With uniquely Singaporean dishes, a Reserve Experience Bar, and a relaxing Art Room; Starbucks Singapore’s flagship and largest local store at Jewel Changi Airport is the place to go for a great cuppa, tea-break and coffee education too.
There’s nothing better than a fragrant cuppa to start off your day, or a freshly-baked croissant (or two) for tea. While coffee gourmands who haunt hole-in-the-wall cafes tucked away in ulu corners of our island may scorn us for recommending a global chain, do stay with us – we have good reason for doing so!
Starbucks‘ latest store at Jewel Changi Airport is its flagship, and largest, local outlet. With carefully-crafted woodwork and black and gold accents, you’ll find yourself lulled into a state of relaxation as you step into the store, designed to mimic the lushness of the coffee fields. In fact, the Reserve Bar itself is shaped like the inside of a coffee bean!
At this store, you may notice that all the baristas have on black aprons instead of the usual green – they’re trained Coffee Masters, who go through a rigorous programme of coffee-tasting, theories and testing before they’re certified to wear the black apron. They’re extremely passionate about coffee, willing to share their knowledge, and the team at Starbucks Jewel even includes champions and finalists in Singapore’s national coffee competitions!
If you’d like something different from your normal latte or cappuccino, the Reserve Experience Bar offers coffee made through four different manual brewing methods: Chemex, Pour Over, Siphon Brew and Coffee Press. Don’t worry if you’re unfamiliar with coffee; the baristas are friendly and willing to share more about each method with you. Take your pick, have a seat at the bar, and watch the magic happen! In fact, this is one of the distinct features about the Starbucks Reserve Bars: the interaction with the baristas and experience you have learning more about the beverage you’re drinking, and not just the coffee itself.
In a bit of a rush, but still want to have a great cuppa? No worries – the bar also features the VA388 Black Eagle Espresso Machine, which is also used at the World Barista Championships. A sleek, gorgeous gizmo that allows the barista full control over the consistency and precision in every aspect of a coffee – from bean ratio to brewing time and water temperature – it’s mesmerising to watch, and even more delicious to drink.
Ice-cold drinks will never go out of style in Singapore, but we never liked it when the ice melts in our drink and dilutes the flavour. You wouldn’t have to worry about that with the Four-tap Nitro – the second in Asia – where drinks are infused with nitrogen instead of being cooled down with ice cubes. Caffeine-addicts, go for the Nitro Cold Brew ($6.30) or the Nitro Caramel Macchiato; our personal favourite is the refreshingly creamy Nitro Green Tea Latte ($7.60).
Don’t want to give up your comfy seat at the Reserve Bar? Indulge in a sweet treat of a Classic Affogato ($10.20), House Affogato($11.20), or Cold Brew Malt ($14.90), made with rich Starbucks Reserve coffees and Starbucks x Udders Vanilla ice-cream.
The only difference between the Classic and House Affogatos is that the latter is drizzled with caramel sauce and topped with cinnamon powder, but we liked that better for how the cinnamon further brought out the taste of the vanilla beans, as well as the caramel notes in the coffee. A Cold Brew Malt, meanwhile, is a thick, indulgent mixture of cold brew coffee blended with ice-cream; a coffee milkshake, if you must. Creamy, thick, sweet, but oh-so-worth-it.
Don’t leave without trying the Jewel-exclusive menu items, either! Freshly-baked and assembled on-site, many of them are locally-inspired, ranging from croissants and ciabattas, to tiramisus!
For something peanutty, go for the Satay Chicken Ciabatta ($10.90), where toasty ciabatta is topped with deliciously-charred chicken and satay sauce; complete with pineapple cubes, Japanese cucumber and roasted peanuts, blow-torched for that smokey finish.
Hainanese Chicken Rice Quinoa Salad ($11.90), which sounds curiously hipster at first, is surprisingly delish! A healthier take on our local favourite, this cold salad is made with cauliflower rice, quinoa, poached chicken slices, achar, cherry tomatoes, crispy fried chicken skin (because who can resist that, right) and chicken rice sauce.
While not a uniquely Singaporean dish, we can’t not recommend this Pulled Beef Croissant ($10.90), because it’s just that good. Tender pulled beef, savoury black pepper sauce and melty Provolone cheese, all nestled in a freshly-baked buttery croissant? Yes please.
Or if you’re just feeling peckish, order a freshly-baked croissant (or two) for yourself to pair with your coffee for a fulfilling snack. Take your pick from the Multigrain Croissant ($3.90), Chocolate Croissant ($3.90), or Buttery Croissant ($3.50) – our favourite is still the good ol’ plain croissant though!
For a dose of nostalgia, go for the Milo Chocolate Tiramisu ($8.90), where the malty chocolate powder is layered with the creamy dessert in a pretty jar. Or #supportlocal and get the Udders x Starbucks Ice Cream ($5.50 for Vanilla, $5.90 for Cold Brew) – the local ice-cream brand paired up with Starbucks to make two delicious flavours!
Kick back and relax in the second floor of the store, beautifully-decorated with various pieces of art – many of them original pieces from various Starbucks stores in Singapore, comfy chairs, and natural lighting that won’t strain your eyes as you pore over a novel or your laptop.
Starbucks Jewel Changi Airport
78 Airport Blvd
Brewing Hours: 10am to 10pm daily