Mak’s Noodle Singapore is the latest ‘hot’ restaurant to open in Singapore. The noodle shop in Centrepoint, Orchard Road, is run by the highly acclaimed noodle restaurant from Hong Kong. We tried to beat the crowds by arriving early but the crowds beat us instead. At 11 am (opening time) there was already a queue. Thankfully, the turnover was fast and the wait was not too bad. The place is not conducive to lingering so most people eat and leave rather quickly.
Mak’s Noodle Singapore is quite a down-to-earth place. A simple dining area and an equally simple, compact kitchen which you can look in through the glass partitions. Dining here was quite a squeeze as the tables are placed very close together, but somehow, the atmosphere was right for a Hong Kong style noodle shop. The staff were courteous, straight to the point and handled the pressures of new systems and hungry customers well. This was not a posh dining place and they do not pretend to be one. The only ornaments here were the flying saucers dangling from the ceiling.
It was also pleasing to note that the people waiting to try this new restaurant were not the usual well-dressed foodies, trying to out-do each other in being the first to be there and to be the first to post on Instagram. Instead, we noticed a good proportion of our fellow diners were the not-so-young aunties and uncles who obviously wanted to re-live a nice culinary experience in Hong Kong at Mak’s Noodles.
The menu was presented in a fan-shaped board and contained just three sections. Soup noodles, tossed (we usually refer to them as ‘dry’) noodles and side dishes. We selected one item from each section.
The wanton noodle ($6.90) was of course the compulsory item to eat here. It was a normal sized bowl and the wanton noodle was served with the wantons buried inside. We had to dig them out to be photographed. We like the taste and texture of the noodles. Very thin – similar to the thickness of bee hoon but very springy and we believe very ‘ Q’ is the technical word to describe it. The wantons are succulent and fresh. Beauty in simplicity.
The tossed noodle with beef brisket ($9) had the same kind of noodle, but this time the dish came with more substantial protein in the form of the beef brisket. The brisket was well cooked. Soft but still resistant to the bite so it was not a walkover. The gravy was not as strong as some we have tried before – it is a lighter and more natural tasting dish.
True to its Hong Kong origins, the sauces laid out at the table were slightly different from those we are used to in the usual Singapore noodle restaurants. The usual oily chilli paste was missing and was sorely missed. In its place there was a mild creamy kind of sauce.
Our final dish was the kai lan in oyster sauce ($4.90). We thought it was very good. Crunchy stems and the leafy bits had the robust kai lan taste.
Overall, it was an enjoyable lunch at Mak’s Noodle Singapore. How does it compare with equivalent dishes from Chinese noodle restaurants in Singapore? We would say that it’s different. Mak’s Noodle Singapore’s items seem less oily and were simpler. Our local shops have the chilli sauce which goes so well with beef brisket. Whether you prefer one over the other is a matter of taste. The best feature was the texture of the noodles at Mak’s. Best wanton noodle in Singapore? Frankly we have not tried enough noodles in Singapore to make that call but it certainly would be in the running for such a title.
Finally, a small point that deserves mentioning. We were glad that there was no towels, peanuts, pickles laid out on the table and we did not have to deal with the extra expense of such items at Mak’s Noodle Singapore. This no frills approach is commendable.
Overall Rating: 3 TOPs
Mak’s Noodle Singapore
#01-63/64 Centre Point
Tel: +65 6235 5778
Opening Hours: 11am to 10pm
Nearby Station: Somerset