We’re taking this chance to dispel common misconceptions and getting down to the basics of who we are and what we do at Grain Traders, and hopefully, allow you to get to know us a little bit better.
1. We are not a salad bar.
First and foremost, we’d like to think of ourselves as ang moh cai png, or a Westernised version of the economic rice you see in most food courts and hawker centres. While we might operate in the same manner as some of the salad bars you see around the area, our main difference is that we provide much heartier fare in a much wider variety. Grains form the base of our meals, and we’re unapologetically unfussed about counting calories in our bowls; knowing the amount of fat in our dishes; or whether our tomatoes are organically-grown or not. But we understand that everyone has different needs and desires, so we do have options that cater to almost everyone — whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or pursuing a gluten-free diet. Just ask any of our friendly servers for their recommendations!
2. We’re created just for you.
We talk about #slowfoodrealfast, but what does that really mean? It’s all about taking the time to create almost-home-cooked meals with lots of love and care, but dishing it out at the pace of a fast food joint because we know you simply don’t have time to waste. Even if it’s just grab and go takeaways, or deliveries to your doorstep or office, you know that you’re not getting something that’s been hastily assembled, flash-fried, left out on display for hours, or reheated in a microwave — everything you see at Grain Traders goes from kitchen to bowl as quickly as possible, much like you would do in your own home. We also understand that mealtimes — be it breakfast, lunch, or dinner — are precious times to take a break from the craziness of the workday, so whether you feel like catching up with friends, having some alone time while people-watching, or stretching your legs outdoors after hours of sitting at your deck, our space is designed for you.
3. We’re not afraid to get fancy.
Our goal is no compromise, so even though we serve it fast, we conjure up all kinds of hearty, tasty, restaurant-quality fare. We think that there’s so much flavour that is lost from cheap, quick eating and we want to bring that right back into whatever we serve at Grain Traders. Even if it means slow-roasting our pork, sous-vide-ing our salmon, or cold-brewing our coffee for 8 hours, we do what it takes. The results? Juicy pork, melt-in-your mouth salmon, and full-bodied coffee that is bottled and ready-to-go. And there’s much more where that came from.
4. We get our inspiration from different people, and different cultures.
If you didn’t already know, Grain Traders is brought to you by the same people who founded the Kilo restaurants. We share the same DNA when it comes to inspiration, which is why you’ll see the same mix of Southern American and Asian flavours when it comes to our food here. You have Mixed Bean Pico de Gallo, and you have Wafu Tomatoes; there’s Coconut Curry, but there’s also Salsa Verde. Our Mr. Pirom Hero Bowl is named after Mr. Prew Pirom, a good friend and source of inspiration for one of our founders, and the chef behind Pla Dib Restaurant in Bangkok; the Japanese-influenced bowl represents the kind of cuisine that Mr. Pirom dishes out back home. The El Hibaro, or el jibaro, refers to mountain people in Puerto Rico, and is a bowl that is inspired by the comfort food of these people and their hometown. Along the same vein, we’re also planning for more dishes and sides in the months to come, so there’s always going to be something new each time you’re back at Grain Traders.
5. We work with some great partners to bring you the food that you love.
At Grain Traders, we are proud to partner with brands who share our vision of feeding people right. We share our central kitchen with Salad Stop, who strive to change the way people think about their food: where it comes from, and the hands, soil, and time that made it possible. Our coffee comes from the awesome folks at independent coffee boutique, Papa Palheta, which uses unique brewing and roasting techniques and micro-production methods to tell the story behind each coffee. They’re also all about doing things right, running workshops at C-Platform for coffee enthusiasts and professionals to hone their coffee-making skills. We’ve also partnered with The Edible Company, stocking some of their homemade granola, snack bars, and muesli — gifts that were made with love for friends and family, and now available to the everyday diner as well.
We can go on and on about what we do here at Grain Traders, but the best way to experience it is to simply come down for yourself and see, smell, hear, and taste. We’re still growing and learning as a brand, company, and family, and would love for you to be part of the journey as well — see you real soon.