Singapore Craft Beer Bars: The Only Guide & Map You Need
It wasn’t that long ago when craft beer was an alien concept to this part of the world. My first Singapore craft beer event was a small fair in a function room in 2011. There were just a few distributors showcasing beers that I hadn’t tasted before, from India Pale Ales (IPAs) to Trappist beers.
Since then, the scene has grown massively. While it remains a small community that won’t make the commercial beer giants lose sleep any time soon, it’s spawned the Beerfest Asia festival and a homebrewing showcase. There have also been new craft beer bars, local microbreweries and imports practically every month. Even the average restaurant or hipster cafe stocks a few bottles and cans. It’s expensive to keep up, so I decided to create something useful from this pastime – a list that answers the question, ‘Where to drink craft beer in Singapore?’
Instead of a post that highlights a few bars, here’s a survey of the best Singapore craft beer spots that I have visited, grouped according to location. Click on the hyperlink to go straight to the full list of Singapore craft breweries and local craft beer bars and skip the introduction for newcomers.
Craft beer? In Singapore? What’s this?
Generally, we think of craft beer as the alternative to mass market beer like Budweiser, Tiger and Heineken. However, defining it is a lot trickier:
- Is it better in quality? There are some poorly-executed examples out there.
- Is it produced in limited quantities? Some breweries that started out as “craft” produce millions of barrels today.
- Is it produced using traditional methods? There are breweries that have been doing this for centuries in Europe, and others are using advancements like hop extracts and enzymes to produce new styles.
- Is it made by independent breweries? Macro breweries have bought over craft breweries (e.g. Ballast Point and Little Creatures) and started new lines (Archipelago and Blue Moon come to mind).
I’ll leave the definition to someone else who’s better qualified to talk about it.
Singapore craft breweries
If you want to find craft beers from Singapore to introduce to your guests from abroad, look for these names at the bars and restaurants around the island:
- The 1925
- Archipelago Brewery
- Binjai Brew
- Daryl’s Urban Ales
- Good Luck
- Little Island Brewing Co.
- Lion Brewery
- Pink Blossoms
- Rye & Pint
- That Singapore Beer Project
- Trouble Brewing
You should also try these Singapore meaderies:
Styles of beer
At almost all of the bars I’ve visited, you’ll face a selection of the following general beer styles:
- Lager: A beer that is bottom-fermented (i.e. the yeast sinks when it’s done) at cold temperatures. Pilsner is a Czech variant of this style that tends to use more hops.
- Ale: A beer that is top-fermented at somewhat warmer temperatures. There are many different types, but pale ales and their hoppier IPA cousins are among the most popular styles. ‘Pale’ just refers to the type of malt used. These tend to be fruitier in flavour even before the addition of hops for flavour and aroma.
- Wheat beer, Hefeweizen/Weißbier and Witbier: An ale that’s made with a good chunk of wheat in addition to the malted barley. You may get banana and clove-like aromas.
- Sour: The action of lactobacillus bacteria during fermentation gives the ale a sour flavour. Berliner Weiße and Gose are German wheat ales that have gone through this, and the latter has a touch of salt added to it. In lambic beers, wild yeast also produces strong, funky flavours.
- Saison: A style of ale that originated in the Wallonia region in Belgium. It tends to be floral and spicy.
- Stout and porter: Top-fermented ales brewed with heavily-roasted malts, like Guinness. They tend to taste and smell like chocolate or coffee. Sometimes, the brewer adds lactose to give it sweetness and a creamier body, making a milk stout.
- Cider and mead: Fermented apple juice and honey respectively. Rarely flavoured with hops unless otherwise stated.
A few other terms you might encounter are:
- Hops: the flower cones of hop vines are used to give beers aromas, bitterness and other flavours to balance the sweetness of the malt. Popular varieties include Saaz (which makes lagers spicy and floral), Citra (citrus-like aroma and flavour), Mosaic (pungent tropical mango and berries), Galaxy (passion fruit) and Nelson Sauvin (white wine).
