RIP Iconic F&B Places In Singapore

Imagine the thrill of eating at popular international joints like In-N-Out burgers and Tiger Sugar.

We’ve marked our calendars, counted the days and endured long queues to try out popular food crazes. However, not all brands shared the same successful fate.

In this article, let’s take a look back at the popular F&B outlets that have left Singapore in recent years.

1. Pablo Cheese Tart

The opening of Pablo Cheese Tart was met with a lot of fanfare last August 2017.

Past customers will always remember their creamy, irresistible and gooey Japanese-inspired tarts.

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Unfortunately, the brand low-key left Singapore last February 2019, after the hype for their treats slowly died down.

Arrived in Singapore: August 2017
Went Extinct: February 2019

2. Hello Kitty Cafe

With the islandwide obsession around Hello Kitty Orchid Garden Cafe last March 2016, you’d think that it would last for decades.

Unfortunately, not all good things last forever.

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The cafe remained popular because of its Hello Kitty-themed aesthetic, meals and desserts. However, it closed last February after its company’s licence and partnership with Sanrio ended.

Arrived in Singapore: March 2016
Went Extinct: February 2019

3. Costa Coffee

Costa Coffee’s iconic Mocha Italian blend is reminiscent of the London-style caffeine culture.

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According to TODAY, competition from independent coffee houses and high rental costs were one of the main reasons why they closed their 6 outlets in Singapore.

Arrived in Singapore: 2012
Went Extinct: September 2018

4. A&W

A&W is known for their American-style burgers, chicken, hotdogs and desserts.

It also held the record for Singapore’s first fast food chain when it opened a branch in 1966 at Dunearn Road. It surpassed giants like  KFC (1977) and McDonald’s (1979).

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Despite its very long presence in the country, it left in 2003 due to a change in ownership.

Fortunately, millennials who miss their childhood won’t have to return to the USA to fulfill their cravings.

A&W is set to open a Jewel Changi branch at the 2nd Quarter of 2019.

Arrived in Singapore: 1966
Went Extinct: 2003
Date of Return: 2nd Quarter 2019, Jewel Changi

5. April’s Bakery

April’s Bakery offers Cantonese-style pies from Thailand.

Their bestselling pies are similar to Hong Kong style Lao Po Bing (Wife Cake) with different colours and flavours like Thai Milk Tea, Matcha Green Tea, Custard, Durian, Pork with Gravy and Tokyo Banana.

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The brand undoubtedly became popular in Singapore. However, they quietly left the country in April 2018.

Arrived in Singapore: April 2017
Went Extinct: April 2018

6. Wendy’s

Wendy’s up-and-down history with the locals started in the 1980s.

The popular fast food chain sold burgers, fried chicken and salads — but they left in the late 1990s due to poor business performance.

In 2008, they made a comeback and planned to open as many as 35 outlets in Singapore, with 11 outlets becoming a reality.

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Sadly, not all dreams come true.

Wendy’s closed all of their outlets in August 2014. The reasons for their departure include manpower issues, high rental prices and failure to compete with prominent brands.

Arrived in Singapore: 1980s & 2008
Went Extinct: late-1990s & 2014

7. Beard Papa

Beard Papa’s freshly baked cream puffs which are bursting with fresh fruity flavours — have charmed many Singaporeans.

Although, it wasn’t always around.

The brand opened up shop in 2008 at Orchard Road and quietly closed in 2011 due to unknown reasons.

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Fortunately, they returned to our shores in August 2015 at Clementi Mall.

Here’s to hoping that they’ll stay for a very long time.

Arrived in Singapore: 2008
Went Extinct: 2011
Date of Return: August 2015

8. Joel Robuchon Restaurant

The late Joël Robuchon received the title of Chef of the Century in 1989. His restaurants from across the globe garnered 31 Michelin stars in his lifetime.

Singapore’s only three-Michelin-starred restaurant – Joel Robuchon at Resorts World Sentosa – was also well-loved by many foodies.

Unfortunately, he closed up shop on June 2018.

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According to South China Morning Post, the reasons for the closure include the high cost of importing quality produce and rent at Resorts World Sentosa.

Joel Robuchon died shortly after in August 2018. While many miss his marvelous concoctions, the memory of his creations will forever remain in our hearts.

Arrived in Singapore: 2011
Went Extinct: June 2018

9. Dairy Queen

Who wants to see their ice cream served upside down?

Since 2012, Dairy Queen has served topsy turvy blizzard ice cream to prove its delicious thickness, but the F&B brand left in May 2016.

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RIP creamy and filling ice cream.

Arrived in Singapore: 2011
Went Extinct: May 2016

10. Mrs. Field’s

Mrs. Field’s freshly baked personalised cookies could’ve been the next big food craze.

The brand arrived in Singapore in 2010, but it quickly bit the dust in 2011.

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Sadly, it couldn’t establish a cult following in spite of its international fame.

Arrived in Singapore: 2010
Went Extinct: 2011

Getting over being left behind

Lots of brands arrive in Singapore, with the hope of attracting our hearts and our stomachs.

While some brands have gained popularity, others have ghosted customers and slowly disappeared due to high rental costs and manpower, even if they got a good following.

It’s sad that many have had to leave us, but we’re hoping that others will make a comeback, especially Hello Kitty Cafe.

As of now, we’re currently counting the days till the return of A&W. In the meantime, go out and enjoy the F&B brands that you love.

You never know what you have, until it’s gone.

Featured image from Shop in SG, Instagram and Facebook.