Retro-themed diner Capitol Milk Bar goes for a classic menu of burgers, hot dogs, and milkshakes

The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore has been bustling with food and drink additions since its opening last October, welcoming concepts like 15 Stamford by Alvin Leung, Berthold Delikatessen, Frieda Restaurant, and The Bar at 15 Stamford into its fold. Now, one more newcomer joins in, bringing with it the rose-hued tint of nostalgia.

Capitol Milk Bar is touted as the “reincarnation” of Magnolia Snack Bar, the once-favorite hangout of Singaporeans back in the ’60s. The ice cream and milkshake joint expanded across the island through the years, but shuttered its last outlet in the late ’80s, only to reappear in a new form at the hotel this year.

Those who remember the old school haunt may see this modern-day version as a blast to the past, with elements like vintage posters, neon signs, ceramic mosaic floors, and red booth seats. For the rest of us, it’s essentially a retro diner serving a classic selection of burgers, hot dogs, milkshakes, and floats.

Classic New Yorker 1m hot dog. Photo: Capitol Milk Bar
Classic New Yorker 1m hot dog. Photo: Capitol Milk Bar

Items on the menu are apparently named after famous figures who have crossed paths with the old Capitol Building and its theater, but really, we’re just here for the food. Like the 1m-long jumbo-sized hot dog that you can order to share with your buds. For $36, the humongous Classic New Yorker option comes stuffed with pork sausage, mustard, ketchup, cucumber relish, and crispy onions, with sides of curly fries and/or sweet potato fries.

Capitol burger. Photo: Capitol Milk Bar
Capitol burger. Photo: Capitol Milk Bar

If you prefer a burger, the Stamford ($18) packs 150g of black angus beef patty in an egg wrap topped with cheddar and black pepper mushroom sauce. Buns come in your choice of charcoal brioche, multi-grain, or sesame wheat, all of which are made in-house.

Other options include the Capitol, with pulled pork, arugula, pickled cucumber, yuzu cabbage slaw, and apple butter barbecue sauce, or the Sir Douglas Fairbanks, which stuffs smoked salmon into a focaccia roll with herbs, preserved lemon gel, cucumber apple yogurt, and pistachio cream cheese.

Milkshakes. Photo: Capitol Milk Bar
Milkshakes. Photo: Capitol Milk Bar

To keep those calories coming, the range of ice creams, milkshakes, and floats offer a sugary high, with ice cream flavors like chocolate fudge cookie, peanut butter, calamansi, and Thai coconut. For a milkshake treat ($14 each), you can pick from concoctions such as the Dinosaur, made of chocolate powder, marshmallow, malt balls, and chocolate Pocky, or the locally-inspired Chendol one, blending red bean, pandan jelly, gula melaka, and coconut flakes.


Capitol Milk Bar is at #01-84B, Arcade @ The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore.

6715-6874. Daily 11am-9pm.
MRT: City Hall

This article, Retro-themed diner Capitol Milk Bar goes for a classic menu of burgers, hot dogs, and milkshakes, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!

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