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Home / Chinese Cuisine / Hong Kong Cze Char @ Balestier Road
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Hong Kong Cze Char @ Balestier Road
By Alfred April 25, 2009
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(4 rated)
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Hong Kong Cze Char @ Balestier Road
Fast Facts
Assam Fish Head (亞三鱼头) Kai Lan
Chinese Cuisine
Coffee Shop
Price Range:
S$41- S$50
Rating Range:
5 to 5.9
Balestier (马里士他)
Food Centre:
Recommended For:
Reviewed by:

A true blue Singaporean sure will love a meal of kopitiam Cze Char right? Hands on our heart, can’t we say Cze Char is one food that is truly Made-In-Singapore? I mean where else can you find our local delights such as Oyster Omelette, Sambal cuttlefish Kangkong or ‘our own flavoured’ kind of Pai Gu Wang outside of Singapore? Ok ok Malaysia also have but for those who does frequent eating trips across the causeway, I’m sure you can tell the difference between our food cultures eventhough we shared many similar food names. Basically of course their average food taste much better than ours, well if you compare kopitiam to kopitiam, Wanton Mee to Wanton Mee.

In our night kopitiam scene, another form of Cze Char has been quietly penetrating the market in the name of Hong Kong Cze Char which is essentially a flavour of the Hong Kong stir fry. For those who have been to places like Hong Kong, Sydney, London, Toronto or any other major cities for that matter, I’m sure you would have, at one point of your travelling, entered the Chinatown and walked into a Hong Kong eating house for a meal. For me, the main difference between Hong Kong food and our local food is that Hong Kongers tend to like their cooking a little more salty and most of their chef cooked as if chinese wine manufacturer gives them a free supply for a life time!

They do use a lot of wine in their cooking which resulted in an unmistaken ‘Hong Kee’ restaurant aroma, a fragrance no other cuisine in the world has. Usually for me, when I see a Salt & Pepper blah blah blah, then that line is a must try for me. At least once. The usual stuff would be Salt & Pepper Spare Ribs, Salt & Pepper Chicken or Salt & Pepper Squid, Fish or whatever. They always can make me empty my bowl of rice super fast!

Ok I’ve heard of this purportedly famous Cze Char place sitting in the corner coffeeshop in Balestier a few times from friends. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it is actually a Hong Kong Cze Char, well at least that’s what the signboard says.

But the thing is I did not see any Salt & Pepper dish on the menu. Well I let my partner make the ordering instead and to be on the safe side, I requested that she go for dishes that she had tried before and found them nice. We got an Assam Fish, a Tofu Prawn and a Garlic Kai Lan.

Assam Fish

The sauce of the Assam Fish was good which tasted somewhat more like a Thai sweet sauce or something along that line.

Tofu Prawns

The Tofu Prawn was full of that ’stir fry’ taste but otherwise not something I would visit that place again just because I crave for it, simply because I had tasted better ones elsewhere.

Garlic Kailan

The Garlic Kai Lan is far-fetched from what I know of how a Hong Kong style Garlic Kai Lan should taste. It just lacked that bit of something that can’t really make me enjoy this dish like how I would otherwise at a Hong Kong eating place. Well, so my opinion is they only added a Hong Kong to their signboard for fun.

Cze Char meal

Chilli Sauce

Their menu doesn’t look like one and the taste of their food neither too. Well, you might have been there and ordered some dishes that you think can be a dispute to my opinion? If so please write to me and I’ll be glad to hear from you!

Price: $40+

Recommendation: Tofu Prawn

Conclusion: Definitely not comparable to the real authentic HK flavour. Prices are a little high for a corner kopitiam. Not sure about other dishes but those we ordered today was very normal. Real cantonese flavour no enough!

Likes: The dishes were decent especially the Tofu Prawn.

Dislikes: Not authentic enough.

Address Overall Rating

Somewhere on Balestier Road

6/10 ★★★★★★☆☆☆☆ 

6/10 ★★★★★★☆☆☆☆ 

6/10 ★★★★★★☆☆☆☆ 

5/10 ★★★★★☆☆☆☆☆ 

5/10 ★★★★★☆☆☆☆☆ 

5.5/10 ★★★★★½☆☆☆☆ 


Readers' Comment(s) : 2 (Lim Boon Tiong) says:

I don’t frequent ZI CHAR places much as I find most of these places taste pretty much the same in SIngapore.

From the photos and description above, I would go for the Assam fish and the tofu prawn. You can have the KAI LAN all to yourself cos it looks pathetic. Hee.

At least you have “conquered” the place but not a “great victory”.

next time … try the TIAN WAI TIAN ok.

Posted April 25, 2009 (Alfred) says:

LOL! It actually didn’t looked that bad in real but seriously also nothing to rave about.

Posted April 25, 2009
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