Hawker stalls run by ex-chefs
It’s always nice to be your own boss. And these hawker bosses believe in that too, as they decided to hang their aprons at award-winning restaurants up to open up their own eatery. They have all been successful, with some stalls boasting hour-long queues. This comes as no surprise though, as you get the same tasty goodness, at a fraction of the price! Here are 7 hawker stalls by ex-chefs of popular restaurants that are worth travelling for.
1. Hao Lai Ke
This is one secret we regretted sharing. Quietly opened by an ex-Din Tai Fung chef, Hao Lai Ke recreates the award-winning restaurant’s most famous dishes. A must-get is the Pork Ribs Fried Rice ($6), which looks and taste exactly like the ones found at the OG eatery. Alternatively, order the Dan Dan Noodle ($4.50) featuring a vibrant splash of chill oil, powdered peanuts, minced pork and noodles. Do note that the queue can lasts up to an hour or more.
Address: 204 Bedok North Street 1, #01-393, Singapore 460204
Opening hours: Daily 10.30am to 10p
2. Bowl Chap
Helming the kitchen at Bowl Chap is an ex-Tippling Club trainee. While you won’t find avant-garde dishes here, this humble hawker stall pushes out scrummy rice bowls boasting balanced flavours. We especially enjoyed the 5 Spice Apple Braised Pork Belly ($5.80), with its glistening pork belly, onsen egg, black fungus carrots and fried popiah skins laid atop a bed of warm Japanese rice.
Address: 503 West Coast Drive, #01-80, Ayer Rajah Food Centre, Singapore 120503
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11:30am to 2:30pm, 4:30pm to 7:30pm
Tel: 9450 6366
3. Supreme Ramen Xiao Long Bao
I love Crystal Jade. So when I found out that Supreme Ramen Xiao Long Bao was run by an ex-Crystal Jade cook, I knew I had to pay them a visit. The Shanghai Xiao Long Bao ($4.50 for six pieces) are made by hand, and the translucent skin breaks apart to release a rich porky soup. Fill yourself up even more with their Pork Dumpling Noodles Dry ($4) covered in a fragrant chilli-sesame oil.
Address: Blk 46 Holland Drive, #01-359, Singapore 270046
Opening hours: Daily 8:30am to 8:30pm
Tel: 9798 2211
4. Shi Xiang Ge
The noodles at Shi Xiang Ge are all hand-pulled by an ex-Crystal Jade la mian director, who has over 10 years of cooking experience under his belt. Great on a rainy day is the Beef La Mian ($5), thanks to its robust beef bone broth and tender beef slices. For something unique, get the Shan Xi Cold Noodle ($4.50) comprising chewy rice noodles in a chilli-vinegar sauce mix.
Address: Blk 514 Bishan Street 13, Level 2, Bishan Bus Interchange, Singapore 570514
Opening hours: Wed-Mon 11am to 9pm
Tel: 9151 3586
Shi Xiang Ge is not halal-certified.
5. Big Prawn Noodles
Despite its ulu location at Loyang Way, Big Prawn Noodles still manages to draw in a crowd during lunchtime, with queues stretching over 30-minutes. Helmed by an ex-TungLok chef, you can expect nothing but the best here. The noodles are springy and al dente, while the umami prawn and pork bone broth has a rich, robust body that’s sure to have you begging for more.
There are only three items on the menu, and we recommend the Big Prawn Noodle ($5/$7/$9) and Pork Rib Prawn Noodle ($5/$7/$9).
Address: 64 Loyang Way, Loyang Way Food Village, Singapore 508754
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 6:30am to 3pm, Sat 6:30am to 2pm
6. Meet 4 Meat
Wooloomooloo may be out of my budget, but thankfully I can still get a slice of that steaky goodness at Meet 4 Meat, a hawker stall founded by a former chef of the famous restaurant. Here, their 100% Aussie Ribeye only sets you back $16, and is basted with melted butter to give a richer mouthfeel. Other must-tries include the Jimmy’s Carbonara ($9) and Buttered Chicken Chop ($8).
Address: 228 East Coast Road, Brunners Coffeeshop, Singapore 428925
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 10:30am to 9:30pm, Sat & Sun 8:30am to 9:30pm
Tel: 8290 3605
7. A Noodle Story
A Noodle Story needs no introduction. A famous hawker stall that’s listed on the Michelin Bib Gourmand list, the ramen noodles here are extremely delicious. This should come as no surprise, however, as the two hawkerpreneurs running the stall had experience working at Michelin-starred Waku Ghin and Iggy’s.
Join the queue and slurp up their Singapore-Style Ramen ($8 for small, $11 for medium), which comes with al dente noodles, chashu, potato prawn and wontons.
Address: 7 Maxwell Road, #01-39, Amoy Street Food Court, Singapore 069111
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 11:15am to 2:30pm, 5:30pm to 7:30pm, Sat 10:30am to 1:30pm
Tel: 9027 6289
Good and cheap food at these hawker stalls
Swing by these hawker stalls for restaurant-quality meals that won’t break the bank! If you know of any other hawker stalls that are run by former chefs, do remember to share it with us in the comments section below!