Sunday, 18 October 2015

Where will I be without you? - Punggol Waterway BTO Project

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Here in Singapore, we have a culture of bidding for a housing unit a few years before the dating couple decides to tie the knot. The bidding system is call the "Build to order" scheme, or in short we call it BTO.

How does it work?

Mainly meant for newly weds, this electronic balloting system would require the identification of both applicants in order to be qualified for the scheme. At least 1 of the applicant must be a Singapore citizen. The wedding certificate would need to be produced at the point of possession of house keys.

Interested applicants may have a joint application with their better half in a balloting system where the system will randomly issue queue numbers to all applicants.

With the BTO programme in place, many average guys in Singapore would forego the need to arrange for a romantic proposal by asking the girl to apply for a BTO flat with him. (*Witcast strongly encourage our readers to have a romantic proposal instead of asking your better half to apply for a BTO pls.)

Successful applicants with a queue number will be informed by the Housing Development Board (HDB) to select a unit of their choice at HDB main office. Those lucky ones with the lower queue numbers would have a good chance of securing a better unit of their choice. The better units range from nearer to the Mass Rapid Transport (MRT) stations, bus stops or even better view of their surroundings.

The waiting time for a series of BTO units to be built ranges from 2-6 years. Home owners would have a rough idea when their unit will be ready as HDB would publish the information on their website prior to the BTO project. For applicants who may not want to wait for the BTO units may choose to apply for a sale of balance flat unit, which will have a shorter waiting time than a BTO unit. Alternatively, they may also apply for a resale flat in the open market.

Mode of payment can be either through cash, home owner's Central Provident Fund(CPF) or loan from the bank/HDB.

So, my wife and I applied and secured a unit at the far north-east of the island. With a view overseeing the beautiful Punggol waterway, we expected to have our own home with a 4 years wait.

Fast forward to July 2015, HDB sent us a letter informing us that the Probable Completion Date(PCD) for our flat had been amended from Q3 2015 to September 2015. That's when we got excited for our own home, all the Interior Designers that we have met over the months, we finally can decide on one and start the renovation when we get our keys in Sep 2015.

We were wrong. Sep 2015 came and passed. No news from HDB, no update on their website on the PCD. We were disappointed that the public service we trusted in, failed us. So, on the 2nd week of Oct 2015, a standard system generated letter were sent to all affected residents. For ours, the PCD changed from Sep 2015 to End Nov 2015 due to situation changes on the ground. We wanted to write in to HDB but based on our neighbours' efforts in the past, we believe they will reply us with a standard template reply, hence we got no choice but to drop the idea.

An attempt to send a message to the current MP for Pasir Ris - Punggol GRC also landed us nowhere. The message was read but not replied. I think he is too busy with national issues and got no time for the future residents like me. Probably we should have asked him earlier, during the election period he would probably look into the issue more.

So, when will we finally move in to our "Promised home"? Only God knows.

A simple comparison against some recently completed building such as TreeTrail@Woodlands, their PCD was supposed to be in 2017, but the residents have received news for key collection now. Some contractors are good while some are just nonsense.

So, my concerns here are

1)Some of us has got wedding plans and if the unit will not be ready by our wedding date, we will continue to stay at our parents house and I don't think that is healthy for a married couple.

2) Some of us will be giving birth soon and they would be left without a personal roof over their head because of the main contractor, SUNHUAN's mistake.

3) Understand SUNHUAN will only compensate the residents if the completion date is 1 year after the PCD. But is this fair to the residents? Many of us had bought furniture and some of their value will drop as the technology will enhance further. Worst still, they face a risk of the vendor closing down and their deposit will be lost.

4) Even when we collect our keys, I am sure there will be defects and HDB will take some time to rectify the issues. Which will add in more waiting time.

5) After the defects are done, we need to renovate the house and this will again take time. By the time when everything is completed, we might have missed the Chinese New Year celebration where we would like our friends and family to visit us at our new house.

6) Lastly, do HDB give demerit points to ineffective contractors such as SUNHUAN who made the residents wait ? If all of us know this would happen, we would have went for the BTO which is across the waterway, their BTO project were later than us but all of them is already staying comfortably at the luxury of their new home, rather than us who have to pray and hope we can get our keys faster. SUNHUAN is also the main contractor for waterway banks and i am amazed their building were completed much earlier than ours.

