Kim Heng Roasted Meat: Famous traditional charcoal roast meats — worth the hype?

I was looking forward to my tasting at Kim Heng Roasted Meat. I haven’t had roast meats in awhile so my cravings for these decadent birds were off the roof.

Thinking about the caramelised flavour with a slight hint of bitterness from from the charcoaled bits… I can’t help but salivate thinking about it. Located at Serangoon, the stall sits at the corner of FoodHub coffeeshop.

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You must be familiar with Kim Heng Roasted Meat; it’s one of the iconic stalls that has been famed for their high-quality meats and old-school roasting methods. Popularised by the masses of Singapore, Kim Heng Roasted Meat has garnered a position as one of the “must visit” places for foodies.

But is it really “the best in town” though? I’m not one that blindly follows with the crowd… My sceptical self found myself in the coffeeshop attempting to test if Kim Heng Roasted Meat is really worth the hype.

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Based on first impressions, I was quick to realise that their prices are actually relatively higher as compared to most roast meat stores. For a plate of Duck Rice, it costs S$4.30, and for a portion of siew yoke on top of that, you’d have to pay an additional S$2.

At the side, you’ll see a whole menu of hot soups, with the majority priced at S$3 a bowl, and S$4 for the premium items like Herbal Black Chicken Soup, Pepper Pig’s Stomach Soup and Herbal White Chicken Soup.

Perhaps, it could be the cost to cover their tedious methods, or price increment from the GST hike. Regardless, I was excited to try it out considering how I hyped myself up from the reviews I read online.

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Glistening under the soft light hung a myriad of meats with a golden shine. Like angelic tropes that have some form of attractive aura to them, the array of roast meats in front of me called for me and drew me in.

What I tried at Kim Heng Roasted Meat 

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The irresistible array got me ordering a Roast Meat Platter for 2 (S$17.60). It was inclusive of a portion of roast duck, char siewsiew yoke, and 2 plates of rice.

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They weren’t very stingy in terms of portioning— in fact, it was just right! You’ll receive a condiment platter with chilli sauce and plum sauce upon ordering as well.

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First up: the crunch test. A bite in and their roasted pork belly passed with flying colours. This was super crispy, and really shiok! It wasn’t excessively salty as most places over-season their meats, but I wouldn’t over exaggerate by classifying this as the best I had.

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My opinion towards siew yoke might be controversial, but I’m not the biggest fan of fatty meats. Yet, I found myself picking up pieces and pieces of this.

What I’d like to point out is that I would’ve preferred if this was seasoned just a tad bit more.

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The carbohydrates added a herbaceous touch to my meal as they were doused with a brown sauce. It’s really clever that they included this touch, as it acts as a neutralising element to the sweet and the salty flavours from my selection of meats.

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On the other hand, the char siew didn’t have a wow factor for me. I understand how taste buds are subjective, but I guess I just preferred more caramelisation with the char siew. However, they do have a good ratio of fat-to-meat, and the fats melted nicely in my mouth.

Kim Heng Roasted Meat offers the type of char siew that you’d usually enjoy with wanton mee— slightly more subtle in flavour with no distinct smokiness to it.

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If you’re looking to enjoy Peking duck at Kim Heng Roasted Meat, this is not the place. Instead, you’ll be served a delicious portion of roasted duck with tender meat. They have thick cuts of meat with thin slices of skin that was surprisingly very juicy.

What I usually like to do when I eat duck is to eat a piece without the sweet sauce first. This was great! It had a smoky flavour that I presume would be well-loved by the public.

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In accordance, I tried a piece of duck with the plum sauce— which can’t go wrong. I love anything sweet, and this helped to eliminate any gaminess that comes usually with duck.

Final thoughts

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Well, to answer my question: Was Kim Heng Roasted Meat worth the hype? My meal at Kim Heng Roasted Meat was delightful, but it wasn’t as impressive as I thought it would be. It is good, but it isn’t mind-blowing. I guess I could’ve been clouded by the massive amount of positive online reviews.

It’s definitely a safe choice though; you can’t go wrong with roast meats here. You’ll catch me trying out their soups next!

Expected damage: S$4.30 – S$9 per pax

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Price: $

Our Rating: 4 / 5

Kim Heng Roasted Meat

214 Serangoon Avenue 4, FoodHub, #01-88, Singapore 550214

Our Rating 4/5

Kim Heng Roasted Meat

214 Serangoon Avenue 4, FoodHub, #01-88, Singapore 550214

Telephone: +65 6283 3695
Operating Hours: 9.30am - 7.30pm (Daily)
Telephone: +65 6283 3695

Operating Hours: 9.30am - 7.30pm (Daily)