Founder Bak Kut Teh Restaurant 发起人肉骨茶餐馆

A couple of nights ago, I had dinner with Vanessa and Sam at Founder Bak Kut Teh (BKT) in Balestier Road. I have eaten there quite a few times but had never taken presentable photographs of the meal. Luckily, I had a chance to do so a couple of nights ago.

Whoa! You mean I have to get in line?

Whoa! You mean I have to get in line?

My children likes to eat at Founder Bah Kut Teh for several reasons. Firstly, they prefer the peppery BKT in comparison to the herbal ones. Secondly, they find the ribs tender and the broth tasty. Thirdly, this shop was in our residential district and opens till late. As I mentioned before, we usually have late dinners because of my children’s working hours.

Founder Bah Kut Teh @ Balestier Road. My children felt their waiting in line and their spending on BKT meal at this shop worthwhile.

Founder Bah Kut Teh @ Balestier Road.
My children felt their waiting in line and their spending on BKT meal at this shop worthwhile.

Inside the shop, the walls are pasted with the endless photographs of famous Hong Kong, Singaporean and Taiwanese artistes.

Inside the shop, the walls are pasted with the endless photographs of famous Hong Kong, Singaporean and Taiwanese artistes.

Because we had already ordered our food while in the queue, they came pretty quickly. Starting at 6 o'clock: Youtiao, pork ribs, beanskin (taukee), preserved salted vegetables (chye buay), two more pork ribs, pig's small intestines and pig liver.

Because we had already ordered our food while in the queue, they came pretty quickly.
Starting at 6 o’clock: Youtiao, pork ribs, beanskin (taukee), preserved salted vegetables (chye buay), two more pork ribs, pig’s small intestines and pig liver.

The Youtiao is not as crisp as those freshly fried hot ones in markets. Although these are cold and a little dense, they managed to retain enough chewy texture when soaked in the hot peppery soup. More importantly, there’s no rancid oil smell and taste which I’ve encountered from another famous BKT shop in Havelock Road.

Youtiao S$1.50 Also known as You Char Kueh is Chinese dough fritters made of wheat flour.<br />We usually have these for breakfast and tea-time snacks but they make a good companion to soaking up soupy dishes like BKT.

Youtiao S$1.50
Also known as You Char Kueh is Chinese dough fritters made of wheat flour.
We usually have these for breakfast and tea-time snacks but they make a good companion to soaking up soupy dishes like BKT.

Braised beancurd skin (Taukee) S$3. Ordinary but we liked it and ordered another afterwards.

Braised beancurd skin (Taukee) S$3.
Ordinary but we liked it and ordered another afterwards.

Whenever we eat BKT, our standard individual menu would consist of a bowl of white rice or noodles (usually rice), BKT with prime ribs whenever available, youtiao, preserved salted vegetables and braised beancurd skin. If there are more people, we would include offals, beancurd puffs (taupok) and stewed pig’s trotters in dark soy.

Preserved Salted Vegetables (Chye Buay) S$3. The sugar and salt of the preserved vegetables was well balanced with a teeny weeny hint of sour tang.

Preserved Salted Vegetables (Chye Buay) S$3.
The sugar and salt of the preserved vegetables was well balanced with a teeny weeny hint of sour tang.

While we were in line at the queue outside, a waitress came out to show us their menu and took our orders. They have 4 types of BKT offered on the menu but she said they’d ran out of the “prime ribs only” so we had the mixed, comprising of prime and standard ribs.

Since variations in the thickness of the pork rib’s meat and bone, as well as levels of fat in each cut, can alter the flavour and texture of the prepared dish, prime ribs or loin ribs are regarded highly by BKT connoisseurs. As there are under 15 prime ribs per pig, they usually cost more than standard ribs, too.

