Fresh and delicious

When it comes to cafes, both the food and the vibe are equally important to me. For the food, what’s key is usually fresh produce and good execution.

The Lokal, a new cafe at the junction of Neil and Bukit Pasoh roads, is one place that is certainly off to a promising start.

It is opened by the same crew behind Sarnies in Telok Ayer Street, a cafe which I have come to be a true devotee of.

Of the six items I tried from the new cafe’s menu, my favourite is the well-seasoned roast pumpkin and quinoa salad ($16) with blanched but crunchy French beans, cranberries, pumpkin seeds and lightly pickled cubes of beetroot, tossed in a very subtly spicy vinaigrette. It is such a delight to eat.

I also like the other ovo- and lacto-vegetarian options on the menu.

The sabich ($16) is a fresh pita pocket filled with grilled aubergine, hummus, slices of hard-boiled egg and diced tomato and cucumber. Fresh, simple and done well.

The open sandwich with smashed avocado and citrusy ricotta on sourdough, topped with pomelo and toasted almonds ($18) is another option.

Meat-eaters, opt for the roast beef on rye with caramelised onions and watercress ($19), with a fairly generous amount of juicy roast beef slices. There is also a roast chicken panini and a veal schnitzel burger to choose from. Expect a brunch menu on weekends.

Where: The Lokal, 136 Neil Road
MRT: Outram/ Tanjong Pagar
Open: 8am - 6pm (weekday, kitchen closes at 3.30pm), 9am - 4pm (weekend, with all-day brunch)
Tel: 6423-9918
Cash or Nets only

This article was first published on July 19, 2014.
Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to for more stories.