If you’ve got a hankering for meat-centric dining, it’s often upmarket steakhouses that come to mind. But for a more primal dining experience in a casual setting, set your sights on one of these barbecue restaurants in Singapore that have mastered the timeless art of cooking with fire. This list of fantastic BBQ spots covers everything from Texas-style brisket and Brazilian churrasco to hearty vegetables that have been flame-grilled to perfection.
1. Decker Barbecue
Situated at Robertson Quay, the casual, no-frills Decker Barbecue is a crowd favourite for their low- and slow-smoked Texas-style barbecue. High-quality meats are slathered in a secret rub and cooked for up to 16 hours in a custom-built, wood-fired smoker imported from Texas. The result? Tender and succulent offerings – including the likes of pulled pork, spicy lamb sausage, smoked chicken and chopped Wagyu brisket – that’ll make barbecue lovers go weak at the knees. Vegetarians aren’t left out either: options include crispy cauliflower florets dressed in buffalo sauce and sides such as mac and cheese; potato salad; and the must-order cornbread. Finish off your meal with some banana pudding or apple cobbler for the full Southern experience.
60 Robertson Quay, #01-17. Nearest MRT: Fort Canning
2. Chang BBQ
The Tanjong Pagar area may be most people’s go-to when they’re craving for some Korean barbecue, but Chang BBQ at Dempsey Hill is a more-than-worthy fine-dining alternative. The spacious, high-ceilinged joint specialises in premium cuts of meat, including wagyu beef and kurobuta pork, which you can choose to have marinated in a delicious Korean sauce. Vegetarians can opt for the grilled vegetable platter (which includes asparagus, mushroom, onion, zucchini and potatoes). Another highlight? As with most Korean restaurants, you’ll also be served an assortment of banchan (appetisers) at the start of your meal.
71 Loewen Road, #01-01. Buses: 7, 75, 77, 105, 106, 123, 174
3. Burnt Ends
Serious barbecue lovers in Singapore should definitely have Burnt Ends on their radar. One of the most acclaimed barbecue restaurants in Singapore, it placed 94th on the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2021 list. The menu here highlights a range of meats and sides fired up in their custom-made wood-burning oven or on one of their four elevation grills. While the menu changes daily, you can expect a hearty range of dishes: such as dry-aged steak; Jamaican chicken wings; bone marrow bun; and artichoke with Taleggio cheese. Reservations are essential, and we recommend trying to snag a counter seat so that you can watch the chefs in action.
7 Dempsey Road, #01-04. Buses: 7, 75, 77, 105, 106, 123, 174
Looking for authentic Brazilian-style barbecue restaurant in Singapore? Head over to Carnivore at CHIJMES, which opened its doors way back in 2012. Take a seat at the picturesque al fresco dining area and sit back and watch as waiters bearing hefty skewers loaded with grilled items carve succulent slivers directly onto your plate. Besides meaty standards such as chicken wrapped in bacon, beef rump, roast pork belly and spicy house-made pork sausage, the restaurant also does a tangy grilled caramelised pineapple and offers a range of side dishes and options for vegetarians. Carnivore operates on an all-you-can-eat basis, so be sure to come hungry and in the mood to feast. In celebration of Brazil’s Independence Day, they will also be offering a special dinner buffet ($79-$89) from 7-8 September 2022.
30 Victoria Street, #01-32 CHIJMES. Nearest MRT: City Hall, Bencoolen
For an upmarket Japanese barbecue feast, make your way to Magosaburo at Ngee Ann City. The restaurant specialises in all things Japanese Wagyu beef, including those of the Kobe and Ohmi varieties. While you can select from a range of cooking methods (including sukiyaki and shabu shabu styles), we recommend going for the barbecue option, where diners can cook their meats on a hot grill in the centre of the table. Not a huge beef fan? The extensive menu also features the likes of Hokkaido scallops and kurobuta pork jowl for grilling, plus raw options such as assorted sashimi and the intriguing truffle-flavoured yellowtail carpaccio.
391 Orchard Road, #05-31, Ngee Ann City. Nearest MRT: Orchard
6. Butcher’s Block
Butcher’s Block, located at Raffles Arcade, is a showcase of chef Rémy Lefebvre’s expertise in cooking with fire. Sustainably sourced meats are roasted, stewed or grilled, with the flames imparting delicious flavours and distinct aromas to the food. From the à la carte dinner, choose from barbecue standards such as grilled octopus, pork tomahawk and dry-aged beef, alongside innovative vegetable options like grilled endive with Green Goddess aioli; as well as burnt carrot with a miso vinaigrette. For a taste of the very best that Chef Lefebvre has to offer, opt for the lavish 10-course Tour De Force menu. The regularly updated menu features exquisite plates like the wagyu sukiyaki with smoked egg yolk, barbecued dry-aged duck and Mediterranean seabass with miso brown butter sabayon
1 Beach Road. Nearest MRT: City Hall.
7. Meat Smith
Meat Smith serves up wood-fired barbecue nosh at its two Singapore restaurants located at Telok Ayer and Little India. While the former specialises in Southern American-style fare – think spiced pork ribs with an apple cider glaze, beef brisket and corn bread with smoked butter – the former is the city-state’s first restaurant focusing on modern Indian barbecue. Expect offerings along the lines of stuffed tandoori chicken wings, crab biryani and spice-crusted lamb chops. If you’re here with friends, we recommend the meat platter, which offers a sampling of their barbecue specialties, served with green mango slaw and curried buns.
167-169 Telok Ayer Street. Nearest MRT: Telok Ayer
21 Campbell Lane. Nearest MRT: Jalan Besar
8. Red Eye Smokehouse
Opened in 2015 on Jalan Besar, Red Eye Smokehouse specialises in American-style barbecue classics done “low and slow” – with no corners cut. The best way to try the smokehouse’s offerings are the Meat Sampler platters that feed up to two diners. You’ll get to choose two, three or four meats from their daily smokes section which includes essential barbecue dishes like the Iberico pork belly, smoked chicken, pulled pork and more. You can also top up for premium add-ons like the USDA beef brisket and the St. Louis pork ribs – smoked and barbecued to fork-tender perfection. While most barbecue restaurants in Singapore are best for group dining, Red Eye Smokehouse also offers a single-serving platter for lunch that includes a choice of meats and a half portion side. Red Eye’s high-quality, in-house smoked meat is done in small batches, so come early before they sell out.
1 Cavan Road. Nearest MRT: Lavender
Please check their respective websites for opening hours before visiting, and remember to adhere to safe-distancing measures while out and about.