My parents recommended this Zi Char place to me, praising its the “home cooked” style of cooking.
I was surprised to find that it’s located in a shopping mall (and not at the typical shop houses in the heartlands). This is one of the reasons why I had to try this place.
The plus point of this place is that you can request the chef to whip up a dish that is not on the menu.
We ordered Kailan Beef ($12), Hot Plate Tofu ($10), Sambal Eggplant with Dried Shrimp ($10) and Pork Ribs ($12).
Although the beef was not very fresh, I like the Cantonese style kailan gravy very much.
The tofu dish was not bad. The egg and tofu was doused with the hor fun gravy. Just look at the steam! So delish!
Although the eggplant dish was not on the menu, the chef offered to whip it up for us. I felt that this dish was a tad too pricey for the portion.
The pork ribs were really lean. They tasted almost like chicken cutlets. I, however, could not taste the “sweet and sour” element in the meat and sauce.
Plain rice cost $0.50 per plate.
I will recommend this place over the Kopitiam food court at level 1 . It cost around $11 per person here (and also depending on what dishes you order).
Hope you enjoyed reading!
天外天 is known for their steamboat and I really wanted to try their fish broth! I am Chinese but I have never eaten steamboat in my life (even during Chinese New Year) as my family are not fans of steamboat. This is probably the reason why I was stoked when I got there. We got there around 6pm and there was already a queue. How it works is that you have to order and pay before they assign you your table.
We ordered white rice with Hae Chor (虾枣), Broccoli with Scallop (西兰花带子), Seafood Crispy Beancurd (海鲜脆豆腐) and Salted Egg Pork Ribs (咸蛋排骨). We didn’t order steamboat as it takes quite long to arrive. I WILL definitely try it next time.
The rice was served in small bowls.
The Hae Chor has a crispy skin and is soft and crunchy on the inside from the yam paste and water chestnuts. It is bland so you have to eat it with the sweet sauce which tasted like salted maple syrup to me.
The Broccoli and Scallop was a serious let-down. The gravy was dull and the scallops tasted like the frozen type from NTUC.
This is another deep fried dish. The tofu is different in the way that it tasted like fishcake. Not bad but have to go with the mayonnaise for taste.
Last but not least, the pork ribs! This is the star of the four dishes. I like salted egg pork ribs but his one is on a whole new level. Firstly, their pork ribs are boneless. Secondly, 天外天 used salted egg paste instead of gravy which contains so much flavour. Lastly, the meat was so succulent. I would only recommend this dish out of the four.
Three bowls of rice and four dishes cost us $44.30. (This is the receipt, above)
Most of their food are fried which may not suit some people. From this experience, I can tell that Zi Char is not their forte. Still, I will be back for their pork ribs and fish head steamboat that I have yet to try.