Good food = motivation to go to school
Travelling all the way to NUS might be a chore for most, but this list of food places could give you some extra motivation to go to school. From fancy Italian to classic Japanese, we’ve got you covered. With the free shuttle bus service around NUS, you can also spend the entire day hopping around for different choices. Whether you’re a student, alumnus or just a very hungry foodie, here are 10 places within the campus you can fill yourself up at.
1. Alcove Asian Restaurant Bar
Alcove is perhaps the most hidden restaurant ever in the whole of NUS. Tucked away at the University Cultural Centre, this is the zi char place many have heard of but have never tried. Serving a variety of dishes such as Fried Rice ($5), Beef Stir-fry with Rice ($5.50) and Claypot Noodles ($5), it is a good place for big groups with varying tastes and preferences for food. NUS staff and students get additional discounts by producing identification cards, so check this place out when you can!
Address: 50 Kent Ridge Crescent, NUS University Cultural Centre, Singapore 119279
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 10am to 9pm
Tel: 6777 0050
2. Spice Table by Pines
Serving comfort food at food court prices in a casual environment, Spice Table is a halal establishment located right behind the UTown bus stop. Offering Asian fusion food such as Indonesian-style Sambal Fried Rice ($5), Japanese Beef Teriyaki Set ($8.50) and Chicken Baked Rice ($6.50), it certainly challenges the common misconception that NUS students have of the place as being solely a zi char joint with high prices. Though it might look quiet given its inconspicuous location, it is definitely worth a try!
Address: 1 Create Way, #01-12, Town Plaza, University Town @ NUS
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 10:30am to 10pm
Tel: 6339 9912
3. Sin Kee Chicken Rice
Sin Kee Chicken Rice is a relatively new addition to the plethora of food at The Deck in the Arts faculty. It is easy to identify the stall with its long queue during peak hours that very often extends and significantly blocks the main passage of the centre of the lower deck. This humble chicken rice stall used to be located at Margaret Drive Food Centre and has become a sensation among NUS students, with some of my friends literally eating it on a daily basis. Priced at $2.30 per plate, you can add anything you want and it will probably remain below $5.
Address: 5 Arts Link, Level 5, Block AS7, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, Singapore 117570
Opening Hours: Mon- Fri 7:30am to 4pm, Sat 7:30am to 3pm
4. Humble Origins
Opened in 2012, Humble Origins has stood the test of time with its constant improvements in terms of variety and quality. Located outside LT12 at the Arts faculty, the café is difficult to miss with students hanging out in the area before and after lectures in the afternoon. Serving a bunch of café selections such as waffles ($6.50), pancakes ($5) and paninis ($6), Humble Origins also offers a Rosti with bacon and sunny side up ($7.50) that you can add spicy pulled pork to for another $1.50. Their coffees are also pretty decent with the option of switching to soy, which is perfect for those who are lactose intolerant.
Address: 1 Arts Link, Singapore 117568
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 8:30am to 6pm
5. The Royals Bistro
Many would have recalled the old Wendy’s that suffered a terrible closure, however, its new occupant, The Royals Bistro, has been doing relatively well with a constant stream of students and staff alike. I like its spacious and decorated interior, not to mention the strong air conditioning, which could potentially be the main draw of the café – okay, I might be exaggerating. The café offers a variety of western food such as Beef Shepherd’s Pie ($8.50) and Braised Lamb Shank ($16.90). They’ve also got pretty looking cakes like rainbow cake and red velvet cake, but the selection changes weekly and are subjected to availability. Hint: The Royals Bistro could be a great venue for a casual date in NUS!
Address: 1 Create way, Create Tower University Town @NUS, Singapore 138602
Opening Hours: Mon-Sat 11am to 8:30pm
Tel: 9777 1353
“Now you sashimi, now you don’t”. With their adorable puns and lovely packaging, it is almost impossible to resist buying yourself a Maki-San. The best part is you can easily get these irresistible rolls right at NUS Science, though I must warn you the queues are long during lunch hours. From being able to choose from pre-curated rolls to customizing your own by ticking boxes on the order form provided, there is something for everyone at Maki-san. Given that prices are 20% lower than the outlets outside of NUS, it is definitely worth it to cross the campus for some awesome sushi rolls!
