Ah Hoe Mee Pok – When a Japanese cooks Mee Pok in a coffeeshop…
When a Japanese cooks ramen, we think nothing much of it. But when a Japanese cooks meepok in a coffeeshop, people from different parts of Singapore flock to Clementi to try. That’s the case for Ah Hoe Mee Pok (阿和面薄).
Naoji-san gave up his finance job to pursue his passion for cooking. He started a Japanese stall at the current coffeeshop beside Ah Hoe Mee Pok. It was there that he made friends with neighbouring stall owner, Eric Chia who owns Ah Hoe Mee Pok. Fascinated by the way Mr Eric Chia cooked his mee pok, Naoji-san worked at Ah Hoe Mee Pok for half a year for free before taking over the stall beginning of this year. Currently, he and his daughter Reina runs the stall at block 710 while his son and wife runs another stall at block 713. So where did the shifu Eric went to? Well, he has opened another stall at Blk 501 West Coast Drive.
I went once on a Saturday morning after the news of this Japanese mee pok man is released in makansutra. The queue stretched all the way till the end of the coffeeshop and after queuing for 30 mins, I had to give up because I had another appointment to run to. A few weeks ago, I tried again with my foodies friends at 1pm on a Saturday. First, I saw the daughter Reina cooking the noodles. Then Naoji-san took over while Reina went for her smoke break at the void deck. Honestly, it wasn’t a nice sight when I see a young girl, shaking leg vigorously while smoking. Anyway, that’s story for another day.
I observed how Naoji-san cooks our local BCM like a pro. Everything he is doing is still done the way Eric taught him. However, displaying that famed Japanese precision, Naoji-san sets the timer, dips a generous squiggle of noodles into boiling water, lets the noodles cook while he prepares other ingredients. When the timer is gone, he pulls the noodles out, tosses them up and high for a couple of times till it reaches the desired QQ texture. I admire how meticulous he is about ensuring that each bowl of noodles is cooked for a certain time. That’s Quality Control, which many other noodles stall doesn’t have.
As he slides the noodles into a big bowl, Naoji-san carefully dresses them with chilli sauce, abalone slice, meat ball, minced meak and fresh big prawns. The noodles are al dente and springy, with a splash of pork lard oil coating the noodles perfectly. Nothing much to shout about the chilli sauce though, and a little more vinegar would be good. Honestly, we love the soup version more as the cabbage kinda brings a subtle sweetness to the cloudy and satisfying broth. There are a few selections on their menu – Special Mee Pok Dry/Soup ($4/$5), Mushroom Minced Meat Noodle ($4/$5), Crayfish Mee Pok ($10), Meatball Soup ($3) or Teochew Dumpling Soup ($4)
50 minutes queue? No problem, because I am prepared for it this time. But I won’t travel all the way here again just for it lah (I am not a westie). I am just as happy to eat my Seng Kee BCM in Serangoon Gardens. Maybe next time I should get a French guy to open a chicken rice shop. That would also create some news. 😛
Ah Hoe Mee Pok (阿和面薄）
Address: Blk 710 Clementi West Street 2, Weng Kwang Coffeeshop, Singapore 120710
Opening Hours: Mon – Sat 6am to 3pm, closed on Sundays
Let’s build a food community that helps to update the food news in Singapore! Simply comment below if there’s any changes or additional info to Ah Hoe Mee Pok. We will verify and update from our side. Thanks in advance!