- Dry-hopped: The hops are steeped in the beer after it has been boiled and cooled, extracting the flavours in a gentler manner and reducing the bitterness.
- Draft/draught: The beer is poured from a tap that’s connected to a keg. Is it better than canned or bottled beer? All are good as long as the beer is stored and transported in the right conditions and consumed at the appropriate time.
- IBU: International Bitterness Units, a measurement of the amount of bittering acids in a beer. The higher the number, the more bitter, but a well-balanced brew will still be drinkable.
- Malt: Barley that is activated by warming and soaking. The process reduces the starches in the grain to fermentable sugars. Roasting stops the process and the malt is boiled to extract the sugars.
- Adjuncts are other types of grains other than malted barley. Sometimes, they’re used to cut costs (corn and rice in mass market beer), but they may also be used to impart different flavours (rye and wheat) or add body (oats).
- Session beers tend to be lighter in body and alcohol content (less than 5.0%) to make it easier to drink large quantities continuously.
- On the other hand, imperial stouts and IPAs are stronger than their regular counterparts in flavour and alcohol content.
- Trappist beer: Beer brewed by Cistercian monks to support their way of life. Derived from the name of La Trappe Abbey. There are currently 12 beer-producing Trappist monasteries in Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria, Italy, England and the United States. The beers tend to be strong and sweet ales.
- As with wines and spirits, stronger beers may be aged to produce more complex flavours. Oak barrels may impart vanilla notes like in whiskies.
Singapore craft bars by region
I’ve added comments only if I’ve patronised the bar. Unlike other writers, I’ve chosen not to recommend any particular beer from each outlet. Outside of the breweries, the selections rotate all the time, so you may not find something I rave about when you drop by. At best, I can only provide a sense of what they tend to offer. Instead, take the opportunity to ask for samples. Talk to the staff about your preferences and pre-conceived notions and let them surprise you. Alternatively, you may want to check the ratings and tasting notes that other people have left on apps such as Untappd.
Warning: This being Singapore, craft beer appreciation is an expensive hobby. Also, please don’t drink and drive. That’s the only thing in this post you should take as gospel.
Chinatown craft beer bars
1 Kadayanallur Street, Maxwell Food Centre Stall 33
Mon – Thu: 5.30 – 10.30 p.m.; Fri: 12 – 11.30 p.m.; Sat: 12 – 8.30 p.m.; Sun 12 – 9.30 p.m.
3rd Culture are not (yet) a brewery but they serve draft craft beers at some of the lowest prices on this list. They get kegs from everyone, including the local microbrewers like Brewlander and Daryl’s Urban Ales. Beer comes only in 13-oz plastic cups. Once in a while, they hold takeovers where you can preorder drinks at discounted prices, and they run a loyalty card programme across both outlets. You’re in one of the best-known hawker centres in Singapore – go wild with the food pairings.
115 Amoy Street, #01-03
Mon – Wed: 11.30 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Thu – Sat: 11.30 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun 11.30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
To find the entrance, look out for a neon burger sign on the back alley closer to Gemmill Lane. Besides the New York outlet’s burgers, there are 18 taps of craft beer. Expect half- and full pints of Stone, Shiga Kogen, Pilsner Urquell and others you won’t find on tap anywhere else in Singapore. Hair of the Dog and The Bruery have made appearances, as have some Cloudwater and Omnipollo specials. The menu is sometimes dominated by stronger imperial IPAs and stouts with prices to match (plus GST and service charge). Still good fun if your wallet allows you to be extra-adventurous.
21A Boon Tat Street
Mon – Sat: 5 p.m. – 12 a.m. (Opens at 3 p.m. on Fri; closed on public holidays)
Freehouse is on the second floor of a shophouse (stairs only) that’s a stone’s throw from Lau Pa Sat. It’s a reliable place to find a few beers from New Zealand and Australia, and they almost always have a cider on one of the 16 taps. Beer is served in 10-oz middies, 16-oz pints and flights of four 5-oz glasses. There’s also a selection of cans and bottles in the fridge and fusion pub grub (think cereal fried frog legs, fries with ssamjang and Indian-inspired burgers).
