Restaurant Review: Five & Dime Eatery at 297 River Valley Rd, Singapore

Things that appear on my blog are usually good eats; recommendations that I must share. If it is mediocre, I don't bother. If its bad, unless really bad in which it gets a thumbs down from me, I don't bother either. That's why you see mostly thumbs up on my posts.

Photo by my colleague [Source]

However, there's this new eatery in town that has taken everyone by storm with its decor, its new age marketing (even their website is unconventional, there's no menu there). So one day after work, on a whim, my colleague suggested we go have dinner someplace I've been meaning to check out. So Five & Dime Eatery came to mind, since it is also relatively accessible (by cab) at River Valley Road.

At about 9pm, it is still relatively full with diners. Last orders at 9.30pm so we just made it!

Quite liked their decor - rather old school, vintage (seems like everyone is going down that route nowadays). The floor tiling is very cute, and those mint legged chairs!

So anyway, here's the Five & Dime menu, which cannot be found on the website. I guess the cuisine is like fusion western with some japanese influence.

They also have fancy cutlery which is very long and thin and heavy in the hand. Quite nice.

We were starving so we made our orders quickly. The food came swiftly too but for some reason the water we asked for never appeared until almost the end of our meal when we had to remind the waitresses.

My mentaiko pasta ($22) was slightly creamy and pink with roe (?). It's slightly grainy, briney, yet also a tad sweet. I don't find however after the initial taste, that there is much of any depth to the dish. The pasta was also not as al dente as I would have liked. The 2 chicken yakitori that came with it was also very interesting - it was so soft and juicy that it felt as if it wasn't cooked on the inside! I thought it was quite strange, and did not like it, but my colleague prefers it to his beef.

This was the gyu pasta ($22) my colleague ordered. Unfortunately it wasn't very good.  The japanese yakiniku sauce was thin and salty but did not give anything else to the pasta. The beef was juicy and soft but there is no marinate to it so it did not taste of anything.

The saving grace of dinner came in the form of their smoked duck salad ($12). The duck meat was very enjoyable, and the sesame dressing too! It was too petite though, for the price!

They look good, sure, but taste.. normal.

Lastly we ordered the very interesting You Tiao Churros ($8) for dessert. Only because it says You Tiao. The salty fried dough sticks were warmed up, a bit too charred actually, but it went well with the strawberry ice cream. The chocolate sauce was however very dubious because it was SOUR! I can't figure out why, perhaps a low quality chocolate was used? It wasn't nice at all.

Sadly this place did almost all the right things except not pay attention to the food as well as the pricing. For a place called Five & Dime, you would think the food would be priced more reasonably. I sure hope the owners will either up the food quality or reduce the prices first because I am sure I won't be back for a visit soon and many others will also be doing the same.

I was tempted to give this a thumbs down, but because I enjoy the decor very much and heard they serve a mean cocktail, that I am putting a neutral rating. Don't go there with expectations of great food - be prepared to be ripped off for mediocre grub served in pretty packaging instead.

Five & Dime Eatery
297 River Valley Road, Singapore
Tel: +65 92365002
Mon–Fri: 12pm – 12am, Sat: 10am – 12am, Sun: 10am – 10pm (Closed on Tue)
  1. I pass by this place all the time but I've never gone in. Haha may never do so now!

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  3. The five dime eatery has been described very well by you. The review is very appropriate.