Malaysia’s popular Go Noodle House chain opens first outlet in Singapore
Go Noodle House sells 18,000 bowls daily across the Causeway and its owners hope to recreate its success here, beginning with its 313 Somerset outlet. No need to drive out to JB, folks.
Their special broth has prompted snaking queues across its many outlets all across Malaysia – and now you can do that in Singapore, too, when Go Noodle House opens today (Nov 29) at 313 Somerset.
Co-founded by longtime friends Lee Hon Wai, Alvin Tan Kok Meng, and Mok Wai Peun, it first opened in Kuala Lumpur in 2014 and in a short span of five years, it has expanded to 37 outlets in Malaysia and even one in Melbourne, Australia.
The Singapore outlet is their second foray overseas, with plans to expand further into New Zealand, Vietnam, Korea, Indonesia and the Philippines.
To think it all started with a dinner and an age-old family recipe.
Lee recalled how he was so impressed with a soupy rice dish prepared by Tan’s mother during a gathering, that he convinced the other two to build their entire business around that flavourful broth.
"I asked Auntie what was in her special soup and it turned out that it was the yellow rice wine (shao xing hua diao jiu) that made it so delicious!" said Lee.
The next step saw Tan seeking out experienced hawker owners for different recipes and doing more research to get the perfect noodle-broth combination.
Another secret to the soup? Forty different kinds of fish bone sourced regionally from the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia, which is then sorted into one central pot and boiled to perfection.
The original pot, which has been boiling continuously for six years, is kept in a fireproof room in Shah Alam in KL.
“It’s important that we keep that original taste,” said Tan. “Everything begins from this original pot that feeds all the different outlets in Malaysia.”
For Singapore, the broth will be frozen into blocks at minus 20 degrees Celsius and then transported over the Causeway.
According to Lee, there are plans to at least open five outlets in Singapore over the next few years – and a second one is already in the works. “We are looking at opening up in the heartlands, possibly Tampines. And if all goes well, we should be ready by March 2020,” he told CNA Lifestyle.
He added: “Our Johor Bahru outlet saw many Singaporean customers, with many asking when we’ll be opening one in Singapore,” shared Lee. “That was confidence-boosting enough to want to open over here.”
The Singapore menu will be a mixture of all the favourites from the Malaysian outlets, as well as some local exclusives.
Star dishes that will be available include their bestselling signature bursting pork meatball and mi xian noodles in premium superior soup, handmade ban mian and handmade fish paste.
Specially concocted for the Singapore menu range from fresh sliced tenggiri (mackerel) noodles, premium ribeye Australian beef slices noodles and frog noodles.
Locally, a complimentary cup of shao xing hua diao jiu is offered separately to the customer looking to elevate their mi xian noodles in fish bone broth.
There are also options to purchase bottles of traditional Chinese cooking wine of different ages – 10, 20 and 30 years – that will be kept at the restaurant available for every visit.
Go Noodle House is at 313 Somerset, #B3-37/38, 313 Orchard Rd.