Last Updated: July 18, 2019
When it comes to hawker staples, nothing hits the spot quite like a bowl of fishball noodles, the Teochew kind specifically. The glorious mix of tender pork slices, bouncy fishballs and al dente noodles will always be my go-to.
If you’re like me and really enjoy bak chor mee, then Ah Ter Teochew Fishball Noodles should be a familiar name.
After the success of their stall at Amoy Street Food Centre, Gilbert Lim, owner and third-generation hawker decided to open Ah Ter Teochew Fishball Noodle Bar. This way, Gilbert can introduce the humble Teochew fishball noodles to different audiences in this casual and cosy joint.
Located on the trendy streets of Lorong Telok in Boat Quay, Ah Ter Teochew Fishball Noodle Bar boasts modern and clean furnishings with high tops and bar stools.
The interior follows in the same vein and plus, it’s air-conditioned. A much-needed relief from the heat and humidity that Singapore is all too famous for.
For Ah Ter, they’ve pretty much kept the same menu as their Amoy Street Food Centre Stall of Fishball Bak Chor Mee (S$6/S$8) as well as a deluxe version Whole Abalone & Seafood Soup (S$15), just for the noodle bar.
A bowl of Ah Ter’s fishball noodles begins with an array of sauces: a dash of ketchup, black vinegar for tartness, and Gilbert’s special chilli sauce. This is no ordinary chilli sauce, this chilli sauce is made with good-quality dried shrimps, onions and prawn paste and stirred for a whopping six hours.
As any good foodie knows, a lot hinges on the chilli sauce. Oftentimes, it makes or breaks the dish.
Then, a selection of seafood and pork is blanched. Depending on how indulgent you want your bowl of noodles to be, you can even get two whole abalones.
After which, a ladle of piping broth is spooned over over the noodles and seafood. At this point, I couldn’t wait to dig in.
I ordered both Fishball Bak Chor Mee and their Whole Abalone & Seafood Soup. The main difference is quite obviously the soup, since the noodles for both are the same.
I gave the noodles a good stir to ensure every strand is coated with the different sauces. The noodles were al dente and had a good texture, which went well with the slight tartness from the vinegar and ketchup. This was quite addictive too!
Now for the soup: we started with one of the best sellers at Ah Ter’s. The soup came piping hot and in a bowl with a gilded edge. Fancy!
Ah Ter was definitely generous with their portions. The bowl was filled with fresh prawns, savoury pork slices, liver slices, their signature fishballs and a smattering of minced pork.
The soup was really robust and full of porky goodness, as tasty as it was comforting. Each slurp was indicative of Ah Ter’s expertise at producing an excellent soup base. I was already quite impressed.
Now, I’m we all had our fair share of fishballs and for me, this one really takes the cake. This was springy and bouncy, not to mention perfectly balanced when it came to taste.
The prawn was sweet and fresh. Already a huge brownie point for me, because bad seafood is quite sacrilegious.
For most bowls of bak chor mee, I consider the liver slices as bite-sized goodies that makes eating bak chor mee just so gratifying.
Here at Ah Ter Teochew Fishball Noodles, not only did the liver slices come in a generous portion but they were cooked just right, such that they were soft and tender.
If you are feeling like lunch could be a little more generous then you have the Whole Abalone & Seafood Soup. This indulgent version is only available at the noodle bar, so this was a real treat.
Arriving in an exquisite porcelain bowl, it certainly matched the quality of the ingredients.
Here, you’ll get a medley of plump prawns, abalone, and Teochew fish dumplings on top of what you get in their usual fishball noodles.
The prawns were sweet and succulent, but a little detail that I really appreciated was that these prawns were deveined as well.
A little bit of abalone never hurt anybody. Moreover, these little ingots were sweet and truly made this bowl worth every penny.
If you can’t get enough, another special thing about Ah Ter was their sides. I decided to get the Signature Marinated Wings (S$2.50/Small, S$5/Large) that also comes with their homemade chilli sauce.
The wings were crispy and tasty and they made an excellent companion to the Fishball noodles. Not to mention, the chilli was pretty solid too, tangy and supplying a good amount of heat. It was reminiscent of the chilli you get with chicken rice, which made every mouthful delightful.
When a hawker stall sees as much success as Ah Ter, there would always be complaints about how standards have dropped or the noodle just doesn’t taste the same.
I was a little sceptical when I arrived but it turns out that my fears were unfounded. Ah Ter Teochew Fishball Noodles Bar delivered on all counts.
Purists might argue that to have an authentic experience, you have to sweat it out in a hawker centre. While I don’t disagree, there is something to be said about the different ways we are preserving these age-old recipes.
Expected Damage: S$6 – S$15 per pax
Our Rating: 5 / 5
Ah Ter Teochew Fishball Noodle Bar
5 Lorong Telok, Singapore 049018
5 Lorong Telok, Singapore 049018