Last Updated: February 9, 2021
My trek down to Midview City on a sweltering Thursday morning comes fuelled by keen appetites and a wanderlust for So Good Char Chan Tang’s offerings. Amidst stacks of hardened concrete lurks a slew of cafeterias and other eating establishments that remain largely oblivious to Instagram explore pages and smartphone browsings. One in particular quietly caters to routine streams of hungry folks on the daily, all of whom flock down mechanically from the upper floors of this integrated business hub to a mecca of all things Hong Kong—gastronomically, of course.
It’s thirty minutes to noon, and I peer into So Good’s air-conditioned space of clean, wooden tables and cool white lighting to scout for seats. On weekends, the joint transforms into a bustling arena of snaking ordering queues and impatient frowns toward seat hoggers. Luckily, this weekday visit is a little less stressful. I plop down alongside a stranger who passionately wolfs down his scrambled egg sandwich utensil-free.
The menu here is extensive but thoroughly systematic, as is So Good Char Chan Tang’s ordering system. You have your classics—wonton noodles, polo buns, roasted meats, and cups of milk tea to boot. I’m handed a buzzer for collection and scuttled back to my seat. There, I eagerly stare down the pick-up counter with bated breath and hungry determination.
Plastic trays come flying out of the kitchen, summoning customers’ brisk attendance to their plates in school-like fashion. At the behest of my buzzer, I do the same. It’s a clear eat-up-and-go situation, and patrons know and respect this.
There’s the quartet of roasted meats by way of soya sauce chicken, char siew, roasted pork belly, and duck hanging in pride of place behind a massive glass display. My choice? The Roasted Pork Belly (S$6.50) in all its crackling glory.
Luscious streaks of fat run through this cut, which comes topped with brilliantly crunchy puffed pork skin. On my plate rests thin, springy noodles drenched in a flavour-packed thickened dark sauce. There’s little to deny well-executed roast meat, and So Good Char Chan Tang’s iteration proves to be entirely dependable and worthy of returns.
Some menu items run from wee hours of the morning, right when the restaurant opens its doors at 8am. Granted, you won’t find plates of fried rice and hor fun ready for orders, though I think that’s for the better of everyone’s waistline. Offerings then are not all scarce, though. Breakfast platters of scrambled eggs, crust-off toasts, and thin slices of ham are the usual, then there’s also bowls of smooth congee for all things warm and comforting.
An ample serving of Century Egg & Lean Meat Congee (S$6.50) sits at the table, billowing puffs of steam upward into my camera lens. Give it a good stir, and you’ll find stringy threads of pork clinging on to impressively silky congee. It’s a wonderfully creamy affair, made only more luscious with rich pieces of century egg. I reckon this one will deliver heavy gratification on cold, rainy days.
Elsewhere, there’s the ubiquitous Scrambled Egg Thick Toast (S$3.30)—So Good Char Chan Tang’s faithful paean to the motherland of Hong Kong. When in Rome, my friend, when in Rome. Fluffy scrambled egg droops lovingly over white toasted bread—a timeless combination which should leave no allowance for disappointment. Yet, this one sorely misses the mark with dire seasoning, if any at all. It’s a shame because the textures here are elegantly done, proving once again that a little dash of salt does go a long, long way.
Come to So Good, and you’ll probably find tables laden with oval tins of baked rice, decked out in a bright, punchy red. My table’s no different. Every serving of Baked Tomato Pork Chop Rice (S$8.80) comes blanketed in a tomato-based sauce that’s all sorts of sweet, sour, and savoury. Underneath that, sits an egg fried rice and a meaty bone-in pork chop.
An unusual pairing? Perhaps. But the delightfully piquant and bright flavours of tomato here do beg for repeated mouthfuls. Wok-kissed rice and tender, well-seasoned pork make this one wholly satisfying. It’s no wonder that the regulars find their way back to it time and time again.
Of course, one should never leave the confines of this Hong Kong adjacent without trying the French Toast (S$3). Thick slabs of bread arrive steeped in egg and deep-fried in hot oil, then served with sliced butter and a side of sweet syrup that I recommend you pour over unabashedly.
It’s utterly delicious and now solidified as one of my all-time favourite indulgences. I mop up sweet-salty pools of syrup and melted butter, before burying my lips in tissues for a good cleaning up. Just like that, I become no different from the scrambled-egg-devouring customer before me. I’m guessing that the food here really does have that effect on people.
While I slurp up the last of the congee, I eye a lady clutching her handbag, furtively darting her eyes about in search for empty seats. We make eye contact as I promptly pack up, return my tray, and exit the restaurant. As quickly as I entered So Good Char Chan Tang, I’m back out in the scorching sun, tummy full and energy restored. It’s no-frills dining at its very best, and I’m all for it.
Expected Damage: S$5 – S$10 per pax
Our Rating: 4 / 5
So Good Char Chan Tang
26 Sin Ming Lane, Midview City, Singapore 573971
26 Sin Ming Lane, Midview City, Singapore 573971