55 Keong Saik Road, #01-01
Daily: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.
A venture between Young MasUp to ter Ales of Hong Kong and chef Vinny Lauria. There are serious restaurant-style dishes on The Guild’s menu that make use of locally-sourced seafood and vegetables. At least half of the taps are dedicated to Young Master’s beers, and you’ll get some that won’t appear elsewhere, e.g. Days of Being Wild. From the other taps flow Rogue ales, Garage Project, etc – and the house gin & tonic. Glasses are on the small side (200, 330 and 450 ml) so prices will seem a touch steep, especially with GST and service charge. However, there’s Happy Hour before 8 p.m to take advantage of.
55 Tras Street
Mon – Sat: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.
This is Heart of Darkness Brewery’s first outpost, and its award-winning core range and seasonal beers occupy most of the 30 taps. While there aren’t on-site brewing facilities to tour, serving sizes are similar to those at the taprooms in Saigon. That extends to the generously-sized flights. The other two glasses are a 12-oz “standard” and a US pint. Food – in the form of Vietnamese cuisine and the usual pub grub – is available and so is merchandise like caps and T-shirts.
36 Club Street
Daily: 8 a.m. – 12 a.m.
The Fremantle brewery that kickstarted the craft revolution Down Under set up shop in 2018. Favourites like the fruity Bright Ale, citrusy Pale Ale and malty Rogers Beer are brewed on-site. Food is sold throughout the day, which is cool for those who need the hair of the dog. Besides middies and schooners, you can also get your beer canned to take out.
13 Duxton Hill, #01-01
Mon – Sat: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun: 1 – 11 p.m.
As the name implies, SG Taps features Singapore craft beers on draft almost exclusively. Crossroads, Brewlander, Red Dot and Rye & Pint flow from the 10 Merlion-shaped taps. The fridge is dominated by local breweries too, but there are options from Japan, Hong Kong and Vietnam too. The kitchen serves up Japanese food like donburi, ramen, oden and wafu pizza.
335 Smith Street #02-062, Chinatown Complex
Mon – Thu: 6.30 – 10.30 p.m.; Fri: 5 – 11 p.m.; Sat: 2 – 10.30 p.m.
Most evenings, you’ll find beer geeks huddled around this stall in the corner of a recently-renovated hawker centre. The chances of running into a visiting craft brewer here are pretty high as well. Eleven draft beers from around the world are available, along with a draft cider and bottles at the unit that Good Beer Company used to occupy. Be prepared to commit to full US pints (16 oz; 10 oz for stronger beers) – there are no half-pints here. The prices hover around a reasonable (by Singapore standards) $15 for a drink.
Craft beer in Marina Bay
26 Beach Road, #B1-16
Mon – Thu: 4 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Fri, Sat: 4 p.m. – 2 a.m.
If Little Island is too far away for you, you can sample US pints of their beers here. At one point, the said beers were infused with different ingredients to impart new flavours. However, on my last visit, it was carried out only on the cocktails.
30 Victoria Street, #01-06, CHIJMES
Daily: 3 p.m. – 12 a.m.
The bar serves 16 beers on tap and a mod-Asian selection of bites. They do go to the trouble of highlighting the local beers on the menu, and in February 2019 that was around 40% of the taps. The standard serving size here is a 16-oz pint, though the more premium beers are also available in middies. The hard surfaces mean that the small enclosed space can get noisy, though.
36 Beach Road
Mon – Thu: 11.30 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Fri: 11.30 a.m. – 1 a.m.; Sat: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun: 12 – 9.30 p.m.
You can get steak and American diner-type dishes to go with the 15 taps, which comprise mostly of Stone, Deschutes, Kona and Little Creatures brews. Prices are nett and tiered according to style, and there can be discounts of up to $4 during Happy Hour. Tasting platters of four craft beers are also available.
6A Shenton Way, #01-01 Downtown Gallery
Mon – Fri: 11 a.m. – 10.30 p.m.; Sat: 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.
