Top chefs say we don’t make sense: The Social Outcast
··3 mins read
Just from the name of ‘The Social Outcast’, one might assume the entrepreneurs behind this eatery exuded boldness and are obnoxiously different. Interestingly, Chef-Owner Mint and his partner Noelle started their very own burger and grill concept from very humble beginnings.
A couple of years back, Mint’s dad fell ill and in the face of adversity, Mint’s mindset shifted. “I could be an office worker forever…,” he commented, “or I can do something of my passion whilst he (my dad) is still alive to witness me do so.” To open his own F&B has always been an unspoken wish, but his dad’s situation ignited a spark in him to embark on his long-awaited journey.
Together with his partner, Noelle, they both buckled, hustled quickly, and opened The Social Outcast at a coffee shop in Tampines. It wasn’t anything fancy. She displayed the collective effort that went into the signboard and menu designs, proudly done without any marketing agency’s help. Truly a pair who dug deep, put their feet on the ground and made things happen within their own means.
The Social Outcast: An unorthodox concept?
Upholding their mission to serve customers the best, they spared nothing to import the Lamborghini of ovens—the high-end Mibrasa handcrafted oven from Spain. The reason? They wanted a real representation of a charcoal grill and wood-fire smoked burger and meat joint. Across most kitchens in the world, meat has always been done best and done right over charcoal and raw fire. And certainly, a good oven is part of a chef’s craft.
We bring quality grilled food that you are only able to get in fine-dining restaurants, here at a hawker setting.
It is something unorthodox. In fact, Mint shared that many chefs “told us it is not going to work”, “we are not going to churn out hundreds of burgers with this oven” and that “it doesn’t make sense”. The odds stood no chance for this strong-willed duo and got the nay-sayers gripping tightly. They have since expanded to Bedok Marketplace (Level 2), thanks to the overwhelming support.
Off-the-menu dishes, fiery roasts & more
A tip for all when you head to The Social Outcast, ask for their ‘off-the-menu dishes’. Chef Mint’s special surprise menu items are fiery delights. For the month of December 2020, they have a charcoal-grilledBone Marrow, pin-wheeledBeef Chorizoserved with mashed potatoes and also lamb meatballs, and Jamaican Jerk Half-Spring Chicken ($18).
For burger lovers, try the unique and unforgettable Teriyaki Unagi Burger ($21) served with tempura fries. It’s a serious stack of goodness. Meat lovers can try the Outcast Possible Meats Burger($23). The Outcast boasts a charcoal-grilled beef patty on top of wood-fire smoked lamb chunks, and slathered generously with their homemade chimchurri sauce.
If you think this burger grill joint is run by two daredevil wannabes, think twice. The Social Outcast embraces the uniqueness in each and every one of us all, all while retaining a strong emphasis on having good quality food and good customer service. Now, you and I can enjoy good grub (think charry, wok-hei grilled food, all thanks to the wood fire) in a laid back hawker environment.
“Your dad will be very proud of you,” I told Mint. He smiled. The usual chatty chap paused, as we both sat in comfortable silence. His smile dipped—perhaps from reminiscing about old times. Our chat came to a close with less being said. Yet from across the table, there was so much to feel.