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Chong Qing Grilled Fish
Photo by: Ahmad Iskandar Photography

The best Sichuan restaurants in Singapore

Turn up the heat by sitting yourself down for a Sichuan feast.

Delfina Utomo
Written by
Delfina Utomo
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Fiery. Numbing. Addictive. Sichuan cuisine is anything but bland. It is all about bold flavours built on the foundation of mouth-numbing citrusy Sichuan peppercorns, pungent garlic, dried chillies and lashings of vinegar. 

RECOMMENDED: The best Chinese restaurants in Singapore and the best dim sum in Singapore

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Raffles Place

TRY Mapo Don

An offshoot of chef Chen Kentaro's one-Michelin-starred establishment Shisen Hanten, this casual eatery in Downtown Gallery merges the Japanese donburi concept with Sichuan cuisine. Its standout dish is the Mapo Don ($10). Tender cubes of silken tofu are cooked with minced meat in a thick spicy gravy flavoured with fermented soybeans and toasted peppercorns. The mapo tofu is then poured over sticky Japanese short- grained rice. This mild dish is a good introduction to Sichuan cuisine for those who can't quite handle their spice yet.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Kallang

TRY Skewers

If you find yourself out and about late at night, Jalan Besar’s best-kept secret Chuan Chuan Le welcomes you till the wee hours of the morning – 4 am to be exact. If the extensive menu is too mind-boggling, stick to the skewer selections. Order up sticks of lamb, chicken, bacon-wrapped enoki mushrooms, scallops, sausages and gizzards, which are priced from $1. Slathered generously with Sichuan spices and loads of cumin, the sticks are grilled in the kitchen before they arrive carrying the heady scent of charcoal at your table. Snow beer, the best selling beer brand in the world, makes for the perfect accompaniment to your skewers.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown

TRY Ching Qing grilled fish

Forget your regular mala hotpot – this ancient dish created by fishermen living in Wanzhou is so much better. Grilled fish is covered in different types of flavourful broths and served with other accompaniments of your choice. Get your fix from the first restaurant to introduce the dish to Singapore, Chong Qing Grilled Fish. Choose from five types of grilled fish (prices start from $32) and seven punchy broths, including its spicy and fragrant signature made from dried chillies, peppercorns, chilli powder and a secret spicy sauce.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown

TRY Find the Chicken in the Chillies (La zi ji)

At first glance, this basket of diced fried chicken swimming in a sea of dried chillies, peppercorns and garlic looks extremely intimidating. But the fun part about the amusingly named Find the Chicken in the Chillies ($16) at Birds of A Feather is using your chopsticks to pick out bits of boneless chicken and garlic from the pile of dried chillies. The chicken pieces are bigger than the ones you find in a standard Sichuan restaurant and they are marinated with spices and then fried with peppercorn and chillies. The magic happens when the numbing sensation kicks in as you work through the dish.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Raffles Place

TRY Dan dan mian

The most famous noodle dish in Sichuan cuisine is dan dan mian, which is named after the bamboo shoulder poles (dan) Chinese street vendors used to carry the food they hawk. Try the traditional dish at Qi – House of Sichuan. Springy noodles topped with minced pork fried with preserved radish sit in a rich and creamy savoury peanut broth that isn't spicy so everyone can enjoy it.

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