A short walk from Lau Pa Sat, Joyride is within the premises of The Autobus cafe. There are two taps of Devil’s Peak beers from South Africa (servings are in US pints) and there are more beers, ciders and natural wines from that country and the rest of the world in the fridge.
8 Marina Boulevard, #33-01
Mon – Thu: 11.30 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri, Sat: 11.30 a.m. – 2 a.m.; Sun 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.
While LeVeL33 touts itself as the world’s highest urban craft brewery, the main attraction is not the beer but the view of the Marina Bay area. An outdoor seat usually comes with minimum spending of $50 per head on food and drinks, but I got away without it on a quiet weekday afternoon. The house beers are easy to drink and may be sampled in a flight of five, besides the usual half and full pours. Note that the porter is but a blend of their stout and IPA, not a unique brew.
30 Victoria Street, #01-31, CHIJMES
Daily: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.
Serves up Moa beers from Marlborough, New Zealand with wines and gastropub fare. You can also order kegs and bottles of their beer. The core range of ales is safe but the pilsner is a good introduction.
9 Raffles Boulevard, #01-01 Millenia Walk
Daily: 12 p.m. – 1 a.m (2 a.m. on Fri, Sat)
The Bavarian microbrewery has been here since the mid-1990s. While they follow the Reinheitsgebot in the making of their beers, you might not know that they use the local tap water. Most days, there are just three beers to choose from: a light lager, a maltier dark lager and a Weissbier (the latter comes in 500-ml glasses only). In addition to these, there are seasonal beers like the Salvator (Lenten bock) and the Festbier. As you might expect, the menu features German cuisine extensively.
1 Raffles Link, #01-02
Mon, Tue: 11.30 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Wed – Sat: 11.30 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun: 11.30 a.m. – 10.30 p.m.
The main selling point at TAP is the price of the beers; $8 for 12 oz and $10 for 16 oz, plus GST and service charge for both. The latter price also applies to their wines and you can also get flights. The 20 taps at each outlet heavily feature American breweries like Stone, Lost Coast and Coronado, with a few English, Australian and Vietnamese picks. Bar bites like wings, wedges, ribs and pasta are available, now that both outlets have full kitchens.
Craft beer in Bugis
505 Beach Road, Golden Mile Food Centre, #01-62
Opening hours: 12 – 4 p.m.; 6 – 10 p.m.
A wee stall with four taps of American brews. It shares stall space with Coffee Fusion, which serves up inexpensive espresso drinks. There’s plenty of good food on both the first and second floors.
261 Waterloo Street, #01-23
Daily: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m. (closed on Christmas Day)
ATR boast an impressive 30 taps behind the bar. Glasses come in 7-oz tasters and 16-oz Spiegelau glasses, with some having an 11-oz option. Stone and Deschutes beers are a regular fixture but you’ll also find breweries from other countries. Besides these, full-sized meals, wines and spirits are also available. You can register as a member to get 2.5% back of your bill back and $20 to use on your birthday month.
120A Prinsep Street
Sun – Tue: 11 a.m. – 10.30 p.m.; Wed – Sat: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.
BUNKERBUNKER occupies the container space at DECK. While the selection is limited to bottles and cans of local and American/Australian/Kiwi/European craft beers, bar bites are available (except on Mondays). They publicise their weekend events on their website and social media channels.
119 Tyrwhitt Road
Mon – Thu: 4 p.m – 12 a.m.; Fri: 4 p.m. – 2 a.m.; Sat: 4 p.m. – 12.30 a.m.; Sun 2 – 10 p.m.
Set in an old terrace house that the Chinese Druggist Association used to occupy. With Mikkeller, To Øl, Lervig and more on the 24 taps, expect bold flavours. Serving sizes run a touch smaller than you’ll find elsewhere, though: small glasses are 200 ml and large ones just 420 ml. The food here can be described as Mod-Sin fusion bites.
9 Haji Lane
Daily: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.
