Zheng Swee Kee, A Stalwart in the Hainanese Chicken Rice Scene

zhengsweekee

I made a stop by Zheng Swee Kee for lunch a couple of days back as I visited Bras Basah for some school printing materials. Recalling that the outlet carried a rather decent plate of pork chop three years back, I thought it was good time to visit the store again. Zheng Swee Kee is located at Seah Street and directly across Raffles Hotel and Bras Basah Shopping Complex. Its prominent location signals the start of an entire two streets worth of Hainanese Chicken Rice stores that is popular with many Singaporeans all around. With such competition, it is definitely hard to find a particular favourite.

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Brian and I ordered the Chicken Rice set for two at $13.80. The set came with a quarter chicken, deep fried tofu in thai sauce, chye sim and two bowls of chicken rice. Quite a decent portion I must admit, with reasonable prices. I personally thought the chicken was mild and adequately tasty with the natural flavours standing out particularly well on its own. The rice was a little lacklustre in the flavour and oiliness department, resulting in a rather mild concoction that could do with sufficient uplifting. The chicken rice chilli proved decent, though necessarily mild tasting and not fiery with strong robust chicken oil flavours, unlike what my family prepares at home. A good place to drop by for a quick meal, and definitely one that would have its share of fans amongst the Chicken rice crowd.

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Deep fried tofu in Thai Sauce. Always a pleasure to have a variety on the table.

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I ordered an additional side dish of Chicken Livers ($2). It definitely is not one fancied by many, but something I grew up enjoying back home. The portion is big and definitely generous for $2 (especially if your friend does not eat it). However, the livers could do with a little softer texture instead of the firm meaty thorough texture that made the entire dish dry and slightly overwhelming.

In all, I thought the chicken was particularly decent with good emphasis on the meat, in all its natural flavours. The rice could do with a slight uplifting and paired with a more fiery savoury flavoured chilli dip. Zheng Swee Kee definitely has its share of fans that will swear by its Chicken rice flavours. I will visit the place again for a quick lunch, but perhaps venture deeper into the Seah and Purvis Streets for a wider exploration of variants of Hainanese Chicken Rice that goes beyond a single standard.

Zheng Swee Kee
25 Seah Street
#01-01
Tel : 6336 1042