When I heard that the old Armenian Street char kway teow stall is now in Sengkang, I made my way there at the first opportunity.
You see, this char kway teow stall is one of the lunch places we go to after taking the kids to the National Library. That was back in the 1990s. Even earlier, in the 1970s, we ate at this char kway teow stall after using the library in the US Embassy across the road. It was also near the old Stamford Road MPH bookstore where we hungout often.
But frankly, Armenian road char kway teow was never my favourite though it's likeable and well above average. It's just that it's associated with the most personal memories of all char kway teow stalls in Singapore. Four decades of memories of things and people, some of which are still vivid.
Today, I ordered a SGD4 plate from the friendly Uncle Tan, whose father started the street side stall in 1949 before settling down at Armenian Street. When I came to Sengkang, I wondered how today's Armenian Road CKT would be like. Frankly, I've lost exact memory of the original taste.
As I carried the plate of char kway teow back to my table, I caught a whiff of aroma raising from the smothering mound of brownish noodles. It was a nice aroma that reminded me of those Armenian Road days along the blistering hot five foot way with walls of cracking whitewash. Our noses have elephant's memory.
As I dug into the CKT, I sensed and appreciated that Uncle Tan is trying his best to be as close to the original as possible. There were slices of lup cheong (Cantonese wax sausage), fish cake, blood cockle, egg, bean sprout, chives, lard crackling, garlic, chye poh etc. Everything was there to give it lots of layers of flavours.
But, wok hei wasn't pronounced though it was there. The sauce's flavour was mild and on the slightly sweet side with just a bit of savouriness and spiciness (as I had asked for chili). Because the sauce was mild, I could enjoy the nice taste of the lup cheong and the tiny lard cracklings which stood out.
Though, I generally like mild flavours, for CKT I really prefer it to taste robust with intense savouriness and no holds barred greasy lard flavours. So, this CKT will suit you better if your taste buds are tuned to gentler, milder flavours.
If you are an Armeniam Road char kway teow fan or one who spent your youth hanging out around the Stamford Road - Armenian Street area, you'll be glad to know the CKT is in Sengkang now, even though the National Library, old US Embassy and MPH are all gone.
Armeniam Street CKT is at the Block 303 kopitiam, right at the Renjong LRT station. Very accessible though Sengkang is quite far for most people.
->> The current owners (founder's wife and son) are doing their best to stay faithful to the spirit of old Armeniam Street CKT and deserve our support.
Name of restaurant: Armeniam Street Fried Kway Teow 亚美尼亚街炒粿条
Address: Blk 303 Anchorvale Link, Singapore 540303
GPS: 1.386957, 103.890547 / 1°23'13.1"N 103°53'26.0"E
Hours: 11:00am to 8:00pm (Thurs off)
Tel: 9851 3725
Date visited: 11 Jul 2016
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