Western food is the key to my heart. Having tried many different western food stalls since I was young, I had simply fallen in love with the delightful cuisine. However, no stall has managed to stand out like Shaker Lakers – East Meets West did for me.
If you ask me, I can safely declare this as the best western food that I had ever tasted.
Located in an area dubbed as the “most terrifying place to stay in Singapore”, Shaker Lakers is one of the bright sparks of Yishun. It is situated at Yishun Park Hawker Centre, the home to many modern hawkers who offer a variety of different cuisines and fusion food.
As I explored the rows of hawkers, Shaker Lakers’ distinct signboard stood out to me. The stall is manned by two chefs: Michael Quinn and Gillian Pua. Michael is an Irish chef who comes with significant pedigree, having previously worked in New York City for 14 years. The duo met while working at Marche Singapore, and settled on opening a hawker stall together.
That being said, I was very excited to get a taste of their curated menu. I learned from the owners that they switch up their menu every few months, along with injecting chef specials from time to time.
What I tried
I am massive fan of burgers. However, I have never seen a western hawker stall that offers such a wide selection of burgers. It was as if I was looking at a burger joint’s menu.
I had to go for their Lakers Italian Beef Burger (S$13.90) first. Having tried many of the big burger chains in Singapore, I can safely say that this can give them a run for their money. The presentation of the dish was spot on – with the burger being painstakingly assembled by the chef. Besides that, I really like their meticulous attention to detail. This includes how they make the various elements of their dishes from scratch, not leaving out the tiny details.
As I bit into the burger, I was greeted by a thick, juicy beef patty. Not only that, I could see the juices flowing from the patty, making it very satisfying. Every bite of the burger was packed with flavour and succulence, which was further elevated by the slice of melted cheese that lay on top.
Also, I enjoyed the selection of greens in the burger as the juicy tomatoes and fresh capsicum really went well together. Aside from that, the well-toasted buns were soft and moist. However, the star of the show had to be the generous amount of truffle mayo sauce that came sandwiched within the burger. It carried a brilliant sweet, tangy taste that was incredibly tantalising. To round it off, I opted for the Tater Tots upgrade (S$1), which acted as a nice crisp side dish to the burger.
Moving on to their Hanger Steak (S$22.50), which was done medium. I immediately got to work on the massive pile of greens that were heaped beside the steak, and it gave me a pleasant surprise. Instead of your typical bland, boring greens, there were actual parmesan sprinkles in-between the greens. Although I enjoyed the greens, I felt that the portion size was way too overwhelming.
That being said, massive portion sizes is the common theme among all of Shaker Lakers’ dishes. This did not change when it came to their steak, as I received a massive piece of it. I was very impressed by the fragrant aroma emitting from the steak slices and I couldn’t resist sinking my teeth into them.
The interior of the steak was very juicy and tender, along with a pleasant soft texture. Not only that, the steak possessed a good fat-to-meat ratio, giving me a luxurious mouthful each time I took a bite. It also came along with brown steak sauce, which allowed me to coat my slices in it.
Initially, I was very sceptical about purchasing a sandwich, but boy did their Patty Melt Sandwich (S$10.90) prove me wrong.
Similar to the previous dishes I’ve tried, the dish was arranged very nicely, as it was accompanied by a side of greens and seasoned fries. Besides, I loved how the fries were fried together with plenty of herbs and spices.
From the outside, the sandwich can look deceivingly boring. However, all it took was a single bite into the toasted bread for an explosion of flavour to take place.
Once again, the beef patty was in its glorious thick and juicy form. On top of that, there were also two huge slices of crispy bacon. While they were not too greasy, the bacon still carried a perfect balance between how salty and savoury it was.
A slice of melted cheese, greens, and olive spread rounded off the sandwich, placing it among one of the best sandwiches that I had ever tasted.
Having spent some time photographing the food, I was surprised that their Battered Cod (S$13.90) still tasted fantastic. The skin was still very crispy and it was not overly battered as well. Also, there were generous fillings of fillet below the skin that were not too oily.
As a person who likes to swivel my meat in dipping sauce, I really appreciated the massive portion of mayonnaise. It went along really well with the fish fillet. Not only that, I opted for the S$1 upgrade to their Potato Salad, which was unfortunately nothing special.
Many times, I have been disappointed by aglio olio dishes that contain next to no toppings to go along with the pasta. However, Shaker Lakers’ Aglio Olio (S$7.50) definitely did not let me down. The bowl was packed with toppings like bacon, various herbs and spices, and even parmesan cheese. Aside from that, the silky pasta was seasoned very well.
Trying the food served by Shaker Lakers was nothing but an amazing experience. It’s not every day you come across a western stall that serves quality dishes with huge portions at affordable prices.
Judging by the quality of their ingredients and unique menu, this western stall is surely a cut above the rest.
Pro tip: do make it a point to come for early dinner if you want to try their food, as they close pretty early. Do bring along an empty stomach as well, as you will find yourself licking your lips and craving for more!
Expected damage: S$7.50 – S$22 per pax
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