The tip every Chinese New Year is, get your Bak Kwa early to avoid the long queues and higher prices. One will see insanely long queues at the Chinatown area, with customers coveting over the few famous Bak Kwa brands.
There is Kim Joo Guan at South Bridge Road, just minutes walk away from Chinatown MRT and Maxwell Food Centre. Thank you to Arthur and Kristy for inviting me to try the barbecued pork. I have walked past the shop several times, finally got my hands on them, and can safely declare these glistering slices to be one of my favourites.
Kim Joo Guan may not be as ‘out there’ as the other noticeable brands, because they only have one boutique outlet.
However, they have supplied to five of the most notable Bak Kwa brands in Singapore for more than 30 years.
What I liked about their Bak Kwa ($47 per kg of traditional pork slice, $50 during CNY period) – the barbeque pork slices are tasty, thick and moist, nicely charred on the edges, not overly oily.
Thicker cuts of some other brands can get too dry, especially after a few days in the kitchen, but Kim Joo Guan’s slices still remain pleasantly juicy on texture and savoury on taste.
The shop makes it a point of sourcing only 100% Australian grain-fed fresh pork, whereby only chilled fore and hind leg meats (instead of frozen ones) are used to preserve the taste.
The pieces are also handmade with sliced meat and not minced as that will retain the meat fibres which translate to better flavour when you chew on it.
I had the opportunity to visit the back of the shop where I saw workers grilled the Bak Kwa over charcoal, piece by piece, which eventually gives them a smoky flavour. That also means supply is limited as they are not factory made. (So get them early!)
My other favourite product was the Premium Pork Belly ($68 per kg) which tasted like juicy bacon, and were of course swept clean by my family within two days!
Other Kim Joo Guan products available:
Gold Coin Pork Slice ($45 per kg)
Original Pork Floss ($5.50), Chilli Pork Floss ($5.80), Sesame and Seaweed Pork Floss ($6)
Spicy Prawn Roll ($6)
Note: Kim Joo Guan offers Pre-Order services (above 3kg) for Chinese New Year, available for both corporate and consumer orders. Free delivery to 1 destination for orders above 30kg.
Kim Joo Guan
257 South Bridge Road Singapore 058806
Tel: +65 6225 5257
Opening Hours: 10am – 8pm
* This entry is brought to you in partnership with Kim Joo Guan