First, there was a trendy bagel joint, and now, Tanglin Mall is slowly shaping up to be a little “Korean enclave”.
Why spend all that money on a trip to Korea when you can visit Market Blue, a new all-in-one grocer, restaurant, and marketplace that’ll transport you to Seoul in no time at all?
Run by the team behind BlueBasket, an online Korean marketplace that brings in the best and most trendy lifestyle products from Korea, this unique multi-concept store has been drawing crowds of Korean expats, office workers, and curious tourists ever since its opening on 7 November 2022.
You can now shop at BlueBasket’s very first physical retail store and enjoy a “premium lifestyle curation experience without the premium price tag — by Koreans, for Singaporeans”.
If shopping for the festive season is already on your mind, browse through the extensive selection of Market Blue merchandise like graphic T-shirts, tote bags, stickers, homeware, keychains, dosirak lunch boxes, snack clips, and even whacky erasers and soap brushes shaped like Korean corn dogs — the list is endless.
Korean snack lovers will delight in the dedicated snack aisle and ramyeon library, which carries shelves and shelves of instant Korean ramyeon brands (even though I did spot a staple, Indomie, in the mix).
There are also plenty of fun photo ops dotted around the aesthetically-designed space, so strike your best pose amidst the colourful display of records and crates decked out in Market Blue’s signature blue colour.
But if you want to make your visit a lasting memory, grab your friends or significant other and go all out in the Life 4 Cut Korean instant photo booth.
Prices start from S$10 for a 4cut strip, and props like headbands and funky glasses are provided!
Korean grocer & mart
The striking pink Donas 8 kiosk may be empty for now (those boxes are adorable, though!), but it will soon be home to a Korean bakery selling desserts and sweet treats. A little birdie tells us that you may even be able to find twisted Korean doughnuts (kkwabaegi) here, so keep your fingers crossed!
Don’t forget to hit up the chilled good section while you’re busy dreaming about doughnuts; it is stocked with various types of kimchi, dried anchovies, ready-to-eat meals, cold beverages (like sikhye, or Korean sweet rice punch), and even chestnut paste from France.
If you’re planning to host year-end celebrations at home, swing by Tasty Seoul, a Korean deli and butchery for the perfect cuts of meat that’ll fulfil all your Korean BBQ needs. Those who wish to imbibe some tasty tipples can also check out JuMak, an in-house makgeolli brewery.
Korean food hall
Market Blue’s main attraction is definitely the food hall, where diners can choose their own seats and place orders for Korean meals that will be delivered directly to their table by friendly servers.
Although not every stall was in operation during our visit (during the pre-opening), you can choose from a plethora of lunch offerings from BoonSik, a Korean street food stall dishing up fried chicken and deep-fried snacks, and GoGiPan, a stall specialising in all things BBQ.
GoGiPan’s signature dish, which you’ll probably see on almost every table, is Baekban (백반), a Korean home-style meal consisting of rice, soup and a rotating menu of side dishes.
You can order baekban for up to three pax (although it can easily feed a group of five, especially if you order other dishes on the side), with prices starting from S$24.90.
Each baekban platter comes with a protein of choice (choose from beef, chicken, fish, or pork), kimchi stew, refillable banchan (side dishes), and a bowl of white rice, so you know you’re in for a hearty and healthy meal!
Although the kimchi stew wasn’t as tangy and piquant as I would’ve liked, it was chock full of tuna chunks, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
We had to try the Tteokbokki (S$9.90) from BoonSik — chewy rice cakes, fishcakes, and a hardboiled egg coated in a thick, spicy, and mildly sweet gochujang-based sauce. There’s even a creamy Rose (S$12.90) version if you can’t deal with too much heat.
Fans of Korean fried chicken can also order the Sweet & Spicy Marinated Chicken (S$18.90), which was crispy, crackly, and caramelised in all the right ways.
If the current menu isn’t enticing enough for you, keep an eye out for an exciting dinner menu (with Korean BBQ!) that’ll be released in end-November, alongside longer opening hours.
@tastesoulsg Bring your OPPA along to this all-in-one Korean market place! #tastesoulsg #marketblue #koreanstreetfood #koreansupermarket #sgfoodie #foodie #sgtiktok #sgfoodhunt ♬ Nxde – (G)I-DLE
I can foresee Market Blue being the hottest food and lifestyle destination for those who love all things Korean, so head on down before the crowds get a little too crazy!
📍 163 Tanglin Rd, Tanglin Mall, B1-122, 123, 124, Singapore 247933
🕒 10am–5pm (Mon to Fri), 9am–5pm (Sat & Sun)
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