Freshly tapped craft beers, familiar comfort food, and a welcoming neighbourly vibe – call us easy to please, but these are the simple pleasures that come to mind when we’re seeking a good time.
Though simple pleasures, they are somehow anything but easy to find (at least not all in one place) in Singapore. So it was a joyous affair when we visited Abundance and found the aforementioned traits to be, well, abundantly present.
The first thing we loved about it was its location. Found under a HDB block in the unlikely Bukit Merah district, it actually lures in a good crowd thanks to it being so near a good mix of residential areas (surrounded by flats and with high-rise condos across the street) and for being just a stone’s throw away from Redhill MRT.
It’s quite the sight to see families dressed in shorts and slippers enjoying themselves alongside after-work CBD folk in their suits. Yet no one looks out of place.
Then we’ve got the main reason why we’re here, the drinks. At Abundance, expect a good mix of local and international brews at really decent prices. From Japanese pale ales to locally-made DDH IPAs, nothing went over S$19 a pint, with some costing just S$13 a pint depending on the current rotation.
When we were there, the likes of Sunbird, Alive, and Heart of Darkness were on tap. Sunbird even exclusively launched their first fruited sour, the cutely named Peach Me Up, at Abundance before anywhere else. Using fresh white peaches sourced from Japan and China, the resulting beer is sweet and tangy and pairs supremely well with food.
It’s not just beers on the menu. The bar carries a small selection of smashable cocktails, at, get this, just S$10 during Happy Hour (S$14 if not). We weren’t expecting much given the price point, yet they exceeded that expectation with highballs that hit the spot, and a delicious chrysanthemum G&T that we would actually want again and again.
Though we came for the drinks, the food was actually what astounded us the most. Taiwanese comfort food is the name of the game here: think dumplings, gua baos, fried rice, and hearty bowlful of noodles.
We found the Prawn Toast (S$6/4pcs) to be the perfect deep fried snack to start with, and the Red Hot Chilli Dumplings (S$9.90) to be an extremely moreish appetiser that is just spicy enough to go with beer. The various fried rice dishes are the stars of the menu, with the umami-laden XO Fried Rice (S$11.90) easily our favourite.
The must-haves in our books though are the Crispy Chicken Bun (S$7.90; they cheekily call it the CCB) and the Beef Noodles (S$16.90). The former is mighty crispy and juicy at the same time, while the latter is a generous serving of braised beef laid atop chewy handmade noodles and rich bone broth.
The food is amazing, really. And when we found out that one of the co-founders and main man helming the kitchen was a former head chef at Din Tai Fung, it all added up.
It’s really that trinity of good drink, good food, and convenient yet off-beat location that draws us in. And while at first glance, it may not have made any sense for Abundance to do a set-up like theirs in the location that they did, but as anyone who lives in the far-flung heartlands can attest to, having a convivial drinking and eating spot close to home is a godsend.
Abundance is located at #01-378, 63A Lengkok Bahru, Singapore 151063.
About the Author
Dannon Har is the Managing Editor of Spill. Discovering his innate gift for drinking only at a ripe age, he spares no time trying to find more delicious drops to imbibe during his time on Earth. When he’s not minding every detail at Spill, he spends his time concocting luscious libations and sharing them with folks that visit his home bar.