Tony Johor Kaki Travels for Food · Heritage · Culture · History

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Review of Ah Liang Ipoh Hor Fun @ CapitaSpring Market Street Food Centre 亚良怡保沙河粉

Ah Liang Ipoh hor fun stall is without doubt the most popular stall at Market Street Food Centre at CapitaSpring. It always sports the longest queue in the two-level hawker centre right at the heart of the Central Business District. I was here at least two, if not three times but failed to try it because the lunch time queue was just too long 😬

Stall name: Ah Liang Ipoh Hor Fun 亚良怡保沙河粉

Address: Market Street Hawker Centre, 86 Market Street, stall #02-04, Singapore 048947

Nearest MRT: 10 minutes walk from Raffles station (Exit B)

Hours: 10:00am - 7:00pm

History of Bak Cheng ● King of Malaysia Bak Kut Teh ● Legend of Johor Bahru 木清肉骨茶歷史

In 2006, Bak Cheng Bak Kut Teh 木清肉骨茶 was awarded the title of King of Bak Kut Teh in Malaysia.

Review HWA Seafood Zhi Char ● Tagore Lane off Upper Thomson Road

Eight of us gathered at HWA Seafood off Upper Thomson Road. We had a nice reasonably priced lunch of familiar kopitiam type zhi char dishes.

Stall name: HWA Seafood

Address: 9 Tagore Lane, #01-02, Singapore 787472

Tel: 6452 0918

Hours: 11:30am - 10:00pm

History of Teochew Porridge 潮州糜 Chaoshan Singapore Malaysia Thailand


Teochew style porridge with side dishes is popular in Singapore and found in hawker centres, coffee shops, restaurants, hotels and for a while, even served on SIA (Singapore Airlines) flights.

Singapore Bak Kut Teh Culture ● Yip Yew Chong Mural

Bak kut teh or literally pork bone tea is a soup dish common in Singapore and the west coast of Peninsula Malaysia, but can also be found in Batam and Bintan in the Riaus of Indonesia.

Review TGK Fatty Cow @ Six Star Food Court in Mount Austin Johor Bahru 東甲小肥牛 @ 六星美食中心

Came to Six Star Food Court in Mount Austin to check out a newly opened beef noodle stall in Johor Bahru.

Stall name: TGK Fatty Cow 東甲小肥牛

Address: Six Star Food Court 六星美食中心 69, Jalan Mutiara Emas 5/1, Taman Mount Austin, 81100 Johor Bahru (Ample street side parking)

Hours: 9:00am - 2:00pm (Friday off)

Review Wok Hei Fried Kway Teow @ Liang's Hokkien Prawn Noodle ● 260 Kim Keat Avenue


Facebook buddy Robin had been telling me about Liang's fried kway teow in Toa Payoh since last year. But I forgot 🫢

Then, I bumped into him in JB and he reminded me about it 😬

Stall name: Liang's Fried Hokkien Noodles

Address: 260 Kim Keat Avenue, Singapore 310260 (stall inside Kim Keat Food & Drinks Centre)

Nearest MRT: 15 minutes walk from Toa Payoh station

Hours: 10:00am - 7:00pm (Weds off, Mon & Fri close at 2pm) 

Peppery Teochew Soups That Inspired Singapore Teochew Bak Kut Teh


Singapore bak kut teh was originally herbal as it was concocted as a tonic for coolies. Around the 1950s, the peppery type of bak kut teh synonymous with Singapore bak kut teh emerged.

Geylang Serai Cendol Since 1910 ● Oldest Cendol in Singapore

Geylang Serai Cendol is the oldest operating cendol stall in Singapore. It is run by the third generation now and hasn't changed much since the 1910s.

Stall name: Geylang Serai Cendol

Address: 1 Geylang Serai, stall #02-107, Singapore 402001 (stall inside Geylang Serai Market & Food Centre)

Nearest MRT: 10 minutes walk from Paya Lebar station

Tel: 9090 605

Hours: 9:00am - 6:00pm

Zhong Xing Foochow Fishball Noodle & Lor Mee @ Silat Ave Nan Heong Ho Kee Coffeeshop

Was feeling a little famished after a three hour guided history tour of Telok Blangah (more about that in a future post). So, I went to look for lunch at the Silat Ave area. Stumbled upon the quiet Nan Heong Ho Kee kopitiam and Zhong Xing Foochow Fishball & Lor Mee stall.

A quick peek at the stall and it ticked all the boxes for me - handmade fishball, sambal, and pork lard (furthermore it was Foochow style fishball, which is not so common in Singapore).

Stall name: Zhong Xing Foochow Fish Balls & Lor Mee

Address: 148 Silat Ave, Singapore 160148 (stall inside Nan Heong Ho Kee Coffeeshop)

Nearest MRT: 10 minutes walk from Outram Park station

Hours: 9:00am - 3:00pm (Tues off)

Hot Spot Cafe Fish Soup @ Burlington Square Beside Sim Lim Square

Was running errands at Sim Lim Square when I spotted this long queue while looking for lunch.