HDB will continue giving the lowest bidding contractor for future projects and I sincerely wish the residents who got SUNHUAN as their contractor good luck.

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Thursday, 14 May 2015

10 food stalls we will miss when we move out of Tanjong Pagar CBD area

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After knowing that my company is moving out of the Central Business District (CBD) area, the 1st thing came to my mind; Food.

After spending 8 years working in the CBD , i have grown to love and appreciate the cheap hawker food that accompanied me through many many lunch breaks.

Since we are moving out, let me share with you 10 food stalls that I will dearly miss, yes I am sure you will miss (if your company is shifting out too).

1) Piao Ji Fish Porridge (标记鱼粥) - Amoy food center #02-100/103
Opening Hrs 1030am-4pm, off on Thursday

This stall ranks number 1 in my list as they serve the freshest, tastiest fish and prawn around in Singapore. Fish soup we have had a lot, nothing beats this stall. From the fish, the prawn, the soup, the vegetable to the chilli sauce, everything is tip top excellent.

1 thing I would not miss is the stall assistant (who sometimes cooks too). There is a saying that goes: "Good food comes with bad service". There was once I overheard a lady asking him if there is any more pomfret available, his reply was epic, "我去滝沟抓给你"(or I will catch it from the drain for you).

Priced at minimum of $10 for the fish and prawn soup, this might seemed expensive for some, considering it's from a hawker stall. To me, it tastes better than the restaurant, hence it's totally worth it. We understand they are open on Saturday (half day) too, hence will be back for it.

2) Han Kee fish soup (汉记鱼汤)- Amoy food center #02-129
Opening hrs: Mon – Sat: 10am – 3pm, closed on Sunday

When you mention fish soup at Amoy, everyone will ask you, Han Kee or Piao Ji? Yes, after introducing Piao Ji, here is Han Kee.

The soup is clear and tasty. The fish is awesomely fresh. No signs of tofu or tomato found, but the cabbage is good enough. Priced at minimum of $5, this is also a must try for everyone. I must say they have the longest queue at Amoy food center but the waiting time is roughly 15-20 minutes only.

Something I would not miss is the attitude of the assistant too. No doubt she has got a great memory and eye for details, but when she got stressed up, her body language and tone changed. I have seen many customers being scolded by her personally. She dislikes people wasting her time and you jolly well say it once, say it clearly, else you face her wrath.

They do open on Saturday (half day) too, so when we have the craving, we can always come back.

3)Kazaan Japanese food - Chinatown Complex Smith Street #02-01
Opening hrs Mon -Fri 1130am-830pm, Sun 1130am-6pm Closed on Saturday

This humble stall used to operate at the Tanjong Pagar market. After the market went through major upgrading works, the stall owner decided to shift to the hawker center at Chinatown.

Located opposite Maxwell market, this hawker center is the biggest around the Tanjong Pagar vicinity.

Every time when i visit this stall, the boss would personally welcome me with a big smile, asking what would i like to have today. I have personally "interviewed" him about how he started his shop and what would be his recommendation for his customers.

Food wise, if you have the thought that hawker Japanese food will never win the restaurants, think again after you tried this. Personally i think the teriyaki salmon and teriyaki chicken cutlet are the best of the best. Let's begin with the cutlet; it is crispy on the outside, tender on the inside. Every bite is just heavenly. The salmon of the other hand is fresh and i love the crispy salmon skin. The rice and soup is also of quality which we should try. In fact they are so good that I have blogged about them previously! (See

So in conclusion, they have broken the myth that good food must have bad service. Thumbs up up and up.

4) Good da好日 - Amoy food centre #01-25
Opening hrs Mon to Sun: 1030am-7pm

Back to Amoy level 1, this is the best tze-char stall at Tanjong Pagar. I have a colleague who said this "everything that comes out from this stall is good". Indeed, i love their beef fried rice, their beef hor fun with gravy. For some of us who don't take beef, you can also try their fried rice and fish hor fun, equally nice.

At just $4.50, the amount of beef is like mountain, never seen so much in a plate before.

