06 October, 2008

The BEEFY Series Part 2 - Hock Lam Street Beef Kway Teow (North Canal Road)

Started way back in 1921 at Hock Lam Street, this brand of authentic Teochew Beef Kway Teow recipe was brought in by a certain Mr Tan from Swatow, China, and the rest, as they say, is history. So famous (or popular as stated on their signboard), is Hock Lam Street Beef Kway Teow that it is seen as the benchmark for the rest of the beef noodle stalls – or at least that is what HFB thinks.

What is so special about their soup-based, said to be boiled for at least 18 hours, is the additional of Preserved Salted Vegetables that gave it an extra ‘kick’ to the fairly light flavoured soup, or ‘Cheng’ as how the Teochews described it, although HFB finds it inconsistently salty at times having tried it on separate occasions. Prices ranges from $4.50 (small), $5.50 (medium) to $6.50 (large), and one has a choice of Kway Teow, Bee Hoon and Mee. One can also have a combination of Sliced Beef, Beef Tripe (Stomach), Beef Brisket (Cooked Meat), Beef Liver, Beef Ball, and for an additional of $1.00 – Beef Tendon. The small portion of Sliced Beef with Beef Ball Kway Teow Soup was pretty pathetic in my opinion – unless one is not very hungry during lunchtime, braving the crowd for such a small serving is simply not worth the effort. Besides, the beef ball is definitely factory produced and not handmade, which is a disappointment considering the legacy of this eatery.

The medium portion of Sliced Beef, Beef Ball and Beef Brisket Kway Teow was slightly more adequate and the brisket was palatable – it is intense with flavour and malleable to consume.

The thin version of kway teow used was also something HFB is happy about - it was pretty smooth to slurp, although compared to Tuck Kee Sar Hor Fun, it was nowhere close in standard.

Hardcore Teochew Beef Kway Teow fans would also be delighted to discover that their original dry version comes with an additional topping of Grinded Peanuts to give it an extra crunch, the familiar Chinchaluk (shrimp paste sauce), and a pretty ‘solid’ chilli to go with.


Food: 3.5/5 (Beef Ball is disappointing, soup-based is inconsistent)
Service: 4/5 (Fast Service)
Ambience: 3/5 (Noisy and crowded during lunch time)
Price: 2.5/5 (Pricey for the quantity served)
Total: 13/20
12 North Canal Road
Singapore 048825

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Tai Wah Pork Noodle - Battle of the Bak Chor Mee Giants
Ah Kow Mushroom Minced Pork Mee - A Makansutra Legend?
Restoran Yu Ai - Seafood Curry Noodle

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HairyBerry said...

will check out this place since it's so famous. but will avoid the lunchtime crowd, definitely..hehe

thanks for the tip!

His Food Blog said...

Hey nic,

No worries. You might also wish to try other Hock Lam Beef Kway Teow outlets at Purvis Street and Far East Square as well.

Although I am not sure which is the authentic one since all of them claimed to be the one.

Let me know after you have tried them!!!

Anonymous said...

Well from what I know this is the wannabe and the original one is the one at Far East Square or its 2nd branch at Upper Serangoon.

This standard is no where near the one at both I just mentioned! Nic, go try and you will know.

I find this so-so. The chilli gives me the feeling of primary school canteen..heehee..how nice to bring back my childhood...

Ya, I agree the portion is SUPER DUPER pathetic...soup is kinda weird too...probably because I dont the smell and taste of the parts and the gravy is yucky! My bf certainly will not come back with me again...sigh

Anonymous said...

Ya to "tell u the truth" your absoooooultely correct and by the way, the one and real hock lam beef just celebrated their 97th anniversary on 1 oct and I attended it. The original and real one started right all the way back from 1911 by Tina's great grandfather!! and not 1921..it was on the media and even class95 announced it..guess HFB gotta do some serious homework liao..haa

I simply love their soup and the new version introduced by Tina..its F A B U L O U S! go to ieat blog and read it..u will see all

His Food Blog said...

Hi ieat supporter, glad you decided to swing by here instead :)

Indeed, serious homework was done and 1921 was a claim stated on their menu - HFB is merely stating what he sees - perhaps I could even send you the photo I took to have a look if you are interested. ;)

Personally I haven't try Tina's version (which I believe would be good), but I certainly wouldn't be interested to sample a bastardise version of a beef kway teow (in hotpot style that is) as proposed by Leslie to Tina. My viewpoint is the good old beef kway teow should remain as it is - why change things when it ain't spoiled. Don't you agree?

Anonymous said...

there are so many hock lam beefs around, including one in siglap beer garden which happens to be my favourite. frankly i don't give a sh*t abt who's the original (nobody can verify anyway) as long as they taste good. as far as i know, the so-called authentic teow chew beef kway teow doesn't have the thick gravy that is found in all those who are known as original, authentic, popular hock lam beef.

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