Bee’s Knees Cafe by The Garage @ Singapore Botanic Gardens (Cluny Park Road)
From the same people who opened One Rochester Group and 1-Altitude, comes a new two-storey dining destination at Singapore Botanic Gardens called The Garage. Combining two concepts in a single building, level 1 is the family-friendly, more convivial younger sibling- Bee’s Knees while level 2 houses the slightly more serious older sibling with a contemporary flair- Botanico.
The now transformed terrace space at level 1 was an actual garage where cars used to park back in the day during the 1920s. Much of the exterior architecture has been retained as well as the iconic seven arched entryways that now serve as pick-up points for the open-concept kitchen. Seat offerings include indoors with regular dining chairs and bar stools or the al fresco area with high velocity fans to help you combat the heat. Regardless of your choice, it will be a quiet respite away from the city.
We had brunch here on a public holiday and it came as no surprise that the place was packed. Mostly filled with large groups of families and friends, many also brought their dogs along to enjoy the pet-friendly garden cafe with its casual and relaxed atmosphere.
The menu is all about pizzas, pastas, sandwiches and desserts. Not extensive but decent enough to find something you will enjoy. Prices start at $15 for a pasta, $22 for pizza and $14 for waffles. No service charge is added to your bill because you order and make payment at the counter. The food will be served to your table once it is ready.
Between the three of us, we ordered the Tiger Prawns $18 pasta, Truffle Carbonara $26 pizza and Caramelised Apples Cranberries and Greek Yoghurt $14 waffles.
Presentation-wise, the pasta had a beautiful summery colour palette with chopped cherry tomatoes and chunky fresh peeled prawns. The linguine itself was cooked al-dente with a nice bite to it while the wispy strips of spring onions added a welcoming oriental touch to the dish. Clean flavours and fresh ingredients, what is there to complain about?
While Truffle Carbonara is something one would usually relate to pasta, having it in a pizza form was a unique and refreshing change for us. The crust was thin and crisp but soft and airy on the inside, and had a truffle cheese base that enticed with its aroma. Topped with bacon pieces that were deep-fried to a crunch, this screamed sinful in every bite, save for that handful of rocket leaves. There is just something irresistible about the truffle cheese combination which works almost every time if done right. Bee’s Knees’ creamy creation certainly achieved that.
We added $4 for a scoop of Gula Melaka ice-cream to pair with our waffles and unfortunately it was not the brightest idea. The waffles already comes with greek yoghurt to balance out the sweetness of the caramelised diced apples and dried cranberries so when we included the ice-cream, the scales were tipped and we ended up with an overly sweet combination. Too much of a good thing is not always ideal. Our tip therefore would be to save your money, skip the ice-cream and just enjoy the waffles. They were airy and light instead of doughy in texture so not too difficult to finish even after your mains.
Overall, we enjoyed the concept of The Garage very much. It is a nice little hideaway from the main roads and a lovely spot to unwind after your walk through Singapore’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site. For drivers, do not forget to enter through Cluny Park road or you might have some difficulties in finding the place!
50 Cluny Park Road
Singapore Botanic Gardens
Tuedays to Sundays: 10am to 6pm
Closed on Mondays