With a catchy and memorable name, “Bak Bak” is the newest kid on the block at Circular Road that offers bak kut teh with a twist.
How different is it from other popular brands like Song Fa and Founder Bak Kut Teh? Walk in and you’ll instantly find out why!
Diners can now have their meal in these individual booths! Very much like the concept of Ichiran Ramen – but with our own local comfort food and contemporary-style decor.
This is a daring, yet forward-looking venture by Lionel Lim – second-generation owner of Rong Cheng Bak Kut Teh. He is the son of Uncle Lim, who built Rong Cheong Bak Kut Teh 40 years ago.
Fun fact: Uncle Lim is also the inventor of the white peppery broth that Singaporeans and foreigners have grown to love!
Also, good news for those who are always out of cash, or have trouble grabbing the attention of nonchalant waiters… as Bak Bak supports going cashless!
How does it work?
Simply scan the unique QR code printed on your table, select the dish of your choice and pay with your credit card or Paypal account. Once confirmed, your meal is on your way and served through the grey blinds!
Onto the food – we were spoilt for choices.
I am a proponent of healthy eating and was pleasantly surprised by the decent balance of “sinful” and healthy offerings at BakBak.
The usual favourites for side dishes include Braised Peanuts ($2), Braised Beancurd skin ($2), Crispy Fish Skin ($3) and Fried You Tiao ($2).
Aside from these, some are never-seen-before dishes at a traditional Bak Kut Teh restaurant, such as Cold Tofu with Ponzu Sauce ($2), Chawanmushi with Home
made Crab Sauce ($4.50) and Japanese Cucumber with Sesame Sauce ($2).
The Japanese theme seems to trickle into their food as well.
I was particularly fond of the Cold Tofu with Ponzu Sauce ($2). It was soft and separated easily once sliced through. The accompanying sauce was also light and not overly salty.
Their Pork Rib Soup with Wild Sea Cucumber ($17.50) and Sanuki Udon with Dragon Rib ($11), however, were the main stars of the meal.
The novel inclusion of sea cucumber sounds indulgent, but it is actually one of the Chinese delicacies that contains no cholesterol. It contains a wealth of health benefits like wound repairment, cancer prevention and is a great immunity and collagen booster.
I am definitely not complaining about this addition!
While it may seem pricey, the sea cucumbers were cooked perfectly; they were bouncy and not chewy at all. This came to me as a surprise as I’ve had plenty of bad quality sea cucumbers over Chinese New Year and can pretty much tell apart the good ones from the bad. Oops.
The soup was also flavourful with a mild kick from the white peppers. It is suitable for those who would want a subtle hint of of spice in their bak kut teh. A tamer version of Song Fa Bak Kut Teh, I’d say.
BakBak is also known for their signature Dragon Ribs (龙骨), which is now served with Udon imported from the Kagawa Prefecture in Japan. As someone who avoids meat that contains too much fats, I found them lean, moist and a lot more tender than the pork ribs compared to other joints.
One major factor could be the adoption of fresh pork ribs sourced from Indonesia and Australia. They do not have the frozen, dry texture – you know what I mean.
The udon was also al dente, but I personally preferred it to absorb the broth a little more.
Wholesome options at Bakbak have also extended to Australian Brown Rice ($1.80) and Japanese Pearl Rice ($1).
The former made me feel satisfied, and would definitely appeal to working adults during lunchtime. They can avoid the dreaded sugar crash and feel fuller longer!
To end things on a sweet note, I had their Organic Soy Beancurd, which was unbelievably silky and smooth! Not sure what they added into it, but I was impressed – along with everyone else who tried this. We were slowly savouring this goodness after our meal, despite being full from the main dishes.
Move along Lao Ban, because you’ve met your competitor.
I am really thrilled with the new concept that could transform the bak kut teh scene in Singapore. While the individual Ichiran-style booths have not fared very well in this location where people tend to come in groups, Mr Lim aspires to open an outlet where no human interaction is required: just touch, eat, pay and go.
Seamless service with healthy and tasty options, what more can we ask for?
10 Circular Road, Singapore 049366
Mon to Sat 10AM – 11PM
Closed on Sundays
*Written by @bunnymunchies
She is a foreverhungry bunny who hops for the best desserts, matcha, coffee. Owns an online wholesome cruelty-free bakery — all of us need a sweet treat that we won’t feel guilty about, right?