Sauerkraut Fish, or Suan Cai Yu, has swum its way into the hearts of foodies in Singapore.

Originally hailing from China, this dish showcases the marriage of tangy, pickled mustard greens (suan cai) with the delicate, tender texture of fish – typically a freshwater variety like carp or catfish.

This dish stands out in its ability to balance the piquant, vinegary punch of sauerkraut with the rich, umami flavours of the fish, often enhanced with chilli, garlic, and other spices.

Here are some restaurants in Singapore where you can find Suan Cai Yu in Singapore.

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)

Legendary Restaurant Specialised in Making Chinese Sauerkraut Fish
Established in 2015, the store is immensely popular with over 400 outlets in China. A seat used to be very hard to get in the Singapore branch. But with more outlets, it has been more manageable.

Tai Er aims to preserve the traditional culture of sauerkraut and continue its legacy. Tai Er emphasises that its sauerkraut tastes even better than the fish.

The price of each bowl of Chinese sauerkraut fish varies by size; $48 is for 1-2 persons, $68 is 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.

Slices of plump tilapia are surrounded by dried chillies, peppercorns, and chrysanthemum. 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.

Aside from the main dish, there are starters to share including Fried Crispy Pork ($11), Steamed Chicken with Chili Sauce ($10), and Fried Crispy Shrimp Topped with Mustard ($13).

Read more at: TAI ER 太二酸菜鱼 (Suntec City)

YAO YAO Sauerkraut Fish 姚姚酸菜鱼
VivoCity #02-145/146, 1 HarbourFront Walk, Singapore 098585
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2:30pm, 5pm – 9:30pm (Mon – Fri), 11:30am – 3:30pm, 5pm – 9:30pm (Sat – Sun)

Famous China Suan Cai Yu Restaurant At VivoCity
An acclaimed, unique dining concept boasting over 60 locations in China that serves two variants of Suan Cai Yu in a single bowl, unveils its inaugural Singapore branch at VivoCity.

The restaurant does not serve only Suan Cai Yu, but Sichuan Poached Fish, Tomato Fish, Typhoon Shelter Shrimp with Fries, and even Peking Duck as well.

What makes Signature YAO YAO Sauerkraut Fish ($48 for 2 pax, $68 for 3-4 pax, $88 for 5-6 pax) different is its dual concept of offering a combination of two flavours in a single bowl. Great for those who love to try a variety of stuff.

The fish was noticeably fresh and tender, added later during the cooking process so that it did not disintegrate easily and maintained that bite.

I liked that while there was a tongue-numbing sensation, it wasn’t so overpowering such that it would distract the nuanced flavours. The broth carried a more zesty, sour note than the usual.

Choices include the Tomato Fish for a blend of tangy and sweet; and Sichuan Poached Fish for a more potent hot-sour note.

Read more at: YAO YAO Sauerkraut Fish 姚姚酸菜鱼 (VivoCity)

Beautiful Lai Grilled Fish 赖美丽藤椒烤鱼
Suntec City #B1-111, 3 Temasek Boulevard, Singapore 038983
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2pm, 5pm – 9pm (Mon – Fri), 11:30am – 9pm (Sat – Sun)

Popular Grilled Fish Dishes with Authentic Sichuan Flavours
Nestled in the bustling basement of Suntec City, this restaurant specialising in Chinese-style grilled fish is intriguingly positioned just steps away from its sister brand, Tai Er.

The Green Pepper Grilled Fish ($55) stands out as the star of the show, featuring the tender and flavourful Leiocassis fish sourced directly from the Yangtze River.

The fish is grilled to a delightful crisp, coupled with the robust and spicy peppercorns from Sichuan’s Meishan. The broth was served with a fragrant homage to authentic Sichuan flavours.

Diners also have the option to personalize their pots with add-ons such as Luncheon Meat, Enoki Mushrooms, and Potatoes.

Even though I am trying to cut carbs, I still wanted the fluffy Chinese Wuchang rice ($1.50), which is boiled with mineral water. This preparation technique ensures that the rice is soft, sticky, and sweet, enhancing the dish’s overall flavour.

Beyond the Grilled Fish, the menu boasts an array of signature side dishes, like the rare locally-found Spicy Pot Bullfrog ($36), Coconut Flavoured Crispy Chicken ($12), and Crispy Pork ($12).

Read more at: Beautiful Lai Grilled Fish 赖美丽藤椒烤鱼 (Suntec City)

Shang Social 香聚
Jewel Changi Airport #01-219 to 222, 78 Airport Boulevard, Singapore 819666
Tel: +65 6346 0260
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 3pm, 5pm – 10pm (Mon – Thurs)
11:30am – 4pm, 5pm – 10pm (Fri – Sun, Eve of PH, PH)

Fine Chinese Restaurant At Jewel Offering Diverse Gastronomic Affair
The menu, in part thoughtfully planned by top Shangri-La Chinese master chefs, continues to celebrate the diversity of the region’s culinary landscape.