Stall name: Hot Spot Cafe Restaurant

Address: 175 Bencoolen St, Singapore 189649 (inside Burlington Square)

Nearest MRT: 5 minutes walk from Rochor station

Tel: 6334 2535

Hours: 11:00am - 4:00pm (Sat off)

Food Legacy & History of Chinese Coolies of Singapore ● Rickshaw Noodle & Bak Kut Teh 苦力歷史

Coolies, both Indian and Chinese were the backbone of early Singapore’s labour force.

The hundred years between 1830 and 1930, saw hundreds of thousands of Chinese immigrant labourers or coolies sojourned to Nanyang (British Malaya and Dutch East Indies) to feed the booming ports, plantations and mines hungry for cheap manpower. 

Niu Dian Beef Noodles @ VIIO Balestier Singapore

Ben jio-ed (invited) me to try out the newly opened Niu Dian Taiwan Beef Noodles at VIIO Balestier.

Restaurant name: Niu Dian Beef Noodles

Address: 520 Balestier Rd, #01-01/02 VIIO @ Balestier, Singapore 329853

Nearest MRT: 10 minutes walk from Novena station

Hours: 11:00 am - 3:45 pm | 5:30pm - 9:30 pm

Chocoelf Specialty Chocolate Cafe South Bridge ● Zero Sugar Added

I am on the lookout for alternatives to ubiquitous cookie cutter cafes in Singapore that serve same old, same old coffee, pastries, and bread. So when Ben asked if I would like to try Chocoelf at South Bridge Road "next week or this afternoon also can", I jumped at it "let's go now" 😬

One more thing helped in my quick decision - Ben said Chocoelf also has "bak kut teh chocolate" which was why I could not wait any longer 😬

Restaurant name: CHOCOELF Specialty Chocolate Cafe (South Bridge Rd)

Address: 232 South Bridge Road, Singapore 058781

Nearest MRT: 5 minutes walk from Chinatown and Maxwell stations 

Tel: 6223 3380

Hours: 10:00am - 7:30pm (closes at 9:30pm on Fri, Sat, Sun)

Don Lechon Philippines Restaurant @ Grandlink Plaza Singapore

Always a roast pork fan, I went looking for Don Lechon near Paya Lebar MRT station after a few friends mentioned it to me.

It's in Grandlink Plaza, an old, well weathered kind of shopping mall. It's the type of place I like to explore for hidden gems (which is getting really harder to find in Singapore and Johor Bahru).

Restaurant name: Don Lechón

Address: 511 Guillemard Rd, #01-52, Singapore 399849 (inside Grandlink Square)

Nearest MRT: 5 minutes walk from Paya Lebar station

Tel: 97789737

Hours: 12:00 noon - 9:30pm

Coffee & Tea with Fresh Cow Milk in Singapore @ Madras Coffee House's Kerbau Road

Milton has been telling us about this road side cafe that serves coffee and tea with fresh cow's milk at Kerbau Road in Little India. Six of us dropped by after a scrumptious biryani lunch at Mr Biryani steps away around the corner at Chander Road. (More about Mr Biryani in a future post - it is highly recommended 👍)

Stall name: Madras Coffee House's

Address: 54 Kerbau Road, #01-06, Singapore 218179

Nearest MRT: 10 minutes walk from Little India station (exit E)

Tel: 9499 9945

Hours: 5:30am - 9:30pm (timings need confirmation)

History of Palm Sugar ● Difference Between Gula Melaka, Gula Jawa, Gula Apong

Palm sugar is enjoyed throughout Southeast Asia, southern China (Hainan), Sri Lanka, and India. There are many different types of palm sugar depending on the palm sap it is made from. There are, for example, palmyra, date, nipah, and coconut palms.

There may be different palms but the production process is ancient and the same.

From Kut Teh to Bak Kut Teh ● Did Meat Bone Tea Came from Bone Tea? 藥茶


The origin and meaning of the teh in the popular bak kut teh (meat bone tea) dish is still a riddle today. No one is sure how the teh in bak kut teh came about or even what it really means.

It is clearly a thng (soup) then why is it called a teh (tea)? 明明是汤为什么叫茶?

Fatt Kee Shou Shi Traditional Cantonese Breakfast @ Albert Centre

Office today at Albert Food Centre. Fatt Kee was one of the few stalls already opened at this early hour and there was a queue of hungry customers getting their breakfast before setting off for work.

There weren't too many items on Fatt Kee's menu - simple humble fare like chee cheong fun, fried noodles, rice dumplings, porridge and yam cake. Old school, comfort food. That's all.

Stall name: Fatt Kee Shou Shi

Address: 270 Queen Street, stall #01-68, Singapore 180270 (stall inside Albert Food Centre)

Nearest MRT: 5 minutes walk from Bugis station

Hours: 7:00am - 11:00am (Sun & Mon off)