Situated on Haji Lane, between Blu Jaz and the colourful Piedra Negra mural. You can get dim sum and the usual bar bites to go with one of the 12 beers on tap. Recently, these tend to feature local breweries like Brewlander, Daryl’s and That Singapore Beer Project. The same brewers are also behind Good Luck’s own beers, so give them a go too. Prices are nett and rarely exceed $13 for a half-pint and $18 for a full pint.
7 Purvis Street
Tue – Sun: 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.
Take the stairs to reach Mikkeller’s local outpost. The 25 taps feature mostly the Danish brewery’s products – think IPAs, stouts and the Spontan series of lambics. There are also light bites such as meatballs and bottled beers like those that are sold at The Great Beer Experiment. This is also the usual meeting point for the monthly Mikkeller Running Club events. Weather permitting, they take place on the first Saturday of the month; wear one of their T-shirts to enjoy a 200-ml glass of house beer after each run.
Craft beer on/near Orchard Road
181 Orchard Road, #11-03, Orchard Central
Sun – Thu: 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Fri, Sat: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.
Unlike the ribs restaurant chain’s other outlets, this features 10 taps of imported craft beers and a phenomenal view of Orchard Road below. At their Saturday Beer Club events, it’s $55++ for all the beers on free flow.
1 Tanglin Road, #01-02, Orchard Rendezvous Hotel
Sun – Thu: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri, Sat, eve of holidays: 12 p.m. – 1 a.m.
See the comments on the Brewerkz microbrewery in Clarke Quay.
501 Orchard Road, #02-01A Wheelock Place
Daily: 12 – 9 p.m.
The sister outlet to Druggists moved to the Orchard Road belt in 2018. Sells mostly bottles of Mikkeller (and their merchandise), To Øl, Pannepot, Orval and other Trappist beers from a kiosk, but they also have a couple of taps for local Rye & Pint beers. No other food here but there are seats.
178 Clemenceau Avenue, #B1-00 Haw Par Glass Tower
Mon – Thu: 11:30 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri: 11:30 a.m.- 2 a.m.; Sat: 5 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Hopheads draws a young crowd to its parties and there’s the option of playing beer pong and darts in the dark, ginormous space. Food takes the form of pasta, pizza, burgers and snacks, while pints of Stone, Deschutes and Young Master are often on tap.
313 Orchard Road, #01-26
Sun – Thu: 11.30 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri, Sat: 11.30 a.m. – 1 a.m.
Another of the early movers. Being Japanese-themed, one can order yakitori skewers with draft Hitachino Nest beers and sake. The 10 taps may also pour Fourpure, Brewdog, St Austell, Gweilo and more. Half pints, full pints and flights are served and there is an additional charge for the stronger beers. Pricing depends on what time you show up, but they’re at their cheapest before 6 p.m. There’s a Beer Rewards points programme across the related outlets: earn a free pint for every 10.
500 Clemenceau Avenue North, Stall 71 Newton Food Centre
Wed – Mon: 4.30 p.m. – 2 a.m.
The same beers you’d get from OnTap Craft Bistro, paired with food from the hawker centre that appeared in the Crazy Rich Asians film.
25A Dempsey Road #01-01
Mon – Thu: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri: 12 p.m. – 2 a.m.; Sat: 3 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Sun: 10.30 a.m. – 11 p.m.
333 Orchard Road, Level 5 lobby, Mandarin Orchard Hotel
Daily: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.
The air-conditioned sister outlet to Jibiru is in the lobby of the Mandarin Orchard Hotel across the road. The eight taps usually feature Japanese craft beer labels like Hitachino Nest, Sankt Gallen, Shiga Kogen and Minoh, and there’s more of the same in bottles as well. Fourpure or Brewdog brew may also appear and you can also order whisky and other spirits from Bar on 5. Prices are higher (though there are staggered happy hour prices) but you get cocktail nuts to munch on.
Craft beer in Clarke Quay and Boat Quay
30 Merchant Road, #01-05/06, Riverside Point
Daily: 12 noon – 12 midnight (Fri, Sat, eve of holidays: 1 a.m.)