Miles away from the fiery spiciness one might expect from a Sichuan dish, Shang Social’s Stewed Red Garoupa Fillet in Pea Mash Soup with Pickled Pepper and Chinese Cabbage 椒香豆汤酸菜鱼 ($98) is a hearty preparation with a milder take.

Arriving in a large clay pot, the boneless red garoupa was sliced thick and tasted fresh with a slightly sweet taste.

To moderate the mildness of the fish, the chef paired it with a thick and robust mashed pea broth seasoned with Sichuan peppercorns, pickled mustard greens, and pickled pepper.

In Roasted Peking Duck ($78 for whole, $42 for half), expect thin slices with beautiful crunchy skin and moist meat that one can season further with a deeply rich sweet and salty Hoisin Sauce.

Steamed Trio Seafood Dumpling ($9.80) is elevated with individual toppings of abalone, smoked salmon, and scallop, giving each dumpling a particularly sweet, buttery, or smoky character.

Read more at: Shang Social 香聚 (Jewel Changi Airport)

313@somerset B3-30/31/32, 313 Orchard Road, Singapore 238895
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 10pm (Mon – Sun)

Most Famous Grilled Fish Restaurant In Singapore
TANYU 探鱼, a famous grilled fish restaurant originating from Shenzhen, China, is one of the most popular grilled fish restaurants in Singapore.

This restaurant is particularly known for its variety, with 15 flavours and four types of fish, paired with a selection of 21 side dishes.

The Grilled Fish With Sauerkraut Flavour 酸菜烤鱼 ($52.50 onwards) and Grilled Fish With Green Pepper鲜青椒烤鱼 ($52.50 onwards) are the popular choices.

Choose the succulent Limbo Fish covered with green bell peppers and topped with peppercorns for a numbing effect.

The fish is known for its succulence and tenderness, providing a delightful contrast to the tanginess of the Suan Cai.

The pickled mustard greens are well-seasoned, contributing a distinct sourness that is not overwhelming but rather complements the fish’s natural flavours.

Yu Zhong Bu Tong
Wisma Atria, 435 Orchard Road, #04-02, Singapore 238877 (within Food Republic)
Opening Hours: 10am – 10pm, Last orders 9:30pm (Mon – Sun)

Farm-To-Table Sichuan Dishes in Food Court Stalls
Yu Zhong Bu Tong 鱼众不同 is probably the first in Singapore to offer locally-produced live fresh fish from a coastal farm in a food court setting. Practices are aligned with responsible farming.

The fish soups come in four signature flavours of Spicy Poached (Shui Zhu Yu), Sauerkraut (Suan Cai Yu), Tomato Fish, and Collagen Fish Soup, priced at $9.80 per order. Each portion comes with two add-ons of choice and a bowl of rice.

The Sichuan-style Sauerkraut Fish Soup 酸菜鱼has a 6-month-old naturally-fermented pickled mustard incorporated in it to lend an appetising acidity and distinct spicy-sour taste.

For those who are worried about spiciness, I would say the level is actually quite manageable and not too numbing, while it still maintains its punchy flavours.

The Tomato Fish Soup made with fresh tomatoes is a great option for families with children. The sweetness of the tomatoes is rather apparent, slightly thicker than what I initially imagined.

Revealed to be the most popular amongst office workers so far, Collagen Fish Soup is made more value-for-the-buck with generous servings of live fresh fish slices.

Read more at: Yu Zhong Bu Tong 鱼众不同 (Wisma Atria)

Xiang Xiang Hunan Cuisine 湘香湖南菜
Suntec City #B1-159, 3 Temasek Blvd, Singapore 038983
Opening Hours: 11am – 9:30pm (Mon – Sun)

Hunan Food With A Modern Interpretation
Xiang Xiang Hunan Cuisine, located at various malls in Singapore, is a popular destination for those looking for Chinese food with a difference.

It offers a vibrant menu of Hunan and Sichuan dishes, offering a variety that caters to both traditional and modern palates

A new addition to their menu is the “Suan Cai Yu” ($32.90), featuring Pickled Vegetable with Fish in Soup .

This dish stands out for its unique preparation of fish slices that are reportedly fed on broad beans (蚕豆), contributing to an interesting chewy texture with a satisfying crunch.

I thought that the soup was piquant without being overly tangy or greasy, plus it wasn’t very spicy, making it quite drinkable and enjoyable.

This less greasy version is a pleasant divergence from other interpretations of the dish, which are often heavier.

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