The opening of the new chef-led sandwich shop, Park Bench Deli, has reinvigorated our love for these delicious creations. Sandwiches may be one of the easiest dishes to prepare but anyone who has ever tried to make a good sandwich knows how difficult it is to pimp it up from good to great. It's pretty much the only dish we like more layered than fashion. Here're our favourite places to have a sandwich around Singapore. Lettuce begin:
Opening on 20 July, Park Bench Deli or PBD's for short, is formed by Chef Ming Tan formerly of Lolla, Chef Andrei Soen of The Cajun Kings, and management extraordinaire Aamir Ghani, all of whom are no newbies to the world of F&B. We've tasted their wicked sandwiches at various pop-up dining events the past year and are thrilled to know they now have a permanent home.
We love their culinary seriousness in redefining the perimeters of sandwich making, all at a reasonable price point. Their menu draws from many different cuisines and features a rotating selection of sandwiches, but a sure-fire winner is the fried chicken sandwich. To skip the dreaded lunchtime crowds, grab a sandwich between 2 to 4pm. From 4pm till closing, it's Gua Baos only. PBD's experimental twist on the Taiwanese classic features steamed white buns stuffed with everything from stewed pork belly to duck confit that tastes like Peking duck.
179 Telok Ayer Street. Tel: 6815 4600
This laid-back family-run butcher, deli, and café makes what we call comfort sandwiches. Having access to the freshest quality produce gives Oh Deli its edge and you won't be disappointed with the hearty portions of the Scottish smoked salmon ciabatta or delectable ciabatta with chicken avocado and kurobuta bacon. If you're after a less carb-heavy but no less meaty option, go for the Dorper lamb wrap.
As the joint is run by three sisters who previously lived in Melbourne, the Aussie influence remains strong. Besides sandwiches, you can fill your belly with other rustic home-baked goodies. Before you leave, you can shop around for gourmet goodies to bring home and fill your larder with.
421 East Coast Road Singapore. Tel: 6440 4409
The name says it all — these guys know their sandwiches. Their sandwiches are served up between thick slices of fresh bread, so you'll never have to worry about leaving hungry. Self-professed bacon lovers (fun fact: their Wi-Fi password is 'ilovebacon') Sarnies cure their rations in-house. So if you make it down for breakfast before 11am on weekdays, do yourself a favour and order the bacon and eggs sarnie topped with tomato relish.
For lunch, ask for the chicken schnitzel, and if you really want to go to town, ask the staff to add bacon and tomatoes to it. Carb watchers, don't fret, you can turn any of these options into a wrap, too.
136 Telok Ayer Street. Tel: 62246091
The Hangar is an unusual name for a tiny place to go by, but what they lack in size, they make up for in personality. Grungy, low-key and helmed by Sarnies's ex barista Pav Khialani, it's a cosy place frequented by regulars who return for favourites such as the grass-fed beef sandwich with lemongrass, caramelised onions and shimeji mushrooms. Their coffee is pretty good too, so be sure to grab a cup to fight that post-meal lull.
25 Arab Street Singapore. Tel: 6291 0127
Some might be surprised to see 28 Hong Kong Street on this list since it's a cocktail bar that only opens at 6pm. This secret hideaway, which keeps a remarkably low profile online, is also quietly serving one of the best Reuben sandwiches in town. The pastrami sandwich features beef brisket that is brined for four days and dried for two days. It is then coated with a special home-made dry rub before being smoked and steamed.
Even the rye bread used for the sandwich is specially commissioned and baked by Chef Christophe Grilo to include caraway — a component typically missing from the European varieties of rye breads that get supplied to Singapore. The kicker? A homemade Russian dressing that they slather onto the bread before layering it with beef brisket and sauerkraut.
28 HongKong Street. Tel: 6533 2001