Monday, May 26, 2008

Tanjong Rhu Pao (Geylang branch)

Various fried and baked snacks
Spotted the Geylang branch of Tanjung Rhu Pao which looked quite new. It's a small, spartan corner shop with just one display case for baked goods (above) and one standing multi-tier bao steamer rack (below). Two rather surly aunties guarded the place. I don't know why but the prices seemed a bit prohibitive. The fried/baked items here range from 70 cents to S$1.70 each. Maybe I didn't like those aunties or the feel of the place just cheapened the goods.

'Tanjong Rhu Pao Geylang

The famous char siew baos here are golf-ball sized and easily gone in two bites (for some, maybe just one). They've become a cult favourite among Singaporeans. I remember my former colleague used to bring dozens to the office. Sure, they're reasonably tasty (although very much on the sweet side), but is it worth 50 cents each? I'm not sure.

When I googled the address for this branch, the results came up as "351 Geylang Road (Lor 2)" but this shop is located at the junction of Geylang Lor 34 with Guillemard Road, facing Chung Cheng High School. Maybe they moved here recently.

At any rate, business seemed quite good. A steady stream of people popped in and out on a weekday afternoon. Despite the prices, people will still come for what they deem to be reputable snacks.



  1. That would definitely put a damper on my enjoyment of the food if the people serving/selling it is so surly or worse, rude. I'm not enough of a foodie to put up with a lack of politeness for good makan.

  2. I think so....:)
    I will definitely lose my buying urge if the seller is unfriendly or rude..

    Where in Singapore again? might see

  3. I prefer the old place, along the bridge, where one can see real human pau while buying the edibe pau :)

  4. Why don't you go to their branch in Novena area? They did just move here recently and they are adjusting to the change, the shop is hotter in the day than the old one, hence the surliness?

    If you visit them at night when there are less people (and when the pastries are sold out, they are less stressed out).

    The old place was getting very seedy, not the sort of place you would bring your hubby. Yes, "human pau" for guys.

  5. dammit your pro camera makes EVERYTHING look good! =P

  6. Kenny: yeah, surliness sure ruins the experience. If it is so painful for them to serve customers, I am very happy to help them by taking my business elsewhere.

    Maria: This place is in Geylang, near Paya Lebar.

    Anon: lol human pao! They have become what they eat!

    Kathy: Well, why don't I go to the Novena branch or visit them at night? It's because I don't think the CUSTOMER needs to bend over backwards to meet the food operator's moods! How can you expect to run a food business this way?

    Perhaps you are too kind to even consider WHY they could be surly, but honestly, this kind of poor business attitude is never justified. FYI, it was not crowded when I visited. No queue necessary, customers just one at a time.

    D: thanks! but sometimes I miss the old point and shoot's convenience! lol

  7. Looks like this is a new store. I remember the Geylang one near a overhead bridge or something. I usually get my share from Tanjong Rhu....and one mouth- 50cents gone!

  8. Actually you are right, since we pay, we should not stand for bad service. My friends always complain that I am too nice.

    Funny you should say this now because I just got scolded today by them again when we went for makan session and we got bad food and I tried to dissuade them from complaining.

  9. The landowner for the old shophouse was going to raise their rent almost 3 times so they moved

  10. They were in Lor 21 but the coffee shop owner increased the rent to SGD 28,000 per month.

    Every day, they have to sell 1,500 pao just to cover rent.

    So, they gave up Lor 21 and moved to the current location for SGD 4,000 per month.


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