Chinese Restaurant

Chinese Restaurant

Featuring Nanjing Impressions (Plaza Singapura), Yin Ji, Dian Xiao Er (Jem), Ka-Soh (Outram Park), Hillman Restaurant, Pi Food, Beaulieu House Restaurant, Tsui Wah (Jem), Lotus Garden (NEWest), Xinghua Delights
Wilson Foo
Wilson Foo

Ordered their signature beef ramen, braised beef ramen and wonton in spicy sauce ($8 each). The noodles were freshly kneaded and pulled right before my eyes. Cooked just right, they were very ample in terms of the serving and came with equally generous portions of beef. The wonton in spicy sauce had quite a bit of heat coming from the piquant spicy sauce. Fillings were still tender and savoury.

Very legit Chinese La Mian shop. Recommend for those who want authentic Chinese noodles and dumplings.

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While checking out the Mee Hoon Kway at the corner coffee shop in the same shop lot, I found this Heng Hwa restaurant.

So I came back the same week and ordered a few of the more representative dishes from Putian - Lor Mee, Fried Mackerel Fish, Bean Curd Skin fried with Kailan and Bian Rou (dumping) soup.

Every dish was was authentic. I must say their Lor Mee was the most enjoyable with the fried mackerel the least because the fish used was not the most fresh.

A little far and out of the way for most unless you stay in the north but it’s authentic Heng Hwa food and prices are more than reasonable. Must come back to try the rest of the menu, just ignore the non Heng Hwa dishes.

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This quirky restaurant has a name that suggests they serve Xing Hua cuisine but their menu has a potpourri of Chinese food like Sichuanese and Hong Kong Dim Sum. Stick to the Xing Hua dishes such as Braised Noodles, Lychee Gu Lao Rou, Bean Skin fried Kai Lan, Bian Rou Soup, etc and you’ll be happy. Veer off and order dim sum or some spicy dishes and very quickly you’ll regret it.

If I were to compare this place’s Xing Hua dishes, I have to say it comes very close to Putien but not as good as Ming Chung.

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The queue here on a week day can be very long and most difficult to get a table. The Chee Cheong Fun here is made from steamed rice flour slurry coated on cloth, in order words, Guangdong style.

Although it is not too bad, it is a pale shadow of the original restaurant in Guangzhou. The porridge is also average. Star of the lunch was the deep fried meat balls that were still piping hot and crispy on the outside with succulent minced meat on the inside.

I think I’ll wait for COVID to go away and go back for my cheong fun fix in Guangdong province.

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Every time I am in Nanjing, the capital city of Jiangsu province, I will go to a restaurant that offers Nanjing street food at reasonable prices - Nanjing Da Pai Dang. This chain of restaurant has many outlets and they offer exactly the same food, taste, decor, service, with the leading staff who wears ancient Chinese costume with a funny Mandarin hat and waitresses in ancient Chinese clothes.

Imagine my surprise when I heard they opened a branch in Singapore. And they have replicated the decor and uniforms, even down to the leading staff with the Mandarin hat.

Okay so the menu is very much reduced in terms of items compared with their cousins in Nanjing but the ubiquitous Salty Braised Duck, Smoked Duck, LionHead Meatball, Bean Curd in Brine, Pork Trotters in Dark Sauce, these are all available. And the taste did not disappoint.

I think I will come again whenever I miss Nanjing food or introduce this novelty to friends.

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One of the last restaurants where you can wrap your own Popiah. Located along Kampong Bahru Road in a HDB estate, the place has seen better days. The walls are covered with pictures of celebrities who ate here, a testimony to its passage of time and great taste.

The popiah comes in sets of 6, 12 and 20. Our group of 3 could hardly finish the smallest set because we wanted to try some of their other items on the menu. There was also plenty of turnip left over after we wrapped all six pieces of popiah skin. My suggestion for bigger groups would be to take a smaller set and order extra popiah skins.

This time around, I find the popiah skin dryer than normal. Two of my friends who were novices managed to break the skin during wrapping. The chilli sauce is still as murderously spicy as usual. The turnip was a tad darker than usual so it was a bit weird.

But the fish maw soup, the ngoh hiang and Ah Gong Fried Mee Suah were just perfect. So for those who do not like popiah, this restaurant has other Hokkien dishes to impress you.

I am sure I’ll be back. Even if it’s not for the fun of DIY popiah, there are many other gems in the menu.

This restaurant is located inside Changi Beach Club. For people like me living in the west, it is very far. But after my first visit, I am kicking myself for not coming to this place earlier.

We ordered their steamed crab ($70 per kilo). The STI Lankan crab weighed 1.1kg, a good size. Also ordered roast chicken, claypot rice, Hor Fun with Crayfish and Hong Kong Kai Lan. Every dish was nicely done. The hor fun had a lot of wok heat and the crab had a lot of roe.

But what stood out was the claypot rice. It was served at the table with soya sauce drizzled in and well mixed with the burnt bits of rice. So the final taste was savoury, with tender pieces of chicken and Chinese sausage, and crunchy from the bits of burnt rice.

The one complaint I have is their lack of staff which resulted in long waits to take orders. Even the kitchen staff had to help serve the dishes to the table.

