The founder of gourmet market PasarBella talks about his unusual name, pursuing his interests and his most hated tasks.


You’ve got a unique name. What does it mean?
Clovis is the name of a French king and a city in the states.

Any nicknames growing up?
I don’t have a Chinese name the teacher used to call me xiao di di (little brother). Does that count?

What was the biggest challenge you’ve faced?
Until today at least, things have been quite smooth sailing. The one thing I can remember is passing my driving test that moment was quite happy.

If you we’re working on PasarBella, what would you do?
After I graduated I would have spent a year trying to get working experience in a place like Indonesia or China because in terms of opportunities I think the potential there is much more than what we can get in Singapore.

What was most surprising about starting PasarBella?
We had to adapt as we went along. We wanted to bring in wholesalers of the fresh produce but as we went along, it became more food focused and more about cooked food.

What does a regular day look like for you?
I help out at my dad’s office in the morning and come here in the afternoon. I don’t have an office and I’m always running around.

You must travel a lot. What do you miss when you’re away from Singapore?
When I’m away I miss local food and the convenience. At home, you don’t have to worry about washing your clothes and cleaning the house and, of course, friends and family from primary school.

Name a something you hate.
I hate shopping. I do most of my shopping once a year during Chinese New Year and I’ll buy all I need for the rest of the year.

What do you love?
Finance stuff, I majored in finance in school so from the time I was 21, I started playing the market. But I’m also interested in different business models so in the last six months I’ve been investing in different start-ups mostly in F&B.

Clovis Lim is the founder of PasarBella.


Leave a Comment

Respected Italian restaurant man Osvaldo Forlino talks about why he'll serve casual Chinese food at his newest venture No Menu Bar, an eatery on Boon Tat Street offering affordable lunches to the CBD office crowd.

What are some examples of tapas you will serve?
We'll serve tapas of fresh seafood, meat, appetizers cold and hot, marinated items, crostini, cheeses and desserts.

Why did you decide to serve Chinese food?
No Menu Bar was a local eating house previously, and we would like to respect the tradition not only with the decorations and interiors, but also keeping a Chinese food corner for lunch. Many of our chefs are Chinese and we would like to have Chinese customers too.

Do you eat a lot of Chinese food?
Yes, often. I like the razor clams with sweet garlic, and steamed and seared dumplings.

How did you manage to get a location so close to No Menu?
I heard that the lease of its location was expiring and my dad taught me to never miss an opportunity like that, and open a new outlet next door to us to avoid that other people would do it.

Do you expect to get a bigger crowd at lunch or dinner?
Big queue for lunch—smoother and more relaxed operations in the evening.

What drinks will you serve?
The same wine list as in No Menu restaurant, but also wines from Italy in jugs—priced from $12-22—and homemade cocktails going for $16-20. The prices will be lower for the happy hour too.

Sounds like No Menu Bar will be more casual than your other ventures? Do you think casual dining is a trend in Singapore?
Yes, it will be an all-day casual eatery. Fast, cheap but very good quality products. It’s very important to us.

Osvaldo Forlino runs No Menu Bar.


Leave a Comment