SEVERAL 'desserts only' establishments have opened in the last few months.
And they no longer just serve the after-dinner crowd.
They are also aimed at post-clubbing night owls, as well as those who prefer a late night tete-a-tete over an alcoholic beverage or two.
Just last month, 2am: Dessert Bar (above) opened in Holland Village and, true to its name, it serves restaurant-style desserts till 2am in the morning.
Done up like a cosy and intimate bar, it also pairs suitable wines with the desserts served.
Its concept is similar to Macaron at Robertson Walk, a dessert restaurant opened by the Les Amis group.
There, a variety of traditionally savoury dishes are given an innovative sweet spin.
Serangoon Gardens has an increasingly hip enclave similar to Holland Village with the three-year-old Ice3 Cafe (right). It is enjoying a surge in popularity among students and young adults.
The cafe opens till 1am every day.
Said Ice3's director Ms Theresia Chan: 'There is an increasing number of people who are willing to travel in search of the best dessert.'
Still, there's no way any outlet here can afford to survive with only desserts on the menu.
Ice3 also has savoury finger food like potato wedges, cheesy fries and calamari rings which 'contributes to a small percentage of our sales', said Ms Chan.
'But our main products are still the desserts and the ice cream,' she added.
While Ms Chan did not want to reveal her profits, she said the cafe has seen an increase in sales of 'about 60 per cent' this year.
Ice3's specialities include Alcoholics' Anonymous, a rum and raisin mudpie that cost $9.90.
There's also the Magic Potion, which is made up of a scoop of ice cream and a shot of liqueur (inset). It costs $6.90 for a single shot of alcohol and $10.90 for the double.
Similarly, at 2am, while desserts here are the mains, there are also sides on the menu like prawn linguini and meatballs.
Miss Janice Wong, the 24-year-old chef and owner of 2am: 'I think some of our customers still crave for savoury items, so we have some for them, but the majority of our offerings are desserts.'
Added the Le Cordon Bleu-trained entrepreneur: 'Actually, for the desserts here, our profit margin is quite low because we use premium ingredients like Valrhona chocolate.
'Our customers include young adults and professionals. I've noticed that locals are quite the nightbirds.'
She also offers 'exotic flavours and textures' in desserts like warm chocolate tart with salted caramel and blood orange sorbet ($14), and blackberry parfait with lychee air, basil and lychee rose ice cream ($14).
Mr Mac Woo, who owns Obolo at Joo Chiat Road, says business has been good since the outlet's opening in June.
The 28-year-old, who founded the cafe with Ms June Lee, 28, said he has plans to set up 'a second outlet in the town area in a couple of years' time'.
And to cater to a late-night crowd, he plans to extend the opening hours till 11pm instead of the current 9pm on weekends.
The cafe's best-sellers include cheesecakes and Verinne Summer Berries (right), a glass dessert containing Kirsch and a combination of mascarpone cheese mousse, red berries compote and a jelly layer.
But would Singaporeans, weaned on cheap hawker food, take the time to savour these gourmet desserts?
Ice3, for example, is located a stone's throw away from Chomp Chomp, the popular late-night hawker centre which dishes up cheap $1.50 ice-kacangs and cendols.
Ms Chan pointed out: 'When you go to Chomp Chomp to have dessert, your purpose is to just eat. You can't stay longer than that and even if you want to, people will stand beside you and wait for you to vacate your seat.'
She also pointed out that the kinds of desserts sold at her outlet and at the hawker centre are different.
Said teacher Miss Lizda Riyana Abdul Rashid, 26: 'I think it's worth the money. Ambience and presentation are two very important factors for me.'