Located in the basement of an offbeat toy museum in City Hall, this quirky pub has won us over with its kitschy décor
Stylish, modern bars are a dime a dozen in this Singapore – but where do you go for a simple pint (and a low-key evening) around the city? One venue that ticks all of these boxes, Mr Punch Public House, is a ‘hidden’ gastropub at MINT Museum of Toys on Seah Street. Peek into the museum’s basement, and you’ll find decades-old enamel posters on the walls, one intriguing menu and drinks named after 1900s puppet shows – which you can find out more about in the museum.
The menu reads like a story
Poring over the extensive menu is like reading an assortment of fairy tales – every item is carefully curated, with a fascinating backstory inspired by the classic puppet show, Punch and Judy. Take the new Judy punch jar: a blend of vodka, jackfruit and fresh ginger, the bold drink is named after Punch’s wife Judy, a woman who is “large and in charge”. The bittersweet and slightly spicy drink packs a (pun intended) punch.
Borrowing its name from one of the vintage enamel signs in the pub, the new Kickapoo cocktail is a major throwback. Made of gin, orange liqueur, calamansi syrup and fresh citrus, this refreshing drink tastes like the classic Joy Juice soda – with a big hit of nostalgia.
For a playful rendition of classic cocktails, try the Manhattan Cigar. As the story goes, Punch lends his name to a cigar brand, Punch Cigars in 1840, hence this smoky version of the Manhattan. The bourbon, sweet vermouth, cinnamon smoke and aromatic bitters concoction is served in a smoked bottle, complete with an ice ball.
A secret worth sharing…
An intimate space like Mr Punch is best enjoyed with the crew. The punch jars, which can serve up to six people, are made for large groups. Scoop up the Punch – a whiskey, yuzu honey, ginger juice and fresh citrus mixture that will hit the spot.
Pair your drinks with a couple of sharing plates ($38 for three). The lob & roll, a Vietnamese-inspired roll stuffed with slipper lobster, mushrooms and spicy sesame sauce, tops the list. The wagyu beef rump is one spectacular option – the steak is cold-smoked in tea leaves before being prepared sous-vide, and served in a smoky bell jar. If you’re having wine, don’t forget to order the charred mentaiko fries – the slightly charred crispy fries with savoury mentaiko sauce is a perfect match.
And psst… You didn’t hear it from us, but take the elevator up to Level R to find a hidden rooftop bar. Mention “Honeycombers” for access. You’re welcome.
Mr Punch Public House, 26 Seah Street, Singapore 188382
This article is sponsored by Mr Punch Public House.