But for this level of food, I can tolerate their tardiness. Definitely going back soon to try other dishes.

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Whilst Tai Cheong has always been famous for their egg tarts, I tried their HK style snack bar for lunch.

We ordered their Triple Eggs Spam Macaroni ($9.90), HK Dry Noodles ($11.90), Fried Radish Cake ($7.50), Iced Honey Lemon ($3.20) and Iced Milk Tea ($3.20).

Although on the pricey side, the food tasted legit. The HK Dry Noodles is actually a dry version of the ubiquitous 车仔面 in Hong Kong. Along with the dry noodles, you get two curry fried fishballs, 4 pieces of boiled cuttlefish, 2 slices of sausage and two braised mid joint wings. My advice would be to mix some of the curry and some of the braised sauce into the dry noodles. Yummy.

The macaroni was normal but the soup was refreshingly clear chicken soup. The spam was fried and cut into strips and added on top of the triple sunny side up fried eggs so that it does not become soggy immediately. I did think taking the three eyes char Siew rice concept of adding three sunny side up eggs was a bit too much but if you like eggs, why not.

Lastly, the surprise was the fried carrot cake. Again a big portion, you get plenty of radish cut into 3 by 3 centimetre cubes in the carrot cake. Very generous with the eggs and preserved radish too! Goes well with the chilli provided.

But the restaurant is run in a pretty chaotic fashion. My advice is to come early to get a table. Grab Food delivery riders and people who show up to order take away competes with the staff for their attention. The kitchen is well run but the drinks station is a mess. Drinks were made and not served, or simple not made or made and packed for delivery riders and left on a table outside, not together with the food ordered.

I hope they get their act together cause the food the serve is awesome in taste. One of the more legit Cha Chaan Tieng in Singapore.

By accident, we ended up at Lam’s Abalone Soup and ordered their Salt Baked Chicken Drumstick Rice set ($6.80) and Abalone Soup ($18.80).

First if all, there are not that many places in Singapore left where you can eat Hakka Salt Baked Chicken, if you exclude the homemade one. I know of only 2. Lam’s version is served straight out of the paper wrap after the crusted salt has been removed. The chicken is tender and umami, with juices sealed in during the baking process. It goes very well with the chilli sauce which was spicy and tangy. As we were late there wasn’t any sausage rice left so we had to contend with plain rice.

As for the abalone soup, you get a whole abalone in the soup. Don’t expect a three head abalone for 18 dollars. It’s pretty small but it is tender and not chewy. There is also chicken feet in the soup and slices of conch with bits of dried scallop, garnished with Chinese parsley and peppered with wolf berry seeds. All these lends to a very tasty soup, full of umami and just a hint sweet from the wolf-berry seeds.

The only complain I have is Lam’s is a corner shop lot and we are literally sitting 5 feet away from mainstream traffic. So the smell of exhaust and noise pollution spoils the overall experience. Learnt my lesson. I’ll be back but next time, I’ll head for their Parkway Parade outlet.

This is the fast food version of the very successful Putien chain of restaurant. Lor Mee, Cha Hoon (Fried Bee Hoon), Bian Rou Soup, all in a set meal format and customers can choose to add on appetisers like pickled vegetables or radish and a drink, all for $8.90.

I ordered the Lor Mee set and Bian Rou Soup. The food is served in bowls made with recycled paper. The Lor Mee is unlike those you get at Putien restaurant. This one is more like Chinese La Mian. Comes with two shrimps, two pieces of pork, cabbage and fried bean puffs. The Bian Rou is very much like those you get in the original Putien restaurants. Just add vinegar and chilli sauce and you have a very tasty soup with dumplings.

I think I’ll stick with the original Putien restaurants even though they are pricier. This is a poor representation of Putien cuisine, even though I like the idea of fast food style Putien food.

This Cantonese restaurant first opened in Cantonment Road in 1963. It is most famous for it Paper Bag Chicken. Boneless chicken marinated with soya sauce and Chinese wine, wrapped in grease proof paper and then deep fried.

The fragrance of the dish hits you when it is served. Open up the paper bag and the juice of the chicken oozes out. The chicken is very tender and you can taste the Chinese wine infused in the meat. I personally think they have the best paper bag chicken in Singapore.

They are also famous for their claypot dishes and Har Lok (large prawns fried with soya sauce).

The Kitchener Road branch opens on Monday whilst their Pasir Panjang branch is closed on Monday.

Definitely coming back for more.

This must be one of the very few traditional Chinese restaurants that serve authentic Hakka dishes. We ordered their Abacus Seeds, Red Wine Prawns, Hakka Stir Fry and Hakka Noodles.

The Abacus seeds lacked the chewiness that I am used to. But understand that this is because this restatuses more yam and less starch in the making of their abacus seeds. The red wine prawn has a strong taste of Chinese wine which is nice. The Hakka Stir Fry was just passable but I am biased against celery. The dish that took our breaths away was the Hakka Noodles. The noodles were al dente and if you add their chilli sauce which packs quite a bit of heat, you have a winner. We wished we’d ordered a large or at least a medium portion. Yummy.

I’ll be back again, just for the noodles.

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