Bar Cicheti reopens: New look & menu with rich, smoked cacio e pepe pasta

By Evan Mua March 25, 2024
Bar Cicheti reopens: New look & menu with rich, smoked cacio e pepe pasta
A great spot for handmade pasta lovers, made even better. Photos: Evan Mua/HungryGoWhere

There’s no doubt Italian cuisine — handmade pasta in particular — has become one of the most prevalent crowd-pleasers in the past five years.

Even with the regular wave of swanky new openings each month, probably not many measure up to the Cicheti Group’s concepts, when it comes to reliability.

Since the founding of its maiden restaurant Cicheti in 2013, the venture has grown into a thriving portfolio with a range of eateries.

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Popular Keong Saik restaurant Bar Cicheti has just undergone a revamp. Photo: Evan Mua/HungryGoWhere

It now boasts four of Singapore’s most popular casual dining restaurants — including the highly-raved Bar Cicheti, Forma and Wild Child Pizzette

But change is always necessary in this unrelenting F&B sphere. That meant iconic Keong Saik date spot Bar Cicheti — opened in 2018 — was overdue for a makeover.

Now, slightly over a month after the hoarding went up in early February, Bar Cicheti is finally ready to receive pasta lovers once again.

Just as good, maybe better

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The striking reds and modish vintage vibe makes it a great date-spot. Photo: Evan Mua/HungryGoWhere

One immediately apparent change from the get-go: Bar Cicheti’s get-up is markedly more vibrant and snazzy now.

Compared to the understated browns and blacks of before, the space is now a sea of crimson, with the florid palette adding a modish vintage edge.

Beyond the superficial changes, the new Bar Cicheti comes with a refreshed menu. Some timeless classics found their way back onto the menu, but a myriad of new ideas are also making their debut, injecting a breath of fresh air.

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Giant, juicy meatballs? Can’t resist that. Photo: Evan Mua/HungryGoWhere

One such beloved stalwart is the polpette di manzo (S$22), essentially Italian meatballs bathed in tomato sauce.

Fashioned from minced brisket and pork sausage, the meatballs are delightfully succulent and pairs well with the homely, tomato-forward richness of the pomodoro sauce.

But we don’t come to Bar Cicheti for starters — the star at the establishment has always, unequivocally, been the freshly handmade pasta. 

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Pasta here is meticulously al dente. Photo: Evan Mua/HungryGoWhere

The bucatini con gamberi (S$32) really surprised us with its extraordinarily pristine al dente texture — even for handmade pasta.

While we understand many local pasta bars slightly overcook the carbs to match the local palate, the Bar Cicheti’s bucatini came bouncy and snappy, just the way we like it.

As for the rest of the ensemble, the rich, seafood flavours of the lobster bisque and Argentiian red prawns came through well and made for a comforting dish.

Bar Cicheti’s cacio e pepe

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The restaurant has always been known for serving one of the best cacio e pepe in Singapore. Photo: Evan Mua/HungryGoWhere

That said, anyone who knows anything about the local Italian food scene would know what Bar Cicheti is best known for — its signature cacio e pepe (traditional Roman pasta made with cheese and pepper).

But fans might be shocked to find it in completely new form: It’s now served as a smoked cacio e pepe (S$28) featuring rigatoni charred over the charcoal grill. 

Is the change the right choice?

We think yes. Like any good authentic cacio e pepe, it’s exuberant and punchy with oodles of pepper and cheese oomph. On top of that, the extra dose of smoke perfectly accentuates that base richness, making it oh-so-satisfying.

If you’re a huge cacio e pepe fan though, then there’s also something else on the new menu that would intrigue you. No, it’s not on the food menu, but rather, in the tipples section.

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If you like cacio e pepe so much, why not try it in liquid form? Photo: Evan Mua/HungryGoWhere

Paying homage to Bar Cicheti’s signature, the cacio e pepe cocktail (S$24) is a fascinating concoction of mezcal, egg white, simple syrup, lemon juice, sarawak black pepper, and parmigiano reggiano.

As weird as it sounds, savoury cocktail fans might be enamoured with this. It’s rich and smoky, while also carrying a healthy dose of pepper and cheese fragrance. 

So in case you’re looking to pamper yourself — or a date — with some impressively hearty pasta, why not consider making a reservation at Bar Cicheti?

For more ideas on what to eat, read our stories on the ramen joints that will satisfy you with the heartiest broths and Swensen’s new unlimited buffet where you can eat till you drop!

Do explore the new GrabFood Dine-in service for awesome deals.

You can also book a ride to Bar Cicheti to check out the cacio e pepe.

Bar Cicheti

10 Jiak Chuan Road
Nearest MRT: Outram Park and Maxwell
Open: Sunday to Thursday (12pm to 2.30pm, 6pm to 10.30pm), Friday and Saturday (12pm to 2.30pm, 6pm to 11pm)

10 Jiak Chuan Road
Nearest MRT: Outram Park and Maxwell
Open: Sunday to Thursday (12pm to 2.30pm, 6pm to 10.30pm), Friday and Saturday (12pm to 2.30pm, 6pm to 11pm)

Evan Mua


Evan started off writing about food on Instagram, before joining outlets such as Buro and Confirm Good to pursue his passion. His best work usually comes after his first whisky shot in the morning.

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