Category: Chinese – Hawker – Roasted Meats
My colleague and friend has been raving about this place for weeks on end, and so I finally made my way down on a Saturday morning to give it a try. Before going, I did a quick search which yielded Kim Heng as the “Best all rounder” in an article by the Straits times on the best roasted meat stalls, and so I went with high hopes.
Block 214 Serangoon Avenue 4, 01-88, Tel: 6283-3695, Opens 8.30am to 7pm daily
Situated in a clean coffeeshop at the corner of the ground floor of a HDB block facing the Serangoon Stadium, Kim Heng HK Roasted Meat is easy to find and can be seen from a distance away; even before lunchtime, a long queue of customers would have formed, cutting right across the path.
It’s roasted meat after all, and in a coffeeshop, so it can’t (and shouldn’t) be that expensive. That said, it’s steeper than some of the other places I’ve been, but that could be because we ordered ribs in the mix. It came up to about $14 for each of us, for a platter of mixed meats and 2 small soups to share 3 ways.
To go: Perhaps, if you’re in the area
I’m personally not convinced that this is the best all-rounder for roasted meat in Singapore. It was okay; nothing really special if you ask me, and unfortunately not as mind-blowing as my friend made it out to be (I mean, when he was describing it to me, he really went all out with the expressive hand gestures to accompany the mouthwatering descriptions in addition to a look of bliss). The sio ba (roasted pork belly) was better, but I remain a skeptic about whether this place warrants the queue and the hype.
A MORE DETAILED REVIEW
I cut through the building, entering from the side of the carpark, and straight away saw the long line to my right. My friends had recommended going just before 11.30am when, from experience, a freshly roasted batch of sio ba would be ready and displayed alongside other tantalizing meats, ready to be devoured.
We ordered a mix of char siew, xio ba, ribs and roasted duck (feature picture). The char siew (roasted pork slices) was average – way too fatty and not as caramelised on the outside as would be ideal. There were little tasty bits here and there, but nothing came close to the char siew I’d had at this place called Sun Ming in Cheras, just a little way out from Kuala Lumpur – which, to date, still stands as the best I’ve ever tasted.
The sio ba was springy and the skin was lightly crisped, but I found that it was not exceptionally fragrant although on the plus side, it wasn’t heavy from overused oil which is a common mistake. The ribs were a disappointment – there was very little meat, and it wasn’t particularly tender. If you go, I’d recommend you save your rib fix for another day at some place else like Morganfields which has the ultimate sticky bones.
And so my search for the best roasted meats in Singapore continues. If you have any recommendations, please do let me know – I’d really love to hear all about them!