Folks Collective @ 20 Cross Street

I have not been to Bangkok in the last 15 years and my unit of measurement for Thai food is at best comparing against the standards of Thai Express. So I am probably not your ideal person to comment on what is good and what can be improved upon when it comes to Thai cuisine. Thankfully, I had along two Thai foodies who know what constitutes a good Pad Thai and how to differentiate quality green curry so I must say this outing was somewhat a learning journey for me.

Prior to my friends’ vehement recommendation of Folks Collective, I had not heard of it before. But once we reached the restaurant, I knew I had to be an isolated case because it was packed with the CBD lunch crowd!

Upon entering the somewhat dark and and dimmed space, located along the row of shophouses of China Square Central, the communal bar counter of alcoholic drinks first greets you before the vintage mismatched furniture and quirky art paintings hanging on the wall do. The next thing that strikes you is that the staff all speak Thai, not only do they greet you in Thai (as do every other Thai establishment), they communicate with each other in Thai as well! I was impressed. One up for the authenticity factor!


The menu at the moment is still in their soft launch phrase but the options for Appetizers & Finger Foods, Soups, Curries, Mains and Desserts are considerably diversified and varied.

We ordered the Signature FOLKS Wings $6.90 which is supposedly one of their best sellers. Problem was, these were not wings but drumlets! My friend who is fan of wings, was very disappointed. Nonetheless, we moved on from that and ate it anyway. Taste wise, although the marinate was sticky sweet with a hint of spice and the chicken itself was fried to a crispy skin that was addictive to munch on, sadly between us, we all agreed it that this appetizer was marginally underwhelming.


The Pad Thai Goong $8.90 seemed promising with its fragrant notes and motley of colors that was extremely appetizing. At first bite, the rice noodles were chewy with the right texture and the overall consistency was not oily. The pad thai sauce however was much too sweet with the absence of a balanced tangy sourness from the tamarind.


We chose the Soft-Shell Crab option for our Cereal Seafood $20.90, Prawns and Squid would have been $2 cheaper. Similar to the Cereal Prawns we often have at Tze Char places where the deep-fried crumbs are made from oatmeal, butter and curry leaves, this was no different and honestly quite enjoyable. This was probably our favorite of the lot, evident from the way we used our spoons to scoop up every last bit of oatmeal and curry leaf from the plate.


Folks Collective also offers affordable set lunches at $9.90 each. And seeing how every table had tiffin carriers, we ordered ourselves a set to try as well.

Set B: Green Curry with Chicken, Minced Shrimp Omelette with Steamed Jasmine Rice

But while the gimmicky concept of using the tiffin carriers to serve the food was cute and novel, sadly that was really all to it. The food was lackluster- green curry was watery with few ingredients and the omelette was just normal. I think the ala-cartes fared a lot better.


We ended with a traditional Thai dessert- Mango Sticky Rice $6.90 which I could not fault. The slices of mangoes were fresh and sweet and the sticky rice had a nice creaminess contributed by the coconut milk. This pretty much saved the day in my opinion.


Overall, it is not hard to understand why crowds flock to Folks Collective. The place has been designed especially to model after the hipster cafes that have been taking Bangkok by storm in the recent years with a charming and vibrant atmosphere that is inviting. Folks Collective is unlike any concept you can find in Singapore at the moment and its uniqueness is likely to keep the people coming…

Make a reservation beforehand if you are dropping by!


20 Cross Street
#01-25 China Square Central
6536 6739

Opening hrs:
Mon to Sat, 11am – 11pm


3 Responses to Folks Collective @ 20 Cross Street

  1. Food Esteem says:

    Went for dinner previously at night, and I think their service was quite prompt.. Nearly wanted the wings as it was mistakenly brought to my table but after seeing ur opinion, probably i make the right choice :P i love the mango sticky rice too!

    • admin says:

      Yes I agree! Thought the service was prompt and efficient even though it was so packed! :)) Great review of yours btw :D

  2. ah! your style has evolved. No longer the personal style, this style is more journalistic. :)

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