Had been to the coffeeshop at 218 Sumang Walk previously for the now-defunct Big Brother 台湾盐水鸡; didn’t forsee myself returning again for yet another stall but was pretty intrigued by what this new Western cuisine stall named The Backyard Cookery has to offer. Taking a space beside Ming Xiang Seafood Zi Char, the western stall serves up appetisers, fries (think Okonomiyaki Fries) chops and grills, as well as burgers and pasta, they are an establishment that looks to serve up modern bistro-style fare in a neighbourhood setting. Prices are relatively pocket-friendly here, with the highest-priced item being at $15.90 for the Grilled Grass-Fed Ribeye Steak.

What got us especially intrigued to make a special trip down to try them out is their Cookery’s Beef Burger; the burger features a Laugen Brioche Bun, Caramalised Onion, Tomato Relish, Lettuce, Tomato, Mayonnaise, Homemade Beef Patty. Was initially quite concerned with how it didn’t seem to suggest that it includes cheese in its description, but we did find that they do serve a slice of proceeded cheese melted over the beef patty for the burger as well. The Cookery’s Beef Burger also comes default with a side of fries that accompanies the burger as well. On first look, the Cookery’s Beef Burger does carry an aesthetic almost familiar to that of the burgers served with a Pretzel Bun from HANS IM GLÜCK German Burgergrill, which operates multiple locations islandwide. This is pretty much due to the Laugen Brioche Bun that they use here — a very interesting choice for an establishment of its type. The burger buns come lightly buttered and grilled; pretty crisp on the outside, whilst having a firm bite to it texturally. Beneath the top bun, one would be able to find the caramelised onions just sitting in between the bun and the beef patty; the folks here seemed to have snuck in some raisins that provided an extra hint of sweetness and a bit more texture that actually goes quite well with the homemade beef patty. We also really enjoyed the homemade beef patty here; its beautifully crusted on the exterior from the grilling process — savoury yet locking in all the juices without being particularly gamey nor greasy (we have had quite a disappointing beef burger from a hyped-up new establishment just a week before; this was wayyy better) and while the melted cheese wasn’t something too artisanal, it was a great touch nonetheless. Beneath the patty, we were pretty surprised with how the lettuce and tomatoes were especially fresh; the former retaining a crunch while the latter comes with a juicy bite — all that without the bottom bun being all soggy from the elements above. While the fries did carry a rather plain aesthetic, we felt that these were decent; it’s sufficiently crisp on the exterior and fluffy inside — slightly more thick cut than the standard shoestring fries and probably a commercial product, though well-salted without being excessively so. No doubt a little more of an artisanal creation at the price of $11.90, but one that is seriously as competent as the variants that some cafes/bistros attempt to serve at higher price points both in terms of portion and execution.

Felt that it was quite a pity that we didn’t get to try the other menu items that they have here since we didn’t have that much of a stomach for them, considering that items such as the Okonomiyakk Fries and Cream of Mussels (blue cheese and whole blue mussels) were also items that seem to interest us, and are not something that can be commonly found in Western cuisine stalls in coffeeshops. Having tried the Cookery’s Beef Burger though, we are pretty certain that we are likely to return to try more of their items; no doubt a short travel is required from Punggol MRT Station/Bus Interchange to reach here, but its pretty worthy especially when one is already in the area. A spot that residents should be glad about having in the the neighbourhood; also somewhere that they would most likely be splurging on to treat themselves every once in a while!