I love minimum intervention wines and I do love a good sourdough. But never the twain shall meet? Don’t be too sure about that for amidst the flux of new wine bars to debut in Singapore, one boldly marries the two.
Perhaps not the newest, the once-travelling Drunker Farmer by the Spa Esprit Group has taken root – after dusk only from Tuesdays to Saturdays – as the night-time incarnation of Common Man Stan since March 2021.
To set itself apart from its day-time coffee-purveying persona, Drunken Farmer’s night-time setting is a mish mash of garish neon signs and printed roller blinds with short-clip projections of silent kung-fu movies.
As its name suggests, Drunken Farmer is all about minimum intervention wines and they have curated about 80 labels of natural, organic, biodynamic and/or sustainably-farmed labels sourced directly from winemakers in France, Italy, Chile and Spain, of which 16 are available by the glass. A great way to start would be to opt for the flight of 3 glasses ($50).
But it’ll be a mistake to come here just for the natural wines for the naturally leavened sourdough-centric casual food menu by chef Paul Albert is well-executed, somewhat wholesome and all-round excellent.
To wit, the Margherita ($18) pizza crafted with 30-hour-fermented sourdough starter dough base yields a stiffer base that withstands weight and moisture, yet remains remarkably thin and light with an airy crust bearing a distinctive tang of, well, sourdough. It serves as the ideal base in which to savour the simplicity of the toppings – tomato sauce with slivers of garlic chips, generous servings of stracciatella, basil leaves and a finishing drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
Fried chicken and natural wine is a thing and at Drunken Farm, they have Sourdough Karaage ($20) to get you through snacks – chicken thigh marinated overnight in a sweet and savoury marinade, coated in a batter mix of beer made from up-cycled surplus loaves as well as sourdough discards. The battered chicken is then deep-fried to a golden hue. While lovely with a creamy dip of kimchi mayonnaise, the stunningly crunchy karaage stands its own. Must-have!
I’m not usually an advocate of waffles, I just do not eat it. But Drunker Farmer’s Sourdough Waffle ($12 for small, $18 for big) takes the sweet edge off waffles by incorporating its 159-year-old sourdough starter fermented over two days. The result is an airy waffle layered with tangy, slightly sweet and salty flavours. I could have the waffle even without the banana ice-cream although a scoop of ice-cream never hurts. Having said that, I very much prefer vanilla ice-cream.
If you’re planning a trip here, be sure to order the Prawn Stick ($20). Almost like a prawn tempura, the skewered black tiger prawn is deep-fried with its head and tail coated in a sourdough-based batter. When paired with the smoked paprika aioli dip, it can be dangerously addictive.
11 Stanley Street, Singapore 068 730; +65-6877 4855; drunkenfarmer.sg
© Evelyn Chen 2020
Please note that the reviews published on this blog are sometimes hosted. I am under no obligation to review every restaurant I’ve visited. If I do, the reviews are 100% my own.