Friends were mentioning that we should try some Fish Steamboat for the evening and we went through a list of popular eating places and decided that we should explore the shop house in Balestier as its has been popular and long standing in that area.
It was nearing dinner time and for walk-in customers we had to join the snaky long queue as we did not make any reservations.
While waiting for our tables, we were told to look into the menu and decide what to order. There were seats outside the restaurant to let customers rest while waiting, however the number of seats could not accommodate all the people that were waiting. Some of them have to stand on the pavement which is just next to the road and we find it quite dangerous, also blocking the pedestrians who were passing by us.
We waited for quite sometimes and while watching both human and the traffic, we managed to catch the beautiful blue hour during that day.
About an hour of wait, we finally got our table. Order taking was fast and soon, our dishes were up on the table.
Spinach has a well balanced with depth of flavour coming from the mixture of normal, century and salted eggs. I'm the one who usually love to grab some of the vegetable gravy with my rice but not in this case as it is more of diluted and too much water content in the dish.
Har Cheong kai aka Prawn Paste Chicken's depth of flavour is there and it was marinated long enough with the fermented prawn paste. Wings were plump and crispy at its first bite, letting out its hot juicy flavours.
This was what we were attracted to Whampoa Keng. The steamboat stock was milky and tasted great. Ingredients include the chunks of fish, fried yam, cabbages, seaweed, herbs and hints of fried sole fish taste were spotted. Charcoal as left burning throughout the session in the middle of the pot.
The entire eating area was cramp and servers have to be extremely careful not to knock over the hot steamboat into others. Not only that, the entire place was smoky with steam rising up from each table's hot pot.
Their prices are on a steeper side if we were to compare the same meals to other Fish Head Steamboat. For that time taken for us to queue and grab a table, I would not mind exchange Whampoa Keng Fish Head Steamboat for other eating places. However, taking a look at the crowd, it seems like big families with elderly were enjoy such dinner sessions. Perhaps this traditional name of Fish Head Steamboat already have a group of their die hard fans who love Whampoa Keng's style of preparing the Steamboat.
Keep it up!