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Photo credit: LIM CHEE GUAN

Which Bak Kwa brands are Singaporean youths’ favourite?

From retail shops to hawker stalls, everyone has different opinions on which store sells the best Bak Kwa.

Shannon Kuan
Shannon Kuan

Weird talents include playing the violin, but with a ukulele and a clothes hanger.


Published: 26 January 2021, 12:55 PM

With Chinese New Year just two weeks away, the time to stockpile festive snacks and goodies, such as love letters and pineapple tarts has come. Of course, when you talk about Chinese New Year snacks and goodies, you can’t leave out Bak Kwa, a Chinese salty-sweet dried meat product similar to jerky. 

Personally my favourite snack, I would gladly eat any Bak Kwa I see regardless of the brand. But everyone has different tastes and preferences, so I decided to ask different youths to find out their favourite Bak Kwa brands.

1. Bee Cheng Hiang

The first brand name that comes to many minds when you mention Bak Kwa in Singapore is probably Bee Cheng Hiang.

 

A Bak Kwa classic, you can spot a Bee Cheng Hiang store in almost every Singapore mall. PHOTO CREDIT: BEE CHENG HIANG

 

Jovan Chong, 19, said: “Everyone knows Bee Cheng Hiang! It’s so convenient as they have stores everywhere. I have one just one MRT stop away from me so it’s easy to buy whenever I want to.”

Roxanne Tan, 19, added: “Bak Kwa from other brands can sometimes be too hard or oily, but Bee Cheng Hiang has a nice bite to it and is just right for me.”

2. Lim Chee Guan

Probably the most popular brand, Lim Chee Guan is known for their long queues. We all know what Singaporeans think about places with long queues – it’s probably something really good. 

Toh Cheng Yee, 19, said: “After I’ve had Bak Kwa from Lim Chee Guan, I stopped eating the rest and this is coming from someone who doesn’t usually eat Bak Kwa!

“They’re very consistent, have the right amount of sweetness and spiciness and you can tell their Bak Kwa is freshly cooked. It’s not oily, charred or tough to eat.”

 

Cheng Yee said her Malaysian relatives fell in love with Lim Chee Guan after she introduced the brand to them. PHOTO CREDIT: LIM CHEE GUAN

3. Kim Hua Guan

Instead of retail shops, Kim Hua Guan is a hawker stall located at People’s Park Food Centre and Toa Payoh that grills your Bak Kwa right in front of you.

 

Their Bak Kwa is freshly grilled over charcoal and served immediately. PHOTO CREDIT: KIM HUA GUAN

 

Britney Tan, 19, said: “I feel that the cut of the Bak Kwa meat isn’t too thick and dry, which makes it easy to snack on without feeling too surfeiting. As for taste, I like that it has a nice kick of char which I find lacking in other brands.

“You know Kim Hua Guan’s Bak Kwa is handmade because it’s organically shaped!”

4. Fragrance

Fragrance is another Bak Kwa retail store that can be found in almost every part of Singapore. If you’re late on buying your CNY goodies and need some Bak Kwa urgently, this is the place for you. 

It’s also good for those on a budget because Fragrance is cheaper compared to most other stores. 

 

Their pig shaped Bak Kwa are extra adorable and delicious. PHOTO CREDIT: FRAGRANCE

 

Ruth Chan, 19, said: “My parents usually buy Bak Kwa from Fragrance as it’s cheaper than other brands. I like that it’s quite juicy, sweet, and tastes good when paired with other foods. However, what I don’t particularly fancy is how oily it can get.”

5. Kim Peng Hiang

Another brand with long snaking queues of people waiting to get their hands on some Bak Kwa, Kim Peng Hiang, located along Changi Road, is known for their unique and authentic-tasting Bak Kwa that is sure to delight.

 

Kim Peng Hiang’s signature pineapple Bak Kwa might sound off-putting at first, but is loved by many. PHOTO CREDIT: INSTAGRAM/@JALL_PIX

 

Ngo Yong Zhe, 16, said: “The meat is thick and chunky, unlike the usual thin slices of Bak Kwa. It has a smoky natural flavour and feels more homemade.”


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