Luxe for less: 16 value-for-money fancy set lunches in Singapore under $50

Dim sum at Yan. Photo: Yan

There is some (relative) value to be had at the posh places in town — just try a mid-day meal rather than forking out top dollar during dinner time. It’s the magic of set lunches. Plus, if you’ve amassed a bucket list of restaurants, then this is a pretty good way to knock those dining experiences out.

Here are some of the most value-for-money set lunches in Singapore – most of which are under $50 per person. Treat yourself.


 

Atlas

Photo: EK Yap

Atlas gets a lot of attention for its grand, Art Deco-style, with its Great Gatsby-esque restaurant/bar in the lobby of the “Gotham City” building (aka Parkview Square). The elaborate, high-ceilinged space is opulent, indeed. And every two months, the restaurant’s executive lunch set switches things up by focusing on a different cuisine.

This May to June, Spain’s Basque Country is the region in the spotlight, with dishes such as alubia de tolosa (bean stew with baked tomatoes and black pudding) on the menu.

Parkview Square, 600 North Bridge Rd, 6396-4466. Mon-Fri 11:30am-3pm. $38/two courses, $48/three courses; an additional $24-$30 for wine pairings.

 

Bistro Du Vin

Photo: Bistro Du Vin

This cozy, warmly-lit French bistro serves up great grub – but dining here comes at quite a price. That’s why the far more wallet-friendly lunches are so worth it: You get entrées like French onion soup and pan seared foie gras, with mains such as duck leg confit, French sea bream fillet, and chargrilled black Angus ribeye, ending off with a choice of chocolate mousse, crème brûlée, or cheese of the day.

Two outlets, including #01-14 Shaw Centre, 1 Scotts Rd, 6733-7763. Daily noon-3pm. $34/two courses, $40/three courses.

 

Blackwattle

Grilled lamb tongue. Photo: Blackwattle

One of the buzziest openings of 2017, the modern Australian eatery whips up a power lunch, most likely catering to CBD workers in the surrounding areas: a two-course set with a constantly evolving line-up of starters, mains, and desserts. Sample dishes include raw kingfish with yuzu pickled baby turnip, grilled lamb tongue with burnt onion mustard, and jackfruit custard. Their signature three-course set is on offer during lunch hours as well, in case you’d rather go for the full experience.

97 Amoy St, 6224-2232. Mon-Fri noon-3pm. $34/two courses, $44/three courses.

 

Fratelli

Photo: Resorts World Sentosa

Warm and inviting, this Italian trattoria/pizzeria by chef brothers Enrico and Roberto Cerea from Italy’s three Michelin-starred Da Vittorio whips up a mean batch of pizzas, pastas, and meats. Lunch is a great way to get a sampling of what’s on offer here — dishes on the set menu, like linguine primavera, bresaolina pizza, cod fish risotto, and affogato, get tweaked biweekly.

#02-144/145 Hotel Michael, 26 Sentosa Gateway, 6577-6555. Wed-Sat & Mon noon-2:30pm. $25/two courses, $32/three courses.

 

La Strada

Tagliolini. Photo: La Strada

Within the bustling Orchard area are a handful of charming shops nestled away from all the commercial activity — La Strada being among them. The restaurant is known for its pricey Italian cuisine, but it goes the affordable route with set lunches that start with burrata, frittata, and beef tartare, followed by mains such as squid ink tagliolini, spinach and ricotta tortelli, and lamb spare ribs, ending with sweets such as cannoli, tiramisu, and gelato.

#01-13 Shaw Centre, 1 Scotts Rd, 6735-6656. Daily noon-3pm. $42/three courses.

 

La Taperia

Dishes on the set lunch menu. Photo: La Taperia

Have a sampling of the superb Spanish fare here — during lunch, three-course sets include appetizers like smoked salmon and chorizo sausage with fried egg, with mains such as seafood stew, grilled lamp rump, and pan-seared ocean trout. When you’re done with the savories, traditional Spanish desserts like poached pear in red wine, churros, and seasonal berries pavlova make an excellent finish to the meal.

#02-10/11 Shaw Centre, 1 Scotts Rd, 6737-8336. Daily noon-3pm. $38/three courses.

 

Long Chim

Basil minced beef. Photo: Marina Bay Sands

We’ve got no lack of low-priced, casual Thai eateries in Singapore, but sometimes you just want a sweet spot to relax in. That’s where David Thompson – whose Nahm in Bangkok recently received one Michelin star last year – and Long Chim come in. At lunch, the restaurant, which is near the casinos and hidden from view, offers a set of spicy dishes that include anything from grilled pork skewers and green curry chicken to basil minced beef and minced pork omelette with Sriracha.

L2-02 The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, 10 Bayfront Ave, 6688-7299. Mon-Thurs 11:30am-3pm, Fri noon-3pm. $25/two courses, $30/three courses.

 

Mitzo

Photo: Mitzo

For those who’ve been battling dim sum cravings, tuck into this modern Cantonese restaurant’s double-boiled soups and desserts of the day, dainty bites, and bowls of noodles or porridge. The steamed, baked, and fried dim sum selection includes items like charcoal barbecued pork bun, steamed shrimp and pork dumpling, escargot cheese puff, and baked seafood tart. If you’re still feeling peckish, crispy roast pork belly ($18), black truffle roast duck ($38), and stir-fried wagyu beef cubes ($42) can be ordered to share.

L4 Grand Park Orchard, 270 Orchard Rd, 6603-8855. Mon-Fri noon-2:30pm. $28/three courses, $38/four courses.

