When everywhere else is a ghost town on Day 1 and 2.
It’s that time of the year again, where family members and friends from all over Singapore (and perhaps even beyond!) gather to usher in the new year, feast and be merry. But while visiting the homes of your nearest and dearest is a must among many Singaporeans, not everyone has the bandwidth to cater a full meal for their all guests. So where does one go to eat, when most shops and eateries are shut on the first and second day of the Lunar New Year? Don’t panic! We’ve sussed out a list of places that’ll stay open during Chinese New Year.
1. Hai Di Lao
Photo: Hai Di Lao’s Facebook
There’s truly no better meal to bond over with your family than good ol’ Sichuan hot pot. Renowned for their addictive soup bases, fresh ingredients, a wide range of customisable dipping sauces and an entertaining noodle waving demonstration, Hai Di Lao is the go-to treat that won’t disappoint. Just remember to make your reservation early, the regular three-hour wait just won’t cut it!
Hai Di Lao has several locations. Its Plaza Singapura outlet is at #04-01/20, 68 Orchard Road, Singapore 238839, tel: 6250 0990
2. Jumbo Seafood
Photo: Jumbo Seafood Official Instagram
Seafood is a must for most families when it comes to Chinese New Year meals, and where else does it better than Jumbo Seafood? Known for their live seafood, this household name does not disappoint. Don’t miss their award-winning signature chili crab, sliced abalone and range of dim sum items.
Jumbo Seafood has several outlets. its Dempsey Hill outlet is at #01-16, Block 11 Dempsey Road, Dempsey Hill, Singapore 249673, tel: 6479 3435.
Photo: IKEA Official Instagram
Heading to Ikea over the weekend with your family for some well-deserved meatballs, pasta, chicken wings and ice cream is definitely a major Singaporean pastime. You’ll be glad to extend the invite to all your relatives, since the IKEA restaurant’s self-service approach to dining makes feeding a crowd easy. While you’re there, why not grab some Lunar New Year themed homeware for your next gathering?
IKEA Tampines is at 60 Tampines North Drive 2, Singapore 528764, tel: 6786 6868, while IKEA Alexandra is at 317 Alexandra Road, Singapore 159965.
4. Din Tai Fung
Photo: Din Tai Fung Official Instagram
If your entire clan has a soft spot for dim sum, authentic Chinese dishes and traditional desserts, Din Tai Fung is the place to be. This trusty Taiwanese brand serves delicious fare that is perfect for communal dining. We recommend ordering their wildly popular Xiao Long Bao (steamed dumplings) — splurge on the Steamed Truffle & Pork Dumplings if you’re feeling generous. Other must-tries include their Chicken Soup, Fried Rice with Pork Chop, and Noodle with Minced Pork in Bean Sauce.
Din Tai Fung has several outlets. Its Raffles City outlet is at 252 North Bridge Rd, Singapore 179103, tel: 6336 6369.
5. Food Republic
Photo: Food Republic Official Instagram
Don’t you just love how affordable, accessible and convenient it is it eat at food courts? Good news for those in need of a meal on-the-go or a light afternoon snack – all Food Republic outlets (except Suntec, IHQ and Capitol Piazza) will remain open from the second day of Chinese New Year onwards.
Food Republic has several outlets. Its ION Orchard outlet is at #B4-03/04, Ion Orchard, 2 Orchard Turn,Singapore 238801, tel: 6509 9198.
6. Paradise Dynasty
Photo: Paradise Group Official Instagram
While Paradise Dynasty offers fantastic noodles, rice and dim sum dishes, they are best known for their xiao long baos. Available in innovative flavours like Crab Roe, Cheese, Garlic, Herbal, Ma La, Foie Gras and Black Truffle, these fusion baos ensure that you and your folks get a real gastronomical adventure.
Paradise Dynasty has several outlets. Its Westgate outlet is at #02-13 Westgate, 3 Gateway Drive, Singapore 608532, tel: 6465 9271.
7. Ippudo Ramen
Photo: Ippudo Ramen Official Instagram
Bored of Chinese food? Satisfy your cravings at this Japanese chain, where many ramen dishes and sides are available. Must-haves include its signature Shiromaru Motoaji, a creamy tonkotsu broth-based ramen with firm thin noodles, Samurai Ribs, and Pork Bun featuring its melt-in-your-mouth chashu nestled in a soft white bun.
Ippudo Ramen has several outlets. Its Marina Bay Sands outlet is at #B2-54/55, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, 2 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore 018972, tel: 6688 7064.
8. Zam Zam
Photo: Zam Zam Official Facebook
Known for its delicious murtabak — giant pockets of dough stuffed generously with meat like mutton, chicken or sardine — and fragrant Nasi Briyani, Zam Zam is usually open seven days a week and will be a reliable spot for satisfying hunger pangs during the Lunar New Year. This popular, two-storey Indian-Muslim restaurant (air-conditioning on the second floor) is always pretty crowded, but the chaos is worth it.
Zam Zam is at 697-699 North Bridge Road, Singapore 198675, tel: 6298 6320.
9. Al Jasra
Photo: Al Jasra Official Facebook
If you’re craving for a large supper in the middle of the night, you’ll be delighted with Al Jasra’s Prata Buffet. Not only do you get unlimited servings at just $7.90 per pax, but there are also 16 varieties of the doughy treat to try out! Perfect for those who live in the East, this special coffee shop is open 24 hours daily.
Al Jasra is at 459 Changi Road, Singapore 419882, tel: 6742 5786.
By Zoe Zeng