5) Ocean Curry fish head - 181 Telok Ayer Street
Opening hrs Mondays to Fridays from 11am to 8pm, Saturdays from 11am to 2pm,
Closed on Sundays

Just a stone throw away from Amoy food center, this stall who sells curry fish head and mixed rice wins a shot at the top 10. The food choices is a lot, hence they also have the longest queue you can ever find in the Amoy stretch.

Price wise not so friendly for a mixed rice stall, but the taste is really nice.

6) Banana Leaf Nasi Padang - Amoy Street food centre #02-93
Opening hrs Mon-Fri 10:30 am - 2:30 pm

This stall offers the closest variety as the Malay nasi padang.

Operated by a Chinese couple, they have locked many of our lunch dates with them.

No one can resist the crispy chicken cutlet that they offer can we? Personally I also like their asam stingray, totally worth it. Besides the main dishes, their omelette is also very under-rated by many.

Some may argue it is a little too sinful to have it but let's just enjoy!

7) Ming Kee Cooked Food (明記什菜飯) - Tanjong Pagar Plaza #02-24
Opening hrs Mon-Fri 11am - 7pm, Sat 11am-2pm, Closed on Sunday

Another great mixed rice stall located at Tanjong Pagar Market. Their variety of dishes is more or less the same everyday. The must try dishes are probably - chicken cutlet, omelette, broccoli, Yong tau foo.

Oh did i mention their curry is tasty too? I would always request to have the curry poured unto the rice 1st before i order my dishes.

Thumbs up!!

8) China Street Hainanese Curry Rice - Maxwell food centre
Opening hrs Saturday - Thursday: 11.30am - 7.30pm

I once saw the owner on tv, it's about his children who is in a overseas university. I guess it's never easy to send your children overseas for their education but i can see his determination to provide as a father.

Food wise, i love the meatball, cabbage, sunny side up with lots of gravy and curry. The meat is tender, the cabbage is soft, the sunny side up just sums up your meal with a smile.

Definitely something i will miss.

9) Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice (天天海南鸡饭) - Maxwell Food Center #01-10/11
Opening hrs 10am – 8pm (Closed on Mondays)

Mind you, they beat Gordon Ramsey in the cook off challenge. Their queue consist of both locals and tourist who yearns for a good meal. Personally i love their drumstick rice with lots of sauce. Tender is an understatement. The rice is so nice that you can eat it on it's own. Personally I think this is the best chicken rice in Singapore.

However, when you ask for more sauce, the auntie assistance would say "咸死你"(something like a curse -_-!!)

10) Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken Rice & Noodle - Chinatown Complex Food Centre #02-126
Opening hrs 10.30 am to 7 pm (Closed on Wed)

Last but never the least, the oily chicken of Chinatown. For those of us who never liked oily chicken because it's nothing healthy, you may want to think again.

At only $2, you can get a plate of chicken rice! Drumstick lovers look here, their drumstick is just out of this world. Taking them with a plate of noodles will just make you drool for more.

The long wait might be a reason why i seldom patronise them, including time to walk to and fro, i would suggest you bring your own container and dabao the food back to save time.

I would certainly return to eat them when i go on leave.

I understand the above 10 stalls may not be your favorite. I have included many other stalls that were closed to making it to the list.


Zhisheng cooked food ($2.30 - 1 meat 2 vege)
Ah Ter's fishball noodles (handsome man cooking bak chor mee -fav among ladies)
Ah Liang Ipoh Hor Fun (the fried fish dumpling is awesome)
01-59 (taste very home cooked, the fried fish fillet is awesome)
Li Xing Nasi Lemak (always sold out before 1, enough said)
Hong Kong style steamed soup and steamed rice (Soup is awesome)
Authentic Thai (basil chicken rice is nice)
Snow Mountain (freshest fruits and fruit juice)
Halal chicken rice (the chilli!)
Teh Tarik stall at level 1 (very nice teh tarik)

Maxwell - Jin Hua fish soup (Fresh fish)

AXA Tower - Snack of Taiwan 台湾小吃 (nice breakfast, friendly boss)

Chinatown - 3 for $2 (any 3 dishes for $2, including meat)

IP- Taiwan Railway Bento [the 滷肉飯(braised meat) is nice]

Tanjong Pagar Market - Pandan Leaf Nasi Lemak and Xiang Xiang Nasi Lemaek (both stalls serve the best Chicken Wings around)

Shenton House Nasi Padang & Food Stalls (cheap and good!)

