whether you like your beef marbled with melt-in-the-mouth fat or lean and flavourful. I also like that many of the steaks come in half portions, which is great for small eaters.
1 Nanson Road 02-01 Intercontinental Singapore Robertson Quay, tel: 6887-5885
Wolfgang’s is an American-style steakhouse named after New Yorker Wolfgang Zwiener that dry-ages its USDA Prime beef for 28 days to get it more tender and flavourful.
It doesn’t list the weight of its steaks but the Rib Eye Steak ($118) and New York Sirloin ($99), which come on the bone, definitely look heavier than 400g each. The ribeye gets my vote.
Photo: Wolfgang’s Steakhouse
MORTON’S THE STEAKHOUSE
Mandarin Oriental Singapore, Fourth Storey, 5 Raffles Avenue, tel: 6339-3740
This old-fashioned American steakhouse has been updated recently to look more contemporary and less stuffy.
Its steaks used to be great, but standards have dropped a bit since the company was sold some years back. Nonetheless, it’s still a good place to go for a hunk of USDA Prime beef. A 454g piece of Centre Cut Prime Ribeye goes for $99.50.
(Also read: How to Cook Steak to The Perfect Doneness)
BEDROCK BAR & GRILL
96 Somerset Road 01-05 Pan Pacific Serviced Suites Orchard , tel: 6238-0054
This used to be the place I pointed friends to when they asked to be recommended a good steak that did not sizzle a hole in their wallet. But though prices have crept up over the years and the local restaurant no longer offers good value, it still remains a good place for a well-executed steak.
Go for an Australian ribeye ($99 for 400g) if you are budget-conscious, but the USDA Prime ribeye ($92 for 300g) will taste better. The dry-aged version costs $99.
Photo: Bedrock Bar & Grill
01-514/515, 3 Temasek Boulevard Suntec City Mall (beside Tower 2 Office Lobby), tel: 6822-2886
This is the place I now recommend for a good-value and good-tasting steak.
The highlight here is very well-priced dry-aged beef, with cuts such as 30 Days Home Dry Aged Irish Grassfed Black Angus Rib Eye ($20 for 100g, minimum order of 200g). If you are in a big group, get the 45 Days Dry Aged Corn-fed Traditional Fiorentina Steak ($19 for 100g, minimum order of 800g). The steaks are grilled over charcoal and boast a lovely smokiness.
Photo: District 10 Bar & Grill
SPRMRKT KITCHEN & BAR
STPI-Creative Workshop & Gallery, 41 Robertson Quay 02-01, tel: 9736-4170
This is not a steakhouse, but a smart Western restaurant with a menu that leans towards French brasserie fare.
The Steak Frites ($36 for 200g) comes in a thinner cut than the chunky American steak. But unlike some French restaurants that tend to overcook their steaks, the ribeye here is served medium rare and is juicy and tender. The fries that come with the beef are seriously good.
Photo: ST File
VIOLET OON SATAY BAR & GRILL
01-18 Clarke Quay, 3B River Valley Road, tel: 9834-9935
If you’re hankering for a steak with Asian flavours, the Daging Panggang Sambal Hijau ($50) here is the thing. The 200-day grain-fed Black Angus beef rib eye is tender and flavourful, but what stands out is the sambal hijau, made with green chilli padi, spread over the meat. It is fiery and piquant, yet does not overpower the beef, thanks to cloves of confit garlic that help to fight the fire.
(Also read: 3 New Fancy Foodcourts in Singapore to Check Out)
Photo: Violet Oon Satay Bar & Grill
This article first appeared on www.straitstimes.com on October 29, 2017, with the headline “ST food critic Wong Ah Yoke picks the 8 best steaks in Singapore”.