It’s been more than two years since our one and only visit to Wild Oats, and to be honest I didn't know that they still existed, until I read a recent post on Chubby Hubby’s blog about their Spam (or rather, luncheon meat) fries. Since I read the post, I couldn't get the thought of fried strips of luncheon meat out of my head, so we made a date with some of A’s friends for a late dinner there on Saturday.
They’ve certainly expanded their food menu considerably since they first opened, when they only served chicken wings and a selection of hot dogs. They’ve trimmed the hot dog selection to just one, and the chicken wings now just come with one dip (the yummier gorgonzola), but they’ve added at least ten new items. Between 4 of us we ordered quite a few items to try.
First up was the whole reason for coming here – the luncheon meat fries. Luncheon meat is cut into thin strips, deep fried and served with a kaffir lime mayonnaise. I had high hopes for this dish, but I must say I was slightly disappointed. For me, the perfect piece of spam is fried till crispy on the outside, yet still a bit soft and pale pink inside. These were overfried so they were cooked all the way through and therefore a bit too hard. And while the kaffir lime mayo on its own was a really fragrant dip, somehow I think it’s just too posh a flavour for humble ol’ spam. I found that the fries went better when dipped in regular ketchup.
They’ve got mini Wild Rocket burgers too, which were pretty good. The patty was a little on the dry side, but otherwise I was quite happy with these.
Their minced pork meatballs are served with some kind of tomato salsa, and while they weren’t spectacular in any way, I found them incredibly addictive.
In classic Wild Rocket style, they incorporate local flavours into Western dishes, and one example is the Sarawak chicken curry shepherd’s pie. While this may sound slightly dubious, I actually thought this was very good. The curry didn't seem to be dumbed down – it was quite heavily spiced and had a decent amount of heat too. And it surprisingly paired quite well with the mashed potato.
I find it a bit of a bummer that they don’t serve soft drinks or coffee here, though. I was having one of those days where I really needed a coffee, but ended up being ‘forced’ to order a cocktail instead. The food is interesting, but because it’s primarily a bar, the vibe is just a tad too chi-chi and not conducive for just hanging out.
I didn’t really expect much but was very pleasantly surprised. Excellent bar food and superb service. Fully recommended for some light bites with drinks.
Wild Oats Bar On the Hill
11 Upper Wilkie Road
Open Tuesday to Sunday, 6 pm to midnight