Colbar in short, for Colonial Bar, but also known as Café Colbar and Colbar Eating House, seems to be very popular in Singapore. It came highly recommended by my friend, Malcolm, who told me it is a “rustic, colonial eatery”.
Upon our arrival, I asked him, “Where is the colonial building?” In my mind, I had envisioned something along the lines of the Ipoh Town Hall building. Maybe not as majestic, but close.
I guess a Singaporean’s perception is really different from a Malaysian’s, especially one who is from a small town. Well, Ipoh is a city but compared to Singapore, it is small. I’m sure you get my meaning.
Anyway, I chatted with a local who was having his lunch there. I asked him if there is any other place in Singapore with this setting, and he answered, “No.” I said, “Come to Perak, we have plenty of such shops in smaller towns like Sungkai, Bidor and Tapah, just to name a few.”
He was impressed and said, “Wow, you all really know how to preserve your buildings, eh?” But I was like, “There was no preservation required! They never progressed!”
The shop that is now Colbar was actually once the canteen of the old British army camp back in 1953, but it is well-maintained and has retained its rustic charm.
This is also one of the cafés that has mushroomed in the area between Rochester Park and Portsdown Road, so it is just a short drive from Park Avenue Rochester. Take the MRT to Buona Vista MRT Station, then hop onto Bus 191.
Café Colbar / Colbar Eating House
Add: 9A Whitchurch Road, Singapore 138839
Tel: +65 6779 4859
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm (Tues – Sun)
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