Fu Lin Yong Tau Fu (great gravy and uniquely awesome presentation, didn't make the list as they have branch outlets)

Ok that's all for now. We sing Auld Lang Syne to our favorite lunches at Tanjong Pagar.
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Monday, 23 March 2015

Remembering our founding mentor - Mr Lee Kuan Yew

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He was our 1st Prime Minister,
He was our 1st Senior Minister,
He was our 1st Minister Mentor.

He shared his hard truth,
He shared his tears,
He brought us from kampong to 1st world.

He survived the 2nd world war where Singapore fell to the Japanese. Times were hard during his days. He didn’t give up, he continues to fight for our cause, and he dedicated his life into politics, winning seats in every election he had been. When Singapore was down and out, he took up the role of transforming Singapore from 3rd world to our current 1st world status.

Yes, we do have issues that need to be address in our current state. Bread and butter issues are always going to be a problem. Yes, there are some policies not many people would agree and support. However, those were the hard truth decisions that Mr Lee had to take.

Some said he rules by the iron fist, some may even challenge his authority. 1 thing is for sure, he has got more respect in the world today than many many many others. There are too many quotes that Mr Lee had said that had impacted Singapore. Here are a few more significance ones,

"Without her, I would be a different man, with a different life... I should find solace in her 89 years of a life well lived. But at this moment of the final parting, my heart is heavy with sorrow and grief." - Mr Lee is a sweetheart to his wife.

"I wouldn't call myself an atheist. I neither deny nor accept that there is a God. So I do not laugh at people who believe in God. But I do not necessarily believe in God - nor deny that there could be one." - Mr Lee's views on religion

"I am often accused of interfering in the private lives of citizens. Yes, if I did not, had I not done that, we wouldn't be here today. And I say without the slightest remorse, that we wouldn't be here, we would not have made economic progress, if we had not intervened on very personal matters—who your neighbor is, how you live, the noise you make, how you spit, or what language you use. We decide what is right. Never mind what the people think." - Mr Lee on his management style

"You vote for the opposition, you have 5 years to repent" - Mr Lee on Aljunied residents

"Even from my sick bed, even if you are going to lower me into the grave and I feel something is going wrong, I will get up.” Mr Lee on his resurrection

With Mr Lee passing on, some of the opposition parties actually paid respect to him, sending warm regard to his family too. The Workers' party, National Solidarity Party, Singapore Democratic Alliance, Reform party and Singapore Democratic Party all posted messages on their facebook walls, appreciating what Mr Lee had done for our nation.

Witcast is definitely encouraged by this act, where everyone, regardless of their political background, set aside their differences, come together to mourn over our founding father demise.

Rest in peace, Mr Lee Kuan Yew. Your wish is for Singapore to survive, we know whoever taking over in future will ensure our survival. Without you, there is no Singapore.

With a heavy heart, Witcast signing off.
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Monday, 5 January 2015

Raintr33 Hotel - The former old Changi Hospital's neighbour

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Have you heard before the old Changi Hospital? There was even a movie being made for this place. We were told that their neighbour, old commando barracks were transformed into a hotel.

Yeah, it was a haunted place in the past. Stepping up, here comes Raintr33 Hotel.

Since many of us would know the history of old Changi hospital, so I won’t be saying too much to scare you here. The question now is, will anyone stay in the new hotel? The newspaper article below shows the haunted stories of old commando camp, the article claimed that there is a gateway to hell.

There should be a few groups of people who probably will.

1) Tourist - Enough said, they see the price still ok (Starting from $180), still quite near to the peaceful changi village, there is even a place to chill. So why not?

2) Brave locals - They heard about the history, they want to experience it themselves, 1st hand. However, they might come in a group, hence i suspect they won’t see anything.

3) Bloggers - Surely they will wanna stay there and blog what they have seen or heard so they can drive up their viewership.

4) Lost souls - We don't literally mean the souls, but human beings who might be tired from cycling, jogging etc. Maybe not, Taxis can be easily located right?

So 1st hand experience will be better than hearsay, so are you ready for an adventure??

