A guide to Clementi, Singapore: Things to eat, do, and drink in this underrated neighbourhood

PHOTO: Instagram/burntcones, Instagram/glassroasters

Apart from the trendy cafes and ice cream spots on Sunset Way, Clementi is a woefully under-appreciated area.

Inspired by jalanjalan.me, a new ground-up community project encouraging Singaporeans to explore neighbourhoods on foot, we’ve collected our favourite Clementi hangouts together with highlights from the project.

There are currently four other heartland neighbourhoods on their page to explore too; that’s plenty of things to do on your next sleepy weekend .

Eat

Ah Li Mee Pok

Ever tried Char Siew Miso Mee Pok? This $12.70 bowl and the other items on Ah Li’s menu have a Japanese twist because it’s operated by a Japanese expat.

Expect unique twists on traditional Singaporean fare, with additions of miso, shoyu and chashu on the typical mee pok noodle. Cultural crossover has never been so delicious.

Ah Li Mee Pok is located at Clementi West Street 2, Rong Fa Coffee House, #01-247, p. +65 8742 6540. Open Tue – Sun, 8.30am – 3pm. Closed Mon.

Balmoral Bakery

Gingerbread cookies for this Christmas!

Posted by Balmoral Bakery on Thursday, December 22, 2016

Balmoral Bakery has been around since 1965, though it only moved to its current location in 1984.

This old-school, traditional bakery is stacked full of delicious confections, butter and fruit cake, swiss rolls and sugar donuts. Being able to feast on all your childhood favourites (without parents to tell you to stop) is sure to give you a blast from the past.

Balmoral Bakery is located at 105 Clementi Street 12, #01-06, Singapore 120105, p. +65 6779 2064. Open Mon – Sun, 8.30am – 8pm. Order takeaway or delivery here.

Atipico Atelier

Atipico started as a private dining experience, and now they have their own atelier. The whole idea is that you are able to see your food as it is being made, and it truly is a beautiful process.

Get artisanal bread, silky and light, or choose from a menu of ten cakes, all painstakingly decorated and assembled by hand. Best to pre-order online to avoid disappointment.

Atipico Atelier is located at 1 West Coast Drive, NEWest Mall, #01-82, Singapore 128020, p. +65 8616 1968. Open Mon – Sat, 11am – 5pm. Closed Sun.

Burnt Cones

The east may have Birds of Paradise, but the west has Burnt Cones.

This minimalist space serves gelato on waffles, cones and cups, in surprising flavours like Ube, Strawberry Basil, Kaya Chendol, and the cheesy Fior di Latte and Scamorza.

What’s more, they open at 8am and close at midnight , so you can get your ice cream fix pretty much any time during the day.

Burnt Cones is located at 105 Clementi Street 12, #01-02, Singapore 120105, p. +65 9711 1097. Open Mon – Sun, 8am – 12am.

Desem Bakery

This Japanese bakery strictly believes in not using additives, preservatives, improvers or emulsifiers, using sourdough cultures to get the dough to rise instead.

Turning out stunning, golden brown loaves, sometimes drizzled with sauces, look forward to their immensely popular garlic cream cheese garlic sourdough. It’s best to order in advance over WhatsApp, because these bakes disappear fast.

Desem Bakery is located at 25 Jalan Mas Puteh, Singapore 128630, p. +65 8137 8796. Open Wed – Fri, 4pm – 8pm, and Sat – Sun, 2pm – 7pm. Closed Mon – Tue.

Fredo’s Baker

This cosy space is filled with tarts, cakes and other treats, all handmade by Mr Alfred Chan, a former hotel pastry chef. Expect stunning creations topped with handfuls of fruit, flavours ranging from sweet to savoury – there’s even a white chocolate avocado tart.

Beloved by those who live in the neighbourhood, this bakery is definitely one to visit.

Fredo’s Baker is located at 109 Clementi Street 11, #01-05, Singapore 120109, p. +65 9185 2932. Open Mon – Fri, 8am – 6pm, and Sat – Sun, 8.30am – 6pm.

Glass Roaster

Though a little remote, Glass Roasters is worth the venture into Faber Hills Estate.

This coffee spot has a relatively small menu, with coffee made from Columbian beans, iced tea infusions, and bottles of natural wine. It’s the perfect place for a quiet afternoon with a book or evening spent with loved ones.

Glass Roasters is located at 108 Faber Drive, Singapore 129418. Open Mon, Tue and Thu, 9am – 10pm, and Fri – Sun, 9am – 10.30pm. Closed Wed.

Summer Hill

Anthony Yeoh’s French all-day bistro (full review here ) is a haven for approachable, comforting French favourites with a luxurious touch.

You can expect dishes like Creamy Mussels Normandy, Duck en Croute, Foie Gras Stuffed Duck and Duck Confit with creamy foie gras dumplings. Tuesdays are corkage free, so bring your own bottles!

Summer Hill is located at 106 Clementi Street 12, #01-62, Singapore 120106, p. +65 6251 5337. Open Tue – Sun, 12pm – 3pm and 6pm – 10pm. Closed Mon.

Do and See

Ban Soon Sewing Machine

This old-fashioned store is perfect for craft-lovers – they not only stock an extensive range of sewing machines, but conduct classes for hobbyists to learn how to use them.

One of the most popular spots for sewing equipment, you’re bound to find what you need for your craft here. Maybe you could pick up some tips from the staff too.

Ban Soon Sewing Machine is located at 431 Clementi Avenue 3, #01-328, Singapore 120431, p. +65 6776 3253. Open Mon – Sat, 10.30am – 7pm. Closed Sun.

Clementi Forest

Clementi Forest was largely ignored by locals until October 2020, when drone footage capturing it gloriously shrouded in mist went viral.

Since then, this mostly untouched, 85-hectare piece of land has gained national attention.

A great place to get in touch with nature if you’re feeling exhausted from city life, take a walk here from Old Bukit Timah Railway Station on the Rail Corridor if you’re looking for a nice, easy hike – it’s worth the trek.

Clementi Forest is located along Clementi Road, opposite SIM Global Education.

Old Jurong Line Railway Bridge

This railway line was abandoned on the 1990s when road transportation overtook rail transportation, but until then the sleepers here were part of a line that was intended to connect Jurong with Malaysia.

The bridge and the nearby tree-lined tracks are now a popular spot for photography, as is the tunnel running under Clementi Road.

Old Jurong Line Railway Bridge is located at Ulu Pandan Park Connector.

Singapore Rowing Association

There’s no better way to experience Singapore’s coastline than on a boat.

Don’t know how to row? The Singapore Rowing Association has learn-to-row programmes that will teach you about your boat, how to paddle and water safety basics.

We suggest paddling down Pandan River to admire Singapore’s natural environment from a wholly new perspective.

Singapore Rowing Association is located at 249 Jalan Buroh, Singapore 609832.

This article was first published in City Nomads.