Chye Seng Huat Hardware Coffee

I think I must be the last blogger to write about this place.

A funny article once mentioned that this cafe mainly exists because of Instagram. I would say that it deserves all the IG coverage it gets, though! It definitely scores high on visual appeal. I liked the music they play too.

I think I roughly belong to the generation of the folks who set this up. The generation that has decided to embrace its past, to be sentimental about old Singapore, the places we once knew. That is why the owners decided to retain the name of the hardware shop they took over, a nod to the main trade of the area, before that too disappears.

Although many cafes have sprung up (and some have even since shut down!) in the area since CSH first opened (an old grand-daddy pioneer by now), hardware workshops and warehouses still make the bulk of the business there.

Youngsters quip that Jalan Besar is the new Tiong Bahru, and the latter has become “so yesterday”. Harsh, people, harsh.

So how did we find it? On my first visit there, I bumped into an old friend and his family. So that made our first experience very pleasant, since we got to catch up on life and such.

The French Toast ($15) I tried was very good, and the Full Breakfast ($17) that my relative had was also yummy (as it should, for that price)

On my second visit there, I took more photos, much to the annoyance resignation of my hubby, who dismissed the crowd in one fell sweep as ‘posers’. (Another harsh one.)

The best part of the place to me was the ambience. I don’t mind paying for ambience, since it does cost money (and good taste) to set up a place to channel a soothing vibe, and rent in Singapore is just crazy.

It doesn’t bother me that every other table, someone is taking photos of their food for IG, or selfie-ing away. Whatever makes folks happy, I say. It’s a quality that’s somewhat scarce in sunny Singapore.

chanced upon a friend and his family…

We were there early (around 9am both times), so we had no problems finding seats. But around 930am onwards it starts to fill up. The tables are ridiculously narrow for many of the indoor seats, so we were happy to sit at the bar.

The place does not serve decaf, so if you’re not a coffee connoisseur (as I am not), be prepared to be looked at askance if you request for decaf. There are a range of teas and juices ($7 a pop, don’t say I didn’t warn you), and ample free flow of water that you can serve yourself to, so all is not lost.

But it is obviously a place for coffee lovers to dwell in, what with its own Roastery in the back, and an entire shop selling coffee-making trinkets.

Bye to a cafe hiding behind hardware shop shutters!

All in all, worth a visit if you’re in the vicinity. Potter around the backyard and take photos with the grey spiral staircase!


Address:150 Tyrwhitt Rd, 207563
Tel:6396 0609
Open: Tues-Fri, 9am-7pm. Sat-Sun, 9am-10pm.

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