*Witcast will not be responsible if you happened to see anything/any uninvited guest to your room*

For more information, please visit
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Sunday, 28 September 2014

EPL 14/15 Key players

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Hi everyone

It's been a few games into the season, maybe we can take a look at who are the clubs' key players


Most would say it will be Alex Sanchez? Not for me, I think Arsenal is doing well because of Aaron Ramsey instead. He is often the more silent contributor but majority of the crucial goals were scored by this man. I think he is also the man who got the most shot on goal. If he can stay injury free, Arsenal can have some glory in the days ahead.

Aston Villa

Not many would doubt us when we mention Gabriel Agbonlahor. With Benteke out injured, this name seemed to be a hot name to call upon. His goal against Liverpool recently ensured the bus parking tactic worked.


They have scored just once in 5 games. Conceded 4 in the process. Not much to choose from, so Scott Arfield is the man to look out for, he has got quite a number shots on goal but burnley needs to train harder in shooting.


There are so much talent in this team that there is not just 1 man we are talking about here. However, this man Diego Costa is the killer. He did what Eto + Torres + Ba combined together last season. The question is, will he continue his good form?

Crystal Palace

The great escape from relegation last season was a miracle which also landed Tony Pulis as the manager of the year. However, he had departed before the season kicked off. Shocking. So who is the key player for Palace? Mile Jedinak and Jason Puncheon are my choices. Just look at the way they play and you will agree with me.


Well well well. Is Everton struggling? Alittle. But Mr Kevin Mirallas continue to show everyone why Everton finished above Man Utd last season. If he sits out, you can see Everton missing him like crazy

Hull City

It got to be their top scorer Jelavic right Stephen Quinn is worth mentioning too. In my opinion Quinn is the key player instead as Jelavic wont get any goal if not for Quinn.

Leicester City

Well, the person who saved them the points against Man Utd, Remember this name, Jose Ulloa. Leicester is proving to be a very strong team to beat.


Oh man, they missed Mr Suarez. But they have a trainee by the name of Raheem Sterling. His mazzy dribbling showed the fans he can fill the boots of Suarez? Maybe not yet, but he is surely the player to look out for. Both club and country.

Man City

For a team so strong, it is not possible to name 1 player. But we have seen this man, Sergio Aguero doing it again and again, putting the points into their bag.

Man Utd

Interesting to see so many players who don't mind not going to Champions league. For a moment, Man Utd were dead last. However, Mr Rooney and Di Maria are the men to watch. They have the quality to lift their team upwards.


Moussa Sissoko is the man. His tough tackling is what keeps the team together. Just a pity the team is struggling at the moment. They can buy back Carroll when he is fit.


I wanted to say none. But there is 1 by the name of Steven Caulker. He is the future of England at one time. If he can pick it up and lead the team, QPR might escape being relegated for the 2nd time in 3 yrs.


Lallana, Lovren, Shaw all gone. So who? Up step Graziano Pelle. Another one to watch out for. Southampton had brought in some very wonderful signing this season, and not forgetting they had been tight at the back too.

Stoke City

Captain Ryan Shawcross is the man for Stoke for awhile now. His tough defending had made stoke a difficult ground to go. He will continue to be the man to watch.


For a long time,Sebastian Larsson had been a fringe player. Could this be his season to step it up? Already shown some great efforts and let's see.


He left when his loan expired. Joined Spurs but the deal never made him a better player, so he returned to Swansea. Yes his name is Gylfi Sigurdsson. We all saw how his passes can tear the defense up. Definitely a key man.


Adebayor? No. Lamela? Not really. But this defender Eric Dier. He can really put the strikers to shame dont he? If he can emulate Mr Bale, he can really make it big.

West Brom

If not Saido Berahino, then who?

West Ham

It has to be Steward Downing. He is the reason why the team is moving forward. Get that, haters.

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Monday, 25 August 2014

Jobs and Careers

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After taking a break from blogging, we are back! Today we will be sharing about jobs and careers. In this present age, what we studied in school may not actually means we will be pursuing it in the society.

So assuming you are an 23-year old man fresh from the army, with a Diploma in Nursing. You may/may not be applying for a job in the Healthcare industry. Reason being, you fear the eyes of discrimination against you(being a male), or you simply thinks you can make it big at the finance sector.

