Cafe, bistro, eatery – it’s hard to tell the difference sometimes. But frankly, does it really matter what it is? As long as the food is good, the ambience, prices and service are decent, I’m happy.
The Betterfield is a new cafe/bistro that recently opened almost literally next door to Mosaic Dance, the studio at which I teach salsa. So you can imagine it has been a welcome addition to the Queen/Waterloo Street area for me, where tze char (local stir fried dishes) and cai fan (mixed dishes with rice) feature rather strongly.
Don’t get me wrong I do love my local food, just not for every meal! Variety is the spice of life, for me anyway. And I’m only referring to food here, okay.
Anyway, back to The Betterfield – it seems like a cafe in the sense that it has a fancy coffee machine that serves up pretty decent coffee and all day breakfast items, yet not quite so as they also offer items like steak and duck confit on their menu and their decor is simple and very un-hipster.
Whatever it is, I like the food there. The menu is rather straightforward – main dishes like steak, duck and burgers, egg dishes like omelette and poached eggs, and a range of salads. Plus some sides like fried chicken and sauteed mushrooms with spinach.
And so over the 3 times I’ve visited so far, here’s what I’ve tried.
The Black Angus Ribeye (S$20 for 200g, S$35 for 400g and S$50 for 600g)
This is amazingly good for the price! I think I have never eaten S$20 steak that tasted so good… We had it rare and it was delightfully tender and filled the senses with intense flavour.
The truffle wholegrain mustard sauce that came with it was delicious too, but not really all that necessary as the steak itself shone sufficiently as the star of the dish. Still, it was nice to have a tasty sauce with some bite to go with the lovely meat!
Blackmore Wagyu Marbling 9 Steak (S$21 for 200g)
This was a special on the menu for the week, and it too was done nicely to a rare/medium rare. The beef was flavourful and enjoyable, though I actually preferred the regular Angus ribeye (more melt-in-your-mouth).
Again, this was a really value-for-money dish – close to the standard of or even better than some restaurants but half or less than half the price.
Sauteed Mushrooms and Spinach (S$7)
We had this once as a side for the steak. It was nicely seasoned, tasted mildly of pepper and garlic, and I think had a light dash of cream which lifted the dish.
Truffled Mushroom Scrambled Eggs (S$16)
I like this dish very much. The eggs and mushroom were creamy and just bursting with flavour.
The truffle for me personally was not quite strong enough, but the chef said that he did use quite a bit of it to bring out the taste, which was indeed nice – perhaps more might have overpowered the rest of the ingredients.
Secret Thai Chilli Chicken and Goddess Chicken (S$14.50 and S$13)
These are two of the sides offered on the menu, which are both essentially fried chicken wings but with additional sauces. If you like fried chicken plain and simple, they have an Original Fried Chicken option too at S$11.50.
I’d recommend getting the Secret Thai Chilli version though – the additional $3 is well worth it for the wings to come coated in that beautiful tangy sauce that packs a sweet and sour punch. The Goddess one comes with a light sour cream sauce on the side.
Gourmet Ice Cream Sandwich, various flavours (S$7)
The Betterfield doesn’t make desserts in-house, but they do offer gourmet ice cream sandwiches by the ice cream & cookie co.
I tried the Toasted Marshmallow (with a brown sugar cookie) – not really a huge fan of the Western ice cream sandwiches (I like the local S$1 push cart kind), but hey, it’s hard not to enjoy flavours like toasted marshmallow and brown sugar.
Some other items on the menu I didn’t try but heard some feedback from friends – that the duck confit was alright and the Asian duck salad was yummy. Also saw a pasta dish that a friend was eating the other day that looked rather appetizing…
Overall, I am rather fond of the food, which feels like it is cooked with heart, and the highly personalised and warm service that comes with a small, personally run place.
The prices are nett, and it seems that they recently launched a new menu on Vesak Day, so I will have to go visit again soon to see what else they have up their sleeves!
261 Waterloo Street
#01-23 Waterloo Centre
100 High Street
#01-03, The Treasury
Tel: +65 6694 2361
Opening Hours: 11.00am to 3.00pm for lunch and 6.00pm to 10.00pm for dinner daily.