Starting here a series of healthy restaurant reviews – starting easy too, as I picked what is for me one of the best places in the CBD to get a healthy lunch or grab dinner on your way home: Shake Farm HQ, in Telok Ayer.
The location, the venue & the vibe
You can’t really find a more vibrant street – on weekdays, at least – and it’s only a few meters away from Telok Ayer MRT. Perfect if you work in the CBD area (a bit less convenient if you plan to drive there, parking slots are quite limited in the neighbourhood.)
The venue is really cute, located in a 2storey shophouse – there’s a “farm” theme going on, but the best part is probably the 2nd floor and the quirky paintings & furniture. It’s a nice place to come for breakfast, or to work all day with a coffee (it gets busy during lunchtime, so don’t expect to take your 1pm call from there, though.
That being said, I’d love to see it becoming more popular after work – for now, it is pretty much a lunch place, and it doesn’t get as much traction later during the day, even if they serve nice beers & organic wine. The staff is also very used to the craziness of the lunch rush – but they are struggling a bit to create a nice dinner atmosphere (the only downside I found there!)
They organise activities from time to time, hosting yoga sessions or talks – something they should probably emphasize more, as the venue looks like it was made for it.
The food & drinks
First thing first: they have a BIG menu (quite literally, it’s a huge page) but the ingredients are fresh, and all combinations work perfectly. Inspiration comes a bit from everywhere: Sunday Roasts, traditional brunch plate, burrito-style salads… there is a lot to choose from and you can go quite regularly without getting bored.
I have to admit I fell in love with their bowls and salads: hearty, healthy, and prepared with love. Bowls tend to be more filling, as they contain carbs, while salads don’t. Portions are generous, still – and you can’t leave without trying their beetroot hummus.
You can also craft your own bowl – either from scratch, or by adding/removing things from the signature dishes. They have vegan and gluten-free options if required.
Pro-tip: make any dish low-carb by replacing the quinoa or rice with their cauliflower rice. Delicious & filling, yet much less calorie-dense.
Price-wise, expect to spend 14 to 20$ per bowl – breakfast options being a bit cheaper (you can get toasts for 7$).
What are the healthiest options on Shake Farm’s menu?
Short answer: mostly everything.
The great thing is that you can choose the option that is the best fit for your nutritional needs just by looking at the menu: macros are indicated (although if some of them sound a bit too good to be true) and, thanks to a colour code, you can spot at a glance which ones are highest in protein (if you’re coming back from a workout) or in carbs (if you’re getting ready for a training session.)
If you want a high protein, super filling lunch or dinner, you should probably pick the Beef bros.
If you’re looking for something lighter, both the Mexicana & the superfoods salad are delicious.
They also have a few protein bars to choose from if you want to grab a snack or a dessert on the go – which is a GREAT idea.
What is not so healthy on the menu?
If they are made with fresh ingredients and without added sugar, fruit smoothies are still packed with natural sugar – regardless of where they come from. Containing up to 400kcal a portion, and virtually no other macronutrient than fast-processing carbs, they might not be the best option if you’re willing to lose or control your weight. Of course, they are packed with vitamins, and still a much better option than any pastries or industrial products – just make sure you’re going to use this energy afterwards.
Some last thoughts
Shake Farm is one of my favourite places around, I can’t lie about it – As a huge healthy food advocate, I found there everything I was looking for – If I want to get a healthy meal, I’ll always try to cook and bring it from home first, but when it’s not an option, then Shake Farm is definitely my go-to option.
You can get their food delivered too – and they are on Entertainer (at the time this article is written, you can get 25% off the bill).
Shake Farm HQ, 126 Telok Ayer St, Singapore 068595