Missing some of the iconic Hong Kong Cafes aka cha chaan teng?
Cha chaan teng 茶餐廳 (which literally means “tea restaurant”) are a type of Hong Kong restaurant-cafe known for eclectic wide-ranging menu, made of different kinds of Canto-Western cuisine.
This is where you can expect huge variety of food, from Cheese Baked Rice, Wonton Noodles, Curry Rice, Sandwiches, Hong Kong-style French Toast, Bolo Bun and Egg Tarts.
If you are craving of some of those cha chaan teng food, here are 12 Hong Kong Cafes in Singapore to check out:
Legendary Hong Kong
63 Jurong West Central 3, #03-80 Jurong Point 2 Shopping Center, Singapore 648331
Tel: +65 6794 1335
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm (Mon – Fri), 10am – 10pm
One of a kind 4-in-1 themed Hong Kong restaurant and café in Singapore, Legendary Hong Kong is run by 8 professional chefs hailing from Hong Kong, and they have raised the bar for other Hong Kong cafes in Singapore.
The interior is modelled like an old-school HK cha chaan teng, serving a spread of roast meats, pastry, toasts, noodles, congee and dim sum.
For dim sum, there are items from Steamed BBQ Pork Bun ($4.80), Steamed Beef Ball with Beancurd Skin ($5.20), Steamed Pork Dumplings ($5.80), Piggy Bun with Egg Custard ($5), to Steamed Sponge Cake ($5).
Their house specialty is the London Roast Duck, sometimes known as the ‘best duck in the world’ for its succulent meal and tasty flavours.
Legendary Hong Kong gets the premium duck supply exclusively from Silver Hill Farms, where each duck sold is de-feathered by hand so as to ensure integrity of the quality of meat and no bruising.
Do you know that roasted pork is to be eaten with mustard, roast duck with plum sauce and the roasted chicken with a garlic sauce blend for the best complement?
This was told to me by a waitress here. Looks like Legendary Hong Kong is keeping things authentic here.
Also, don’t miss the oozing Custard Crust Bolo Bun ($6) with a crispy bolo bun exterior.
So Good Char Chan Tang
Capitol Singapore #01-17/18, 13 Stamford Road, Singapore 178884Opening Hours: 8am – 9pm (Mon – Fri), 9am – 9pm (Sat – Sun)
Travel to Hong Kong instantly with a bite at So Good Char Chan Tang, an upbeat casual dining café. This cha chaan teng or Hong Kong-style café genuinely reflects the streets of modern-day Hong Kong and has been quite popular with local Singaporeans as well.
Its long operating hours allow you to grab any meal from breakfast to dinner.
For brekkie or a tea-time snack, try the aromatic Crispy Bun with Condensed Milk ($2.00). Pair it with Hong Kong-Style Milk Tea ($2.20 for hot, $2.50 for cold) for a classic rendezvous of flavours.
Make it more filling with an order of roasted barbecue meats. Smoky and flavourful, the meats are served with either noodles or rice.
Other chef-recommended mains include Curry Beef Brisket Rice ($8.00), Baked Cheese Spaghetti Bolognese ($8.50), Fried Rice with Pork Chop & Fried Eggs ($9.50), and Fried Hor Fun with Beef ($9.80). Note that there are only 30 portions of the Beef Hor Fun every day, and they are usually sold out.
The Baked Egg Tart ($3.60 for 2 pcs) perhaps the most popular Hong Kong pastry, has delicately flaky tart filled with a silky-smooth egg custard. Relish it as part of a high tea, or just snack a piece or two with Iced Red Bean ($3.00). So Good Char Chan Tang (Capitol Singapore)
9 Penang Road, #01-18, Singapore 238459 (UBS Singapore Business Hub)
Tel: +65 8932 0632
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm (Mon – Sun)
When you walk into this new restaurant at UBS Business Hub (formerly known as Park Mall) with its sleek stainless steel walls and ceilings. Looking quite futuristic, you may not have imagined this is a Hong Kong style cha chaan teng.
