Level P1, Power Plant Mall, Rockwell, Makati City
Open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
(SPOT.ph) When you think of Crazy Rich Asians, you probably think of the extravagant parties, the designer outfits, the lavish lifestyles, and Michelle Yeoh as Eleanor—oh, and the love story, too. But one scene stands out, especially for foodies: When Rachel Chu and Nick Young first arrive in Singapore, they are welcomed by friends Araminta Lee and Colin Khoo, who take them on a food trip at Newton Food Centre. With close to 100 stalls, the food market was the perfect place to sample Singapore’s best local eats.
It’s impossible to think of Singapore without thinking of the hawker stalls. So when owner Marla Moran closed her Southeast Asian restaurant, Wild Ginger, in Power Plant Mall to open Roti Shop, the food stalls were first on her mind. Their space channels the casual yet colorful vibe of a hawker shop, with bright reds, yellows, and blues, lots of cute
Here, you are welcome to and even encouraged to eat with your hands. After all, roti is their main attraction. “We wanted to focus on Singaporean and Malaysian food, which we loved,” says Moran. “And we thought that nobody here really does roti so that’s what we focused on.”
Moran shares that they try to stay as close to the traditional Singaporean or Malaysian recipes as possible—though they do offer a vegan version of the roti.
Roti Shop carries lots of dips to go with your roti, and the Roti Prata Special With Chicken Curry (P195) is a no-fail option. They recommend that you eat the flatbread immediately upon serving as they make them from scratch in the kitchen, and they are best appreciated fresh. Plus, you’ll want to experience its flaky goodness while it’s warm, with a strong, buttery flavor that makes this roti impossible to resist. You will almost forget about the pot of curry that comes with it—don’t because the rich butteriness jives well with the aromatic spiciness of the curry, with just a hint of sharp brine from fish sauce.
Those looking for a more filling but still handy option can opt for the Murtabak, which Roti Shop dubs “the Asian quesadilla.” The concept is pretty much the same—a wrap stuffed with different kinds of fillings, but using roti for the Murtabak makes it flakier and almost melt-in-your-mouth—the perfect fit for the cheesy, creamy Chicken (P195).
Other hawker-stall staples also make their way on the menu. It’s tempting to go for the Hainanese Chicken Rice (P495), and that’s perfectly fine but we recommend ordering the Hainanese Roasted Chicken Rice (P495) instead, if only for the novel experience. “This is a modern version that’s seen more in Malaysia than Singapore,” explains Moran. “And they say it’s the younger ones who started it.” Think of your usual, juicy Hainanese chicken—but with the skin roasted for a crisper, more flavorful exterior. This has the same flavor profile as your usual Hainanese chicken but taken up a notch. Plus, the ginger, mild chili, and chili sauces give each bite a boost in spiciness and freshness.
“We want to make roti a household name,” says Moran. With how addictive Roti Shop’s roti can get, they’re well on their way to achieving that goal. And we’re seeing a lot of folks raving about Hainanese Roasted Chicken in their future, too.
Photos by Majoy Siason