Disclaimer: I’m not sure if you are one, but let me tell you more about myself: I am a millennial who pretty much had Hard Rock Cafe as a permanent fixture in my life, thanks to my dad’s passion and love for rock music and motorcycles.
Because of him, not only did I grow up listening to some of the most amazing bands and artists but I also got to indulge in all the sumptuous American fare that Hard Rock Cafe is synonymous with. As a kid, each visit to Hard Rock Cafe was filled with wonder and the live music that used to fill up the room was exhilarating for a six-year-old.
While we try to remind ourselves what live music used to be (hah!), Hard Rock Cafe is taking us on a different route down memory lane. In conjunction with its 50th anniversary, the establishment is celebrating the milestone by bringing back some of the most classic dishes in a limited-time “Back to Classic” menu.
But, are these Golden Jubilee dishes worth the calories? Keep reading for our honest review.
What to order from Hard Rock Cafe’s “Back to Classic” menu
The limited-time menu is all about recreating your favourite Hard Rock Cafe memories with food, but the team certainly did not take the easy way out here.
Instead of just bringing back the classics in their original taste and presentation before they were taken off the menu, Hard Rock Cafe actually gave the dishes an updated spin to suit the modern-day palate.
For starters, you have the Traditional Potato Skins (S$17.95), where large potato shells are fried golden brown before they get filled with Jack and Cheddar cheese, crisp smoked bacon, and green onions.
The only appetiser on the menu, it comes with a side of sour cream for dipping.
Loaded bacon and cheese fries are a staple American snack, but Hard Rock Cafe elevated it by swapping French fries for the actual tuber itself. It was indulgent but not nauseatingly rich that you’d get sick of eating it.
In fact, we tried to stop ourselves from ordering another plate!
For the main course, choose from three hearty options: Quinoa Burger, Chicken Club Sandwich, and Open Faced Sirloin.
To start, Quinoa Burger (S$25.95) is a vegetarian burger that stacks a house-made patty of quinoa with red onion, portobello, egg, Cheddar cheese, pecan, barley, soy sauce, and breadcrumbs, topped with hummus, arugula, tomato, and grilled red onion.
But like any good burger, this dish is served with seasoned fries on the side. While it’s labelled as vegan, I find that this is actually a good option to try on days when you don’t feel like having meat.
What I liked about the Quinoa Burger is that it packed a flavour punch despite not having any meat in it and still remained relatively moist.
Also on the menu is the Chicken Club Sandwich (S$25.95), which sees grilled chicken, crisp bacon, tomato, mayonnaise, and lettuce neatly wedged between two slices of toasted sourdough bread. It’s served with seasoned fries and coleslaw on the side.
Grilled chicken can be hard to perfect, and unfortunately, the Chicken Club Sandwich missed the mark for me as it was a tad too dry for my liking.
My favourite main course has got to be the Open Faced Sirloin (S$29.95).
Roasted New Zealand sirloin is sliced and served over toasted sourdough bread, smothered with mushrooms, and caramelised onions, and topped with melted Swiss cheese and brown gravy. Like the Chicken Club Sandwich, it’s served with seasoned fries and coleslaw.
Don’t be fooled by the unassuming open-faced sandwich; it may look like a smaller portion compared to the vegan burger or club sandwich but trust me, it was seriously satisfying and filling!
The beef slices were cooked to perfection and had just enough bite for texture. With the combination of mushroom, onions, melted cheese, and gravy, the dish reminded me of a mouthwatering steak with mushroom sauce done right.
In fact, the Open Faced Sirloin was such a highlight for me that I immediately made a booking to have it again next week, this time with my husband who’s also a meat lover like me.
To end your meal on a sweet note, don’t forget to order the Mud Pie (S$18.95).
A cookie crust is filled with a heavenly concoction of coffee and topped with a generous layer of Häagen-Dazs chocolate ice cream, together with a drizzle of hot fudge and sprinkles of crunchy almond flakes.
I was initially worried that the dessert would be too sweet for my liking but all my worries were cast aside the moment I tasted a mouth of the coffee-and-chocolate pie.
The cookie crust was firm enough to hold the coffee filling but soft enough to be picked up by the fork with just a gentle push – plus, the coffee and chocolate combo is always a good idea, am I right?
I am a big fan of Hard Rock Cafe’s sinfully delicious Hot Fudge Brownie (which is available on its regular menu), but I’m certainly glad that I now have another dessert that I can order during my next visit.
What’s a Golden Jubilee celebration without the booze, right? To do it Hard Rock-style, Hard Rock Cafe introduced not one, not two but four cocktails to celebrate its 50th birthday.
If you like a more classic drink, you can choose between Retro Espresso Martini (S$22.95) and Classic Long Island Iced Tea (S$24.95).
For something more colourful, ask for either the C.M.F (S$24.95) or Blue Devil (S$22.95).
In addition to the cocktails, there’s also a non-alcoholic option for those who want to indulge minus the hangover. The non-boozy Groupie Grind (S$19.95) is a combination of mango puree, pineapple juice, and homemade piña colada mix poured over strawberry puree.
Hard Rock Cafe’s “Back to Classic” menu definitely had more hits for me than misses, and digging into the iconic dishes – some of them were around for more than a decade! – definitely brought back fond family memories where we bonded over good classic American food.
And whether you’re a millennial like me with good memories of Hard Rock Cafe or just a foodie looking to try new flavours, I definitely recommend giving the limited-time menu a try before its final curtain call.
The “Back to Classic” menu is available for a limited time only until 31 October 2021. Enjoy it in Hard Rock Cafe Singapore located at 50 Cuscaden Road, HPL House, #02-01, Singapore 249724 or find it at Hard Rock Cafe Sentosa located at 26 Sentosa Gateway, Resorts World Sentosa, #01-209, Singapore 098138. Head over to the official Hard Rock Cafe website to make a reservation.