WE TRY: NEON PIGEON’S NEW BENTO LUNCH & BOOZY BRUNCH MENU

Gone are the dark and gritty nooks of the OG Neon Pigeon—its spacious new home at Carpenter Street retains the same buzzy izakaya vibes we know and love, along with a good dose of street charm. Urban New York meets Tokyo’s underbelly in a 2,100 sq ft space that now screams pop culture through three eye-catching wall murals, including ZERO’S parody of Tristan Eaton’s Let Loose The Pigeons of Love, which highlights sociopolitical issues with vibrant and eccentric elements depicting peace, love, and fun. Don’t leave without getting a selfie with the wall.

Spot ZERO’s colourful mural.

Backdropped by Japanese hip hop beats curated by DJ Patrick Oliver, the space draws you in instantly, from the intimate bar seats to the well-spaced tables designed for communal dining. Don’t come expecting sushi or sashimi, although dishes featuring raw fish like tatakis, carpaccios, and ceviches are excellent. Instead, make a beeline for the plump Kumamoto oysters and sake glazed Iberico pork ribs—both pair nicely with the wide selection of drinks here.

The bento lunch set.

Once known for tasty pub grub when night falls, Neon Pigeon 2.0 now serves a fresh lunch menu just in time for the new year. Hearty yet affordable, the bento sets come with a choice of snack, “bird feed”, a bao or a main. For S$29, each set includes miso soup and dessert on rotation. Must-tries include the cult-favourite Tokyo hummus, where a bowl of curry chips begs to be doused in a moreish edamame dip; as well as the soft shell crab bao, which has the battered crustacean drizzled in truffle sauce and sandwiched between a pillowy-soft bao.

What’s a brunch without some booze?

On weekends, take it up a notch with the boozy bento brunch menu, which lets you enjoy food plus free-flow alcohol for a whopping two hours. We recommending going the indulgent route with the katsu sando—lightly toasted brioche with pork katsu, scrambled eggs, savoury “bulldog” sauce and a side of furikake fries. Alternatively, make a beeline for the wagyu steak and eggs (main image), where decadent slices of tender beef laid in curry is paired with a sunny-side up. For something a little unusual, try the Birdfeed Benedict, which pairs beautifully grilled unagi with a yuzu hollandaise poached egg.

The drinks menu is extensive and undoubtedly playful, where modern riffs on classic cocktails take centerstage in comic book-inspired illustrations. Go for the shochu-based Shoten Sawa, a refreshing concoction enlivened with yuzu, kombucha, and fizz; or the palette-cleansing, G&T inspired Shinjuku, crafted with sake, gin, lime, mint, and cucumber.

More information here.

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