Every second Saturday of the month local Singaporean microbrewery Jungle Beer hosts a boozy all-you-can-drink craft beer extravaganza in their small tasting room / hangout, which is hidden away in the dark bowels of an industrial food distribution center in a remote corner of Sembawang. Unless you live in the immediate area it’s a serious haul to get out there, and with the facility mostly deserted on Saturday evenings it feels like a perfectly idyllic location to get murdered in, but hey, five hours of four free-flowing craft beers for S$40 is five hours of free-flowing craft beers for S$40 – plus I’ve heard rumors that Tiger Airways will soon be offering direct flights from Changi International Airport to Sembawang. Fingers crossed.
Forty bucks for all that booze is a godly deal in pricey Singapore, particularly for Jungle Beer, which you can enjoy on the (relative) cheap on draft during happy hours at recommended watering holes like JiBiru Craft Beer Bar and Brewerkz, but is otherwise a little overpriced and hard to justify when it comes to their bottles. As far as that goes, the Jungle Beer crew seems to have de-emphasized larger 640ml bottles in favor of standard 330ml bottles due to what I’m guessing is a combination of profit margins and being able to stretch the distribution of their small-batch brews further by bottling in smaller quantities; I need to ask brewmaster Aditya Challa about this.
The 640ml bottles, for example, were at one point offered at an insanely low introductory rate of S$8.90 from online beer delivery service Mabuk Monkey, but today over at Tippletown an eight-pack of four different types of 330ml Jungle Beer bottles is “on sale” for S$83.60, or S$10.45 each; Thirsty has 330ml bottles of Jungle Beer for S8.90. Meanwhile, I haven’t been able to find any 640ml bottles of Jungle Beer in Singapore for some time; Mabuk Monkey still has the Imperial Stout and Tropical Wheat listed on their menu at S$12 each, but it hasn’t actually been available for months. This is strictly conjecture on my part, but I get the sense Mabuk Monkey has been permanently phased out by the brewery over pricing issues, which is a shame: I may be an atypical consumer, but I’m far more likely to purchase a large bottle for S$12 than I am a small bottle for around S$10.
That deal on Mabuk Monkey wasn’t sustainable, and may have contributed to the deterioated business relationship between them and Jungle Beer — yes, I’m actually gossiping about craft beer — but it was that deal, coupled with the convenience of having the bottles delivered to me at the York Hotel of all places within an hour, that turned me onto Jungle Beer in the first place and left me searching for more of their beers around the island. Even without that wallet-friendly deal, though, Mabuk Monkey still has the best delivery value on one locally brewed craft beer.
It’s on a suite of 640ml bottles from Brewerkz, the respected microbrewery that debuted in 1997 and now has two locations in Singapore where more than 10 of their beers, along with selections from Red Dot Brewhouse and Jungle Beer, are poured on draft. Though you can actually order six-packs of 640ml Brewerkz bottles directly from them online at prices that are even better than those offered at Mabuk Monkey, you can’t mix and match varieties like you can at the latter, delivery is not guaranteed within an hour, and to get free delivery you have to place a minimum order of S$150, which works out to at least four six-packs; otherwise you’ll have to tack an additional S$50 onto your order or pick it up yourself.
You’ll get free delivery on orders over S$50 from Mabuk Monkey, where stock fluctuates but generally includes up to eight flavors of Brewerkz priced from S$8 – S$10 per 640ml bottle. The brewery’s signature Golden Ale, Hopback Ale, Pilsner, Oatmeal Stout and IPA tend to always be on the menu, but seasonal and limited-batch brews such as Black Pig, Blonde Assassin, Oktoberfest, and White Rabbit have all also been available. In addition to Brewerkz, Mabuk Monkey stocks 500ml bottles of Hobgoblin, Old Empire, Wychcraft, Schneider Weisse, Green Goblin, and Duchy’s Original for S$7.50, and small 330ml bottles of St. Bernardus for S$6.60 – S$10. Check out the full menu here.
Singapore has other beer delivery services worth checking out, including the aforementioned Tippletown and Thirsty, both of which offer a deeper menu of craft beers than Mabuk Monkey; Time Out Singapore recently published a nice rundown of the island’s options. If you’re a resident and don’t mind buying in bulk, Craft Beer Singapore has an excellent selection of craft beers sold by the case at competitive prices, including Hitachino Nest Weizen for S$160.50 (S$6.68 per bottle) and Rogue Dead Guy Ale for S$133.75 (S$5.57 per bottle). Still, the Monkey’s Brewerkz deal and convenience are hard to beat.
Mabuk Monkey will deliver to any address in Singapore from their headquarters on Arab Street, convenient for both those of us stocking the fridge at home as well as for those just passing through and hoping to sip good beers in the hotel without paying dearly for the privilege. Here’s hoping Mabuk Monkey and Jungle Beer do business again soon, too: Happy hours and free flows are great, but big bottles of Tropical Wheat on my balcony are usually even better.
Contact Mabuk Monkey at +65 6294 1714. One-hour deliveries are offered Tuesday – Thursday and Sunday from 6 p.m. – midnight, and Friday – Saturday from 6 p.m. – 2 a.m. Closed Monday. Cash, credit card, and PayPal accepted.