A Bean Away by Soo Eelee

While the coffee culture continues to grow and evolve in Singapore, finding the best barista in town is no longer the sole factor to a good cuppa coffee. Better Than Brunch kicks off by spilling the beans on some of our favourite new coffee hideouts offering something different in their choice of beans.


Skipping past the latte art and signature foam, we dive straight for the simple yet tasteful Long Black. With this cup of gold, there’s no hiding of flaws, only the original flavour of roasted coffee beans complemented with enough water and just the right amount of crema. Read on to find out more about the best beans in town.

Brawns & Brains

100 Guillemard Road #01-07 Singapore 399718

Tues – Fri: 9am to 7.30pm, Sat – Sun: 9.30am to 7.30pm

Contact: 6348 8892


A little hole-in-the-wall coffee joint tucked away in a corner of the Old Badminton Hall at Kallang, that’s how most would describe the setting of this new café hideout. Operated by a coffee loving couple, they take pride in roasting their own coffee beans and sharing a quality cuppa coffee to fellow enthusiasts.


Noticing a lack of organic blends in the market at the moment, Brawn & Brains currently offer two types of coffee beans, from Colombia and Brazil – all organic. Opting for something we thought was a little more adventurous, we went with the Colombia Supremo for the Long Black. Offering one of the most aromatic coffees we’ve had, the fragrance alone was an instant perk-me-up. Taste wise, the coffee had a very rich intensity that was accompanied by a smoky aftertaste. As much as we did enjoy the coffee, the smoky aftertaste was a tad too bitter for our liking. But at $3.50 per cup, it is definitely worth a visit.

Common Man Coffee Roaster

22 Martin Road #01-00 Singapore 239 058

Mon - Sun: 8 am to 7 pm

Contact: 6836 4695

Common Man Coffee Roasters (CMCR) is a unique new concept that’s brewed from a partnership between Harry Grover, Five Senses Coffee (Australia), and the Spa Esprit Group.It is inspired by the desire to make top-notch coffee and the knowledge surrounding it more accessible to the greater public, with the belief that great coffee should not be a privilege, but instead made for all to indulge. With a comfortable 2,500 sq ft of space, the location houses a coffee roaster, a specialty coffee bar, a 60-seater café and a charming retail space.
The simple cup of Long Black will draw you in with a fresh, feathery light aroma that surprises without intimidating. Offering a somewhat complex taste, the coffee is robust and bold, yet capable of ending with a sweetly refreshing aftertaste. If we could have our my way, we would describe it as a very sexy cup of Long Black and definitely one of my personal favourites.

CAD Cafe

23 Haji Lane, Singapore 189 216

Mon - Wed: 8 am to 10 pm, Thur - Fri: 8 am to 12 am ,

Sat: 10 am to 12 am, Sun & PH: 10 am to 10 pm

Contact: coffee@cad.sg

CAD Café is all about Coffee, Art & Design. With backgrounds in both art and design, the founders have managed to create a space that showcases various works from internationally renowned artists to local upcoming and student works. Almost hidden from the hustle andbustle of shisha bars crowded along Haji Lane, the coffee spot is a fairly new establishment offering quality coffee in the vicinity.
While small in size (with limited seating), the place compensates with noteworthy coffee and a friendly chill-out vibe. The first thing you will notice is an identical coffee cup used at Toby’s estate (Rodyk St). But do not be mistaken, CAD Café uses only a selected coffee blend – woolloomooloo blend – that is also produced by Toby’s Estate. What this interesting blend promises is a mildly flavoured coffee that produces a nice, smooth finish with a hint of caramel and spice. Syrupy and rounded with notes of earthy cocoa, it adds brightness and vibrancy to the otherwise light yet uplifting coffee. While it will neither overwhelm nor blow you away, you find yourself leaving the store a little perkier and filled with character each time.

Liberty Café

131 Rangoon Road, Singapore 218 409

Check out their Facebook for more informatino on their opening dates and time.

Contact: 6392 2903


Notoriously hard to catch, Liberty Café is opened by the same people behind Liberty Coffee, a local wholesaler and retailer of artisan roasted coffee beans. Opening the café to public only once a month, the business model behind this neat little space can be quite mind boggling. With their main business being the micro-roastery, the husband and wife team take great pride in the freshness and quality of their specialty coffee beans with small-batch roasting and hand-sifted beans. Opening the café is solely out of passion and a desire to spread the goodness of coffee across our little island.
While the café did offer a wide variety of quality coffee beans from several countries, their most renowned brand is the Speakeasy Espresso Blend that is made up of beans from Brazil, Mexico and El Salvador. The fuss-free dose of caffeine set itself apart with distinct nutty tones that stayed consistent throughout the cup. While lacking slightly in fragrance, the medium bodied coffee had an amazing texture that leaves one satisfied with an almost chocolaty aftertaste. If you are craving for a quick caffeine fix but can’t get to Liberty Café itself, fret not, you can also have a taste at places like Flock Café, Artistry, and Carpenter & Cook. Check out their Facebook for more information on their opening dates and time.

Maison Ikkoku

20 Kandahar Street, Singapore 198 885

Mon - Thur: 9 am to 9 pm, Fri - Sat: 9 am to 11 pm

Sun: 9 am to 7 pm

Contact: 6294 0078



Maison Ikkoku is a 3-story lifestyle boutique comprising mid-high end international mens wear retail, a perfectly semi-alfresco cocktail bar, and a strong core café centered on specialty coffee.The artisanal coffee bar serves up a really strong, masculine cup of quality coffee. The quaint little café uses only coffee beans from Brazil and Ethiopia, and are meticulously roasted by their own baristas on a weekly basis.
Don’t be deceived by its initial light fresh aroma. Each sip sends a strong surge of flavorful beans through your system, leading to a very well differentiated taste. The subtly bitter aftertaste that lingers on after each sip is unique and can be highly subjective according to each individual’s liking. In conclusion, a purely individual coffee that goes better on its own than with any food, which will only act as a distraction to its distinct flavor.