This spot for authentic and inexpensive hand-pulled noodles or La Mian, can be found in the basement of Capitol Singapore, attracting foodies who love slurping up bowls of noodles.
Unless you venture to the basement of this mall (even so, it is at a hidden corner), you may not have heard about this place.
Chef Kok who runs the eatery, has over three decades of Chinese culinary experience. His resume includes being part of Maxim Caterers in Hong Kong.
800 Bowls is named after his wish of selling 800 bowls of hand-pulled noodles daily.
The cuisine here is mainly Shanghainese, which emphasises the quality of the ingredients and accentuating their original flavour.
This means you will not get any overly complex or strong-handed flavour profiles. The best part about 800 Bowls is the affordability, as most noodle dishes are under $10.
The more affordable ones are the Sichuan Ramen with Peppery Sauce ($6.00) and Ramen with Minced Meat ($6.00).
The most expensive item is the 800 Bowls Supreme Ramen ($16.80), where you will find slices of meat and pieces of wanton to line the bowl.
While you decide on the noodles, you can have some appetisers to start. The Black Fungus Salad ($3) is a sour and spicy plate of crunchy goodness that is quite refreshing to have.
The Braised Spice Tofu ($3), on the other hand, is packed full of flavour and can be easily chowed down if you are not too careful.
Consider the Chinese Chive Dumplings ($6.80), Prawn Dumpling in Hot Chilli with Vinegar ($8.80), Pork Dumpling in Hot Chili with Vinegar ($6.80) better known as “Hong You Chao Shou”, which has six plump pieces of pork dumping.
Or you can have these dumplings in noodles ($7.50).
Its generous filling, coated with the sour-spicy chili oil, is addictive to have on any day of the week. Good to note that the dumplings are hand-made by Chef fresh (though the skin seemed pre-made).
Back to the noodles, I went for the Minced Meat Noodles ($6.00) aka “Zha Jiang Mian”.
The noodles had a good springiness and thinness to each strand – give it a good toss for that all-round flavours.
A better-than-average bowl, very good for this price, though I wished the meat sauce could have been more robust.
The accompanying soup that was slightly milky, had a very clean flavour and easy to finish.
Note that as this is a new eatery, operations may not be completely smooth. Even though it was not considered crowded, waiting time was slightly longer than expected.
Also there was some confusion between orders during collection (it was self-collection when your number is buzzed), possibly due to the lack of labelling or putting the bowls on the correct tray.
Ultimately, 800 Bowls cooks up hearty Chinese La Mian to a consistent standard at a great value, which should be enough justification for you to pin the eatery to visit when you are in City Hall.
Capitol Singapore B1-32A, 11 Stamford Road, Singapore 178884
Opening Hours: 11am – 8:30pm (Mon – Sun)
* Written by Daniel Ang @DanielFoodDiary and Dean Ang. DFD paid for food reviewed unless otherwise stated.