The Lokal Review

Around the area of Outram Park and Tanjong Pagar, specifically Neil Road, Duxton and Bukit Pasoh… There are quite a few Restaurants, Cafes and Bars received hyped-up reviews, but can all these be true? Today, I hit a Restaurant, Cafe and Bar called The Lokal along Neil Road to find out…

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Yea, I know, this place seems a little too Hipstery and Mainstream for me… But, it was chosen by my Sis for her Birthday Brunch, what to do haha? Anyway, it was quite packed (No surprises there) on a Sunday Morning, apparently… They do a killer and unique Sunday Brunch, but more on that later…

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Yeah, so while waiting for a table, I sat at the Bar counter and stared at the Coffee Machine under the control of a skilled Barista… The Coffee Machine was quite impressive, I couldn’t figure out which brand was that, but it was big and it featured a glass cover at the front, which showed some of the inner workings of the Machine.

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Finally after about 20 minutes (and a stroll down the street to the entrance of Restaurant Andre), we were ushered to a square table which barely managed to fit a party of 4… I didn’t really mind that though, as I had a great view of the open Kitchen at work… Also, there is a little counter right in front of the kitchen that can sit 4, where you can see the Cooks and the Australian Executive Chef at work… But, I am guessing you need to be a regular (or just lucky), to sit at the ‘Chef’s Table’.

Now, like I was saying, their menu is quite interesting, they don’t offer quite a few classic Brunch dishes like Eggs Benedict, but instead, they do their own twists on dishes which will you see soon…

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Now, to start any ‘Non-Champagne’ Sunday Brunch, you need a pick-me-up, a Flat White ($5.00) is my kind of poison. Oh yeah, before I forget, Lokal’s Coffee is from Common Man Coffee Roasters, a great suppliers of amazing Coffee Beans… Well, Lokal did do it justice, nutty with a medium-bodied finish and a great aroma… Sadly, it was a little Tannic though…

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This is the Warm Mackerel Salad ($18.00). Honestly, this was one of the best salads I have had (And I hardly eat Salads). The Mackerel was smoked in-house, and had a great smoky flavour, stronger than most Smoked Salmon I have had, the dressing was warm, sweet with a tinge of acidity… And the salad wasn’t drenched in it, well-dressed and crafted with Cucumbers and Pickled Onions, a Must-Order!

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This is their French Toast ($16.00) with Bacon, Ricotta and Maple Syrup. One thing I really can’t stand, is thin and soggy French Toast… But, Lokal’s one was Thick and Crispy, and the Bacon was dry and crisp, but the Ricotta didn’t blend well and was a little superficial.

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This is their speciality, Pulled Pork Belly Burger ($18.00). Served on a Charcoal Bun, nothing special about it, the Pulled Pork was tender, but extremely dry.

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This is a custom Pimp my Breakfast plate, consists of Pumpernickel Toast ($1.75), Fried Eggs ($5.00), Wilted Spinach ($4.00) and Pork Sausages ($6.00). Egg was well-fried, but I would have preferred a slightly crispy bottom and runnier Yolk… Well, I guess this would be an alternative to their already crafted dishes, but it wouldn’t be necessarily cheaper, that plate looked quite plain, but it costs $16.75… Well, you get the picture…

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Now, on to something only available after 11am for Sunday Brunch, the Sunday Roast ($26.00)! Now, their Sunday Roasts varies from time to time, they had a choice of Roasted Chicken or Leg of Lamb when I visited…

As you can probably see, I had the Roasted Leg of Lamb with Middle-Eastern Cous Cous and a Spiced Yoghurt Sauce. Now, I would suggest you request for a Steak knife if you don’t get one with your dish, the Butter Knife is quite useless with Red meat… Now, onto the Lamb, it was roasted to a Medium Rare, and it had a strong gamey taste, which could put people who do not eat Gamey meats off… It was quite lean, but then a little tough and chewy at parts, the roasting should have tenderised it more. The Cous Cous was Al-dente and had Tomatos and Raisins… Slightly spicy as well, and the Yoghurt toned it down!

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Finally, to end off the Sunday Brunch, a slice of Carrot Cake ($10.00). Yea I know, it is quite expensive for just a slice of cake, but it was quite good, not overly sweet, a little too dense though… And the Cream Cheese frosting was thick and sticky, but a little grainy, weirdly…

In conclusion, yes, The Lokal, like everyone says, is good and all of its hype is justified with good food… But, as I said… It is a bit of a hipster cafe, but it is one that focuses on Food, a food-centric joint… That being said though, it wouldn’t be a cafe that you could hang out at all day…

Overall Rating:8/10

The Lokal
136 Neil Road
S088865

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