As the saying goes, home is where the heart is. Inspired by the serenity and harmonious energies of the Nepali mountains, owner Ollie wanted to create a “public home” for people in Singapore to escape from their hectic daily lives.
Situated right in the middle of the hip and trendy Haji Lane, my first impression of Going Om is exactly what its name suggests — small, homely, and terribly cosy. Taking up one floor of a two-storey shophouse, Going Om has only enough seats for around a dozen people in the day. As the sun sets, the occupancy increases up to tenfold, with the place able to accommodate up to 200 people gathered around stools and short tables.
As we went in the day, we had a nice large table all to ourselves. While waiting for our dishes to be served, I couldn’t help but check out the decor of the place. It wasn’t as thematic as it was a smorgasbord of inspirational quotes and cultural references — think motifs of dragons and elephants, fortune cards and ornamental lights, religious artefacts like paintings and statues; there is even a bookshelf right beside the sofa if you’re in the mood for some books!
Bearing an uncanny resemblance to a particular local nyonya finger food, the panipuri takes kueh pie tee and mixes it up with a splash of Indian flavour. The bite-sized portions surround a little bowl of homemade sauce made from a blend of coriander, mint, and some spices. We were told to scoop about three scoops into each panipuri, before eating it in one mouthful. The homemade sauce packed a punch, and I was pleasantly surprised by how appetising the combination was.
The Salmon and Brown Rice with Vegetables also stands out as being a healthy option that tastes as good as it looks. I particularly liked the homemade pesto with fusion masala sauce to smear all over my baked salmon. The chef also told us that he opted for brown rice not only because it’s healthier, but also because it’s crunchier than white rice. The sweet potatoes, baby corn, and carrots on the side cemented this dish as my favourite wholesome meal at Going Om.
Both the panipuri and the Salmon and Brown Rice with Vegetables are new additions to the menu, which will be made available to the public by May.
Chef Yusof reminded me to come back next time at night, where the place paints an entirely different picture as its daytime facade. He likens the atmosphere to a quaint village, with people strumming guitars and ukuleles, cheerful banters, and happy laughters all around.
While Going Om is just a cafe/bar, I left with an impression of a homey sanctuary – a place filled with positivity, harmony, and bliss.
And to think we can find all that in a refurbished shophouse tucked away in our very own eclectic Haji Lane.
63 Haji Lane
Sundays to Thursdays: 12:00pm – 12:00am
Fridays and Saturdays: 12:00pm – 1:00am
EZi Wallet will be available at Going Om soon. Check them out then with our app and enjoy the discounts!