Helmed by Chef Tsang Tak Ching, a former Sous Chef at Lei Garden Hong Kong, Pi Food takes its name from the number pi (π), a math constant with digits that never end.
The modern cha chaan teng items range from classic Hong Kong-style noodles, rice, congee, sandwiches and roast meats, to Canto-Western dishes.
Recommended is the Stir Fried Beef Noodles ($13.80) with slices of beef are wok-fried over high heat, enough for them to sear-til-they-char and feel that “breath of the wok” aka wok hei.
The Lotus Leaf Rice with Roasted Duck Meat ($16.80) uses the woodsy aromatic lotus leaf to wrap HK-style roasted duck,steamed in between sticky rice. For best experience, enjoy this fragrant dish while still hot. Pi Food (Penang Road)
Tai Cheong Bakery Cafe
Holland Village 31 Lorong Liput Singapore 277742 (Holland Village MRT)
Opening Hours: 10am – 8pm (Mon – Sun)
Tai Cheong Bakery is known for its signature Egg Tart, famed for its crumbly cookie-like shell, buttery fragrance, and smooth wobbly egg custard.
This café at Holland Village is the brand’s FIRST dine-in concept ever.
In terms of Tai Cheong signature pastries, there are the Singapore-exclusive flavour of Pandan Egg Tarts ($2), Durian & Cheese Tart ($3.90), Coconut Tart ($2.80), and Chicken Pie ($3).
The creation features aromatic pandan-infused egg custard in the buttery pastry shell. The fillings reminded me of the Nonya Kueh Kueh with its kaya-ish fillings.
There are the other more typical Hong Kong cha chaan teng dishes such as Scrambled Egg Toast Stack with Chicken Chop ($11.90), French Toast ($7.90), Hk Dry Noodles ($11.90) with sausage, Swiss chicken wing, curry fishball and braised cuttlefish, to Cheese Baked Rice with Pork Chop and Tomato Gravy ($17.60). Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore (Holland Village)
Tsui Wah Singapore
3A River Valley Road, Clarke Quay, #01-03, Singapore 179020.
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 10pm (Mon – Sun)
Tsui Wah’s first outlet in Singapore is located at Clarke Quay (facing the riverside) – a good choice of location especially when it intends to extending opening hours into the night.
There are also outlets at Jem, Jewel Changi Airport, and Heeren.
The contemporary-styled restaurant has a seating capacity of over 140, with an al fresco dining area which faces the riverfront.
Some of the signature dishes over in the Singapore outlet include Beef Brisket Curry with Prata ($17), Chicken Wings in Supreme Sauce ($10.50), Wontons with Shrimp Roe in Fish Soup ($9.50), Kagoshima-Style Braised Pork Cartilage with Tossed Instant Noodles ($10.50), Crispy Bun with Condense Milk ($4), and Tsui Wah Signature Pork Chop Bun ($8.50)
The popular choice would be the Crispy Bun with Condensed Milk ($4) – freshly baked bun coated with butter and condensed milk.
You can also go for the Kagoshima-Style Braised Pork Cartilage with Tossed Instant Noodles ($10.50), which is a homage dish to a Japanese chef who shared this recipe with Tsui Wah. Tsui Wah Singapore (Clarke Quay)
Social Place 唐宫小聚
583 Orchard Road, Forum the Shopping Mall #01-22, Singapore 238884
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2:30pm, 6pm – 9pm (Sun – Thurs), 11:30am – 2:30pm, 6pm – 9:30pm (Fri – Sat)
Social Place is known for its contemporary Chinese cuisine and modern dim sum items that pushed the envelope.
Many of their Chinese dishes do bring in some surprises (do get your cameras ready) such as the Flamin-ple’ ($28) in which a whole pineapple is set aflame at the table before you dig into the beef brisket with curry gravy within; Sweet & Sour Pork on Ice ($24.80) served with crushed and cubed ice that keep the battered pork crisp.
