Out of curiosity, I asked my family about the first dish that comes to mind when they think of Chinese food. The answers were mainly dim sum, fried rice and stir-fried noodles. But Chinese cuisine is so much more than just xiao long baos and chicken chow mein. Individual Chinese restaurants offer endless variations and styles, each unique in its own way.
What can be agreed upon is that Chinese food is loved by many, especially us foodies. Here are 13 Chinese restaurants in Singapore we can vouch for that we know both you and your family will love.
1. Majestic Bay
Majestic Bay definitely lives up to being majestic by offering the freshest seafood you can find, served in a brightly-lit and elegant restaurant at Gardens By The Bay. Perfect for a meal after a family excursion to admire the flowers.
You might think that the bill would burn a hole in your (dad’s) pocket, but the vast majority of dishes are reasonably priced, considering the great quality of all the ingredients.
If you love garlic, the Crispy Sea Prawns in Light Soya Sauce and Smashed Garlic ($30) is to die for. A mountain of prawns smeared in soya sauce towers over the plate with garlic cloves lying on shredded greens.
The huge prawns were juicy from the sweet yet salty sauce, making them extra succulent. Bonus points for being de-shelled as well, so even the lazy members of your family can enjoy!
2. YELLOW POT
Located in the exquisite Duxton Reserve hotel, Yellow Pot is known for its extremely instagrammable interior. With an aesthetic colour palette of black, yellow and gold, it is not difficult to see why folks love the decor. There are even yellow pots in all sorts of shapes and sizes, courtesy of the restaurant’s name.
The health conscious will be elated to know that they adopt a clean eating philosophy, which means that you won’t find any traces of MSG, additives, or artificial flavouring in their food at all. This meal will no doubt be extra healthy for the older folks in the family.
Many flock to this restaurant for the Signature Roast Duck (S$51). The preparation behind this masterpiece is crucial for flavour—- it is marinated for 2 days in a fermented beancurd paste and then roasted over hickory wood. With great preparation comes bursts of flavour, and it is no wonder that this is one of the best roasted ducks in town.
3. Qi – House Of Sichuan
Mala. Mala everywhere. This spicy, oily sauce craze heavily features in Qi — House of Sichuan that’s located at Marina Bay Link Mall. The branch in Hong Kong has been awarded a total of 4 Michelin stars, so you know these guys mean business.
You’ll have to standby a glass of milk before digging into the Braised Garoupa Fish Fillet in Chilli Oil Soup (S$40 for small, S$50 for large); the giant bowl comes brimming with a myriad of spices, sweet potato noodles and plump garoupa fillets.
The soup may initially come across as too overwhelming, but it was light and surprisingly had only a thin layer of oil. Be warned, though, this isn’t for the faint-hearted, but it sure is addictive.
We all know a mala-loving family member who would take on the challenge.
4. Madame Fan
Alan Yau, the founder of renowned UK-based Wagamama chain and Michelin-starred award-winning Hakkasan, launched Madame Fan in 2018. Located at The NCO Club in Singapore, it allows his playful and mouth-watering creations of Chinese fine dining to come to life.
Meat lovers must try the Jasmine Tea Smoked Ribs (S$42), which is an entire honey-glazed rack of meat, crusted with an exquisite char.
There was a subtle smokiness and a wave of pleasant floral notes from the jasmine— I found it delightfully different. With meat that is oh so tender that it directly slips off the bone, this dish will impress the whole table.
5. Mui Kee Congee
Some may think that congee is only for days when you’re sick and lying in bed. However, the congee at Mui Kee Congee located in Shaw Centre and Shaw Plaza, appeals to one and all because their bowls of gruel are packed with marvellous umami.
While the Sliced Threadfin (S$18.80) congee looks simple, it actually requires 5 painstaking hours of preparation. First, the mashed century eggs and raw rice grains are stirred together and then, pork bones along with fish stock are poured and mixed in every 5 to 10 minutes.
The result? A bowl of thick yet smooth porridge embedded with fried fish slices emanating wok hei and a hint of ginger. No wonder the congee is approved by Tai Tais back in Hong Kong.
1 Scotts Road, Shaw Centre, #01-12, Singapore 228208
+65 6737 2422
Mon to Fri: 11.30am – 3pm & 5.30pm – 9.30pm
Sat & Sun: 8am – 11.30am & 11.30am – 5.30pm & 5.30pm – 9.30pm
6. Dai Lou
Dai Lou means ‘big boss’ in Cantonese. You and your family will be well taken care of by the head chef once you set foot in this Cantonese family-style restaurant at Marina Country Club that features both traditional zi char and Chinese dishes with modern twists.
Prepared using Dai Lou’s top-secret recipe, the Golden Sand Chicken (S$13 for small, S$19 for medium, S$23 for large) will make you wish you could find out how the golden sand batter creates such a beautifully crisp layer over the chicken.
The tender and juicy chicken paired with powdery chicken floss and drizzled with sweet mayonnaise will make you want to get the Large right from the start.
7. Yin Ji
With a history of over 60 years and branches in Guangzhou, Hong Kong and even Canada, the Yin Ji 银记肠粉店 chain naturally gives one high expectations. With only 1 outlet in Singapore, this famed store is located in Far East Square.
And as Singapore’s first cloth-pulled chang fen (rice roll) speciality store, the anticipation is only further amplified. Thankfully, these expectations are not only met but exceeded.
House-made-everything is the best and I can definitely say that’s true for their Tender Pork Roll (S$7.40), which comes stuffed with vegetables and soft pork slices.
The chewy skin of the chang fen, tender meat, and the savoury light soy sauce will make it so easy to gobble up the entire roll in one go that it’ll leave you and the fam hankering for more.