Address: NUS Science Drive 2, #LT25, Singapore 119077
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 11am to 7pm, Sat 11am to 3pm
Tel: 6737 8772
7. Sapore Italiano
Sapore Italiano offers a cozy and quiet environment for a nice meal with friends or to engage in people watching. Also, it could be the only place that serves alcohol in the whole of NUS, so now you know where to go when you need booze. Although it may sound too fancy for your wallets, the prices here are actually quite reasonable, with pastas and pizzas priced below $20. Tortellini al Nero di Seppia ($16.90+) and Risotto Al Funghi Porcini ($14.90+) are some of the better dishes there. Gelato is also available and you can enjoy them at UTown green or the breezy alfresco seating area.
Address: 1 Create Way, NUS University Town, Singapore 138602
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 11am to 9:45pm
Tel: 6684 5137
8. Platypus Food Bar
Platypus is one of my favourite places to eat at NUS as it is a great option if you are craving for some freshness but are unwilling to pay exorbitant prices for lettuce. Offering a variety of salad bowls in different sizes- small ($6.90), medium ($8.90) and large ($10.90) that consist of protein, veggie and cold pasta, Platypus is no doubt a healthier option compared to other food places at NUS. Though salads may sound unsatisfying, I can promise you the small bowl is sufficient to help you survive a lecture. Also, the café itself is well designed with large tables and dim lighting that add an extra touch of comfort, which could make you forget you are actually dining in school!
Address: 16 Science Drive 2, Science Block S16, National University Of Singapore, Singapore 117546
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 7:30am to 8pm
Tel: 6778 9104
9. Butter My Buns
“Don’t be fooled by our name; we do more than buttering your buns”. With such a cute name, Butter My Buns certainly draws our curiosity as to what they have to offer. Opened by the founders of The Tiramisu Hero at Jalan Besar, Butter My Buns is their latest creation that offers a whole host of coffee, breakfast, waffles and desserts. The main draw of the café is probably the freedom to build your own breakfast, with a wide selection of breakfast option such as eggs ($3), portobello mushrooms ($2.50), waffle hash ($2.50) and mac&cheese ($3). Their signature Belgian waffles such as the Honey Truffle Belgian Waffles ($12) and crepes are also worth a mention. If you’re looking for Korean Bingsu but are too lazy to travel to Westgate for Nunsaram, Butter my Buns can help satisfy your cravings with their variety of flavours such as Oreo, honey vanilla and Rafaello!
Address: 2 College Ave West, Stephen Riady Centre, Singapore 138607
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 10:30am to 9pm
Tel: 6262 1649
10. Waa Cow!
Located at Utown, Waa Cow! is a relatively new establishment that replaced the old Taiwanese stall. With a clean and minimalist interior, it certainly stands out from the other food places at NUS. Their popular mains include Signature Wagyu Beef Rice Bowl ($17.90) and Aburi Bara Chirashi Bowl ($16.90), which you would have probably come across on Instagram. Other sides such as Sweet Garlic Soy Glazed Chicken Wings ($8.90) and Shrimp Karaage With Mentaiko Mayo ($6.90) are also worth a try. Though the menu is slightly limited as compared to other Japanese establishments, the quality and taste are consistent and guaranteed to keep you coming for more. Plus, NUS students are entitled to a 10% discount off their total bill – Waa Cow!
Address: 2 College Avenue West, #01-06, NUS UTown, Stephen Riady Centre, Singapore 138607
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 11:30am to 3pm
Tel: 8168 8777
Eat, study, sleep, repeat
Don’t say there is nothing to eat at NUS because your friends can challenge your assumptions by sending you this link on Facebook. Alternatively, NUS students, this could be your way of showing how awesome the NUS campus is. Let us know if you’ve got anymore food places in NUS to recommend!