As with every new food outlet that comes to Singapore, a great queue awaits. Issac Toast is a famous breakfast sandwich chain that whips out sandwiches with various toppings to hundreds of Korean young people and tourist everyday in multiple locations across Seoul. Just last year, this popular outlet decided to open its first outlet in Malaysia airport followed by the 2nd and 3rd outlets in a few bigger shopping malls. This move had many Singaporean crying and wondering when will they come to our sunny shores? Imagine the loud cheers when news broke that they are finally opening their first outlet in Plaza Singapura this year!
Fast forward to present, Isaac Toast opened it’s doors to hungry Singaporean in July. I waited for a month before visiting hoping the heat of the crowd has died down but I guess not. There is still a relatively long queue when I visited one Sunday afternoon. The queue never stops with approximately 20 people in line all the time. Not forgetting the people with their waiting numbers, that is easily 25-28 people in queue.
The outlet is slightly bigger than the ones we see in Seoul where the Ahjummas work out of a 1 by 1 m square cube dishing out sandwiches at an incredible speed feeding hungry patrons. Here they have at any one time 5 to 6 staff on duty with 1 handling the cashier, 1 handling drinks, 1 handling the packaging and 2 handling the main stove. There are also some other staff behind the kitchen handling the preparations of ingredients.
The menu is very similar to the Korean outlets except for some of the specials that is only available in Korea. Most of the popular menu items are available in Singapore. A simple price comparison for the ham special: it costs KRW 2,400 (SGD 2.93) in Korea but a whopping $4.90 in Singapore. It is close to $2 more. Well, if you have been craving for this so much, the $2 will not be a deterrent and we have to count our lucky stars they are not selling it above $5.
After you placed your orders, you will be given a ticket with your number. The staff will prepare your drinks first if you ordered any and put it in order on the glass panel. You can take your drink first while waiting for the sandwich. There is 1 staff fully in charge of packing the sandwiches into bags and calling the ticket number.
The stove is spilt into 3 sections where 1 section is used for cooking the meat patty, the centre area for cooking the egg and the right section is where the bread is buttered and toasted and assembled. The average waiting time from the moment you join the queue to the moment you get your sandwich is about 15 – 20 mins.
Each sandwich is packed into these waterproof paper pockets and neatly placed in a plastic carry bag for take away.
You can simply eat out of the paper pockets without any mess.
I ordered the ham special to do an apple to apple comparison to the one I had in Seoul as this flavour is the one I always ordered. The surface of the toast is well buttered and there is a nice crisp to it. The combination of the meat, egg and the cabbage is still very refreshing and delectable. The overall taste of the toast is very similar to the one in Seoul, the only thing I felt was lacking was sauce. Both me and my friend remembered the toast to be very juicy and messy with a good amount of sauce bursting out from the sides of the sandwich while we bite into this square goodness. However, the Singapore version had nothing of this experience, it was pretty dry and while the taste is good, something was just lacking.
For those who have tasted it in Seoul, you can try it once to cure your love sickness for Issac Toast. Those who have not tried it, go with an open mind. ( I overheard a customer saying the ones he had in Taiwan breakfast stores are much better )
Address: Plaza Singapura Shopping Mall , Basement 2, Unit 42
Operating hours: 10.00 am to 10.00 pm
How to get there : Dhoby Ghaut MRT Station