Soups are to me, soul food. Packed with flavour, nutrients and just good ol’ fashioned warmth, I look forward to dining with a bowl of soupy essence by the side. I was, therefore, glad that Souper Tang (or Tang Shifu as the Malaysian brand is known) has now opened its doors at The Centrepoint. With 18 outlets under its belt, Souper Tang is well known for its commitment to serving nourishing fare whipped up with an assortment of Chinese herbs while keeping each dish enjoyable.
Though Chinese herbal soups are its main fare, the restaurant does serve up much more than just that heady broth. There is also a unique array of dishes such as the Home-braised Pork Belly in Rich Dark Sauce to the Steamed chicken with Cordyceps Flower and Essence of Chicken. Or if you are in the mood for a luscious piece of oily fish, go for the Claypot Atlantic Codfish with Fish Maw.
I started off the meal with the Souper Tang Signature Soup ($26.90++ for two; $39.90++ for four). This concoction of American ginseng slices, ginseng root, cordyceps flower, conpoy, shiitake mushrooms and fish maw, amongst others, was simple, clear and richly flavoured. Despite the liberal use of herbs, the dish was balanced and easy to enjoy.
My favourite soup for the night had to go to the Shi Quan – 10 Herbs Soup ($15.90++ per portion). The soup’s dark tones did not betray any excessive bitterness and the use of wolfberries, Angelica root and osmanthus bark made each sip crisp, sweet and enjoyable.
I have to also give a thumbs up to the Mee Sua tossed in XO abalone sauce ($3.90++). Although it looked rather ordinary upon serve, I was deeply impressed with the use of scallion oil and punchy, savoury XO abalone sauce that was both umami, sweet and refreshing. Enjoy it slowly, or slurp it down quickly, whichever makes you happy.
The Home-Braised Pork Belly in Rich Dar Sauce ($18.90++) proved that Souper Tang is definitely much more than just soups. Each piece of fatty pork glistened in contrast under the sharp tungsten mall light’s, and the flavours proved remarkable. While it is definitely not Dongpo Rou, this is definitely a good, individual creation made with herbs such as Angelica root, star anise and orange peel.
Veggies wise, there is the Stir-fried French Beans with Pu-Er ($11.90++). While flavourful, I thought that the sheen on it was a little too much to bear.
The restaurant also has a one pot dish such as the Signature Souper Pesto Pot ($25.90++ for 2-3). Its assortment of vegetables such as beancurd sheets and tau kwa would probably appeal to some but the pesto, made out of the brand’s in-house (and secret) pesto mix, is definitely an acquired taste and not one readily embraced.
But if it’s one dish that I had to order when I’m back it would be the Claypot Atlantic Codfish with Fish Maw ($29.90++). The cod was cottony smooth, and its flavour was well complemented with the umami, savoury rich gravy that is constantly bubbling over an open fire below.
End off the meal with the restaurant’s homemade Beancurd ($3.50++). It is served chilled and comes with either caramel or ginger syrup. I loved the ginger choice for its touch of spiciness.
In all, Souper Tang does a great job in serving up a comforting bowl of hearty, warm soup – especially so when there is a particular craving for it. Though its presentation can get a little messy at times, the restaurant makes up for it with robust flavour. I would love to be back for more, especially for a bowl of 10 herbs soup and that claypot Atlantic codfish with fish maw.
Thank you Souper Tang for the invitation.
176A Orchard Road
Reservations: 6737 6772
Daily; 11am to 10pm