The last pop up at The Star – Sokyo Ramen is sadly over (never had the chance to return for a second time!), and has been replaced by another pop up that specialises in Singaporean hawker style food.
When I read that these guys serve Katong style laksa, I was immediately excited at the possibility that this could satisfy the cravings for Katong laksa from Singapore… even if it only tasted a litttlee bit like it. There has been other restaurants in Sydney which calls their laksa “Katong Laksa”, but in fact its just another curry laksa, misleading!
So, in true Singaporean style, we had laksa for breakfast/brunch (it was our first meal of the day!) on Good Friday. We did not just have just laksa of course, accompanying it we also tried the Master Djohann’s Chilli Crab and Whampoa Road Rojak.
At 11:30AM, we thought we were the first customers but in the corner of our eye we spotted another guy digging his fingers into the chilli crab
Here’s what our $50 brunch looks like
Master Djohann’s Chilli Crab – $23
We’ve had quite a few good chilli crabs in Singapore so we were ready to put this to the test. They use spanner crab so as expected it was quite small, the flesh is more coarse and not as sweet compared to say mud crabs. It didn’t taste particularly fresh either but the spicy kick in the chilli sauce would keep your taste buds pre-occupied. The Singapore chilli crab we are used to and love is more sweet, tomatoey and barely spicy, this one however was more like a tomato-sweet chilli sauce, the intensity does build up as you go. Its definitely not easy to eat with the crab being sticky and tricky to dig your fingers into but fear not – they provide wet towels to clean you up.. if anything there are toilets nearby anyways. Love that it comes with 4 mantou buns for you to dip in the sauce, which is always the best part, you could always pay for more if you want to make the most of the sauce!
Katong Laksa – $17
Dun dun dun! Time to see how this dish fairs. To be honest, we’ve only ever had laksa from 328 Katong Laksa, so thats what we’re comparing this to. (I know, we really should broaden our laksa palette in our next trip to Singapore..) Trying the soup first, it was coconuty-creamy and sweet… there was barely any chilli-ness to it which makes it easy to slurp up. They use 2 types of noodles for the different textures but unlike katong laksas, you can’t eat it with just your spoon since the noodles are still full length. I love the hint of vietnamese mint which makes up a katong laksa – I just wished there was more of it! This was like a seafood laksa and they definitely did not cheapen out on the amount of it in there. Overall, we can say it kiiiind of tastes like what we hoped for but flavour wise think they could up it a few notches, + spice + herbs! We shared 1 between the two of us, so next time I would gladly have a bowl to myself!
Whampoa Road Rojak – $7
We were pretty full at this point but we felt like we needed a 3rd dish to try. We tossed between the rojak and the carrot cake… which the rojak won. Sadly the rojak didn’t quite win our tummies. The fruits did not taste freshly cut (it lacked the crunch!) and found the sauce to be too overwhelming, not the kind of flavour I could associate with. Could not bring ourselves to return an empty bowl unfortunately.
Virgin Singapore Sling – $3.50
Reviving ourselves from the chilli-ness of the chilli crab with a non-alcoholic take of the Singapore Sling! Its $3 when purchased with dishes 🙂
The prices of dishes are no where near Singaporean hawker prices but for its location, I’d say its pretty reasonable! It was a preeetttyy good brunch overall, we definitely want to go back and try the other dishes on the menu like the chicken rice and prawn mee! For now we’ll just keep hoping for more attempts at Singaporean style hawker food in Sydney 😀