This six-month-old Shanghai-style la mian and xiao long bao stall at a Holland Drive kopitiam is helmed by a chef with some serious cred. Li Huaizhi, 49, worked as a dim sum chef at Crystal Jade and Tung Lok restaurants for a few years each, before setting up his stall here. The Chinese native from Liao Ning, who came to Singapore more than a decade ago, says: “I’ve been making xiao long bao as well as noodles for more than 20 years”. The soft-spoken man invested less than $20,000 in his stall. He says, “I wanted to be my own boss and give it a go even though I knew that it can be quite tough.”
SLOW AND STEADY: His wife, who works as a Chinese teacher in Singapore, only helps out at the stall on weekends. Meanwhile, his 21-year-old son, who studies in a university here, isn’t keen on working as a hawker. So Huaizhi hired a former colleague to help full-time. He says: “It’s also not easy to get people to know about my stall as I’m not great at marketing. For me, what matters most is when customers tell me that they enjoy my food. We chose to set up shop at this coffee shop as there aren’t any stalls here offering what we are selling. The crowd is quite good too, and rental is affordable at $3,000 a month. I’m glad to say that business has been brisk so far!”
Check out the photo gallery above for our review of the food here.
Supreme Ramen Xiao Long Bao is at #01-359 Blk 46, Holland Dr, S270046, Tel: 9798-2211. Open daily 8am to 8.30pm, last orders at closing.