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Singapore Hawker Culture
Photograph: Ethan Hu/UnsplashSingapore Hawker Culture

17 hawker stalls newly awarded with Michelin Bib Gourmand 2023

Here's our favourite hawkers that are recognised with a Bib Gourmand this year

Dawson Tan
Written by
Dawson Tan

This year, a grand total of 79 establishments made the Michelin Bib Gourmand 2023 list. Out of the 19 new awardees – a significant increase from 67 awardees on last year’s list – 17 of them are hawker stalls. While it is no secret that most look to the coveted list where tasty value-for-money dining options are given the spotlight, there isn't always a need to break the piggy bank to enjoy a taste of the best food in Singapore. And as a team that eats out (a lot), here are some of our favourite hawker picks.

Beach Road Fish Head Bee Hoon

Despite the name, you won’t find this popular hawker on Beach Road. Instead, it calls Whampoa Market Place it's home. Once the gate-kept secret of Whampoa residents, you’ll now find a long queue made up of hungry gourmands from all across the island. And you’ll probably find Time Out Singapore's deputy editor Cheryl Sekkappan in the queues one of these days, saying that “It’s out of the way for me, and queues are really long. But it is definitely worth the wait for super fresh fish and the flavourful broth.”

“Always go for the yuan yang, a mix of fresh and fried fish, for the best of both worlds!”

Know that, eventhough the humble stall opens bright and early in the morning, they usually sell out before their official closing time at 2pm.

Bismillah Biryani
Photograph: Bismillah BiryaniBismillah Biryani

Bismillah Biryani 

They weren’t kidding when they claim to serve the best Dum Biryani in Singapore. And if not for Arif Salahuddin, chef-owner of Bismillah Biryani, and his persistence to dish up an authentic plate of biryani, most of us would still be thinking of gravy-drenched rice and meat as the real McCoy. 

“I actually tear a little every time I order it. It's that good!"

For Time Out Singapore's part-time editor Simran Panaech, her first encounter with Bismillah was over dinner with friends right before the pandemic. And during the lockdowns, she counted on it to satisfy her food – and holiday – cravings: “The amalgamation of rice, meat and flavours in their biryanis reminds me of holidays in Dubai in every bite."

Char kway teow
Photograph: Singapore Tourism Board

No.18 Zion Road Fried Kway Teow

Ever since Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong gave this old stalwart a shout calling it one of his favourites, business has been booming. But that isn’t entirely why you’ll find long queues here. We allude it to the fact that things here are done the traditional way as each plate is fried upon order. Time Out Singapore's food and drink writer Dawson Tan instantly recalls this as one of his favourite hawker joints to visit for a proper dose of wok-kissed noods.

“It is delicious – albeit heart-clogging – history on a plate. One of the very few hawkers worth standing in line for.”

Stepping foot in the airy waterfront hawker centre, one just can’t ignore the smoky aromas that fill up the atmosphere. Each plate guarantees sweet and smoky sensations with a touch of spice while the imitable accompaniments of pork lard and fresh cockles complete the dish. Simply iconic.

Hui Wei Chilli Ban Mee 

Spice-loving folks ought to know about this and if they haven’t already stood in line for a bowl of fiery noods, they’ve been missing out. As Time Out Singapore's branded content editor Pailin Boonlong describes it, Hui Wei is known for its satisfyingly chewy handmade noodles, but the star of the show is the chilli. 

“Just one small dollop lends the entire bowl a fiery kick.”

From just $4, your bowl will come with hand-torn noodles and generous servings of savoury mince, meatballs, fried shallots, and crispy anchovies. And if it ever gets too spicy, we find that mixing up the ingredients with the runny egg yolk helps to balance out the spice.

Nam Sing Hokkien Fried Mee
Photo: Ahmad Iskandar Photography

Nam Sing Hokkien Fried Mee

While they’ve got a number of outlets around Singapore, it’s the Old Airport stall that’s scored a Michelin Bib Gourmand. Even for Time Out Singapore's arts and culture writer Mingli Seet, who isn’t the biggest Hokkien Mee fan in general, finds Nam Sing the exception: “I find that the noodles are not overly moist and the slow-cooking definitely contributes to its unique depth of flavour.”

The full list of Michelin Bib Gourmand 2023 includes everything from time-tested stalwarts like Outram Park Fried Kway Teow Mee and new-school hawkers like A Noodle Story to even Kotuwa, a modern Sri Lankan restaurant in the list. Hungry? Check out the full list here for what you should be eating next.

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