Sz Kitchen @ Cafe – Taiwanese Eatery with Superb Fish Soup!
I’ll kick things off with an honest disclaimer — I haven’t always been a fan of Chinese soups. Unlike most Western soups, which commonly contain cream, Asian-style soups tend to rely solely on a robustly-flavoured broth. After growing up drinking meat-flavoured water at home (sorry mum!), I decided that it was time to pay a visit to Sz Kitchen @ Cafe (小珍私房菜). This Taiwanese eatery serves up tasty bowls of grouper soup!
Sz Kitchen sits right at the entrance of Gek Poh Shopping Centre. This eatery isn’t hard to spot as it displays its vast menu right at its storefront. Whilst navigating through their menu, I was surprised to see that the eatery also serves dishes from a variety of other cuisines. You can look forward to Thai Fish Cutlet, Rendang Chicken and even Fish & Chips!
It was only after I walked up to Sz Kitchen’s counter that I saw their interesting ‘New Year Special’ menu. They’ve got at least seven options for your Fish Soup — you can order soup containing grouper head, tail, belly and more! The menu brought back memories of my secondary school Biology classes as it prominently features a photo of Giant Grouper with detailed labels indicating each section of the fish. I think that this is a great way of letting customers know exactly what they’re getting. After I ordered the Grouper Belly Soup (龙袍汤) which cost $12, the lady pointed out and clarified that I was ordering the belly portion of the fish.
At first glance, the large bowl was definitely value-for-money despite its higher price point. The soup was generously filled with a bunch of ingredients which include fish maw, vegetables, goji berry, minced fish and the main attraction, grouper! The soup that I ordered that day contained Red-Spotted Grouper instead of the usual Giant Grouper, even though I was assured that it tasted just as good.
Initially, I thought that the soup looked overly milky. However, I was proven wrong after I took my first sip. The hearty soup is truly packed with flavour without tasting over-seasoned. It had a moderate level of sweetness, meaning that I could still enjoy the fresh flavours of the fish. This perfect balance of flavours had me rapidly gulping down spoonful after spoonful of the soup. The fish was cut into sizeable chunks, so it retained a delicate, yet springy, texture. Although some might not be a fan of the grouper’s thicker skin, I found that its gelatinous texture added a nice chew to the fish.
The other components of the soup were excellent complements to the fish. I particularly enjoyed the addition of goji berries, which added a subtle burst of acidic tang that lifted the flavours of the soup. Also, the minced fish was satisfying and delicious as it was seasoned brilliantly.
I couldn’t leave Sz Kitchen without having a carb-loaded dish. Instead of going for their more adventurous options, I decided to have their Zha Jiang Mian ($4.50). When I first received my bowl of noodles, I thought they had accidentally given me a salad instead! The noodles were hidden under an enormous amount of fresh vegetables including lettuce, radish and cucumber. I decided to brave the veggie storm and mixed them into the noodles.
Overall, this was quite a decent bowl of noodles. However, I felt that the zha jiang sauce, which is made from soybean paste and minced pork, could have been bolder in terms of flavour. The vegetables have quite a high water content, so they watered down the flavours of the sweet and savoury zha jiang suace when bitten into. I thought that the lu dan (soy braised egg) was a nice touch as it made the dish a bit more substantial.
That being said, I think that Sz Kitchen is worth a visit if you’re craving for a delicious bowl of fish soup. I, for one, will definitely be a returning customer!
Sz Kitchen @ Cafe
Address: 762 Jurong West Street 75, Gek Poh Shopping Centre, Singapore 640762
Mobile: 8123 4671
Opening Hours: 11am to 9:30pm daily, closed on Mondays.
MissTamChiak.com made anonymous visit and paid its own meal at the stall featured here.
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 Sz Kitchen @ Cafe. We will verify and update from our side. Thanks in advance!
For more food videos, check out our official YouTube channel! You may also want to check out our articles on Gu Zao Ren Taiwan Porridge located at Changi Road or Dong Fang Hong Sotong Ball Seafood Soup which serves handmade fish balls!