Thai-inspired flea markets are becoming more and more ubiquitous these days, and Artbox could arguably be regarded as the one that started it all.
Thanks to the massive success of its first instalment back in 2017, similar events such as CMYK, Let’s Go Jalan Jalan! and Twilight: Flea & Feast have blessed us with a constant stream of hipster food and knick knacks we probably don’t need but buy anyway.
Considering that the 2018 edition was back in June, however, we’re probably going to have to wait more than a few next months for the OG market to return to our shores.
…or do we?
Hipster Food Heaven
Taking place over two weekends in January (the 11th-13th and 18th-20th, to be exact) at Downtown East, Eatbox is described by its organisers as a “boutique edition of Artbox”.
We’re not sure what that means exactly, but judging by the name we’re going to go on a limb and say that there’ll be a bigger emphasis on food (which is the most important part, tbh).
What we do know is that the market is set to feature more than 50 local and regional F&B brands, and will no doubt include hipster food mainstays like rainbow toast, poke bowls and milk tea served in comically large buckets.
Here’s what you can look forward to:
1. Beef Bro
If you were at the Geylang Serai Bazaar last year, you’ll probably recognise Beef Bro. They were the newcomers at the annual Geylang Serai bazaar last year and generated long queues.
What they’re known for is, of course, beef. Specifically, flame-grilled beef cubes, like the ones you find in Taiwan. Each order of beef cubes is seared and cooked with a blow torch upon order and comes with a selection of toppings such as Mentaiko, Cheese, Garlic Chilli, Barbecue Sauce, and even their signature Sambal Belacan!
The best Thai Milk Tea we’ve tried at events comes from Broti, a pop-up store that appears at events like the Ramadan Bazaar and Twilight Fest. Broti’s Thai Milk Tea is aromatic and is not overly sweet.
Broti also stands out for being value-for-money. You know how most vendors would fill your cup halfway with ice and the remaining half with water? Well, Broti is truly a bro because they don’t play you dirty like that. For $4, you get a way bigger cup compared to most other places we’ve tried!
If you eat, sleep and breathe all things Japanese, then you’re going to love this one.
Trained at the Tokyo Sushi Academy to fortify her passion for Japanese cooking, you can expect her highly raved lobster inari which comes in small sets of 4, ramen, unagi bento and more!
We recommend getting the lobster inari which is a combination of lobster and squid salad which sits atop a bed of sushi rice. All these premium ingredients are nestled within some Inariage aka Aburaage (the sweet beancurd pouch) and finished off with some Japanese mayonnaise.
Think of Saiko as the elevated version of your typical pasar malam takoyaki joint!
Serving up Japanese street food realness, Saiko serves takoyaki in sizeable portions with full bite-sized fillings. You can choose from 3 different fillings – octopus, chicken and braised mushrooms. You also have the option of mixing 2 different fillings in one serving.
Other selections include Classic, Dashi (takoyaki with dashi broth, bonito flakes and scallions) and Miso (takoyaki with miso butter and rice krispies). Top it all off with a perfectly cooked onsen egg!
We promise you that the takoyaki from Saiko won’t disappoint!
5. RUMI The Poet’s Cup
Rumi The Poet’s Cup is new in the scene and has crazy delicious drinks like Hazel Malt, Caramel Cream and High Tea.
Just like breaking open a fortune cookie and unwrapping the message, each customer will receive a scroll containing different poems and messages from various writers and poets with each drink purchase.
Of course, food won’t be the only thing to look forward to – resident EATMEPOPTART DJ’s weelikeme and KIDG will be on the decks to provide their signature brand of alternative party music (Mr. Brightside, anyone?), and there’ll be a host of interactive art murals to get your Instagram on as well.
Until then, you might want to start thinking of excuses for why your new year’s resolution to get fit will have to be postponed again.
Venue: Downtown East, Open Plaza by D’Marquee
Date: 11th January – 13th January, 18th January – 20 January
Time: 3pm – 11pm
(Header Image: Invade)