Started brewing their own beers decades before craft beer became a thing in Singapore. Bottles, growlers, kegs and pub grub are also available. The range includes six core beers, two seasonal specials and three guest taps. You can have them in anything from an 11-oz stem to a 4-litre tower to a flight of four 4-oz glasses. The TV screens show live sports channels so you don’t have to choose between watching football and good beer.
8 Mohamed Sultan Road
Tue – Sun: 3 p.m. – 11 p.m.
I haven’t been to this outlet but you can see my comments on Nickeldime in Novena.
3B River Valley Road, #01-09/10, The Foundry, Clarke Quay
Sun – Fri: 6 p.m. – 3 a.m.; Sat: 6 p.m. – 4 a.m.
33/34 Boat Quay
Mon – Thu: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri: 12 p.m. – 2 a.m.; Sat: 3 p.m. – 1 a.m.
86 Robertson Quay, #01-02
Mon, Tue: 4 – 11 p.m.; Wed – Fri: 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sat: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun 12 – 11 p.m.
What I wrote about the One Raffles Link TAP outlet also applies.
81 Clemenceau Avenue, #01-12, UE Square
Mon – Sat: 12 p.m. – 11 p.m., Sun: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Temple Cellars started as a bottle shop with door-to-door chilled deliveries of craft beer, natural wines and boutique spirits, but they now also have eight taps and occasionally organise craft produce fairs. Draft beer comes in 10-oz glasses. You can also order online and pick up from the shop.
Craft brews in the east of Singapore
261 Joo Chiat Road
Tue – Sun: 11 a.m. – 1 a.m.
51 Old Airport Road, Old Airport Road Food Centre Stall 144
Wed – Fri: 6.30 – 10.30 p.m.; Sat: 4.30 – 10.30 p.m.; Sun 4.30 – 9.30 p.m.
There are a couple of differences from the sister outlet at Maxwell: there’s a fridge full of bottles and cans, and beers come in 16-oz glasses. Note that the selections at the two stalls rarely overlap, and the events take place at only one outlet, not both. To make it easier to find the stall, go to the easterly end of the food centre closer to Dakota MRT station. On Wednesdays, you get two free beers when you complete their loyalty card here.
2 Stadium Walk, #01-06/07 Singapore Indoor Stadium
Mon – Thu: 5 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri, Sat: 12 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Sun: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.
(Closes at 1 a.m. on eve of holidays and re-opens at 12 p.m. the next day)
6 Changi Village Road, #01-01/02
Mon – Thu: 12 – 11 p.m.; Fri: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sat: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.
This is a very chill place where you can sit outdoors and watch planes land and take off from Changi Airport. American- and Australian-style food is on the menu for brunch, lunch and dinner, and a barbecue or paella special takes place occasionally. As for their own beer, there’s no fixed size. You purchase a charge card, top it up with at least $10 and use it to pour as much or as little of each brew yourself. You can also ask the staff for help if you want to taste a little of each before committing.
685 East Coast Road
Mon – Wed: 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Thu: 4 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Fri, Sat: 3 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Sun: 3 p.m. – 12 a.m.
This relaxed gastropub in the Siglap area serves dinner and comes with both indoor and outdoor seating. The 12 taps draw mainly Fourpure and Brewdog beers but there are others too. And if it matters to you, each beer is served in that brewery’s glassware. You can watch live sports on the TV here as well.
5 Changi Business Park Central 1, #01-70/71 Changi City Point
Mon – Sat: 11.30 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun 5 p.m. – 12 a.m.
What I wrote for the CHIJMES Moa outlet also applies, except you’ll find more of an office crowd here on weekdays.
50 Ubi Ave 3, #01-12
Mon – Fri: 5 p.m. – 11 p.m.; Sat, Sun, holidays: 2 p.m. – 11 p.m.
The Pink Blossoms brewery taproom is in an industrial estate with few dinnertime options. Thankfully, you’re allowed to bring your own food and Ubi MRT station is a short walk away. The Lean on Me New England pale ale and the Hundred Years milk stout are the core beers, while the seasonal beers tend to be hazy pales and IPAs brewed with different hop varieties. For now, they come only in full-sized pints; flights would be nice.