Newer items to look forward in Singapore’s menu include the Shanghai Steamed Buns ($6.80), and the Chilli Crab Xiao Long Bao ($7.80) filled with sweet-spicy crab fillings and topped with tobiko.
For fans of “Liu Sha Bao”, do not miss out the Charcoal Custard Bun ($8.80) with ebony-black exterior and gold brush strokes. Break it apart to reveal velvety custard fillings within.
Joy Luck Teahouse – Plaza Singapura
#B2-26 Plaza Singapura, 68 Orchard Road, Singapore 238839
Opening Hours: 10am – 8:30pm (Sun – Thurs), 10am – 9pm (Fri – Sat, PH)
Perhaps having some authentic HK cha chaan teng food of Egg Tarts, Pineapple Buns, Hong Kong-style Milk Tea and Curry Fishballs can help bring back those joys.
Joy Luck Teahouse currently has outlets at ION Orchard, Bugis Junction, Causeway Point, Parkway Parade (Food Republic), Chinatown, Sun Plaza, Bishan Junction 8, and Plaza Singapura.
However, most are kiosks concepts, but the outlet at Plaza Singapura has a sit-down area.
There are two styles of Egg Tarts offered here, one with a puff pastry shell and the other with sweet shortbread crust almost like butter cookie.
Newly introduced is the HK Twin Sausage Bun 双肠热狗包 inspired by a well-loved local offering from a popular restaurant at Central, Hong Kong. You can get a taste of it here without flying over to Hong Kong.
The newly introduced item comprises of two steamed chicken sausages (made locally, only chilled and not frozen), both housed within a lightly steamed bun.
To me, the real draw is the accompanying sweet mustard-like sauce that is specially made in-house using a secret recipe which includes butter, mustard, pickles, egg, vinegar and more. Joy Luck Teahouse (ION Orchard)
Xin Wang Hong Kong Cafe
68 Orchard Road, #06-08/09/10, Plaza Singapura, Singapore 238839
Tel: +65 6884 8698
Opening Hours: 11am – 11pm (Mon – Sun)
Branches at Anchorpoint, AMK Hub, Bugis+, Compass One, NUH Medical Centre, Northpoint City, Plaza Singapura, White Sands, West Coast Plaza
Xin Wang should be the most visible cha chaan teng in Singapore, as it is one of the earliest to reach out to the youths, and has many branches around Singapore.
I remember days where friends would gather at (now-defunct) Xin Wang Cineleisure after a late night KTV or movie session, seated at booths to chit chat over Thick Toast and Snow Ice.
There are a total of 186 items and 24 categories in XW entire menu. Their Top 10 items include XO Fried Carrot Cake, Cheese Baked Mix Grill Spaghetti, Olive Fried Rice with Pork Chop, Claypot Nissin Soup Noodle, Homemade Papaya Soup Bee Hoon, Honey Butter French Toast, XW Chicken Wing Rice, HK-style Curry Chicken and Braised Beef Brisket Cheong Fun.
A recommendation is the Signature Stir Fried Rice ($10.90) which uses Japanese rice grains is they would absorb sauces
The dish also reminded me of Malaysian-style zi char with a sweet-soy taste. Turned out that the Executive Chef did want to emulate the rustic taste and flavours of some of the famous fried rice dishes he tried up north. Xin Wang Hong Kong Café (Kovan)
Friends Cafe HK 朋友冰室
60 Springside Walk, The Brooks I #01-18 Singapore 786020
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2:30pm, 5:30pm – 8:30pm (Mon, Wed – Sun), Closed Tues
Friends Cafe HK 朋友冰室 situated within a mixed development The Brooks I at Springside Walk, comes quite close in terms of the old-school Hong Kong café décor.
There are the tiled walls, mosaic floor, booth seating, mirrors and random menu pasted all around and within the table’s glass covering. Got the feels.
