Call it what you will — progressive, over-ambitious or just plain bizarre. However you may feel about modern Singaporean (Mod-Sin) cuisine, it’s here to stay. Past years have seen restaurants sprouting up with their own reinterpretations of local staples the likes of laksa and chilli crab, as well as savvy hawkers jazzing up their food with trendy ingredients such as truffle.

It may seem like a pretty recent concept in the local culinary world, but Mod-Sin food has actually been around for over a decade. One of its pioneers is homegrown chef Willin Low, who coined the term when he opened his restaurant Wild Rocket in 2005. Back then, the eatery made headlines with its daring take on food typically found in hawker centres and kopitiams. Its signature dish was a laksa pesto pasta, which featured linguine drenched in a pesto made from laksa leaves and embellished with tiger prawns and a quail egg. Years on, and several menu revamps later, the restaurant remains a popular spot.

If you’re craving something a little different (and fancier) than your usual hawker centre or zichar fare, here are 5 Mod-Sin restaurants to check out.

(Main photo: Restaurant Labyrinth; Featured photo: )