Xin Yuan Ji (新源记): Comforting & Wallet-Friendly Fish Soup Near Bugis

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The ever-popular Xin Yuan Ji ( 新原记) has to be on your list whenever you need a comforting fix of fish soup. Right in the heart of Bugis, this eatery is always teeming with hungry lunch-goers.

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One of the best parts about Xin Yuan Ji has to be that the restaurant is air-conditioned. A much needed and certainly appreciated respite from the scorching afternoon sun.

When it comes to the restaurant business, Xin Yuan Ji is no greenhorn. Having been around since 1993, they run like a well-oiled machine. As the chatty lunch crowd streamed in and orders start to pile up, the staff wasted no time in swiftly seating their patrons and taking their orders. 

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Here at Xin Yuan Ji, it would be remiss to not order their signature Fried Fish Soup Bee Hoon (S$5.80) or Sliced Fish Soup Bee Hoon (S$5.80). You can opt for clear soup or with the addition of evaporated milk. Truth be told, for me, it doesn’t feel like fish soup unless the soup has that milky-white sheen to it.

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The bee hoon strands were silky and slippery but retained quite a good bite to them. Nothing short of a satisfying slurp. On top of that, the soup was comforting and rich, and not overpowered by the addition of evaporated milk.

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Not only do you get a generous amount of fried fish pieces, but these babies were also golden and chunky. Definitely more bang for your buck.

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This might be a little counterintuitive when it comes to fried food, but I love soaking those fried fish pieces in the soup until they practically fall apart. There is nothing more satisfying than wolfing down a heaping spoonful of bee hoon and pieces of ‘soggy’ fried fish.

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For the health conscious among us, fish soup with sliced fish serves as a good alternative. It’s a lighter option, but not one that is any less delicious.

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The pieces of sliced fish were fresh and firm. I can imagine how this would serve one as a much-needed comfort when one is feeling slightly under the weather.

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Another highly recommended dish is the Crispy Prawn Paste Chicken (S$18.80) or more commonly known as har cheong gai.

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For the uninitiated, these are chicken wings marinated in fermented prawn paste, then fried to perfection. The fermented prawn paste lends quite an intense savoury note to the wings. Quite a common zi char item and one that is well-loved by many.

I would say it’s a rather odd offering at a restaurant known for their Charcoal Fish Head Steamboat or Fish Head Mee Hoon, but this is one addictive chicken dish I can’t say no to.

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Xin Yuan Ji did not disappoint, as these wings were crispy and I couldn’t wait before reaching for my second piece. There was the characteristic dried shrimp flavour that har cheong gai is known for.

While I thoroughly enjoyed these wings, I felt that paying nearly S$20 for a plate was a tad lavish. Great for sharing but if you are in need for a fix, but I reckon you’d much rather head down to your local coffee shop.

Rain or shine, nothing hits the spot quite like a steaming bowl of fish noodles. Quite an underrated dish in the realm of hawker fare but one that has to be in your arsenal of go-to comfort foods.

Not to mention, how nice would it be to refuel with a robust bowl of fish soup after a day of romping around Bugis?

Expected damage: S$6 – S$12 per pax 

Price: $

Our Rating: 4 / 5

Xin Yuan Ji (新源记)

31 Tan Quee Lan Street, #01-01, Singapore 188117

Our Rating 4/5

Xin Yuan Ji (新源记)

31 Tan Quee Lan Street, #01-01, Singapore 188117

Telephone: +65 6334 4086
Operating Hours: 11.30am - 11pm (Daily)
Telephone: +65 6334 4086

Operating Hours: 11.30am - 11pm (Daily)