por kee eating house, tiong bahru

decent food at this hidden-away sprawl of a cze char eatery in the newly-hipstered enclave that is tiong bahru. long before the fakely bespectacled, tight-trousered, coiffed hippied teenager took over the now cafe-belaboured estate of tiong bahru, places such as this one must have made the area’s reputation as gastroterritory.

cze char (or zi char or tze char) is home-style food served outside your home – and this place is truly old-school: slightly cantankerous chinese-speaking staff, blue-white plastic dinnerware, and good food unpretentiously plated. the only caveat here is that while admittedly tasty, the food is a little on the rich + oily side – and I’m not one for fatty meats or oily vegetables (but you jolly well could be!)

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big eater restaurant, changi

fantastic seafood and zi char at this casual chinese restaurant nearish the singapore expo – really, it’s rather out of the way (for us), but it’s now become my family’s go-to place for crabs and the like, and well-worth travelling to. the place has been packed to the rafters even by early evening (we popped here on two consecutive sundays because it was so good) – but the prices are reasonable, the food is absolutely commendably executed, and service is both sincere and quick.

if you’re not from around here – then zi char refers to a rather casual style of dining-out, where you get local home-style chinese cooking spanning nearly anything you could want – meat, seafood and veg – with some stalls so expert as to provide restaurant-quality cooking at more accessible prices.

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