There were 3 pieces of meaty ribs per bowl which cost S$8, each

There were 3 pieces of meaty ribs per bowl which cost S$8, each

I am happy to learn that Mr. Chua, the founder of Founder Bah Kut Teh, stands firm on using only fresh pork for his fare because there’s a huge disparity in terms of taste for the meat’s texture and the natural sweetness of broth if one should use imported frozen ribs. And there’s no fooling this man when it comes to the quality of pork as Mr. Chua was a pig farmer before our government decided to shut down the country’s pig farms for environmental reasons. From thence, he took on the challenge to come up with his own recipe of BKT and through many experimentations found one that he was satisfied with, hence the name Founder Bak Kut Teh.

This was our 4th bowl.

This was our 4th bowl.

Every now and then, an attentive staff would walked past with a metal jug of the pork broth and asked if we wanted to have our bowls refilled. This may seem to be a normal service in BKT shops yet I have heard of some arrogant owners refusing refill. Back on track, the peppery broth here was robust and we could taste the natural sweetness of the pork. If msg was used, it should be minimal.

Chitterlings. The small pig's intestines had a hint of bitterness that day.

Chitterlings.
The small pig’s intestines had a hint of bitterness that day.

We had offals like the small pig’s intestines and liver soup. Somehow, the intestines were a little bitter and did not sit well with the children. I was the only person eating it and there were leftovers.

While in the queue ordering, we had requested that the pig’s liver be cooked 70% doneness. The waitress told us that they do not fully cook the liver so we left it to the cook to prepare it in his usual way. We’re happy with our lot. As you can see the soup for this dish was murkier and darker and that’s because of the blood. My family do not drink the soup from this bowl but I know some folks find drinking this bloodied broth especially good for those with anaemic conditions.

Liver Soup. The liver was cooked till slightly pink inside which is the preferred way for eating this dish. Thus, you can see that the broth was darker (blood) and more murky.

Liver Soup.
The liver was cooked till slightly pink inside which is the preferred way for eating this dish.
Thus, you can see that the broth was darker (blood) and more murky.

S$69.20<br />for 4 bowls of pork ribs soup (BKT), 2 beancurd skin (taukee), liver, intestines, salted vegetables, youtiao, coconut drink, coke, towels and GST.<br />There's no Service Charge. The caricature is Mr. Chua Chwee Whatt, founder of Founder Bah Kut Teh.

S$69.20
for 4 bowls of pork ribs soup (BKT), 2 beancurd skin (taukee), liver, intestines, salted vegetables, youtiao, coconut drink, coke, towels and GST.
There’s no Service Charge.
The caricature is Mr. Chua Chwee Whatt, founder of Founder Bah Kut Teh.

There's always a queue it seemed. This was taken after we've had our dinner and was on the opposite side of the road on our way for some desserts.

There’s always a queue it seemed.
This was taken after we’ve had our dinner and was on the opposite side of the road on our way for some desserts.

We were satisfied with our meal. The price was on the high side but we didn’t mind as the restaurant uses fresh pork. The service was attentive enough. I asked Vanessa if she would recommend her friends, should they be looking for a BKT meal, to eat here and she said yes!

Founder Bak Kut Teh 发起人肉骨茶餐馆
Address: 347 Balestier Road,
Singapore 329777.

Tel: (+65) 6352 6192.

Operating hours: Closed on Tuesdays
Lunch: 12noon – 2pm
Dinner/Supper: 6pm – 2.30am

Founder Bak Kut Teh @ Rangoon Road
Address: 154 Rangoon Road,
Singapore 218431.

Tel: (+65) 62920938.

Operating hours: Closed on Wednesdays
9am – 10.30pm

Happy eating 🙂

Links to other posts on BKT below:
OLD STREET BAK KUT TEH 老街肉骨茶
SOON HUAT BAK KUT TEH 顺发肉骨茶
RONG CHENG BAK KUT TEH 榕城肉骨茶

KEDAI BAK KUT TEH HIN HOCK 兴福肉骨茶
KIANG KEE BAK KUT TEA RESTAURANT 强记早市肉骨茶
MEI HUA AH BEE BAK KUT TEH 华美亞B肉骨茶
SHOON FA BAK KUT TEH 顺发肉骨茶

For simple recipe:
BAK KUT TEH 肉骨茶 – MY HOME RECIPE

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