Thursday, March 17, 2022

Hill Street Tai Hwa Pork Noodle vs Tai Wah Pork Noodle : Who does it better?

This Teochew-style pork noodle was started from a pushcart in 1932 before moving into a coffee shop in 1939 at Hill Street then moved to Marina Square in 1986 followed by Crawford Lane in 2005. It was started by Mr Tang Joon Teo in 1932 before being taken over by Mr Tang Chay Seng and Mr Tang Chai Chye, the sons. This was supposedly the first Teochew-style pork noodle in Singapore then. 

Block 466 Crawford Lane #01-12 SINGAPORE 190466
Operating Hours: 9.30 am to 9.00 pm (Closed on Mondays)

This is the only Bak Chor Mee that awarded 1-Michelin star and this is their one and the only stall by Mr Tang Chay Seng, the current owner. He is emphasizing quite strongly on this and even to the extent to issue a statement in the newspaper. They are located in a coffee shop near Lavender MRT. This is one of the most popular choices for Bak Chor Mee and the queue is forever long even before awarding the 1-star by Michelin in 2016 till now. I started eating when they were at Marina Square.

They have recently started to take pre-orders in advance for taking away. My usual orders have to be the Mee Pok or Mee Kia in dry version. The nicely cooked noodles serve with sliced lean meat, minced meat, liver, meatballs, wantons, dong cai (冬菜), deep-fried sole fish, and seaweed with chilli and black vinegar added. Their prices range from $6, $8 to $10. 

The Mee Pok in soup is a comforting choice though the taste is not as exciting as the dry one. The soup was nicely flavored, the minced meat with the other ingredients added depth to its flavor. The meatballs did not leave an impression as the taste was quite generic. The soup though flavorful but slightly salty.

531A Upper Cross Street #02-16 Hong Lim Food Centre SINGAPORE 051531
Operating Hours: 7.30 am to 3.00 pm

Their main stall is at Hong Lim Food Center with outlets at Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Hougang, Owen, Holland, Marsiling, and Toa Payoh. This is operated by Gerald Tang and Jason Tang, the nephew of the owner who took over from Mr Tang Chai Chye, their father. This stall is the recipient of Michelin Bib Gourmand in 2018, 2019, and 2021. Tai Wah and Tai Hwa are not directly related.

Mr Tang Chai Chye used to have a stall in the Bestway Building along Price Edward Road before Gerald started the other stall at Hong Lim Food Centre in 2004. The prices range from $6, $8 to $10 for the options of Mee Pok or Mee Kia, dry or soup. Both came with ingredients like sliced pork, minced meat, liver, meatballs, wanton, seaweed, deep-fried sole fish, and crispy lard. The noodles are tossed with chilli and black vinegar in lard oil for the dry style. 

I ordered this from their outlet in Ang Mo Kio. The dry tasted quite similar to what I had at their stall in Hong Lim Food Centre but the soup came with a big bunch of seaweed and that was the only taste. 


Both are famous for their dry version and not so much for the soup one. I would go with the Hill Street Tai Hwa Pork Noodle as the standard of Tai Wah Pork Noodle is quite inconsistent. Some actually recommended only eat at the main stall at Hong Lim Food Centre for a more authentic taste. No matter, it is good to just have one outlet so it is easier to maintain its standard. 

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