The Grub Guide: Banana Garden


Ananya Pinnamaneni

Banana Garden Deep Fried Mango Ice Cream

Amidst multiple upscale restaurants, such as the Mayflower, Banana Garden doesn’t look like much. However, despite its tacky appearance and a seeming lack of customers, this restaurant will exceed your expectations.

I ordered the Belachan Goreng Rice, which looked just like normal fried rice at first glance. However, after looking more closely, I discovered that there was shrimp in it, which was not included in the description on the menu. I don’t usually eat shrimp, so I was hesitant to try it, but it tasted surprisingly good, with a perfect balance of sweet, savory, and spicy. 

Even though I ordered a dish which contained meat, Banana Garden has plenty of vegetarian options – more than most other restaurants I’ve been to. From the Veggie Laksa Noodle Soup to the Veggie Char Kway Teow, there are multiple vegetarian dishes that I still want to try next time I go there. Even for the non-vegetarian items, you can ask for them to make it vegetarian, and they will serve it without the meat. However, the options available for vegans were limited. None of the items on the menu explicitly mentioned that they contained egg, but some of them, such as the Veggie Malay Mee Goreng, did have egg in them.

The customer service was not great at first but improved over the course of the meal. Although the waiters didn’t seem very approachable when we arrived and were somewhat imposing in what they wanted us to order, they served our order within minutes of the order being placed and checked in with us multiple times to make sure we were enjoying our meal. Additionally, when they were notified that it was my friend’s birthday, they were enthusiastic about making it a special day for her, so they brought out their special desert (Deep Fried Mango Ice Cream) with a candle in it and started playing the Happy Birthday song on their speakers.

Navigate Left
Navigate Right

The Deep Fried Mango Ice Cream was by far the highlight of my meal. The crunchy fried bananas drizzled with chocolate syrup tasted amazing and complemented the sweet mango ice cream with whipped cream. The icecream did melt quite fast, quickly turning into a pool of yellow and brown liquid on the plate, but it was worth it while it lasted.

Overall, I would rate Banana Garden a 7/10. It’s not the best restaurant I’ve ever been to, but the food definitely tasted a lot better than I expected based on the overall ambience of the place. The food is somewhat more expensive, ranging from $14-$17 for most dishes, but the serving sizes are also large enough to make up for that. I would recommend paying Banana Garden a visit, even if it’s just to try the Deep Fried Mango Ice Cream.