Monday, January 10, 2011

Kovan Ri Yi Beef Noodles With Video

After my post on Hock Lam Beef Kway Teow, there were a number of readers who singled out to me that there were far better beef noodles around our island.

My attention was thus brought to this very inconspicuous stall tucked away in one corner in the heart of Kovan and Hougang, in a coffeeshop that was rather quiet for that afternoon.

Little can one suspect that this humble stall can produce possibly, the best beef noodle bowl in the whole of Singapore. In fact, I had lunch prior to reaching the stall, but was tempted to try a bowl nevertheless.

Beef Noodle Soup with Various Cuts of Beef

We had a bowl of the soup variant with all forms of beef cuts thrown in. Beef slices, beef tendon, beef tripe and beef brisket could be all found swimming in the delicious broth. Speaking of the broth, you can specifically request for an enhancement of flavoring with the addition of bean paste.

And what a difference the bean paste made to the overall flavor of the soup! By itself, the soup was really flavorsome and was already by far, the best beef broth I have tasted. The bean paste simply moved it to a different level altogether.

But what really stood out was the beef slices. I had mentioned previously that I could never find tender beef slices anywhere in Singapore. Well, I was wrong. The beef slices were cooked medium pink and was simply gorgeous and tender.

Preserved Shallots Dip

Unlike most beef noodle stalls, Ri Yi does not serve the usual prawn paste dip for the beef. Instead, they came up with a rather unique preserved shallots dip which really brought out the flavors of the beef with the acid from the dip mixture. The crunchy texture of the shallots also mixed well in a spoonful of beef noodle goodness.

I must admit, Ri Yi really proved to be more than just impressive. I have found my beef noodle nirvana here.

Kovan Ri Yi Beef Noodles
Block 210, Hougang Street 21

Written, filmed, edited and directed by Silverchef Productions.
Shot and edited entirely on Apple's Iphone 4 and at Bishan Junction 8 on 70's camera stock.
No beef brisket was harmed in the shooting of this video.
"The Beast of Burden" performed by Lee DeWyze.


  1. Imagine having 2 lunches one after another. Didn't know you can still stomach this 2nd bowl and it was not small.

  2. Glad you like this recommendation. However, I wouldn't put it as the best just comparing to Hock Lam which I think after the Grandfather passed on and the father passed down to the daughter, it has gone so much downhill like on a ski slope. So much so that you don't even know if they are Hainanese or Teochew.

    BTW, that is ferments black bean and not bean paste.

    Go try Empress Place Beef Kway Teow ( that also has the Hock Lam heritage - more faithful to the original - down to the dried version)at 936 Upper East Coast Road. Make sure David is there as the staff doesn't cook so well. Just like when boss of Re Yi is not around.

  3. Sincere apology. I was referring to Hock Lam at Far East Square, Upper Serangoon Road and Bukit Panjang Plaza. They are also rather pricey for the portion. Re Yi and Toa Payoh Hwa Heng has the best value so far.

  4. Will try this kovan branch. Have you tried "original hock lam beef" that the previous comment mentioned? So far thats the best quality I've had, very different from the "popular hock lam" at boat quay which I found so normal. Thanks for the vids!

    J-pop L

  5. Appreciate the recommendations posted here :) ... this original hock lam beef noodles sounds like something i should savour!

  6. Hi, I believe the stall has shifted from Hougang St 21