Signature set meals here include Charsiew Spaghetti or Macaroni ($6.50), Luncheon Meat Noodles with Egg ($6.50), Spiced Pork Cube Noodles ($6.50), Ham Macaroni ($6.50), Preserved Vegetable Beehoon with Pork ($7.50), Chicken Chop Noodles or Rice ($7.60), and Pork Chop Rice ($7.50).
There are also snacks of Curry Fish Balls ($4), Deep Fried Chicken Thigh ($5), Fried Chicken Mid Wings ($5), Sandwich ($2, $3), Fried Veg Roll ($3), Peanut Butter Milk Toast ($1.80) to Fried Wedges ($3).
As they are relatively new, do give them some time to iron out some of the dishes. One of the most popular items offered should be the French Toast ($3.50). Friends Cafe HK 朋友冰室 (Springside)
Centrepoint #01-33 F/G, 176 Orchard Rd, Singapore 238843
Tel: +65 6734 6609
Opening Hours: 11am – 9pm (Sun – Thurs), 11am – 10pm (Fri, Sat)
Other outlet at Westgate #02-06
The signature Honolulu Egg Tart ($1.70) is known for its 192 layers of flaky pastry, crumbly, with wobbly eggy fillings.
Frankly, the Egg Tart was not too bad, and I liked the crumbly crust which reminded us of cereal.
Offering include Pineapple Bun with Butter ($2), Deep Fried Egg Puff ($2) and BBQ Pork Pastry ($1.70), French Toast ($3.00), Sandwiches ($3.00 – $7.00), Instant Noodle ($5), Beef Brisket Noodle in soup or with noodles ($6.00) and Main courses of Baked Pork Chop Spaghetti or Rice ($7.80), Baked Fish Fillet Cream Sauce Spaghetti or Rice ($7.80).
Most of the other dishes were really quite average-tasting, but good for a fuss-free meal in town. Honolulu Café Singapore (Centrepoint)
Streats Hong Kong Café
26 Sentosa Gateway, Resorts World Sentosa #01-205, 098138
Opening Hours: 10am – 3pm, 5pm – 10pm (Mon – Fri), 11am – 10pm (Sat – Sun)
Outlets at Bukit Panjang Plaza, City Square Mall, IMM Building, West Mall, Tampines 1
Streats Hong Kong Cafe is known for halal Cantonese cuisine and dim sum, and has casual and modern tea house vibes.
Some outlets such as the Asian concept at RWS presents a wide variety of popular Hong Kong, Macau, Indonesian and Asian street food, with traditional dim sum, noodles, pastas and other local favourites.
Recommended dishes include Salted Egg Yolk Pumpkin Fries, HK Fried XO Seafood Noodles, Fried chicken & Beef Rendang set.
Order the signature Macau Chicken Chop Fried Rice or Hong Kong Fried XO Seafood Noodle to satisfy your cravings.
Central Hong Kong Café
VivoCity #B2-13/14, 1 HarbourFront Walk, Singapore 098585
Tel: +65 6262 4056
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 10pm (Mon – Fri), 10am – 10pm (Sat – Sun)
Lead by Hong Kong Group Executive Chef Chiu Ka Wai, who has been the master chef at Regent Hotel Summer Palace for more than 20 years, you get a wide range of Hong Kong staples and street food.
This includes Fried Lamian with Seafood ($8.90), Hong Kong Wanton Noodle ($6.00 for soup, $6.50 for dry), Beef Brisket Noodle ($6.50 for soup, $7.00 for dry), Hong Kong Curry Beef Brisket On Rice ($7.90), Hong Kong Style Fried Beef Hor Fun ($8.90) along with toasts, stocking milk tea, ginger coca cola and more.
The ‘problem’ with Hong Kong cafes are that there are too many dishes to choose from. I quite liked the saucy Braised Beef with Black Bean Hor Fun, with tender braised beef slices, rice noodles smothering with wok-hei.