Rong Hua Bak Kut Teh @ Fusionopolis is our latest eating stopover as we explore the restaurants and food outlets in this R & D location in One North, Buona Vista. According to a poster displayed at the entrance, the roots of Rong Hua Bak Kut Teh (榮華肉骨茶) can be traced back to the 1920s, when the founder, Mr Chua Ah Hua migrated to Singapore from China. Ah Hua started work as a coolie but eventually became a kitchen apprentice at a well-known Teo Chew Bak Kut Teh stall owned by his village elder, Uncle Rong who later named Ah Hua his successor. They went on to develop their very own unique blend of popular pork ribs’ soup recipe, which eventually went on to be known as Rong Hua Bak Kut Teh.
Fusionopolis is a 30-hectare portion of the One North zone in Buona Vista. It is made up of a cluster of buildings that have futuristic names like Galaxis, Genexis and Symbiosis. Rong Hua BKT is located on the second floor of a building called Connexis. The One North MRT station has an exit that emerges at the basement of this building, so there is easy access from the rest of Singapore.
Rong Hua Bak Kut Teh restaurant is simply decorated to look like an old Chinese eating house. The kind that reminds us of scenes from wu xia movies where pugilistic fighters will start a fight, use chopsticks as deadly projectiles and hurl the stools at each other.
As expected of a BKT restaurant, the Rong Hua BKT menu features pork ribs and other related dishes such as pig’s stomach soup and pig’s tail. There are a few non pork items like sliced fish, braised chicken feet and vegetables. Here is a picture of a portion of the menu and a specimen order form. We ordered a pork ribs soup ($7), braised pig trotters ($6.50), sliced fish soup ($6.50), salted vegetables ($1.50) and steamed rice ($0.70).
The pork ribs soup was well presented. The soup was the clear, peppery Teochew type of bak kut teh soup. The level of ‘pepperiness’ was quite high but manageable. One of the pamphlets displayed on the table claims the good health benefits from consuming garlic and pepper. There were three sticks of ribs in the soup. The meat content was average and the taste was good. With no dreaded porky taste and with a soft but not overcooked texture, we thought that the ribs were excellent. Some cloves of garlics were served and they were creamy and tasty.
The braised pork trotters was a served in a larger portion than we had expected. This alone and rice would have been enough for lunch for two of us. There was a good mix of lean and fatty bits. Like the pork ribs, we thought that the trotters were cooked just right, with the texture of the meat and skin being of an ideal consistency.
The salted vegetables, one of our staples whenever we eat BKT was however more controversial. This was quite a fresh version of salted vegetables with still some crunch in them. Those who like this dish with crunchy vegetables will like this. Those who like them mushy will not.
The sliced fish soup (using toman fish – we think) was a disappointment. The fish had no taste of its own and it is cooked in the same soup as the pork ribs. Both our soups get topped up periodically from the same kettle. We will skip this the next time.
Overall, our lunch at Rong Hua Bak Kut Teh was a nice old-fashioned meal in a space-age building.
Overall Rating: 4 TOPs
榮華肉骨茶 Rong Hua Bak Kut Teh @ Fusionopolis
1 Fusionopolis Way , #02-13, Connexis, Singapore 138632
(Directly Above One North MRT, Circle Line)
Tel: 6469 3536
Monday to Thursday: 11:00am to 9:00pm
Friday & Saturday: 11:00am to 9:30pm
Sunday & Public Holidays: Closed