There are lots of restaurants in shop houses along East Coast Road in Singapore’s East that offer interesting fare. I recently organized a catch-up with friends at Tea Villa Cafe. It’s a vegetarian fusion café that offers a variety of eats with an Indian twist.
The Ambience, Service and Staff
As Singapore continues to emerge out of Covid-19 restrictions, we were continuing to support our F&B establishments.
Tea Villa Café is a low key café in a renovated shophouse which has been tastefully decorated with an ethnic twist that blends into the Peranakan charm of Katong.
We were a party of 4 and had made our reservations via Chope. We were quickly seated by the friendly and professional staff and provided menus. Bottled water is provided on the table. We were there on a Tuesday evening and while we place was not packed, it wasn’t exactly empty either, with both indoor seating and alfresco dining at about 60% capacity.
As we went through the menu, we soon discovered a range of items that were familiar, and yet had a pronounced Indian Twist. Things like a Mac and Cheese Pizza or a Mexican Bhel sounded like two familiar items that had just had a love child… and we soon discovered exactly that!
We ordered some chilli paneer and pani puri to start with. These are 100% Indian and tasted like the real thing.
We followed it up with the Paneer Bhurji Quesadilla which works really well… the familiarity of a traditional Indian snack.
We followed up with the Vada Pav which comes served in a pair. It’s a blend of two savoury street snacks into a single item. We also got the samosa chaat which was a bit of a surprise… the samosa had been completely mashed down into the chaat.
Pizzas were to follow, and we got the Mac and Cheese Pizza which is loaded with cheese and jalapenos, and the Pav Bhaji Pizza which is a Pizza topped with Bombay Pav Bhaji that is really comforting.
Our food came out quickly – typically in less than 10 minutes from the order. (We ordered in phases as we came to terms with the very varied menu).
We also ordered a couple of drinks – a pot of tea, and a mojito – both of which were well presented and came out quickly.
The Price Point
Our meal for four came up to just over $140 which is a decent amount dinner at a café of this calibre in this part of town.
The Final Verdict
Tea Villa Café is quirky and great for vegetarians. It offers some familiar western favourites with a subcontinental spin that makes it casual and fun to try out, or to come for a low key catch-up with friends. They have decent service and good quality food.
Address: 97 East Coast Road, Singapore 428794.
Phone: +65 8518 4250