I finally made it to Singapore for the first time after 20 years. It felt strange because it has been quite some time since I played tourist in an Asian country (maybe because I looked like everyone else, I felt less like a tourist?).
The first few things I did was send Whatsapp messages to a few friends who have been working there for the past few years. One of them was Chin Dy, a good friend from Seri Kembangan.
He came over to meet me at Lot One, just a bus ride away from where I was putting up the night (ex-high schoolmate Su Ee and family very generously let me stay in their guest room). In my head, I quickly compared, "Oh, we have Lot 10 in KL, they have Lot 1 in Choa Chu Kang... no wonder we always fall behind them..."
After some deliberating, we decided to dine at Wan Chai HongKong Tea Room on the bottom level near the food court.
The place reminded me slightly of Kim Gary, perhaps due to the HK influence present in its decor and menu. As it was dinner time, the place was crowded.
The unagi lover in me saw me ordering something not so HK-like. Hm, let me just say that when at a HK place, order the HK stuff.
Then there was congee. Chin Dy decided to go for a dumpling one and well, not much can go wrong with HK congee. Bland or not, up to us to add as much soy sauce and pepper as we wanted to it!
On top of ordering something for ourselves, we also ordered something to share. Chin Dy recommended a serve of crispy silk beancurd with pork floss. Wah, I was impressed. I liked the combo of healthy with not so healthy. Crispy and refreshing.
Service was not top notch but the place was clean (well, this was in Singapore after all). Food was served pretty quickly, though. Something I did not expect: the waitstaff were made up of the not-so-young crowd (unlike the Asian restaurants in Sydney and KL).
Wan Chai HongKong Tea Room Lot One Shoppers' Mall
21 Choa Chu Kang Ave 4, #B1-10/11 Singapore 689812
Tel: +65 6893 8803
Opening hours according to Lot One