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We visited Eatbox's new permanent space and stuffed our faces with Muslim-friendly mookata, Thai shaker noodles and BTS macarons

Back before the pandemic hit, pop-up markets were a common affair that many of us looked forward to.

Hailing from Thailand, Eatbox — the boutique version of the famous Thai market Artbox — was one of the more popular events in town.

And now, they've found a permanent home at Tekka Place and will finally be open to the public this Friday (Sept 3).

Conveniently located right above Rochor MRT, the 9,500 sq ft food hall has two levels and houses 20 booths and four kiosks. These are manned by popular F&B vendors who will be serving up an array of international and fusion cuisines, including crowd favourites from past events.

Here, vendors are given the option to take on a more flexible short-term contract and hence, the variety of stores and food will be switched up every few months, an Eatbox spokesperson told us. 

Additionally, a cloud operating system that will help make the ordering, payment and collection process much smoother is currently in the pipeline.

Can't wait for the official opening? Here's a preview of what you can look forward to. 

The vibes

We got to visit the space during a media preview and we are loving the vibes. The space feels like a cross between a night market and a modern food court. The first level is mostly packed with food stalls and a scattering of seats while the second level has two to three other stalls and more space for diners to chill.

We also adore the quirky decor, which is what Artbox and Eatbox were known for. The entire space has an cohesive industrial enhanced with neon signage and pops of bright colours.

And best of all, the air conditioning. We need not worry about the sweltering Singapore heat or a sudden downpour since everything is held indoors. Bliss.

The food

It's hard to choose a favourite out of the 24 different vendor options but here are some of our top picks:

1. Chickata

This Muslim-owned store specialises in Thai hotpot and steamboat and does not serve pork or lard.

They have three different platters — Seafood Lovers ($39.90), Beef Lovers ($35.90) and Chicken Lovers ($29.90) — that are good for two pax, but if you're a single diner, you can opt for the Mini Pan for One and choose a set of your choice such as The Lamb Set ($13.90) or Smoked Duck Set ($12.90). Ala carte items are also available.

2. Satay Ummi

Some of you may recognise Satay Ummi from previous Eatbox or pop-up events. Well, this is their first permanent, physical store. This Muslim-friendly stall also does not use pork or lard. 

Traditionally, satay is usually served on a stick, but here, all the meat chunks are carefully packed into a box along with a tub of peanut sauce and ketupat (rice cakes). Meat options available include mutton ($10), beef ($9) and chicken ($8).

Not feeling satay? You can get their nasi lemak or otah-otah instead.

3. Thachang Shaker Bar

If you enjoy shaker fries, you'll love their DIY Thachang Noodle Shaker.

Here, diners get to select their preferred noodles, premium ingredient, sides and sauce. Everything is then served to you in a plastic cup. Before consumption, give the whole thing a good shake to mix all the ingredients up.

It's an ingenious way to enjoy noodles and we love how convenient it is too.

4. Okinawa Onigiri

You can now snag some Instagram-worthy Okinawa onigiri from Eatbox! This rendition of the popular Japanese rice snack looks a little like a rice sandwich and features ingredients wedged between a layer of rice and seaweed.

There are nine different onigiri available to choose from, including Hiroshima Oyster ($6.90), Wasabi Mayo Prawn ($5.90) and Fried Scallop ($5.90).

5. B Ly's Banh Mi

B Ly's Banh Mi specialises in hearty and authentic Vietnamese sandwiches and they have eight different options on their menu to choose from such as Egg Pate Bang Mi ($5), Grilled Fish Banh Mi ($5.50) and BBQ Pork Banh Mi ($6.50).

If you're spoilt for choice, get the Special Great Banh Mi ($6.90) which comes with four types of ham pork, char siew, pork floss and pate.

6. Haengbok Cakeyo

Bento cakes are all the range and now, you can get yourself one from Haengbok Cakeyo.

Apart from that, they also sell other baked Korean goodies such as the Pull Me Up Yuzu Cake ($15.80),Fudgey Brownie with Vanilla Ice Cream ($10.80) and their famous Fatfatcarons ($19.80 for four).

We also love their carefully designed Macaron Lollipops ($12.80) — just look at the BTS version!

Address: 2 Serangoon Road, #01-55 to 59, Singapore 218227
Opening hours: 8am to 10.30pm

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