Fusion cuisine is hit-and-miss but that’s no concern to Chengdu-Western fusion restaurant Birds of a Feather along Amoy Street.
Chengdu, the capital of southwestern China’s Sichuan province, is distinguished by its fiery cuisine. Here, that’s elevated with contemporary elements of Western fare.
Spice is everything to Sichuan cuisine and the Oriental Bolognaise (S$26) features thin pasta adorned with fresh kale, sun-dried tomatoes and thinly-sliced lotus root, all packed with an intoxicating Sichuan spicy aroma.
The onsen tamago enhances the flavour of the noodles, giving it more of a punch. This is one fusion dish that your family will be thanking you for.
Having over 200 outlets in China, YUN NANS is a well-renowned casual restaurant chain serving authentic Yunnan cuisine. With this in mind, it is a no-brainer why it already has 4 outlets in Singapore. However, this list stars their subsidiary restaurant which focuses on hotpot, YUN NANS Stonepot Fish in Northpoint City.
Despite the name, this spot on our list does chicken soup immensely well. The Stonepot Chicken Soup (S$39.80 for 800g, S$68.80 for 1.4kg) uses premium ingredients like white corn and kampong red jungle fowl chicken for ultra indulgence.
Thanks to the long 6 hours used to cook the broth, it is packed full of a natural sweetness and tastes just like Mom’s cooking. It is definitely a feast for the other senses as well, with the straw wok lid sprinkling out scented smoke that will leave you salivating.
10. Ah Ma Jok
Nothing better than home cooking, am I right? Ah Ma Jok at Selegie Road gives a familiar taste of nostalgia that really comforts the soul. This nostalgic flavour is no coincidence, considering how this porridge recipe has been passed down from the owner’s own ah ma.
This quaint brick-and-mortar spot hides multiple unique variations— Abalone Porridge (S$17) and even the modernised Kimchi Porridge (S$6). For the folks who just want the classics, not to worry! Pork Porridge (S$6.50) is here to save your classic tastes (and empty wallet).
The star would be the Pork Porridge. Having been slow-cooked with pork bones for many hours, the broth used in this porridge creates a creamy and fragrant goodness that you cannot help but savour.
If you adore traditional with a modern twist, Kimchi Porridge will be a winner! I thoroughly enjoy its tangy refreshing hints, thanks to the kimchi. A word of advice would be to mix the refreshing kimchi thoroughly for an even and balanced flavour.
11. Qin Jin Rougamo
Miss the Chinese ‘hamburgers’ aka Rougamo in China? Qin Jin Rougamo with branches at 5 locations (with another outlet about to open in The Woodleigh Mall) may be the answer for your cravings!
Specialising in these Chinese ‘hamburgers’, this joint offers 6 different fillings between those flaky buns. Those who prefer slight kicks to their taste buds will definitely enjoy the Cumin Pork Rougamo (S$5.80). The earthy taste of the cumin mixes fantastically well with red onions and green peppers to bring you on a rollercoaster of flavour.
This eatery also has other dishes like Sour & Spicy Potato Noodles with Minced Pork (S$8.80) that may suit your fancy. It would be a shame to miss out on trying this well-balanced bowl of goodness while you are there!
60 Paya Lebar Road, Paya Lebar Square, #B1-08, Singapore 409051
+65 6970 0123
Daily: 11am – 9.30pm
1 Wallich Street, Guoco Tower, #B2-04, Singapore 078881
+65 6970 8345
Daily: 11am – 9pm
460 Alexandra Road, Alexandra Retail Centre, #01-33, Singapore 119963
+65 6970 9597
Daily: 11am – 9pm
1 Raffles Place, One Raffles Place, #B1-28/29, Singapore 048616
Mon to Fri: 11am – 9pm
Sat: 11am – 8pm
Closed on Sun
12. Jyu Gae Bistro
Missing the street food of Taiwan? You will be pleased to learn that Jyu Gae Bistro in Lazada One offers a popular array of authentic Taiwanese street favourites. From Taiwanese breakfast items like classic egg crepes to desserts of the famed Taiwanese ice cream popiah, this restaurant is sure to satisfy.
Personally, I was most excited about the Jyu Gae Signature 3 Bowls Set (S$18.90). Indecisive as can be, the idea of having miniature bowls of 3 popular dishes — Braised Pork Rice, Salt-pepper Popcorn Chicken and Oyster Mee Sua is just so appealing to me! It definitely helps that all 3 were done exceptionally well, tasting true to the original back in Taiwan.
A close contender was no doubt the Taiwanese Pork Floss Egg Crepe (S$8.90). Essentially pork floss and egg bundled within roti prata, this little bundle of joy went perfectly with the garlic sauce on the side. A perfect light breakfast!
Open till 2am, Old House BBQ & Bar at Boon Keng is the answer to your light night suppers. I would say this is the perfect place to get some light grub, as their speciality charcoal skewers go perfectly with their drinks!
With each of the skewers dusted with herbs, the mutton meat on the Xin Jiang Rose Willow Mutton Skewers (S$12 for 3 skewers) was incredibly flavourful. The distribution of fat and lean meat reminded me of pork belly. It has an oomph that is so unforgettable that you will ask for another.
Other than the other 30-odd skewers, there are also Chinese staples— Grandma’s Fried Rice (S$12) and even Old House Rougamo (S$6) if you prefer some substantial carbs. Old House BBQ & Bar will make for a satisfying dine and drink with your loved ones.
1088 Serangoon Road, Singapore 328188
+65 6018 1318
Mon to Fri: 4pm – 2am
Sat & Sun: 2pm – 2am
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