Jewel Changi Airport is full of firsts, like Shake Shack, Pink Fish and Burger & Lobster.
But for A&W, they’re coming back to a celebration of old fans, which explains why they experienced the longest queues in Jewel during the preview.
According to Channel NewsAsia, the A&W outlet hadn’t even opened that day, but there were already more than 50 people in line.
A&W, Allen and Wright, came to Singapore in 1966 at Dunearn Road. After growing to 5 outlets on the island, they pulled out of the country in 2003, much to the despair of their loyal followers.
So I guess after 16 years of deprivation, this last bit of waiting is really nothing.
But other than their frosty mugs of root beer along with the classic American fare like their heaped coney dogs, juicy burgers and crispy fried chicken, what else can Singaporeans expect from A&W Singapore?
Oh god, the last two words felt so good to type.
Expect Popular A&W Restaurants From Overseas
A&W is not a fast food franchise but a fast food chain, because A&W Restaurants wanted more control over their menu decisions.
This freedom to play around with their own menu actually allows them to bring in other regional favourites like the “golden aroma chicken” from A&W’s Malaysian and Indonesian outlets and the “waffle sundae” from A&W’s Thai outlets into Singapore.
According to Channel NewsAsia, Mr Kelvin Tan, A&W International’s director of marketing and communication, said: “We have tweaked the menu so that it appeals to a wider group of customers”
He added, “We have brought in menu items that have done well in overseas markets to Singapore. We still have our classics but have added new things to appeal to a wider crowd.”
And that includes going Halal
A&W is interested in opening their stores to the Muslim community, which they recognise as a big and important market based on past records.
While they’ve been trying to keep things halal from D-Day, they haven’t made it official.
They are hoping for the crowd to ease out a bit before getting the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS) to come down for an audit.
But in the meantime, they assure us that the food is already halal in practice, even if not in name.
“Right now, we would like consumers to know that it’s a Muslim friendly menu, no pork no lard, and as soon as we can find the time to submit our application to MUIS, we will do so immediately.”
Easing the Crowd
When A&W returned to our shores, they came prepared. The first outlet, as you all know, is up in Jewel Changi Airport and guess what, the second outlet is hot on its heels, scheduled to open sometime in June.
Where? We just have to be contented with knowing that its a “very high traffic location”.
“After opening here, we wanted to be able to scale in such a speed where it would ease off the crowd at the first outlet,” said Mr Tan. “It’s not that we come unprepared, we know that there’s going to be a huge crowd.”
On top of that, they’re planning to add a third outlet next year.
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So if the queues are too long for you right now, don’t fret. You’ll have a while to enjoy all the root beer and hot dogs you want because this time, A&W is here to stay.
Although, Mr A&W sir, the west of Singapore has one of the highest population in the country. #JustSaying #IDontKnowTrueorNot
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