Not “Sour Candy” but “Soi Candy”.
While Phua Chu Kang is singing songs for Shopee ads, wife Rosie Phua has been keeping herself busy with opening another restaurant.
Soi Candy is a new modern Thai noodle bar opened by local actress-host Irene Ang, who also owns talent agency FLY entertainment, F&B businesses FRY Bistro and Bar Naked.
Located at 20 Tanjong Pagar, the first thing you notice is the bright sunshine yellow signboard with fuchsia pink words, then the interior painted with colourful graffiti art.
I liked that touch of fun – quite in line with the boss’s on-screen personality, which differentiates this from the other more predictable-looking Thai eateries of late.
The name of the chef is Candy, who used to own an eatery in Thailand and cook at Tamarind Hill.
I went during lunch and the menu included affordably-priced set items of Signature Khao Soi Gai ($9.90), Signature 2-Tone Noodles, Homemade Thai Hor Mok ($12.90) and Softbone Pork or Beef Longan Stew ($8.90 / $9.90).
Each set includes an appetiser of Green Curry Chicken Stick, Deep Fried Crispy Wanton Skin, or Thai Fishcake, so it is considered value for its money.
There were other items of Tom Yum Seafood Soup ($8.90), Green Curry Chicken ($8.90), Basil Minced Pork with Sunny Side Up ($7.90), Green Curry ($7.90) and Pineapple Fried Rice with Mango Tofu Salad ($8.90).
I suspected that the Signature 2-Tone Noodles would be similar to Bak Mee Moo Daeng Thai Wanton Noodles, except that this came with a twist.
You get two noodles – jade noodles and wholegrain egg noodles in a bowl, included with minced pork, pork balls, roasted char siew, and topped with fried wanton.
Other than the colour factor, I couldn’t tell how the dual noodles added a taste variant. BUT this was a decent bowl.
The noodles were cooked with a satisfying springy bite, with that distinct fragrance coming from the pork lard oil.
While the sauce was kept minimal, give it a good toss and you would find that it was nonetheless flavourful.
I wished there was an additional bowl of soup, and that the combination of sauces could be a tad less salty.
Surprisingly, the Beef Longan Stew managed to capture that Thai essence that I dearly missed.
The interesting component was the addition of sweet longan, commonly found in Chiang Rai where Chef Candy is from.
Serving piping hot, the double-boiled broth was hearty and robust with a tinge of sweetness.
The thin rice noodles were slippery smooth matched with melt-in-the-mouth beef pieces. However (again), it would have been better if the salt level could be reduced. (I would assume people around the CBD would be more health conscious as well.)
The Homemade Thai Hor Mok ($12.90) is the Thai rendition of our Otah Otah.
Steamed in intricately folded banana leaves, dig into the juicy block on cabbage, and you could find chunks of salmon within – a pleasant surprise.
To be honest, I was initially expecting the food to taste ‘safe’ like several of the mass market Thai eateries out there.
There is this element of unpredictability and fun with authenticity here.
Soi Candy Thai Noodle Bar
20 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088443
Tel: +65 8875 3095
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 3pm, 5pm – 10:30pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon