Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Bak Chor Mee @ Sim Lim Square

When it comes to shopping, people often cite Orchard Road/VivoCity (Singapore) or Mid Valley/One Utama (KL) as their favourite places to shop. As for me, Sim Lim Square at Bugis is a great place to hunt for bargains on electronic goods (especially computer hardware) and to update myself on the latest gadgets available. Don't get me wrong, I do have my fair share of love for my Tommys and Calvins but somehow, only sale items excite me. And when the place you love to shop includes a fantastic foodcourt (or that's what you've been told), you just know that you have to make time to pay a visit.

That's exactly what I did on Deepavali. Knowing how bad the traffic congestion can be on the North-South Highway during the holiday season, I stayed put in Singapore and had myself a little feast with a group of friends. Prior to that, I was at Sim Lim to check out the Micro-SD cards and bought myself a 2GB Kingston-type for S$31.50 (which I thought was a good buy). After the satisfying purchase, it was time for food.

I've never really paid attention to the foodcourt at Sim Lim Square until I heard that there's a famous Bak Chor Mee (Minced Meat Noodle) store at the foodcourt. This TeoChew delicacy is the best hawker food I've ever tasted in Singapore and I do try to make an effort to track down the best ones in town. So far, it's a tie between Ah Kow's (at Hong Lim Food Centre) and Tai Hwa's (at Crawford Lane). So, how did this version fare compared to the two giants?

For S$4.50 (large), the portion came rather huge for food court's standard. The mee kia (thin egg noodles), which was lightly seasoned with lard oil and soya sauce, came al dente. A dollop of chili paste was added to provide extra kick to the otherwise bland noodle. Side ingredients came aplenty and diversed, including fishballs, poached pork, stewed mushroom, fish cake, dumplings, chinese lettuce and scallion (as topping). Free flow of fried lard (a must!), Chinese black vinegar (a must too) and chili paste are also available, at your disposal. The crispy lard literally exploded in the mouth, releasing exceptionally aromatic flavour that complemented the noodles very well. Black vinegar and the mushroom added an interestingly contrasting and refreshing taste to the noodles. I wished they'd included a slice of dried flatfish, which would have added certain savouriness and aroma to the dish.

For an additional S$1.00, you can get a bowl of soup with 3 pieces of dumpling. I found the dumplings a tad too bland and lacked in ingredients (for the filling). To me, a good filling should include wood ear fungus, waterchestnut and again, flatfish. Then again, there's a limit as to what S$1.00 can offer.

It was generic Bak Chor Mee at it's best. Generously portioned with lots of side ingredients but lacked in subtly (taste-wise), as displayed by Ah Kow's and Tai Hwa's more traditional versions. Perhaps it was the control over usage of vinegar and soya sauce.

Minced Meat Noodles
Food Court @ Sim Lim Square
1 Rochor Canal Road
Singapore 188504


wenching & esiong said...

Bak Chor Mee is something that I hardly choose to eat and I don't know why. But your photo made me feel so hungry. Haha! And I would change my mind and try looking for good places for it!

Nic (KHKL) said...

i like the tangy and spicy taste...very different from kl's version of pork noodles. is there any place in kl that serves singapore style bak chor mee?

Jackson said...

hey....u review remind me of my SIngapore trip... i wan Singapore food now!

Nic (KHKL) said...

Hey Jackson, Food Republic is already opened Pavilion...try out the hokkien mee! A typical Singaporean dish. Nice. Wonder if they have Bak Chor Mee, hehe...