Tim Ho Wan

Never a time I passed by Tim Ho Wan without seeing any queue (except when they were still close). Considering this is an outlet of the cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant (only the original outlet in Mongkok and Sham Shui Po are the ones with Michelin stars), perhaps seeing the notorious queue is not surprising at all. The first Tim Ho Wan was opened in 2009, by Chef Mak Kwai Pui, and the restaurant was awarded Michelin star in 2010. Although many of our friends told us that the dim sum sold in Singapore outlet do not taste as good as those sold in Hong Kong outlet, not all of us has the luxury to hop on and aeroplane to Hong Kong for the original version!

Browsing through the menu, we saw that the 3 monthly specials were new, so we ordered them all. Seems like to cater to the local taste buds, they concocted this spicy dish - jade wonton in laksa soup ($5). The laksa was not overly spicy, there were tau pok added too!

The second monthly specials was also a spicy dish - yam dumpling with chilli crab meat ($5). Despite being deep fried, the net-like skin doesn't feel very oily.

The chilli crab filling does not have enough kick from the chilli, more of a sweet version of chilli crab. It still taste good nonetheless.

We were hesitating at first whether to order this braised chicken feet with abalone sauce ($5) as we prefer chicken feet to be cooked in spicy sauce. We were glad we did, the sauce of the chicken feet was simply delicious. The chicken feet was not the 'puff up' version as it was not being deep fried. It was firm, smooth, and full of collagen which is good for your skin!

This baked bun with BBQ pork ($4.5) was one of the big 4 heavenly kings. The brittle-like sugary casing readily crumbled upon each bite. However, the BBQ pork was seasoned way too sweet, masking the original roasted char siew flavor. Perhaps it will suit you if you have a sweet tooth.

The steamed egg cake ($3.8) was also one of the big 4 heavenly kings. I wasn't fond of steamed egg cake before but now I am starting to look for the recipe! The surface of the cake was smooth with slight shine, beneath it was the spongy cake packed with mouth-lingering sweet aroma from the brown sugar, simply hit the spot!

Vermicelli roll with pig's liver ($5.5), one of the big 4 heavenly kings too. Too bad none of us were fans of pigs liver. The liver was cooked just right, not dried up but still tender.

Ends up, we preferred this vermicelli roll with shrimp ($5.5) than the one with pigs liver. The vermicelli roll was well made, it was thin, smooth and slippery.

Steamed or fried? We chose the steamed version. Biting into the chewy beancurd skin was the juicy and flavorful fillings of mince pork and shrimp ($4). The beancurd skin was well soaked-up in the gravy and absorbed all the goodness from the sauce.

The dumpling Teochew style ($4) have nice semi-transparent chewy skin, you can more or less see through the skin to get a hint of the ingredients inside. The skin was well-made, it doesn't stick to the teeth.

A close-up look. The amount of meat and vegetables was in good balance and the fillings was moist. I thought there should be some peanuts but I don't remember biting into any.

We ordered congee with lean pork, century egg and salted egg ($4.2), to fill out whichever stomachs that still shouting for more food! The congee was smooth, and the pork was cooked just right, neither too stiff to the bite nor dried up, every spoonful easily slided down the throat. A simple yet well executed dish!

I didn't get to try the rice with beef and fried egg ($6), my friend finished it all.

Our cold barley drink ($2) and hot chinese tea ($1.2) - the black and white combination. 

The restaurant name literally means 'increase good luck', such an auspicious name they have.

The restaurant does not accept reservation, so be prepared to queue for hours. However, I find it quite a pleasant wait as they prepared chairs for those in the queue to rest their feet. I saw people chatting, on the phone, browsing net etc, it was not such a horrendous wait at all. It is worthwhile to mention too that the service staff, despite the overwhelming crowd, was extremely pleasant and attentive. It was indeed a satisfying dining experience there.


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