Tow Kwar Pop: 54-year-old Michelin-recommended charcoal grilled rojak stall in Tiong Bahru Market

Tucked away in Tiong Bahru Market lies a rojak stall that is on the down low, despite having been featured in the Michelin Guide 2023. Tow Kwar Pop serves old-school rojak which makes for an excellent snack.

Tow Kwar Pop — Storefront

Tiong Bahru is home to many eateries we cannot live without. From iconic bakeries like Tiong Bahru Bakery or newer places like Eonni Korean BBQ, it’s safe to say that this neighbourhood’s bellies remain satisfied.

Tow Kwar Pop — Surroundings

Because of this, I was not too surprised at the crowd in the late morning. The market was full of hustle and bustle, with many folks here for a quick bite. Long queues were made at some of the popular stalls, a prime example being Hong Heng Fried Sotong Prawn Mee. 

Tow Kwar Pop was one of the quieter stalls among the bustle. Customers were given impeccable customer service, with speedy food preparation and a heartwarming smile (courtesy of the friendly stall uncle).

Tow Kwar Pop — Grilling

Having a quick chat led to me learning that this stall had been operating for 54 years. This second generation legacy had been passed down to the current stall uncle by the previous owner. History is a trait that this rojak stall definitely has.

Tow Kwar Pop — Stall Uncle

This stall is definitely a rare one, having a limited menu of just 1 item — Rojak Set. Worry not, as you can add on specific ingredients if you wish. Extra you tiao for me please!

Having been featured in the Michelin Guide and various food publications, I was curious if Tow Kwar Pop was worth the hype. Would my curiosity kill or satisfy? There was only one way of finding out.

What I tried at Tow Kwar Pop

Funnily enough, I usually avoid rojak. The heavy sweet sauce has the tendency of overpowering ingredients, making for a sticky, intense sweetness. Unexpectedly, Tow Kwar Pop’s Rojak Set (S$5) was thoroughly enjoyed.

Tow Kwar Pop — Rojak Set

Unlike the other places I have tried, the sauce lathered over was extremely light. What I loved most was that the sweetness was not that of a syrup, but rather a lighter sauce. I felt that the condiment was a perfect complement to the ingredients, giving a balance which was well adored. 

Soon Heng Rojak: Super famous rojak in TPY with heaploads of ingredients & a symphony of flavours

The spicy prawn sauce looked intimidating, but was well appreciated. Despite being practically allergic to spice, I enjoyed the lingering kick of heat. However, I could not quite get the prawn flavour, which could have added more depth to the rojak.

Tow Kwar Pop — Tau Pok

The set certainly did not lack ingredients. It was like a mountain on the plate, as it was loaded with fruits like pineapple and the classic savoury items. Trying each piece and guessing the flavour profile made for an exciting treasure hunt. 

My favourite definitely had to be the Tau Pok, which was a crunchy treat. Surprisingly, the combination of the vegetables — bean sprouts and cucumber paired with the beancurd exterior — was perfect. It made for a great refreshing packet, with the sauce coating intensifying the shiokness

The fried tofu skin was a close second, as the rich soy flavour made a treat. I loved how neutral it was, making a great dipping snack with both the sauces.

Tow Kwar Pop — Pineapple

Of course, I could not neglect the fruits. The hint of the sweet pineapple and apples satisfied the fruit addict I was. A piece of advice is that the spicy sauce makes a wonderful accompaniment. 

However, the acidity from the shredded green papaya was surprisingly tasty. On one hand was the sour from the papaya, and on the other was the sweet company of the dark sauce, making a balanced set.

Final thoughts

For me, Tow Kwar Pop has proven to be a hidden gem in the vast Tiong Bahru Market. The Rojak Set made a great morning snack before work, leaving me satiated yet not overly full. Those afraid of food coma, this stall should most definitely be on your go-to list. 

Be sure to enjoy this before heading off to grab coffee at a swaggy cafe nearby!

Expected damage: S$4 – S$5 per pax

Gu Zao Rojak: Popular 25-year-old AMK rojak stall run by only 1 uncle, with fragrant banana otah

Price: $

Our Rating: 4 / 5

Tow Kwar Pop

30 Seng Poh Road, Tiong Bahru Market, #02-06 , Singapore 168898

Our Rating 4/5

Tow Kwar Pop

30 Seng Poh Road, Tiong Bahru Market, #02-06 , Singapore 168898

Operating Hours: 9am - 3pm (Tue to Fri), 9.30am - 3pm (Sat & Sun), Closed on Mon

Operating Hours: 9am - 3pm (Tue to Fri), 9.30am - 3pm (Sat & Sun), Closed on Mon