 

Origin Grill

Photo: Origin Grill

Inspired by a retro train station, Shangri-La Hotel’s newest addition features curving arches, benches, and even a frosted glass panel covering the bar area, giving the familiar sense you’d get when you glance out your cabin window at the scenery whizzing by. The restaurant offers an executive set lunch that changes weekly: Pastas, wagyu flank steak, and grilled sea bass fillet are among the revolving roster of mains, and there’s a dessert display of cakes and tarts that are never the same two days in a row.

Lobby level, Tower Wing, Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore. 22 Orange Grove Rd, 6213-4595. Mon-Sat noon-2:30pm. $34/three courses, $45/four courses.

 

Spago

Big eye tuna tartare cones. Photo: Marina Bay Sands

Sky high rooftop space? Check. Panoramic views of Marina Bay? Check. Celebrity chef who’s actually rolling out good food? Double check. Spago by Wolfgang Puck is one of those swanky spots you book a table for when you’ve got a really special occasion to celebrate. So at $45, the restaurant’s three-course express lunch set is a pretty good deal, with starter choices like gratin of royal oysters and big eye tuna tartare cones, followed by hearty plates of grilled Iberico pork pressa, grilled Angus beef burger, and garganelli with wild mushrooms, as well as a dessert of pistachio panna cotta. If anything, this experience will probably whet your appetite for a return visit at dinner.

Tower 2, L57, Sands SkyPark, 10 Bayfront Ave, 6688-9955. Daily noon-2:30pm. $45/three courses.

 

Takumi Yamamoto

Kaisen set. Photo: Marina Bay Sands

At Takumi Yamamoto, you get a choice between four different menus – sushi, robata (charcoal grill), ramen, and teppanyaki. If you’re feeling up for Japanese during weekday lunches, the sets come in options like ramen and gyoza ($20), tempura with truffle chawanmushi ($38), beef steak and veggie teppanyaki ($48), and the slightly higher priced kaisen don with sashimi seaweed salad ($58). On weekends, there’s the tempura ramen set ($48), curry chicken with rice ($38), and a fruits and vegetables combination with miso soup and veggie handrolls ($42).

L2-05 The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, 10 Bayfront Ave, 6688-7098. Daily noon-3pm. $20-$58.

 

The Black Swan

Photo: The Black Swan

Gilded gold trimmings, Art Deco flair — the fancy pants scene at The Black Swan makes for a solid choice when it comes to hosting clients for lunch. The lunch menu here starts you off with yellowfin tuna carpaccio or broccoli and avocado salad, before moving on to half lobster thermidor or grilled rainbow trout, and ending with a sweet affair of coffee profiteroles, apple tart with ice cream, or frozen s’mores.

19 Cecil St, 6438-3757. Mon-Fri 11:30am-2:15pm. $39/two courses, $45/three courses.

 

The Halia

Chocolate and raspberry. Photo: The Halia

Make your way through the lush foliage of our UNESCO World Heritage Site to arrive at The Halia for a tranquil lunch in the midst of Mother Nature’s finest. Mains here come in the form of wagyu braised shank, chilli crab spaghettini, and wagyu rump, while dessert lovers get to choose between ginger and almond nougatine parfait, and a chocolate and raspberry creation.

Ginger Garden, Singapore Botanic Gardens, 1 Cluny Rd, 8444-1148. Mon-Fri noon-2pm. $28/two courses, $34/three courses.

 

Yan

Steamed sea perch. Photo: Yan

A classy restaurant that whips up elegantly plated Cantonese dishes, Yan’s five-course lunch starts with a trio of dim sum creations, followed by options like braised dried fish maw broth, deep fried prawns with wasabi mayo, and poached Japanese noodles with prawns. Before you wind down your meal, choose from desserts such as chilled mango cream with pomelo and sago, hot red bean cream, and chilled apricot with sea coconut.

#05-02 National Gallery Singapore, 1 St. Andrew’s Rd, 6384-5585. Daily 11:30am-2:30pm. $38/five courses.

 

Wolfgang’s Steakhouse

Filet mignon. Photo: Wolfgang’s Steakhouse

Hailed as the Wolfgang Experience, this set lunch is basically a collection of the New York steakhouse’s signature stuff, from a seafood appetizer to a salad or soup to an entrée with two sides and a sweet treat served with coffee or tea. To keep prices on the lower end, go for the catch of the day ($50) – but if you can’t say no to a good steak, you’ll have to splash out quite a bit more on the filet mignon/sirloin steak/ribeye steak ($80-$90) with sides like mashed potatoes, creamed spinach, and steak fries.

#02-01 Intercontinental Singapore Robertson Quay, 1 Nanson Rd, 6887-5885. Daily 11:30am-5pm. $50-$90/four courses.

 

Zafferano

Photo: Zafferano

The view from above is a stellar one, especially when you’re tucking into Italian cuisine while gazing at Marina Bay from your 43rd-storey perch. To beat back the work blues, schedule your corporate lunches here and talk business over plates of pappardelle lamb ragout, chicken Milanese, and fish ravioli from the menu that revamps biweekly.

L43 Ocean Financial Centre, 10 Collyer Quay, 6509-1488. Mon-Fri 11:30am-3pm. $42/two courses, $52/three courses (if you’re willing to go slightly over budget).


 

Read on for more:

11 alfresco and garden-themed restaurants in Singapore for a chill weekend out

The cheapskate’s guide to wine on a budget in Singapore

Best romantic restaurants in Singapore: Where to go for candlelit dinners, date nights, and special occasions

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