Pioneering Caribbean restaurant and bar Lime House brings a taste of the Caribbean to Singapore’s vibrant East Coast Road dining scene.
When Lime House opened along Jiak Chuan Road in the Keong Saik F&B enclave back in 2013, it was the first restaurant in Singapore dedicated to serving Caribbean cuisine.
Was their food authentic? Few Singaporeans knew. The Caribbean included a swathe of countries and island nations surrounding the Caribbean Sea and, correspondingly, encompasses a number of different unique cuisines. And unless you’re a huge fan of rum – or the Olympics – chances are many Singaporeans wouldn’t have heard of Martinique, Guyana, Barbados, or even Trinidad and Tobago, much less travelled there.
For many, Lime House was the first time we tried jerk chicken. Curry goat. Fried plantains. And liming, basically a Caribbean colloquialism for chilling out over food and drink with friends.
And Lime House is pretty much still the only place in Singapore to get food inspired by the Caribbean. Now it has expanded with an outlet in the east. Lime House Caribbean East Coast is located in the busy East Coast Road stretch in Singapore’s lively Katong district, where the now-defunct British-style pub Rabbit Carrot Gun used to be.
Much of what made the original Lime House great has been carried over. You’ll find popular favourites such as Spicy Shrimp, Bajan Fish Tacos, Jerk Chicken – and yes, the Tribajam Curry Goat! – all represented here. As is our favourite, the Caribbean Nachos, which sees plantain chips replace the usual corn chips in your typical nachos. These house-made, hand-sliced fried plantain discs are absolutely moreish; crispy on the edge, and moist and creamy within.
Some dishes now incorporate some Asian influences. Purists may consider this culinary heresy, but I’m more tolerant. The Caribbean is a melting pot of cultures, and this is Katong – the stronghold of Peranakan culture, itself of hybrid heritage – after all.
I love that dishes here make great bar bites. Lime House Caribbean East Coast, like the original Lime House, has the same fabulous drinks programme with some great tropical cocktails that simply demand finger-friendly food.
You can’t go wrong with the Lime House Punch as a refreshingly fruity start for the evening, as was the rum and champagne-based classic that is the Old Cuban. The Dark N’ Stormy too, with the freshness of lime and a subtle hit of spicy ginger, will help wash off the heat of the day.
Prefer stronger cocktails? The Rum Negroni – a Kingston Negroni too, with proper Jamaican rum replacing the usual gin – will set you right. And if you don’t intend to go home sober, go for The Walking Death. This is a classic Zombie but on steroids, incorporating five different rums in a deceptively drinkable tipple that will hit you like a Trevor Berbick uppercut.
If you live in the East, you can now lime the proper Caribbean way in Katong.
Lime House Caribbean East Coast
Address 47-49 E Coast Rd, Singapore 428768 (Google Maps link)
Opening Hours 11am to 11pm on Tuesdays to Thursdays and Sundays; 11am to 12am on Fridays and Saturdays; closed on Mondays
Tel (65) 6304 5328