The craze for Chinese food continues to sweep across the island.

In particular, Chongqing Grilled Fish and fish hotpots like Tan Yu and Yun Nans Stonepot Fish have been drawing crowds all over.

Tai Er 太二酸菜鱼 which is famous for its Chinese-style Sauerkraut Fish, has opened a couple of outlets in Singapore at Jewel Changi Airport, JEM and Suntec City.

A seat used to be very hard to get in the past (so much so that a friend described as “striking a lottery”).

But with more outlets, it has been more manageable. If you cannot get a reservation online, try walk-ins during off-peak hours.

The sauerkraut here is not the German kind with finely sliced cabbage.

Instead, the Chinese way of doing it involves taking chunks and pieces of cabbage and fermenting it with salt. This is a preparation method with over three thousand years of history.

It creates a sort of sauerkraut that is salty and sour all at once, and Tai Er has been using the sauerkraut to make fish hotpots for a while.

Established in 2015, the store is immensely popular with over 400 outlets in China, frequented particularly by the younger generation.

Tai Er aims to preserve the traditional culture of sauerkraut and continue its legacy. Tai Er pickles its cabbage for nearly a month to be refreshing and crispy.

In fact, Tai Er emphasises that its sauerkraut tastes even better than the fish.

One of its winning formulas (at least for the Suntec City outlet) is that you can watch your fish being prepared fresh in the “live” kitchens, that would attract curious shoppers.

The price of each bowl of Chinese sauerkraut fish varies by size. $48 is good for 1-2 persons, $68 is good for 3-4 persons, and $88 is aptly named “for the feaster”.

Add on other ingredients ($3) such as vermicelli, asparagus, tofu, and enoki mushroom.

My big bowl of Chinese Sauerkraut Fish came in a blaze of glory.

Slices of plump tilapia are easy to spot, surrounded by dried chillies, peppercorns, and even chrysanthemum.

Of course, the bottom of the bowl was loaded with the Chinese sauerkraut.

It really is a sharing dish, with ladles provided to scoop up portions for yourself.

I could understand its appeal, the fish was fresh-tasting, soft and tender without any funky smell or taste.

My favourite part (other than the “suan cai”) was the tangy-appetising but not too fiery broth that went so well with fluffy Chinese Wuchang rice (said to be boiled with mineral water to ensure the rice is soft, sticky and sweet).

Okay, would have wished that it was way less oily.

Aside from the main dish, there are starters to share including and Fried Crispy Pork ($11), Steamed Chicken with Chili Sauce ($10), Tasty Fried Chicken Wings ($11), Egg Coated Glutinous Rice Rolls with Brown Sugar ($18), and Fried Crispy Shrimp Topped with Mustard ($13).

A nice touch was the free-flow tea station to make your own concoction (or proportion) of Roselle Orange Peel Tea, which would cleanse your palette after the sour and spicy meal.

While Tai Er may just be another name in the list of fish hotpot in Singapore, and it is on the more expensive side, it is one of the few specialised in making Chinese sauerkraut fish and worth a shot.

TAI ER 太二酸菜鱼 – Suntec City
Suntec City Mall #B1-108/109, 3 Temasek Boulevard, Singapore 038983
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2pm, 5pm – 9pm (Mon – Fri), 11:30am – 9pm (Sat – Sun)

TAI ER 太二酸菜鱼 – Jewel Changi Airport
Jewel Changi Airport 03-208, 80 Airport Boulevard, Singapore 819666
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2pm, 5pm – 9pm (Mon – Fri), 11:30am – 9pm (Sat – Sun)

TAI ER 太二酸菜鱼 – JEM
JEM #B1-04, Jurong Gateway Road, Singapore 608549
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2pm, 5pm – 9pm (Mon – Fri), 11:30am – 9pm (Sat – Sun)

Other Related Entries
Dian Xiao Er (City Square Mall)
Crystal Jade Pavilion (VivoCity)
YUN NANS Stonepot Fish (Northpoint City)
Black Knight Hotpot 黑武士火鍋 (Millenia Walk)
Coucou Hotpot (Suntec City)

* Written by Daniel Ang and Dean Ang. Follow @DanielFoodDiary on Facebook, Instagram and Youtube for more food news, food videos and travel highlights. DFD paid for food reviewed unless otherwise stated.


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