What happened to Hock Lam Beef Noodles? One may wonder. And who’s the real deal?
An “Original Hock Lam Beef Noodles” restaurant opened at the glamorous Ion Orchard, up the high level scale with the offering of Australian ribeye slices with humble Teochew style beef noodles.
This particular Hock Lam also has branches at Far East Square and Alexandra Retail Centre, said to be more than a century in history with the business started from 1911 when the owner’s grandfather used to sell the noodles on foot in Chinatown.
There is another different shop calling themselves “Authentic Hock Lam St Popular Kway Teow Pte Ltd”, operating since 1921.
Whatever it is, all I know that the old old Purvis Street shop had one of the best tasting beef noodles, and sadly none can quite replicate the taste.
To be fair, I liked the braised Australian Angus Beef ($15.90 for set meal), quite tender and covered in a rich tasting dark black sauce.
The same style of beef can also be found in the Angus Beef Bun ($2.50 for 1 piece, $9.90 for 4 pieces).
The Hock Lam Beef noodles ($9.90) with hand sliced beef cuts, tripe, brisket slices and beef ball suffered from the fate of commercialisation.
While the herb based soup and chilli sauce were the saving grace, some parts – sauce not warm enough, dry generic tasting beef balls, and clumpy noodles made me miss the good old taste of Beef Noodles I had while growing up.
I think it is an okay bowl. But what is stopping customers from having something similar, at half its price in the food courts?
Maybe that was why the brand needed to choose to use a higher quality Angus Beef.
2 Orchard Turn, #B3-18 (Orchard MRT)
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm Daily
Other branches: Far East Square
22 China Street, #01-01 (Raffles Place MRT)
Opening Hours: 10am – 9pm (Mon-Fri), 11am – 5pm (Sat, Sun & PH)
Alexandra Retail Centre
460 Alexandra Rd, #02-24 (Labrador Park MRT)
Opening Hours: 10am – 9pm (Mon – Fri), 11am – 9pm (Sat, Sun & PH)