328 Joo Chiat Rd #01-03
Mon – Fri: 3 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Sat – Sun: 1 p.m. – 1 a.m.
Changi Airport Terminal 1 (transit area #02-39)
24 hours daily
When I last visited in March 2019, Stone, Brewlander and Lost Coast were among the pints available. Prices are steep but if you can only afford to remain in the transit area, this is where you can sample local craft beer on tap. Other forms of booze are also available.
Craft brews in the west of Singapore
77 Ayer Rajah Crescent
Daily: 9 a.m. to 12 a.m. except Sunday (10 p.m.)
As the name implies, they sell chilled bottled craft beer and cider from $10. There are macro brews and whisky highballs on tap as well. For food, patronise the hawker stalls in at lunchtime and the food trucks in the evening. It can get pretty raucous especially when there’s live music.
50 Tiong Bahru Rd, #01-03, Link Hotel
Mon – Fri: 5 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sat: 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun: 4 – 10.30 p.m.
Canjob, formerly known as Booze Pharma-C and Little Papa’s Wieners, occupies a cosy unit in Link Hotel. There are four beers on tap along with cocktails and a fridge stocked with the usual selection, plus a couple of Spanish beer and cider imports. You can also get the draft beers to go in 11-oz/330-ml cans. As befits its former guise, the grub takes the form of hot dogs and meat pies.
120 Bukit Merah Lane 1, #01-05 Alexandra Village Hawker Centre
Tue – Sun: 11.30 a.m. – 2 p.m., 6.30 – 9 p.m.
The drink choices at Danger Close aren’t limited to the handful of imported and local craft brews on tap. They also offer espresso, nitro cold brew coffee, gongfu tea and even sparkling gourmet tea on tap. Recently (May 2019), there were also bottles of Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout. It a pity, though, that the short opening hours and proximity to houses dictate how long the post-meal drinks last. Half and full US pints are the serving sizes here.
31 Bukit Batok Crescent, #02-01 The Splendour
Mon – Fri: 12 – 2.30 p.m., 6 – 11 p.m.; Sat: 6 – 11 p.m. (Closed on public holidays)
21 Jurong Town Hall Road, Level 2, Snow City
Mon – Fri: 12 – 3 p.m., 6 – 10 p.m.; Sat – Sun: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.
3 Depot Close, Level 4
Mon – Sat: 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
There are just pints and jugs of Trouble Brewing’s beers in this canteen but it’s hard to argue with the prices they’re offered at. Wine is also available.
2 Science Park Drive, Savourworld #01-23
Mon – Thu: 4 – 11 p.m.; Fri, Sat: 4 – 11.45 p.m.
The GBC name started as a hawker stall that sold bottled craft beer in the early 2010s. It’s since changed hands and moved to Kent Ridge, though the signage remains near Smith Street Taps. From the eight taps flow pints of Brewdog, Fourpure, St Austell and Hitachino Nest, but the fridge also stocks more than 200 different beers that various distributors bring in from around the world. Food can be bought at the other restaurants that make up Savourworld and you can sit outdoors or inside the bar’s air-conditioned premises.
Craft bars to the north of Singapore
1010 Upper Serangoon Road
Sun – Thu: 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Fri, Sat: 4 p.m. – 1 a.m.
Only macro on tap here but the fridge is stocked with craft beers, ciders and mead.
215F Upper Thomson Road
Mon – Fri: 4 – 11 p.m.; Sat, Sun: 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.
While Birdy’s is a dog-friendly all-day dining establishment, it’s run by one of Singapore’s craft distributors. This is the place to come to if you use the hair of the dog as a hangover cure. It gets really packed here on weekend mornings when folks descend for brunch. However, they also have one tap for Sapporo, three taps of Australian/Kiwi/American craft beer, and one guest tap, all served in 16-oz nonick glasses. In addition, they stock canned Garage Project beers, natural wines and a few spirits.
275 Thomson Road
Sun – Thu: 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Fri, Sat: 11 a.m. – 1 a.m.
