Time Out: Honest Fun With Food At Three Buns | Clozette


“Who doesn’t like a good hand-crafted burger?” questioned the man behind Three Buns, a gourmet hand-made burgers lifestyle concept just launched by the Potato Head Family. 




We were speaking with Seng-Hoo, Managing Partner & CFO of the Potato Head Family, to gain insights into the success of this Indonesia-born F&B lifestyle group and its latest venture. An affable and energetic gentleman, Seng’s career is steeped in the finance industry. Belonging to a family in the finance business, he gravitated by default towards going to business school and landed his first job as a banker for a European bank.




In 2010, Seng joined the Potato Head Family, tasked with growing its real estate and F&B businesses. The switch in career paths was driven by his passion for hospitality. Seng espoused that the hospitality and lifestyle industry is practically a people business — finding the right people and having them fit into the right structure is probably the most challenging thing he and the Group have faced. “It’s all about finding people with the right mindset, with similar principles and core values that can allow you to achieve the same goals,” Seng emphasised.


The Group has four Potato Heads across Bali, Singapore, Jakarta and Hong Kong, with Three Buns being present in each of these cities as well. A Potato Head pool club will open soon in Los Angeles. On the food end, there are already four Kaum restaurants; we are fans of this restaurant concept that renders authentic Indonesian food from around the archipelago with a modern twist, served in contemporary settings.


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Katamama is the Group’s first artisanal boutique hotel designed with hand-made furnishings that showcase Indonesian craftsmanship. The second one will open in early 2020. Potato Head Hotel, its biggest project, is currently under construction and due to open soon, with three more new hotels confirmed within the next three years.

Asked about the secret behind the success of the Potato Head Family, Seng didn’t hesitate to share, “Consistency in delivering the experiences for your guests but at the same time, you need to evolve and take risks in developing breakthroughs, giving the people something they don’t know they will love. We don’t follow trends, we focus on providing original experiences and allowing people to be true to themselves, nothing pretentious, it’s about having honest fun.”



He went on to give the example of how Three Buns Quayside toes the Potato Head Family ethos of “Good Times, Do Good”. The 80-seat burger bar located at Robertson Quay is fitted with sustainably made furniture handcrafted by Indonesian artisans using all-natural materials such as up-cycled compressed wood scraps, recycled rubber, eco-friendly cement and even roof tiles from 1950s old houses in Serangoon Gardens that were recently demolished.


Left: Da Cheese Master Burger; Right: Miso Dirty Fries


Seng was also quick to stress that sustaining the food standard of its F&B outlets gets equal attention, highlighting its endeavours to solicit chefs like Adam Penney — who earned his stripes at Lonsdale, one of London’s most fashionable restaurants known for making iconic burgers from scratch — to helm Three Buns. Here, diners can expect Asian-influenced gourmet hand-made burgers using grass-fed prime Australian Angus and fused with home-made sauces. Each patty is crafted from two prime cuts of beef and simply seasoned with nothing else but kosher salt to retain its flavour integrity.



We were enthralled by the SMOKIN’ B-BOY — 150g of Black Angus beef patty layered with dingley dell black beer & treacle streaky bacon, bawang goreng, and smoked cheese; lathered with smokey mayo and BBQ ketchup; and sandwiched by a toasted brioche. This B-Boy was accompanied by utterly sinful MISO DIRTY FRIES, drenched in miso béarnaise sauce and topped with smoked chicken sausage and floss, chives, scallions and pickled chilli. Seng suggested pairing the tasting with an Italian red. It worked well; the robustness of the wine cutting through the richness of the food.




Three Buns is set to expand to Japan, Korea, China, Australia, the UK and the US, and will stay true to its concept of creating an original experience through collaboration with partners the likes of street brand ‘Neighborhood’ from Japan, which made shirts, shorts and hats for Three Buns, and surf brand Stussy, which made Hawaiian-style shirts.



As our conversation drew to a close, Seng extolled that hospitality can be a powerful tool to inspire society. The bigger picture in Group’s direction is to build a business where sustainability is its core, leading by example with its first zero-waste restaurant in Bali called Ijen that sits inside Potato Head Beach club. Laudable efforts indeed; here’s to better times and greater good.



Read more of our Time Out stories here.


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Stack 'em, wear them bold, or go for a simple band — the possibilities of styling rings are endless. And while they may be minute compared to the rest of our outfit pieces, it's no secret that they give their own touch of elegance and shine to whatever ensemble they're mixed in. So if you're looking for more ways to spice up your look with just a flick of a finger, pun intended, check out how the Community brings its ring thing to the styling game to elevate their look.  


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Fenty Fairy Bomb Shimmer Powder, SGD40/~USD29


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Sabrina

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Swatch SHINEBRIGHT , price unavailable


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