Liao Fan Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken – Smith St Complex, Chinatown

I have been here a lot of times.  I love this place and I love the Soya Sauce Chicken here.  I didn’t mind waiting the 20-30 minutes if I wanted a plate of noodles or rice.  And of course I could always jump to the front and order a whole chicken without queueing, as long as they didn’t have to chop it.

Then Michelin happened.

And while the food remains absolutely awesome and the same price – at the stall (more on that later) – the experience now is just not there anymore.

I had a friend and his family in town and they wanted to eat the famous Michelin Star Soya Sauce Chicken.  So I queued with him.

We started queueing around 12:45pm.  We were about 25 deep at that point.

Getting closer. I see about 11 chickens on the rack. Almost our turn!  Only 4 chickens left!And so we got there around 1:30pm.  We ordered 4 plates of noodles, rice, etc. And if I was queuing for that long, I was going to get a whole chicken.

Turns out that after us, there were only 2 chickens left and the queue was still as long.  Bad news for a lot of people who were still queuing .  They told them to go to the store to get chicken.  More on this in a bit.

First off, here is the Chicken and Char Siew Noodles.  Still tender as anything.  Still fatty and smooth on the Char Siew as well.  And still only $2.50 plus another $0.50 for the Char Siew.  The rice is only $2.00.  You can’t beat it and the taste.Yes, please go and experience it.  But after one time, the novelty wears off.

Now let’s talk about what has happened since Michelin came calling here.

Chef Chan has collaborated to open a storefront, right across the street from Smith Street Chinatown Complex.  You can get your chicken in a nice automated environment with aircon and the queue is not that long.

But, and I still don’t understand why, the prices are a little higher.  Especially the price for the whole chicken!

At the stall it’s S$14 for a whole chicken.  At the store it’s S$25!  Why?

I asked the lady at the stall.  Her reply, not sure, maybe aircon?  I had to laugh.

I also took the opportunity to ask if I still had to queue in order to buy a whole chicken that wasn’t chopped.  She said I still had to, even though we could in the old days.

Ah, I miss it.

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