Sunday, August 28, 2005

Sin Huat Seafood Restaurant, Singapore

This place on Geylang Road (at Lorong 35, 6744-9755) is celebrated by local critics as well as even Mr. Anthony Bourdain himself (his episode on Singapore featured this place), so I had to come try it. The signature dish invented here is the crab bee hoon (not cheap at S$45 or US$27 for a normal-sized crab), so that's the only thing we ordered.

It wasn't bad by any means. In fact, it was pretty darned good, especially given all the greasy garlicky seafood taste mixed in with the bee hoon noodles. But it was a bit overrated. I still don't appreciate the thick-shelled Sri Lankan crabs commonly used across the island (boy, do I miss the Swan Oyster Depot in SF). Don't get me wrong - the place is good, and certainly pretty unique to Singapore, but I doubt I'll get cravings for this place. (Besides, the service is too slow here.)


friskodude said...

I live just 3 blocks from Swan Oyster Depot, so I get down there on an almost weekly basis. Great place! You wouldn't believe how many new restaurants and cafes have opened on Polk Street over the last few years.

Mark said...

woah dude you really get around some. excellent blog man!

Anonymous said...

As with most places that get featured on television, the quality and tastiness of the food at Sin Huat have probably become worse.

Used to eat there, until a minor tiff with the owner over service caused me to take my business elsewhere.

He's got a bad attitude, basically he knows that if he pisses off a few customers there are dozens more coming so it doesn't matter. So much for service standards eh.

Anonymous said...

Yup...that plc is known for bad attitude...but people still goes there...Like the beehoon there but been a long time since I went back..the waiting time is too long!!

Anonymous said...

thanks, i'll definitely skip sin huat, bourdain be damned. but thanks for reminding me of swan, now i'm hungry and got nowhere to go.

Anonymous said...

I live in Tanjong Rhu now and used to live off of Clement St. in SF. Ironically, it's easier to get live seafodd in SF than it is in Singapore.

But like many crab lovers, I find that Sri Lankan crab shells to be a challenge. It's so thick. How I miss the great dungeness crab.

But as for Sin Huat, which is not far from where I now live but have yet to sample, how does their famed crab beehoon compare to the garlic noodles found in San Francisco's Thanh Long or Crustacean?

And the mention of Swan Oyster Depot makes me long a a dozen little necks on the half shell....oh well

bma said...

I think it's been years and years since I last ate at Crustacean, but if my memory serves, it's in the same ballpark at least.

Actually, I was back in the city a month or so ago and ate at Tommy Toy's for the first time. They had a lobster thing that reminded me of Sin Huat too.

Anonymous said...

Update opinion along the lines of comments you'll find on the net:

Went to Sin Huat on 26 May 07 around 7pm.

The wait - ~30mins to order. the food came pretty quickly.

The chef - Was slightly curt, but did not display huge attitude.

The venue - Dingy as per pictures. 7 or 8 tables served while we were there. Not crowded.

The food - Vegetables, scallops, prawns and the crab bee hoon. Overall, tasted good, but not worth the (huge) price.

My opinion - You get better zi char food at some of those equally non-descript coffeeshops in malaysia (eg along the way to genting). At less than half the price. The crab bee hoon was indeed pretty good, but not can't say the scallops or prawns were worth the price. Scallops were fresh, but that should be a given at the price. Prawns were fresh, but again, that should be a given. I put the popularity of this place down to novelty factor (High-end prices for seafood in a dingy surroundings).

Kicker - I was happily drinking up the prawn gravy as it tasted quite good (on hindsight, we would all be hungry after the 40 min wait). 10 mins later, my MSG sensitivities were on high alert.

Anthony Bourdain clearly doesn't fall into the majority of Caucasians who are allergic to MSG.

Jackie said...

Sin Huat is over priced, over served in quantity, and zero ambience. Imagine paying $388 for a dinner of scallops, frog legs, prawns, crab beehoon and veg for 5 adults and one 8 yr old kid. And eaten in a dirty looking run down kopi tiam. Whenever you find yourself in a restaurant without menu, please do ask how much each dish will likely cost or you will likely be in for a nasty surprise! But the problem here is that the owner chef is taking your order himself and kept suggesting we should order more. We did not specify the plate size as he knew how many of us will be eating. The thing was the dishes seemed to come out in one size for us ie, large. We could not finish (70% untouched) the crab beehoon when it finally came out. In fact, we couldn't even enjoy it as we were so full. And one telling reason is we were charged $75 for 3kg of scallops! Imagine our number being served 3kg of scallops. So, needless to say, we will never return again.

Anonymous said...

Sin Huat is definitely NOT the place to go to. I hope more people will make use of the internet to checkout places before they explore new places to eat. Sin Huat is NOT worth it. Too expensive, portions too large (basically we expect the waiter to recommend how much to order based on the number of people on the table - the guy obviously eats a humungous amount himself - of just don't care). Food is usual that you'd find elsewhere. NO one was eating there, should have suspected something. That was even on a saturday night. So save your hard earned money.

Anonymous said...

Sin Huat looks dirty, no surroundings and certainly too expensive! Big portions but just too much! Even Jumbo Seafood is better value for money or just try one of the local seafood restauarnts down Katong Rd.