Sometimes all it takes is one unforgettable holiday experience to plant the seed of an idea for something great…which was the case when Indra Kantono and Gan Guoyi took a trip to the Pacific Northwest of the US and visited the Hama Hama oyster farm. After indulging in fantastic fresh oysters, they decided to pay homage to the noble shellfish with a new Seattle-style restaurant on Bukit Pasoh Road.
We’ve always liked Bukit Pasoh Road, which features Oso, one of our favourite go-to eateries, and Restaurant Andre, arguably one of the city’s best restaurants. However, we always felt that the street could use a bit more foodie cred, so Humpback’s concept of a friendly neighbourhood seafood joint is really refreshing. The restaurant offers freshly shucked oysters flown in direct from the States alongside seafood, meat and veggie small plates.
Why you should come here:
This spot is perfect for a casual catch up with friends over good drinks and bites. Overall, we think that Humpback makes for a quality offering in the heart of Chinatown and a pretty easy option if you’re looking for a casual outing.
The menu here is split up into Snacks, Garden, Seafood and Meat with five options under each, and all the items are pretty reasonably priced, which was our cue to order up a storm. They also have a pretty sweet cocktail menu with white spirit-based drinks to complement the food, as well as bubbles, beers and wines by the glass and the bottle. We highly suggest the Savory Gin Tonic ($22) with gin mare, olive brine, soda water and Fever Tree tonic water.
Good options for snacks are the Carrots ($8) with yoghurt and cumin, which were simple, crispy and healthy, and the plump Cerignola Olives ($8) lightly seasoned with marjoram, citrus and fennel.
Moving on to the Garden, the Cabbage ($10) with herb cheese, crispy quinoa and chili oil came charred on the edges and dusted with a healthy smattering of the quinoa. When dredged through the creamy cheese and drizzled oil, it was so good that we just had to order it again. The Burrata ($14) with salsa verde, picual and sourdough was also a nice treat, and the Kale ($14) with buttermilk, pear, kale chips and pecan nuts was so tasty that it was almost hard to believe that it was also super healthy.
To get our tastebuds back on track, desserts were in order. Out of the two we opted for, we preferred the Valrhona Chocolate Mousse ($8) with berries compote and fresh cream to the Fernet Panna Cotta ($8) with bitter cocoa and orange. The velvety richness of the chocolate with just a hint of salt just seemed to tantalise the tastebuds so much more than the somewhat bitter sourness of the Panna Cotta.
What we love:
The interior is bright and cheery with clean white walls, wooden high-top tables, and seating along the big curved bar. You can also opt to sit outside if you prefer. They were playing some awesome 90s jams when we were there including beats by U2, which had us feeling nostalgic. And, although the dining room was pretty quiet patron-wise, the atmosphere was still upbeat. Overall, we found Humpback to be a good and easy quality offering in the heart of Chinatown.
Humpback has a great Happy Hour all day on Monday and from 5pm to 7pm daily – $2 oysters and discounts on select cocktails, wines by the glass and draught beer…what’s not to love?
About $45++ per person excluding alcoholic beverages