Satay holds a very special place in Singapore food culture. It is the only hawker dish where you can find many stalls at the same place, selling the same dish. You don’t find chicken rice clubs or bak chor mee clubs or roti prata clubs, but you can find Satay Clubs which are a throwback to THE legendary Satay Club at the Esplanade (1975-1995) which in its heyday was heralded as the best place in South East Asia to eat satay!
Unfortuntately, Satay Club had to be demolished to make way for Esplanade Theatres by the Bay. Some of the stalls relocated to Clarke Quay which didn’t quite capture the magic of the original Satay Club @Esplanade. That lasted only 10 years before it was closed.
However, The Satay Club did leave behind a legacy which lives on at Lau Pa Sat, East Coast Lagoon Village Food Centre and Satay by the Bay. Although these places aren’t as big as the original Satay club, they are still places where you can enjoy satay under the stars and where the air is thick with the eclectic mix of charcoal smoke, lemongrass, exhaust fumes and the scent of the sea!
I hope this little vignette has helped you gain a better appreciation of our very own satay culture and why it is important for us to celebrate it and help preserve it! So, if you haven’t already done so, please vote now at https://www.oursgheritage.sg and pledge your support for our bid to have our hawker culture listed by UNESCO!