Tim Ho Wan
After volunteering for housekeeping at one of the elderly homes in Toa Payoh, K and I thought we should go for tim ho wan which is nearby. The legendary tim how wan was already opened a few years ago but as the line was always ridiculously long, I have never thought of trying it in Singapore. Now that the hype has gone down a little, the queue is actually much shorter and we waited 20min before we could feast and that is almost as fast as Hong Kong. Prior to this, I had tim ho wan twice in Hong Kong, one at Mong Kok and the other at Hong Kong Station. This chef was originally from the much upmarket Lung King Heen that is the world’s only Chinese restaurant with three Michelin star at the Four Seasons Hotel and he decided to open a no frills dim sum restaurant which I think is a very good move. So, I shall do some comparisons on some of the food that I’ve ordered.
The top picture was taken from Hong Kong station and the bottom is the SG version. I think both have their strong points. Apparently, the filling for the HK one is more moist than SG but I find that the crust of SG is more fragrant which means fatter as more butter is used. Nevertheless, they are still good baos there!
The prawn dumpling here is much nicer than the one in HK. HK uses darker soy sauce and isn’t fragrant but the har cheung here is surprisingly fragrant. There are little bits of spring onions in it and i think that gives it the extra flavour. Yums.
The har gao was not bad actually. I was a little surprised actually as I always felt that tim ho wan can only make a few good dim sum but definitely not the har gao in HK. The Skin here didn’t stick and prawns were fresh. I find it just slightly thicker than more expensive restaurants.
I would say that on the whole, the dining experience in tim ho wan sg is better than in tim ho wan hk. Firstly, the cutlery is cleaner and you wouldn’t find a layer of white powder on it. Secondly, service here isn’t as rushed. You are allowed to order more than once while the one in HK expects you to order everything at one go. Also the waitresses and waiters are more friendly here despite the super HUGE crowd. They still smile when I asked for one more bowl or spoon but you will never get that in HK. I guess life in HK is still much faster. A really lovely lunch and I only spent $30 per person!
Verdict: An excellent restaurant (Must revisit!)