Sam’s Cottage Review (Fish & Chips) – A Man Walks Into A Bar…


You can’t go wrong with fish and chips. 

-Michael Sandel

Dive bars used to get a lot of stick back in the days for being shoddy; even the name supposedly comes from people diving under tables whenever a bar fight broke out!

Sam’s Cottage’s Fish & Chips

But nowadays, it’s a label for a place of quaintness and good ol’ get-together. It started with a simple wish from Mr Samuel Sam over 10 years ago: to have a place where people in the neighbourhood can get together. With blocks of condominium apartments all over the Dairy Farm Estate where his dive bar is situated, he feels that neighbours don’t interact with one another as often as they used to back in the ‘kampung’ days. Home to many is just a hiding place to rest before the next day comes. He also finds it a safer alternative to heading out for drinks and possibly driving to bars elsewhere; several years before the Upper Bukit Timah area is connected by train with the new Downtown Line, which only started operation in late 2015.

It was a weekday when I first visited and even then there were quite a few residents just enjoying a pint or having some of Sam’s signature menu item: Classic English Fish & Chips.

Sam's CottageSam's CottageSam's Cottage

Like at any respectable Fish & Chips place, you get the  food piping hot and wrapped up in white paper. The fish has nice golden-brown batter and fluffy white meat, and the chips are well, chips! These are best accompanied with generous sprinkles of salt and malt vinegar. Now, although you can’t beat serving traditional cod fish, his take on the dish is decently done.

Other than Fish & Chips, Sam’s also takes pride in having free Heineken beer on tap, which turnovers relatively quickly. Supposedly, no keg is left unfinished after 2-3 days, tops! Here’s Sam himself taking pride in serving only the freshest food and drinks to his loyal following of customers:

The place itself is a perfect example of what this website seeks out: a quaint place that’s serves really good food, has a good ambiance, and serves a really niche group of customers but definitely deserve a lot of attention. With seating for just over a dozen inside and a handful of tables in the alfresco, it can get quite bustling on weekends. The bar is also run in a very relaxed and open style. Sam shows a great affection to everyone, and remembers almost all their names!  If you’re lucky enough, you can challenge Sam to a game of darts or fuzzball. But don’t ever think that he’ll make it easy for you!

Sam’s carefree attitude to running the place is even more reflected, the bar’s opening hours are “when he comes” and closes “when he leaves” (translated: about 8pm to 12am, with some variance). But don’t even fret; Sam is honest and reliable to a tee and will always be ready to let you have a place to unwind, mingle and have great food!
Sam's Cottage Sam's CottageSam's Cottage

The Verdict

hole-in-the-wall-ness:
This place doesnt just feel hole-in-the-wall, it represents it!

Price:
Be prepared to shell out a little bit more for fresh food and beer, although it is not very big of a pinch

Quality:
Decent quality Fish & Chips and other finger food like chicken drumlets, with clean Heineken beer on tap

Overall:
If you’re not put off by the distance because you live in the #eastsidebestside, or you live in the west, it’s worth visiting what could be one of Singapore’s best dive bars, tucked away in a little corner called Dairy Farm Estate!

Sam's Cottage Fish & Chips

Bonus: Check out their 90s spot commercial below!

More Information

Sam’s Cottage
17 Dairy Farm Rd
Dairy Farm Estate,
#B1-09
Singapore 679043
Opens daily from about 8pm to midnight, or as Sam puts it: “Sam’s Cottage is open when he comes and closes when he leaves”.
Phone: 6766 3907
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Sams-Cottage-169232239761773/


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7 thoughts on “Sam’s Cottage Review (Fish & Chips) – A Man Walks Into A Bar…

  • Colin

    Yes indeed a lovely, cosy and fantastic little English Pub with an authentic wooden Engish fire place that I have had been going to, to enjoy my evenings during my yearly company annual leave whenever I return to my home country Singapore over the years. Yeah, the Fish and Chips is my favourite!

    Check it out yourself guys!

  • Colin

    The fresh chilled Heineken is always refreshing and energising for the soul after a hard and long day work .

    By the way, did you know that the wooden English fire place was flown all the way from London to Singapore in an A380 Emirates plane?

    Sam’s Cottage is the place to spend the evening with a chilled glass of fresh Heineken from the tap.

  • Colin

    My family and I had many fond memories in Sam’s Cottage Singapore when we were in Singapore many years ago. This is the place we spent our evenings after works will glasses of chilled Heineken from the tap. LOVE THE PLACE !

    From Thailand.

  • Obama

    Definitely a place to spend the evenings while you are in Singapore, though it is outside the CBD, the new MRT northsouth line will bring you to the door step at Hill View station.

  • geegoring

    Definitely a place worth visiting. Fish and chip is good, beer is fresh and v personal service!

    No.1 place for chillax.

    PS: You can always bring your own food for sharing with the community there!