Ah Lim Zichar & Fishhead Steamboat
Last week, we travelled all the way to a industrial building in the west, to have dinner at Ah Lim Zichar & Fishhead Steamboat. The coffeeshop where this cze char place is located is always bustling during lunch time. During dinner, most of the stalls are closed and this is really the best time to go as you get lots of parking space. The outdoor seating looks inviting and a light breeze is blowing.
My favourite here is deep fried 5 spice pork ($10 / $15). Well marinated with crispy exterior and juicy meat, I can’t stop eating it!
Making tofu is an labourious process so I really applaud food establishments who take an effort to make their own beancurd. Ah Lim’s Homemade tofu ($12) is made fresh daily and has an exceptionally smooth texture. The fried golden mushroom tasted more like eating fried batter though.
Even though I love their five spice pork, the same cannot be said for their crispy chicken ($22). Marinated with plum sauce, I was expecting the skin to be more crispy.
Supposedly the signature, Ah Lim’s fish head steamboat (market price) unfortunately did not impress. Love the charcoal flame and I set a high expectation for it. But the soup base lacks body and it was diluted with cabbage. Red snapper didn’t give a shiok feeling, and would probably fare better with more tender chunks.
The thick slices of braised honey pork belly ($15 / $20) are juicy and supple after hours of braising with fats that are smooth like jelly. The robust soya sauce-based gravy is a balance of savoury and spices.
Another favourite for me is the sambal fish head (market price). Even though it is drenched with chilli oil, the tender meat is a perfect match with the slightly sweet sambal.
When I visited the place, they were less than 2 weeks old. So let’s give them a bit of time. With a bit of luck and fine-tuning, Ah Lim Fish Head Steamboat and Zi Char may well hit on the formula for success.
Ah Lim Fish Head Steamboat and Zi Char
Address: 1 Bukit Batok Crescent, Wcega Plaza #02-06, Singapore 658064
Opening hours: 11:00am – 2:30pm, 5:30pm – 10:30pm
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