We tried Singapore’s worst-rated Western food stall

Because human beings are social creatures, we are susceptible to ‘groupthink’, where individuals simply repeat opinions they hear without thinking. Browsing bad hawker reviews online, I wondered if some stalls had been the victims of negative groupthink. So, I decided to review the lowest-rated hawker stalls in Singapore for myself. First on my list of worst-rated Western food stalls was Bedok Western Food at Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre.

worst western - storefront

It was rated just 1.9 stars out of 5 on Google Reviews in mid-September. As an Eastling, I took this one personally. We are supposed to be the happening part of Singapore; why was this random hawker stall dragging us down?

I made my way to Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre and located Bedok Western Food. Seeing the stall for the first time, I suddenly wasn’t so sure that the problem was groupthink.

worst western - signboard

It stood out for its old-style signboard and fluorescent lighting, looking like a snapshot from the ‘80s. Unfortunately, the sight didn’t make me feel nostalgia but overwhelming cringe. Compared to the adjacent ones that had a clean, modern look, this one seemed dingy and rundown.

Worse still, it was 2pm and there wasn’t a single customer in line. Oh, dear— what had I gotten myself into?

What I tried at Bedok Western Food

worst western - western dishes

I cleared my mind and got to work. The first thing I ordered was the Pork Chop (S$7). It was served with baked beans and thick crinkle-cut french fries. Given the look of the stall and the bad reviews, I had been preparing myself to be disappointed. I was surprised. The slab of meat was tender and juicy.

worst western - pork chop with sauce

Unfortunately, it was topped with such a nonsense sauce that it should have been called non-saunce. Red, diluted and watery, it had bits of garlic floating inside and gave off a funky smell. I could not bring myself to take more than two bites and even that was too much. To make matters worse, the fries were cold and hard.

The only saving grace for this plate was the serving of baked beans. Even though clearly from a can, they were reasonably tasty.

worst western - fish and chips close up

Wow, what a bad start! Surely, Bedok Western Food had some redeeming features, right? I decided to take another chance and, from the pictures on the menu, the Fish n Chips (S$7) seemed to be a fair choice.

This, I actually liked. The fish was done well with a thin batter and, as you can see from the photo, the stall serves a pretty reasonable portion for the price. Taking a bite, I discovered that the fish was not overly fried and done just well enough to remove all traces of a fishy flavour and smell.

Like the Pork Chop, it came with baked beans and crinkle-cut fries, too… and the verdict was the same for them— beans good, fries bad.

Final Thoughts

My experience at Bedok Western Food was better than the online reviews (and my first impression!) had led me to expect.

Sure, the Pork Chop was disappointing but that was only because of the horrendous sauce. The meat itself was fine and I would even rate it as above average. Some reviews I have read complained about the meat being undercooked but that wasn’t true when I was there, either for the pork or the fish.

worst western - collage of western food

Most of the negative reviews for Bedok Western Food mentioned the bad attitude and rudeness of the hawker. I didn’t come cross any behaviour like that— if anything, I found him to be especially polite and friendly. It’s hard to say but it could be that the bad reviews led to an attitude adjustment.

In the two weeks between the first time I came across the online reviews and early October when this review is being published, Bedok Western Food’s Google rating has inched up slightly to a score of 2.1 stars out of 5. This was mainly the result of some recent positive feedback for them. (Not from me)

As it stands today, Bedok Western Food in its current form certainly won’t make the SETHLUI TOP 300. However, I think it at least deserves a score closer to 3. I still have no plans for a return visit but if you think you have a stomach for reassessing food ratings, why not head down and decide for yourself?

Expected damage: S$7 – S$9.50 per pax

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Bedok Western Food

208B New Upper Changi Road, Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre, #01-62, Singapore 462208

Our Rating 2.5/5

Bedok Western Food

208B New Upper Changi Road, Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre, #01-62, Singapore 462208