So does that mean the Healthcare sector will have 1 less capable worker? I don't think so, as the polytechnics would have catered for a certain percentage of graduates who will choose to move on from what they studied.

So is there a discrimination in the world today? Certainly. I deemed the cause to be based on perceptions. Take for example, the perception of construction workers would certainly be a male. If you are a female who is very passionate in being a construction worker, you may apply to be one. Just that you might immediately be featured on the news, every talk show and maybe even being mentioned in the National Day Rally. The reason being; no man in this part of the world wants to be a construction worker, let alone women.

There are some jobs which women are being preferred too, such as manicurist or lingerie sellers. That left the office jobs being a place for both the male and female right? Maybe, office workers such as the Human Resource department are often associated with women being the vast majority. I am not sure if there are any discrimination over here but it seemed that they all seemed to require experience in the HR field prior to the selection. So, assuming you have just completed your degree in HR, applied for a job in HR (which most certainly requires a vast amount of relevant experience), will you ever be recruited?

To me, if every HR department wants someone with experience, where do the new fresh grads go? In any organisation, you need fresh ideas, you need fresh blood to keep up with the changing society. If all you have are people who knows what to do but no fresh ideas, eventually the whole society will just revolves around the same group of people.

Come on HR directors, recruitment directors, please don't be so direct ya? Give the fresh grads a chance! Especially when they had took on HR related courses in their tertiary studies. If no one gives them a chance, they will be going to work in some places where their potential might not be fully optimized.

So, we heard that there is a over supply of lawyers huh? Ok, lawyers are indeed a very in-demand lot of people in the working society today. Many can work in the banks, public service etc.. But shouldn't a lawyer supposed to be fighting for the lives of the innocent? And in the case of persecutor, they have the right to put criminals into jail. So assuming no lawyer wants to do that, we don't have any other choice.

In conclusion, to me, jobs are something for you to get your pay, which you can get paid for the number of work done in exchange. Whereas a career will involve your heart and soul, where you strive to give the best to it. Heard before the career path? Have you heard before the job path? No right? So make your informed choice before you regret. Understand some of us would rather get a job than career too, it's just a matter of our expectations in life too. Whatever decision we made in life, will eventually affect our destiny.

Signing off.
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Friday, 18 April 2014

Good morning to Shun Fa Shu Shi 顺发熟食

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Happy Good Friday everyone!

Being a Singaporean living in the heartlands all my life, there are always some food from the hawker centers that never fails to make me drool.

One of such delicious food stall is 顺发熟食(Shun Fa Shu Shi).

Shun Fa Shu Shi serves delicious Singapore styled breakfast, with a wide variety of main and side dishes to choose from. Be it bee hoon with egg, fried noodles with fried fish, or even hokkien-styled noodles with chicken wings, they never fails to attract you over.

Today, my entry will introduce some of their best sellers.

Me : Hi uncle, sorry to disturb you. I am representing Witcast and I am a blogger. I really liked the food and would like to feature your stall.

Uncle: Ok.

Me: Thanks uncle, 1st of all, would like to ask how long have your stall been around?

Uncle: Its around more than 10 over years now.

Me: Wow, nice. So among you dishes, which ones are the best sellers? Like the must try?

Uncle: It depends on the individual, very hard to give you a good answer. But the best sellers so far should be the hokkien noodles, chicken wings and the fried fish.

Me: Yeah, i agree those are great. Just to check, if you have any plans on expanding your business?

Uncle: Ha, no lah(singlish word)  How to do it? I don't know.

Me: Sure sure no problem. Thank you for your time uncle, and you are...?

Uncle: Thank you too! I am Mr Lee.

Me: Thank you for your time. Have a great day and may your business prosper.

So the short interview was quite fruitful. I have to agree with Mr Lee that the Chicken Wings and Fried Fish are great. The wings are crispy on the outside, tender and juicy on the inside. Simply marvelous! The fried fish is crispy and doesn't lose to those from the western stalls. While i liked the hokkien noodles, one to mention is the fried kway tiao too. It's not oily and it's completely worth it. Lastly, the chili is nice, one scoop is not enough!

So, if you have some time and hungry in the morning, head down to try it!

Address: Blk 162 Ang Mo Kio Ave 4 #01-34
Opening hours : 3:30AM to 2PM (or until sold out)
Rest on alternate Wednesday

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