Singaporeans are a festival-going lot. Just take a look at the numerous festivals celebrating food, booze and coffee – or better yet, remember the crowds that turned up for one-off events like this year’s inaugural edition of Artbox – we’re still recovering from the mud, sweat and trauma of squeezing our way through the sweaty masses.
But no matter how many times we swear off food festivals for good, the next time one rolls around, we can’t help but get sort of excited again. Festivals are basically a gathering of everything you love into one space, which makes for a fuss-free experience – if only hundreds of other people didn’t think the same way.
Anyway, if you’re looking for something to brighten up your calendar for the rest of 2017, glance through this list of food festivals coming your way soon – we’ve included everything from beer and rum fiestas to ramen parties to coffee and tea get-togethers.
Beerfest Asia (Aug 17-20)
Grab a beer at the ninth edition of Asia’s largest beer festival, where you’ll make some of life’s toughest decisions when confronted with more than 500 varieties of beers and ciders at the sprawling space. Look out for over 100 new labels making their Singapore debut — including Erdinger Sommerweis and Guinness Bright — as well as beer workshops with brew masters, performances by tribute bands, and what’s being hailed as Singapore’s largest outdoor beer yoga session (yes, apparently that’s a thing now).
Aug 17-20. Various timings at Marina Bay Cruise Centre. $28-$166.
Epicurean Market (Aug 11-13)
This year’s Marina Bay Sands affair looks to homegrown flavors for inspiration, with new additions like the Singapore Street Food and Kampung Bar experiences. The former is a two-storey shop house dishing out local bites with a twist — such as ‘ginseng’ abalone bak kut teh and banana fritters with gula melaka ice cream — while the latter whips up hawker-inspired cocktails with ingredients like chilli, lemongrass and pandan.
Also look out for new names like restaurant/bar/club Lavo and Japanese ramen chain Ippudo making appearances, as well as the usual line-up of celeb chef offerings, masterclasses, farmer’s market and late night festivities.
Aug 11-13. Fri & Sat noon-2am, Sun noon-9pm at Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Halls A, B and C. Three-day pass $39.
Ramen Revolution (Jul 28-30)
Ramen lovers, unite for a mass gathering at Resorts World Sentosa with 10 ramen brands from Singapore and Japan. Over the weekend, names like Kajiken, Keisuke Tonkotsu King, Marutama Ramen and Menya Sakura will be serving up piping hot bowls of your favorite noodle dish, while you entertain yourself watching speed eating competitions and spicy ramen challenges. Just don’t forget to bring a wad of bills with you – all ramen bowls are cash-only and priced at $10 nett.
Jul 28-30. Fri 5-9pm, Sat-Sun 11am-9pm at B1, The Forum, Resorts World Sentosa. Free.
Rasa Fiesta Singapura (Now-Jul 15)
Here’s a reason to get crunk during the week – a celebration of all things rum. Held at bars like Sugarhall, Vasco, Potato Head, Bread Street Kitchen, and Lime House, the merrymaking revolves around rum cocktails ($15-$25) specially concocted at each of the watering holes. Everything culminates in a boisterous Tiki Festival on Saturday, complete with groovy tunes, tropical cocktails, street food stalls, tattoo booths, and dance parties.
Now-Jul 15. Various timings at various locations. Street festival: Jul 15, noon-10.30pm at Jiak Chuan Road and Keong Saik Street. Free.
Singapore Coffee Festival (Aug 3-6)
Take a shot of espresso, ‘cause the coffee fest is back (even though its outing last year received a ton of backlash for bad crowd control, poor management and general chaos). Hopefully, the organizers have learned a thing or two from all the negative reviews – so if you’re willing to give it a second shot, drop by for music performances, barista competitions, a Japan Pavilion with Japanese exhibitors, and cups of caffeine by the likes of Chye Seng Huat Hardware, Caffe Vergnano, Symmetry and Common Man Coffee Roasters.
Aug 3-6; first day reserved for trade and media. 10am-3.30pm & 4.30pm-10pm at Marina Bay Cruise Centre. $18-$22.
Singapore Food Festival (Jul 14-30)
There’s plenty to do at this year’s edition. Seriously. So plan your days properly, or you may end up with a bad case of FOMO.
One of the main highlights is, once again, STREAT (Jul 14-15). This year, chef Malcolm Lee of Michelin-starred Peranakan restaurant Candlenut will team up with Mod-Sin chef Willin Low to helm a pop-up diner, as well as curate a line-up of nine stalls hawking local dishes. Of course, there’s also the bargain hunter’s favorite 50 Cents Fest (Jul 29-30), which features a medley of old school snacks, games and toys. Other happenings include the Chocolate Wonderland at ION Orchard, Kueh Appreciation Day, Heritage Food Trail, and Hawker Wine Safari.
Jul 14-30. Various timings at various locations. Free and ticketed events.
Singapore Restaurant Festival (Now-Sept 30)
Basically an extended version of the popular Singapore Restaurant Month, this inaugural fest offers dining promos across more than 50 eateries over the next three months. So if you’ve been eyeing a particularly pricey place for a while now, this is your chance to dine for less.
Besides restaurant deals, you can also get a voucher set worth $100 for $70 (if you’re a DBS/POSB cardholder) that can be used at names like Fatty Weng Restaurant, Peach Garden, Hoshino Coffee, Supply & Demand, and Barossa. Each of these eateries will also come up with a locally-inspired dish for the fest, with creations such as chicken rice risotto by Joo Bar and chicken tikka pizza by Cali Café and Bar.
Now-Sept 30. Various venues.
Singapore Tea Festival (Jul 22-23)
As part of the Singapore Food Festival, this debut tea-centric get-together organized by The 1872 Clipper Tea Co. beckons all tea enthusiasts to head to town for a weekend of flavorful brews.
First, check out the pop-up café nicknamed ‘Teapitiam’ for tea-inspired bites like Earl Grey tea cakes by In the Brickyard, ‘ugnuts’ (‘ugly’ donuts) by Bird Bird and gelato by Birds of Paradise. Then step into the Tea Room for workshops and craft sessions about the intricacies of tea, and find out about the origins of the drink at the Tea Museum. Before you leave, sample new flavors by homegrown brands at the Tea Market, which offers a selection of hawker drinks-inspired brews, floral infusions and blends with traditional Chinese herbs.
Jul 22-23. 10am-10pm at B4 ION Station, ION Orchard. Free.
The GREAT Food Festival (Sept 21-24)
Here’s another reason to make the trip to RWS: A new four-day event, centered on Singaporeans’ favorite pastime, humbly called The GREAT Food Festival. Taking advantage of all the celeb chef restaurants in the area, the fest features special dish creations, live demo sessions, and baking masterclasses by top chefs.
Highlights include chef collab dinners (that are sure to be as extravagant in price), a lavish medieval banquet, and a ginormous dessert and pastry showcase displaying more than 300 treats that will likely satisfy any sweet tooth cravings you have.
Sept 21-24. Various timings at various venues in Resorts World Sentosa. One-day pass $78.