From pop-up to a permanent eatery, The Salted Plum is making waves when it comes to serving up great tasting, value-for-money Taiwanese fare in the CBD. It is surprising that with a vibrant food culture like ours, Taiwanese cuisine does not feature as prominently as one would think. The Salted Plum’s Chef Shawn Koh is here to change all that with a menu full of Taiwanese classics. But its more than just the food, it’s the casual, fun vibe where you catch yourself involuntarily singing along to Mandopop hits of the 2000s that makes this the perfect lunch spot.

Conveniently located along Boat Quay, The Salted Plum is soon to be your favourite lunch joint with its $10 Lunch Bowls. You cannot go wrong with the Lou Rou Fan and the Steak Rice, which you might already know about if you’ve ever been to the Five Ten pop-up, but the Burnt Chili Chicken Rice offered at The Salted Plum is providing stiff competition. The succulent pieces of seared chicken perfectly tender to the bite are brought to another level with the ‘burnt chilli’ and coriander combination giving it a subtle but noticeable kick. The sous-vide egg gels all the components of this rice bowl together making it a simple, satisfying meal.

The Taiwanese Tapas concept is perfect for Singaporeans who want to try a little of everything. Indulge in affordable side dishes like the karaage-styled Fried Chicken ($10) that is simply addictive. Marinated with soy and sesame, deep fried to perfection and served with a delectable Nori Mayo dip, this popular Taiwanese Street Food is a must. Another Taiwanese street snack served here is the Taiwanese Sausage Patties ($10) – you’ll never go back to pasar malam Taiwanese Sausage after these made from scratch juicy patties. By adding five-spice powder (wu xiang fen) and toning down the honey, Chef Shawn has made this dish more savoury and complex in terms of flavour.

For those lamenting the lack of greens, order up the Brussel Sprouts and Shitake Mushrooms ($10). These crunchy Brussel Sprouts sauteed with salted pork and sherry vinegar are crunchy and have a smokey flavour which has converted naysayers like me. The vinegar comes off a tad strong but the texture of the Brussel sprouts is lovely. The Haus Bacon ($10) otherwise known as the salted pork, is perfectly juicy with just the right amount of fat. Be cautioned, it is salty but after squeezing the lime and eaten with the free flow plain AAA white rice it hits the spot. Get the Shiny Rice ($0.50) drizzled with lard and garlic oil, for some extra umami (and for the ‘gram).

The drinks menu is slim, with non-alcoholic options like Red Tea and Salted Plum Juice ($5 for a decanter) and few boozy options of white wine, cava or Taiwanese Beer. The dessert menu comprises solely of Red Tea Jelly with Pearls and Cream ($5), a deconstructed bubble milk tea that is more than just the sum of its parts. Perfect for sharing because a little goes a long way.

There is a bright future in store for The Salted Plum that hopefully includes more drink options, especially of the alcoholic nature as it is perfectly situated for an after work drinks hang out. That said, the menu is full of great value for money options that every Singaporean will enjoy!

The Salted Plum is located at 10 Circular Road, Singapore 049366, p.+65 6260 0155. Open Mon-Sat 12pm-3pm, 6pm-10pm.