Across the road from the Novena Church, just in case you feel guilty. Beer-inspired pub grub, pizza and burgers to go with the 20 taps. Their beers come from various sources, so you’ll find Deschutes, Lervig, Heart of Darkness, Yeastie Boys and more. One size only and that’s a 16-oz pint. Premier League football matches are also shown on a big screen here.
10 Jalan Serene, #01-03 Serene Centre
Tue – Thu, Sun: 4 – 11 p.m.; Fri, Sat: 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.
Orh Gao (‘black dog’ or stout in Hokkien lingo) shares its premises with a Killiney Kopitiam franchise. If you’re so inclined, you can have your beer with kaya toast and eggs when their hours overlap. After that, the kitchen makes pasta, fish and chips, otah-otah (spicy fish paste) sandwiches and other finger food. 300-ml servings and full pints are available from the 10 taps, and the choices are supplemented by bottles in the fridge.
398 Upper Bukit Timah Rd, The Rail Mall (the smaller section south of the carpark)
Tue – Fri: 5 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sat: 3 p.m. – 12 a.m.; Sun 3 – 11 p.m.
This gastropub is as close to the northwest as the revolution has got. There are usually Brewdog, Fourpure and Hitachino Nest beers among the eight taps but there is also an extensive selection in the fridge. Half and full pints are served but you can also have a tasting rack of four draft beers. The kitchen whips up the standard pub fare like burgers, pasta and fish and chips. They also organise Trails & Ales, a monthly trail run in the surrounding Bukit Timah area that is followed by $10-pints of selected beers.
Bottle shops in Singapore
Besides Temple Cellars, you can buy and take home bottled and canned beer from these local establishments. You can also order craft beer online from them (click on the links) and arrange deliveries.
1 Jalan Anak Bukit, #B1-15 Bukit Timah Plaza
Daily: 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.
The selection here comes from the world over and also features a few harder-to-find bottles. You get a 5% discount when you purchase six bottles, while a dozen gets you 10% off. They keep a bottle/can of each beer they have in a fridge as well.
370 Alexandra Road, #B1-42 Anchorpoint Shopping Centre
Daily: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
211 Holland Avenue #02-12 Holland Road Shopping Centre
Daily: 10.30 a.m. – 8 p.m.
501 Bukit Timah Road #02-19 Cluny Court
Daily: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
The Anchorpoint outlet features American beers almost exclusively, a few of which you won’t see at the other two. All the outlets have a fridge with one of each beer, and for a dollar per can/bottle consumed, you can drink a chilled one on the premises. Disposable plastic cups are supplied. From experience, it’s not easy to get hold of them on the phone (through no fault of theirs), so try e-mail and Facebook messenger.
Homebrewing supplies in Singapore
Yeah, I know the price of booze in Singapore is ridiculous. However, did you know that you can make up to 30 litres of beer a month per household without a license? As long as you don’t sell it, distil it or create a nuisance, it’s legal. If you want to try brewing your own beer, you can start out at either of these places. I doubt you can discuss beer at length with another geek in the same way when you buy from Amazon.
16 Arumugam Road, #02-02A LTC Building D
Tue – Fri: 3 – 8 p.m.; Sat – Sun: 12 – 6 p.m.
354 Clementi Ave 2, #01-195
Wed – Sat: 2 – 6 p.m.; Sun: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
If you’d like to meet other homebrewers and aficionados, you can join Craft Brew Asia or any of local Telegram/WhatsApp homebrewing groups that I don’t know of.
Establishments that have closed
Even though the craft beer scene in Singapore is growing, the cost of doing business takes its toll occasionally. These are some of the players that have exited over the last few years – a moment of silence for them, please:
- Brewers Craft
- Five Marbles
- Jungle Brewing
- The Dragonfly
The SG craft beer bar map
I’ve pinned the above bars and shops and others I know on the map below. I hope this list has been useful! It’s a constant work-in-progress, so it’s not always accurate, and I’m grateful to the local craft beer community for their valuable input.
First published: 6 January 2019