Monday, November 26, 2007

Lai Lai Family Restaurant

Lai Lai Signature Beef Noodles, originally uploaded by Camemberu.
Taiwanese treats abound at Lai Lai Family Restaurant on Liang Seah Street. This simple, cosy joint seems to be helmed by a young lady with a melodious (Taiwanese maybe?) accent. She was a good host, proactively coming out to welcome potential customers.

We tried quite a few dishes here today. The signature beef noodles (S$6.80 for small portion) came in a rich, savoury, hot broth. You are given some minced salted vegetables to put on top but I don't think they lent much flavour. I liked the beef but the wheat noodles were a bit too starchy for me. I think I would have taken well to the soup if it had been SPICY!

Braised pork trotters, originally uploaded by Camemberu.
We also took the braised pork trotters lunchtime special (S$7.20) which comes with a bowl of steamed Calrose rice and a side dish (fried tofu). The pork trotters are normally S$7.90 per bowl on their own. I liked this dish. The gravy was lightly perfumed with wuxiang (five spices), not too overpowering. The pork was tender and sweet. Just a bit too fatty. Only grouse is that the pork skin itself had some leftover pig hair on certain corners.

This dish my friend had - apparently not too exciting. The shredded chicken was bland, so it didn't add much flavour to the rice. But it went well with gravy from the pork trotters!

What's REALLY good here is the salt-and-pepper chicken (S$3.90), fried with basil leaves. Amazing how the simplest of seasoning can do wonders! If I come back here, this is what I would definitely eat again. In fact, this dish makes me want to go back again. Hahaha.

I'm not sure how to translate this "cong jua bing" (S$5.90) but it's a prata-like pancake with egg and spring onions. We had the upgraded version with cheese and pork floss (S$6.90). Slightly on the bland side but not too bad if you bite into parts with pork floss. Nice pickled vegetables.

Fried beancurd side dish, originally uploaded by Camemberu.
This is just your regular tofu, cut and fried. Served with a brown sweetish dipping sauce which reeked strongly of raw garlic. Nothing particularly outstanding, just a side dish that came with the lunch set.

Mango konnyaku freeze, originally uploaded by Camemberu.
They have quite a variety of drinks here too, mainly cold ones. This mango konnyaku freeze (S$3.80) is quite delightful. It remained cold and slushy while we finished our food. The konnyaku jelly added a chewy dimension, making this like a dessert. Oh the joy of brain freeze!

Liang Seah Street has become quite the food alley. Lai Lai is a casual dining joint, decorated with minimal fuss in white. Service generally is not too bad. Seems they don't add GST to the bill but there is a 10% service charge.

20 Liang Seah Street
Tel: 6837-1556/7
Open daily 11.30am til 3am!


  1. You have any info about the lady, love?

  2. I don't think they fry the salt/pepper chicken with mint leaves. More like Chinese basil?

  3. the salt-and-pepper chicken and mint leave sounds interesting...a very contrasting taste, i can imagine...

  4. Oh is it basil? They were fried to a total crisp. Kinda minty to me but my tastebuds are still off kilter from my cold, so I couldn't tell for sure.

    Yeah, nic, quite tasty, whether mint or basil. :P

  5. Taiwanese don't do this with mint leave for god sake, i love your blog, keep up the good work but don't repeat this kind of mistake again.

  6. Jeez, I never did claim to be a Taiwanese expert - in fact, I stay away from Taiwanese food as much as I can. And I am bad at identifying herbs that are fried to death. But thanks for reading my old post, I should have corrected this long long ago.


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