The relatively popular brunch café Sin Lee Foods at Bukit Ho Swee has closed.
While it has been attracting the weekend (hipster) crowds, perhaps it was not enough to sustain in light of increasing rental and labour cost.
In comes Broth Noodle Bar, which is pretty risky considering that it opened with almost zilch marketing and at a slightly inaccessible location.
I like to support the underdogs anyway.
They specialise in noodles in ‘homemade’ broth cooked from bones and vegetables, without the use of additional MSG.
There are two main options for noodles, with beef broth or pork bone broth.
The Beef Noodles comes in braised or clear soups, priced at $8.80, $10.80 and $12.80 depending on the cut of the meats – shin cuts, tendon and tripes.
I had the Double Combo Braised Beef ($10.80) served with bak choy, pickles and braised egg.
Actually, it vaguely reminded me of the hearty Taiwanese style of hong-shao noodles, with flavourful soup, and meat with good balance of fat and tendon.
To be fair, this would be considered a lighter version as those overseas as it was not too rich or greasy.
The Pork Belly Charsiew Ramen ($9.80) was the weaker link, lacking in the robustness and umami flavours.
It was not bad, but not enough for diners to make an exceptional journey, especially when the noodles were slightly too soft for my liking.
You could tell that they were trying to inject some creativity into the sides as well, with offerings of Green Mango Salad ($4.80), Fried Wantons with Khao Soi Mayo ($4.80), Stuffed Chicken Wings with Thai Sweet Chilli ($3.80) and Chilled Drunken Chicken Roulade ($5.80).
I was fairly intrigued by the Fried Wantons with Khao Soi sauce – one of my favourite Northern Thailand noodle dish.
The flavour could have been more pronounced and distinct, and overall marred by (redundant) crushed peanut who tasted like it had been left in the air for a while.
Broth Noodle Bar is promising, and I would suggest going for the Braised Beef Noodles. But they probably got to do more to get the crowd coming in.
Broth Noodle Bar
Blk 4 Jalan Bukit Ho Swee #01-164 Singapore 162004
Opening Hours: 10am – 9:30pm (Mon – Thurs, Sun), 10am – 10:30pm (Fri – Sat)