Swa Garden’s closure makes us crave for chye poh hor fun
This is what we will miss most at our favourite Teochew restaurant.
We are still mourning over the closure of well-loved Teochew restaurant Swa Garden on 16 April. Founded in 1999, the two owners cited the lack of successors and ailing health as the two main reasons to call it a day. The epicure team has spent many lunches there and it was a soul-satisfying experience each time.
What we miss is the old-school décor. Entering into the restaurant, with its sheer curtains hanging over glass walls and doors, seasoned white table cloths, fading carpet and 1980s Chinese music playing in the background, feels like you are walking into a time warp. But it's their exceptionally well-done Teochew dishes that are going to cause major withdrawal symptoms. We recall many trips to Swa Garden for the tender and flavourful Teochew braised goose, addictive orh nee (taro paste) with gingko nuts, and the highly sought-after Teochew cold crabs filled with plump meat and creamy roe.
But if there's one star dish we have to choose, it has got to be their Chye Poh Kway Teow. The kway teow is wok-seared together with shredded preserved radish and kai lan, before a dash of fish sauce is added. To round it off, it is then fried for an additional minute to get a charred and crisp flavour.
Missing the Chye Poh Kway Teow already? We have our chye poh hor fun in opeh leaf recipe to share with you. While it may not rival Swa Garden's version, it will go a long way to manage those withdrawal symptoms. So tuck in.