Sunday, 8 March 2020

Bong Tong Kee – The Real Taste of Boon Tong Kee

Signature Boiled Chicken @Boon Tong Kee Whampoa West

Boon Tong Kee is one of the famous Hainanese Chicken Rice restaurants in Singapore. It started by Mr Thian Boon Hua in 1979 in Chinatown, before it progresses to its first restaurant in Balestier in 1983. On the second year of the operations, it started to received recognitions from customers, media and F&B industries. Over the years Boon Tong Kee has expanded into 8 branches.

The branch that I want to review here is their Whampoa West Branch. It came highly recommended by our friend after I told them the unsatisfying experience in Balestier and East Coast Road branch. We have visited this branch a few times before I wrote this review.

Boon Tong Kee Whampoa West

Located in the matured HDB estate of Whampoa, this old style of restaurant is usually packed with regulars. At the front of the shop, beside the entrance, you can see the boiled chickens hanging on the pole through the glass windows, ready to be chopped. This restaurant has indoor and outdoor seating. The indoor dining area is air-conditioned and the tables are covered with a brown and white colour checkers table cloth. Meanwhile, the outdoor dining area is mostly used for people to sit and wait, instead for dining.

Signature Boiled Chicken on Display

This time around we came in a big group, allowing us to order more variety. Signature Boiled Chicken ($28 for whole, smaller portion is available). The whole chicken is halved, then evenly chopped and presented nicely in two plates as halved chicken each. Each plate looks like a mirror image, showcasing the chopping skills of the chef in the kitchen. Once the plate of the boiled chicken is served, the service staff will pour the mixture of oil and soy sauce on the dish.

Signature Boiled Chicken (half chicken per plate)

The chicken is served at room temperature, tender, succulent, tasty and cooked to perfection. You can taste the coagulate oil in between the chicken skin and the flesh. The flesh from the breast part is also moist, bouncy and with a good bite to it. The chopping is so clean, you won’t find any splinter of chicken bones on the plate.

Signature Boiled Chicken (half chicken per plate)

Those who are a connoisseur of chicken bishop, you won’t be disappointed. It is firm, bouncy and bursting with robust chicken flavour. Of course, you need to know how to remove the smelly parts. I was very friendly to the service staff and I got rewarded with 4 pcs of the bishop in return.

Chicken Bishop

Meanwhile, the chicken rice ($1) is fragrant and each grain is plump, al-dente and well infused with chicken stock, ginger and garlic. One thing that I have to admit, they sure perfected the rice recipe across all their branches, unlike their boiled chicken. For Boon Tong Kee (‘BTK’), they served their rice on a small rice bowl, instead of on a plate.

Chicken Rice

From the Zi Char selections, we tried Sweet & Sour Pork ($13). The pork is deep-fried till super crispy, then coated with sweet and sour sauce. Interestingly there is fried youtiao in this dish to add the crunchy texture, plus lychee and cherry tomatoes for sweetness and tangy flavour. Very Good in the taste and texture, but we do hoped for more meat than youtiao.

Sweet & Sour Pork

Crispy Beancurd ($8). The mini cubes of fried egg beancurd is a signature dish of BTK. It is crisp externally, followed with velvety smooth beancurd internally. It comes with mayonnaise like dipping sauce.

Crispy Beancurd 

Fried Pig’s Liver Served in Claypot ($13). The pork liver is cooked just right, coated with minced garlic. The combination of garlic and spring onion subdue any smelly flavour from the liver. The cut of the liver is very generous and the juicy plus bouncy texture is just a delight.

Fried Pig’s Liver Served in Claypot

Fried Pig’s Liver Served in Claypot

Steamed Assorted Egg ($9). The smooth and velvety texture of the steam egg, topped with sliced of century egg and salted egg. The base of the steam egg slightly bland, however, it is nicely balanced with the solid flavour from the salted egg.

Steamed Assorted Egg

For the vegetables, we ordered Fried Baby Kailan with Garlic ($9) and Poached Chinese Spinach with Gluten & Garlic ($12). The baby kalian is crunchy with a touch of bitterness. Meanwhile, the spinach is poached in a robust stock base. The chewy gluten acts like a sponge, soaking the robust broth and sweetness of the spinach. Yum Yum.

Fried Baby Kailan with Garlic

Poached Chinese Spinach with Gluten & Garlic

Service here is friendly, mixed with old traditional auntie style. The price of the Zi Char dishes is also very reasonable.

The Dishes

Overall, LD and I are glad that we found this Boon Tong Kee branch. We agree the food served here are one reflects the old style of the restaurant and the standard that received the accolade in the past. For LD, this is the taste of her childhood. We’ll come back for more chicken rice here. Cheers!!

Food & Drinks: 8/10
Value: 8.5/10
Service: 6.5/10
Ambiance: 6.5/10
Budget per Person: $11 - $25

Boon Tong Kee 文東記
Blk 34 Whampoa West
#01-93 Singapore 330034
(Beside Boon Keng MRT Station Exit B)

T: +65 6299 9880
IG: @Boontongkee_sg
OH:
Mon – Fri: 11.00 – 14.45 (LO 14.30); 17.15 – 22.00 (LO 21.30)
Sat, Sun & PH: 11.00 – 15.00 (LO 14.45); 15.30 – 22.00 (LO 21.30)

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