SGH Coffee Sources

The average house officer / medical officer / SIP student in Singapore General Hospital is dead tired and a fan of either tea / coffee.

J. is a coffee drinker more than a tea drinker, though he likes both. J. tends to order either hot kopi-c siu dai or kopi siu dai in general, though he enjoys a nice cappucino or flavoured coffee on occasion.

Kopi Peng
Kopi Peng

Thus, he has spent a bit of time scouting the various coffee sources in SGH and now presents the best kept caffeine secrets of SGH.

Onwards to coffee sources!

1. Coffee Machine Coffee ($0.50)

You get your choice of drainwater black, drainwater with milk, drainwater with sugar or drainwater with milk + sugar. Good thing it comes in a small cup. Also available is the option for extra dirt… um, thick coffee.

Verdict: Avoid unless you really, REALLY need that post-call caffeine

2. Kopitiam Kopi Siu Dai Bao ($1.10 cash, $0.96 with staff Kopitiam card)

Kopi = coffee, siu dai = less sweet, bao = to go. It’s a good choice if you’re into coffee-flavoured water. If you’re foolish enough to buy kopi-peng (iced coffee), when the water melts you’re basically drinking brown-coloured water.

Verdict: Avoid unless you enjoy throwing money away

3. Housemen’s Canteen Kopi Siu Dai Pao ($0.60)

The Housemen’s Canteen is located outside of Block 7, SGH. People who park at that Block’s public carpark will almost invariably pass by the place. A favourite jaunt of surgical teams prior to their surgeries, it’s not limited to house officers.

Kopi-C siu dai is J.’s favourite option but is $0.10 more expensive. They tend to put a bit too much condensed milk in the kopi so it’s ridiculously sweet. Kopi siu dai is just nice.

Kopi-C siu dai bao ($0.70)
Kopi C Siu Dai Bao

If you drink it in the canteen, it comes in mugs (for hot drinks) or glasses (like above, for cold drinks). If it’s to go, it comes in a plastic bag which is handy to carry but not easy to put down. For convenience’s sake, J. brings along his Starbucks mug to use for putting down his coffee.

Verdict: Optimal choice for the cost-conscious student

4. Staff Cafetaria Cappucino ($1.20 for outsiders, $1.00 for staff)

Located at the 8th floor of Level 6, the Staff Cafetaria is usually only bustling at lunchtime. The coffee machine is self-service, and the advantage over the housemen’s canteen is that it comes in a styrofoam cup (with cap) that can be carried around and put down easily.

Cappucino/Teh Tarik Machine
Staff Cafetaria Coffee Machine

The cappucino is creamy and sweet. Not bad at all. It’s the only coffee available at the staff cafetaria though. However, the staff cafeteria often isn’t open at 7.00am in the morning, the usual time that J. arrives in hospital.

Verdict: Tasty! Drink only on occasion to avoid the cloying feeling

5. Polar Café Coffee ($2.20)

Again, Polar doesn’t open so early in the morning. J. doesn’t usually buy the coffee from there. However, they do provide the coffee and snacks for Tuesday morning HO teachings.

Coffee + Creamer + Raw Sugar + Stirrer
Polar Cafe Coffee

Verdict: Not bad. Drink for free at teachings and meetings!

6. Délifrance Freshly Brewed Coffee ($3.10)

For the coffee kick at 7.00am in the morning, this is NOT the place.

It is, however, a good place to sit and relax during a slow moment upstairs. It has the advantage of being located at Block 4 where wards such as gastro/endo, respi, med/onco are, making it easy to hurry upstairs in the event of a new admission/emergency.

However, just one cup of the coffee will set you back by an amount equivalent to SIX housemen’s canteen kopi’s.

Verdict: Rare indulgence due to cost issues

The Ultimate Verdict
Go go Housemen’s Canteen!
Staff Cafetaria comes in a close second because of its convenient location.


One response to this post.

  1. Even though it’s not exactly in SGH (about a 10-min brisk walk total to-and-fro), the best damn coffee to be had if you’re posted to SGH is from Highlander Coffee Bar. Post to be put up soon.


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