Tsui Wah, which has more than 70 outlets in Hong Kong, Macau and China, has expanded to Southeast Asia with an outlet in Clarke Quay, a touristy entertainment district.
The cha chaan teng chain is famed for having an extensive range of Cantonese-style Western and Chinese food, served quickly in a casual setting. According to Mr Cheung Pui Yan, Tsui Wah’s director of kitchen operations, about 60 to 70% of the Hong Kong menu has been transplanted here.
Another popular dish is the Kagoshima-style braised pork cartilage instant noodles, the brainchild of a Japanese chef who worked at the chain. The tender-soft cartilage with chewy gelatinous bits is served with the Hong Kong classic dish of tossed instant noodles.
Other dishes include the fish paste puffs in fish soup noodles, beef brisket and tendon curry rice and pork chop bun.
Of course, there is the signature milk tea made with specially sourced Ceylon black tea leaves and condensed milk that is served in a pre-heated jolly-looking tea cup.
The restaurant says that each batch of frothy caramel-brown brew is kept for 30 minutes at most to retain its optimal taste and texture. A popular pairing with the milk tea is the crispy bun coated with condensed milk and butter. Prices range from $3.50 for a cup of milk tea to $29 for the lamb chop curry rice.
While there are no exclusive dishes to the Singapore outlet for now, there are many Cantonese dishes to choose from such as sweet and sour prawns with pineapple and hawthorn, and braised abalone rice with diced chicken and kale. More dishes from the Hong Kong menu will be rotated here.
Tsui Wah’s Singapore forary is a partnership between the group and Singapore restaurant company, Jumbo Group, which runs Jumbo Seafood and Ng Ah Sio Bak Kut Teh. Both companies are publicly listed in their respective countries. Tsui Wah started in Mong Kok in 1967.
On how the quality of food will be kept consistent in the Singapore, Pang says that ingredients such as tea leaves and curry pastes will be imported from Hong Kong. A team of six chefs will be based here to train the local staff, while Cheung will be based here for two years.
Pang adds that the group will monitor the business to decide if the outlet will open 24 hours to cater to the clubbing crowd in the vicinity or to start another outlet in the future.