Best Cheap Eats 2015: Newton
Sri Pinang. Photo: Simon Young
LITTLE SHEEP HOTPOT
27 Cross St, Newton
The tables are filled with Chinese hipsters in this cavernous joint where you cook your own dinner in a big pot. Go with the half-half, a chilli stock and a plain — you order what you want on a little slip of paper and for this, we highly recommend the fish balls, maybe some noodles, and definitely the bone marrow.
Mercury Plaza, 23 Mercury Lane, Newton
Don’t be put off by the ambitious spread of cuisines here: it’s Isaan Thai and Vietnamese, but with all the Thai classics and some Malaysian dishes, too. The laksa is better than at many Malaysian eateries, packed with seafood and both vermicelli and egg noodles. But it’s the Isaan dishes we come for — the spicy chicken wing salad is $11 worth of heaven, and the nam tok neau is generous with both the grilled beef and chilli. Mop it all up with sticky rice.
SRI PINANG (TOP 10)
356 Karangahape Rd, Newton
Angie Siew has been serving Nyonya classics for a couple of decades now: the restaurant is still BYO and the plates don’t always match, but we love all that, and the service is brilliant. You’ll find one of the city’s best Hainanese chicken rice here, while the “Pinang” fish curry is at once tart and tangy and sour. A lunch of roti canai with chicken curry costs a mere $8.
277 Karangahape Rd, Newton
At Uncle Man’s, the roti makers proudly flip their dough right in front of you. We love that. We also love the perfectly smoky char kuey teow, a beef rendang meltingly soft with a decent amount of heat, and those flaky, fresh roti. The menu covers multiple cuisines, but we recommend the Malaysian stuff most of all.