Friday, February 21, 2020

Mooi Chin Place, Village Hotel Bugis

Mooi Chin Place, Village Hotel Bugis

Mooi Chin Place (#03-12A Village Hotel Bugis, 390 Victoria Street, tel : +65 6339 7766) is old school. Old school like AC/DC. Like how they're still around - relevant because of their presences and still able to belt out their craft with undeniable skill. And in the repertoire - gems be hiding. Though the audience that would appreciate them dwindles by the year and mostly these days, they're largely nostalgia. Once iconic, currently not so well understood and fading through the years.

I've only heard of Mooi Chin in the recent years though they've been around for decades. We're here today for that taste of nostalgia uncommon.

Mooi Chin Place, fried chicken dark soya sauce

We ordered their fried chicken with dark soya sauce because it looked interesting and we've never had anything like it. It wasn't a dish that was unimaginably wild or out there. The pairing just never occured to us. What arrived was exactly as the name described. Deep fried chicken slathered with dark soya sauce. The skin was very crisp but the meat was also a little hard and a little dry.

Mooi Chin Place, hainanese ox tongue stew

Hainanese styled ox tongue stew was in order (pun intended) because ox tongue. Those slices of tongue were tender sitting in a savoury brown sauce that had the flavour of cinnamon. I believe this is my first Hainanese styled ox tongue stew. Liked it. The execution looked tired, looked routine but I thought it was pretty delicious. This would have been good with steamed white rice. 

Mooi Chin Place, fish maw vegetables

This was from the vegetable section of the menu and was called 'fried fish maw with mixture'. Not descriptive at all. There's fish, some squid and prawns in there as part of the mixture. What we ordered this for was the cabbage which was sweet and that savoury broth that made this one of those dishes people would consider perfect pairing with white rice. Nice. This tasted homely.

Mooi Chin Place, hainanese pork chop

Mooi Chin's Hainanese pork chop differs from the others through the gravy that they use. This one was brown and flavoured by cinnamon, unlike the usual tomato based variety which tastes like they were made with ketchup. Never enjoyed much of those to be honest. This rendition I liked better. But they slathered it all over the pork so any crisp to the crust was lost pretty quickly.

Mooi Chin Place, chicken rice

Other than white rice, there's also chicken rice to be had because Mooi Chin also serve steamed chicken rice with cze char dishes; not dissimilar to Pow Sing, Chin Chin or Sin Swee Kee. Even Boon Tong Kee is set up that way. There's some flavour to that chicken rice. While I wouldn't say it's incompetent, there are nicer ones out there.

Mooi Chin Place, chilli sambal

That's the chicken rice chilli on the left with some heat and quite a bit of lime. It's okay. Very edible but there're better ones around. The sambal on the right is pretty good with the squeeze of lime. Good enough for me with white rice and their pork chops which would have already gotten soggy in a while.

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