Tim Hortons opens in Singapore

Finally Timmie lands in Singapore. Double double brewed coffee has always been in my favorite coffee list. For some reason this is the only time I would have 2 pumps of cream and sugar in my coffee. I’ve tried Tim Hortons in Toronto, Vancouver, Dubai and Manila. The quality varies in each city worldwide. Canadians will tell you that the coffee is not their first choice. Meanwhile in Manila, Tim Horton’s rarely pulls a crowd and a few outlets have shuttered too. The quality of the coffee beans is dregs at best and my cravings for Double Double have gone downhill ever since. Dubai — Uhh, I was happier with the coffee at Cinnabon.

First outlet in Vivo City, upcoming in NEX, Suntec and a lot of other outposts around the island by 2024. That’s some mega expansion, and I hope Tim Hortons know what they’re doing. Singapore is oversaturated now when it comes to coffee spots. You’ll need a second stomach for coffee.

The lines on day 1 are indeed long, but I’ve queued for longer wait times. By half an hour past its 10:00am opening time, the lines have gone shorter. I credit it much to their streamlined and highly efficient queuing system — segregating dine-ins from takeaways and putting limits to orders. But this screams warning signs for me that Tim Horton’s opening is muted and less than my expectations. It seems that people lined up for the first 100 customers to get a weekly latte for 6 months, and the first 200 tumblers/glass bottles for giveaways.

@candidcuisine Your regular dose of SG queues #tiktoksg #sgfoodie #新加坡生活 ♬ MONACO – Bad Bunny

Canadian loyalists abound on opening day, waving the Canadian flag, some wearing University of Toronto alumni shirts, and some claiming their grandma is Canadian while they’re not. I don’t know why brag about these things when it’s just donuts and coffee. If you have time, check out the real love behind Tim Hortons on Reddit.

I set aside my regular Double Double for now in favor of the Maple Cinnamon Latte ($7). Loved the aroma of cinnamon but a little too sweet for my liking. Tim Hortons roasts a decent cup of coffee to those looking for Starbucks alternatives. Of course, they’d have fresh coffee beans at their opening, otherwise it’s going to be a huge f up. Let’s see how it pans out in the next couple of months.

The selling point at Tim Hortons is surprisingly not their Timbits, which used to be my favorite. Singapore’s timbits ($10) are too chewy for my liking. I like my donuts to be a little airy, lightly crisp on the outside. I am not a fan of the birthday cake flavor, or why call it birthday cake when it’s simple as rainbow. Limited flavors once again for timbits: Classic, Cinnamon and Rainbow. (Yes I’ll call it that, because it’s simpler.) There are more timbits flavors in Manila, by the way.

You can’t purchase individual donuts yet. You also can’t claim your free lattes through the Tim Hortons Singapore app yet. You can’t earn points either. I don’t know when they’ll allow that, but I thought not being able to earn points on opening day is just vastly unfair when you told media outlets to download the app. Okay, uninstalling the app from my phone now. Useless.

Meanwhile, the sourdough toasts are surprisingly good. I love the Triple Cheese and Caramelized Onion ($8.90), and I find that it’s better than their doughnuts.

There are no bagels at Tim Hortons Singapore, and yes, Manila has it (and the crueller and more so Singapore’s menu is so limited you have to wonder if this is the Minimum Viable Product they’re aiming for). But even launching the everything bagel in Singapore just couldn’t compete with the quality in Canada. (And bagels here in Singapore are just terrible; I’m very vocal about that.) I remembered it being a bagel on its own class, soft and piping hot and toasted with cream cheese, and even the homeless crowd outside its Yonge Dundas location didn’t deter me from getting a bagel. I am glad Singapore chose not to serve the bagel. There’s a lot that can possibly go wrong with it.

An advice to Tim Hortons Singapore executives: Slow down the expansion. Don’t go all Flash Coffee and you’ll stay a bit longer in the game. Everyone’s already making a bet as to when you’re going to shutter your doors and leave the market.

Address: 1 HarbourFront Walk, #01-207 VivoCity, Singapore 098585
Opening Hours: Daily 10:00am – 10:00pm


Tim Hortons Singapore menu