Did you know that Aljunied Food Center (also known as Geylang East Food Centre) has not one, not two, not three but four wanton mee stalls ??!!🤯
Who needs that many wanton mee stalls ?
Is that why the fearless Aljunied residents have alternative voices?
Or are syndicates money laundering through wantons?
Someone call the police!
When I read about this phenomenon, I immediately rushed to investigate and called up my fellow investigators The Wanton Whisperers – Doc and Muffy.
“What’s that Doc, you can’t ? Why not ?
“You have mouths to feed and lives to save ? What the Duck ! (cleverly disguised)”
“Listen carefully Muff. Forget about the loser. Just you and I. And I’ll give you a biscuit.”
“Woof , woof, Wolf”
“What ?? You can’t leave the house without his permission ? You’re not familiar with the Aljunied area? And he’s bringing you a bone tonight ? “
“ You useless mutt”
So off I went alone, one balmy afternoon, determined to find out the truth about the four stalls.
Guan Kee Wanton Mee (#01-47)
I could bullshit you and pretend I came here.
But the truth of the matter is that I only learnt that there was a fourth stall after I came back from my investigation.
You see – I thought Guan Kee and Quan Kee was one and the same and was just a misspelling.
So yes. I’m not as intelligent as I look.
And I could have blamed it on Muffy but the lazy mutt didn’t want to come.
But I read a blog that described their char siew as “dyed and anorexic“ so perhaps we didn’t miss much.
Hoe Kee Wanton Mee (#01-22)
I came and saw this.
What the Duck (cleverly disguised)!
I asked the stall owners what time do they open and they replied that they are closed because yesterday there was market washing.
I looked around.
Ermm uncle everyone is open and bustling.
Bro you must take market washing very seriously to declare a holiday the day after 🙄🙄.
Quan Kee Wanton Mee (#01-79)
This is old school style wanton noodle.
They are very generous with their chilli (I did ask for extra chilli) and Chinese croutons (pork lard bits).
So maybe don’t ask for extra chilli everywhere you go like some handsome idiot I know.
Well not at this stall anyway. I could have collected all the chilli sauce in my plate and started a chilli smoothie stall.
The char siew was a little dry like the old school wanton mee style seem to require ( I have never understood why) but I have tasted more cupboardy ones.
The noodles were too alkaline tasting and didn’t appeal to me. Chilli was alright but not particularly tasty.
But it was the wantons that moved me (as in I left). They had thick clumsy skin and were tasteless.
I stood up and abandoned the remaining two thirds of the noodles of my plate and made a quick exit.
Tanjong Rhu Wanton Mee (Since 1986) (#01-60)
Okay there is some background to this stall.
There are so many branches or franchises of this stall that it’s confusing.
There are branches in Marine Terrace (with the exact signage including the words (since 1986), Old Airport Road, Toa Payoh and many other locations.
I have tried one or two of these locations and I have to tell you the quality varies widely.
The original stall is at Jalan Batu which is an area near to or in the neighbourhood of Tanjung Rhu.
Jalan Batu boasts 2 famous wanton mee stalls – Tanjong Rhu Wanton Noodles and Kim Kee Wanton Noodles.
I have eaten at Kim Kee for the last 20 years and have also tried Tanjong Rhu Wanton Mee but have always preferred Kim Kee, although I have found Tanjong Rhu wanton Mee decent.
To those in the know, Kim Kee is the stall that is in this small Coffeeshop right in front of the Jalan Batu Food Center. That Coffeeshop houses only two stalls – Kim Kee wanton mee and Tanjong Rhu pao.
Tanjong Rhu wanton mee, however, has always been situated at the Jalan Batu Food Centre behind the Coffeeshop.
What has confused patrons between the two is that Kim Kee in later years left the Coffeeshop and went behind to the same Jalan Batu Food Centre (# 01-18) where, up to today, they enjoy monster queues everyday.
So it is clear that out of all the branches and franchises, the original Tanjong Rhu Wanton Mee is the one at Jalan Batu Food Centre.
So with all these confusion and international mystique , I put on my best debonair James Bond swagger and asked the aunty serving me:
“How are you linked to the Jalan Batu outlet?”
“We moved here”
“ You moved from Jalan Batu to here ?
So there you have it.
Unless the lady was mistress of fake news, this is the original Jalan Batu outlet.
First, the noodles are the very thin egg noodles compared to the thicker ones which the old school wanton Mee style adopts.
Some of us describe this thin airy noodles as the “Hong Kong style” type.
Very thin, very airy and fluffy.
The noodles were good. But today it was overdone and wasn’t exactly al dente.
And I ordered the medium $4 portion. Why do they give such a monster portion?
It was, and I’m trying to be poetic about it – a knn goddam shitload .
This was what I couldn’t finish and left behind.
What does it matter that they gave too much noodles ? I just think it affects the balance of the dish – you are supposed to have nice symmetry in a dish.
The right amount of noodles nestling in just the right amount of chilli and sauce to coat the strands, enough meat to go round and make you feel like a satiated cheetah, some greens to make you feel like a graceful gazelle and some tasty soup to make you feel like a slurping wildebeest.
Too much noodles just disrupts the eco balance.
The char siew was alright – nothing to write home about but it was not dry or felt like I could paste it on my wall.
The addition of two crispy wantons were a nice touch and they were delicious. The wantons in the soup were tasty too, soft and yielding with delicate skin.
Other than the too soft and too abundant noodles which affected the whole balance of the dish, this was a more than decent bowl of wanton noodles worth coming back for.
But I had Kim Kee wanton noodles recently and I still prefer Kim Kee over Tanjong Rhu after 20 years.
I’m glad some things don’t change.
GUAN KEE WANTON NOODLE 源記雲吞麵Geylang East Market & Food CentreBlk 117 Aljunied Ave 2#01-47Singapore 380117
Business HoursTue – Sun: 7.30am – 3am
HOE KEE WANTON NOODLES 117 Aljunied Avenue 2
#01-22 Geylang East Centre Market & Food Corner
📍權記云吞面 Quan Kee Wanton Noodle
Geylang East Centre Market & Food Corner #01-79
TANJONG RHU WANTON NOODLES (SINCE 1986)