I initially dithered over whether to order the Beef Rendang (S$14), which came as a recommendation by the lady of the house. I was never a fan of the dish: Lesser versions I had the meat was overcooked and thus sinewy, the dry curry always cloying assaulting the palate. Not Brew & Bar’s. Each and every bite-sized cube of meat was incredibly fork tender, the dry curry delivering piquant savoury jabs and undercuts and did not let up. At the apex was mottled morsels of grated coconut. The complexity and mouthfeel of this most excellent dish was a testament to the many hours it takes the chefs to cook it.
The heady whiff emanating from the Kari Ayam (S$12) stopped me in my track. One mouthful of the curry chicken and I was utterly hooked. The spices — and I reckon lemongrass — all contributed to a remarkable tang. Unfortunately, it was takeaway dinner for my sister and not for my own enjoyment; the usually-fastidious eater did later give it a thumbs-up.
Do not leave Brew & Bar without trying its desserts. The ondeh ondeh is transmuted into cake form (S$7/slice) here. The slice featured alternating layers of soft pandan-infused sponge and coconutty cream that was fragrant and sweet. Titivating it with some shredded coconut might help in replicating the look and texture of the traditional kueh. Resembling red bean soup at first glance, Bubur Hitam is made of black glutinous rice. Brew & Bar’s version (S$3.50) had a thick consistency, and its sweetness showed restraint. Coconut cream decorated the top like latte art.
Brew & Bar’s décor is homely with Peranakan-inspired leanings, and there is also a cosy corner with antique furniture for one to ensconce in. Prices for the dishes here are steep, considering the portions — a hungry solo diner should be able to polish off one dish on his own, save the Nyonya Asam Pedas. I do think the food quality more than justifies the prices though. As the name suggests, Brew & Bar is well, also a bar. There is a fine selection of quaffs to wash the food down with. Happy hour starts from 7pm and lasts for two hours, with beers going at S$10 nett a pint.
Brew & Bar
Address: 6 Jalan Pari Burong
Time: 12pm to 11pm, closed on Sundays