After an intense Google session in search of the next food trend, former national badminton shuttler, Sean Lee, 23, and No Signboard seafood chain scion, Cheo Tian Feng, 21, decided they wanted to be the first to bring in the popular Taiwanese street food of flame-grilled diced beef to Singapore. In Taiwan, customers hankering for the popular snack readily wait in queues for up to 30 minutes. The freshly ORD-ed NS pals first hatched the idea while they were still campmates. They’ve invested $250,000 into the venture, which was still a work in process in a test kitchen when we visited last month. The boys based the flavours on the meats they’ve sampled while holidaying in Taipei, and conveyed them to their Singaporean cooks here. The stall opened about two weeks ago at the basement of Plaza Singapura. Expect to queue up to 15 minutes during peak meal times.

Huoyanshaiziniu (which means ‘diced, flamed beef cubes’ in Mandarin) is a made-in-Singapore brand, modelled after famous stalls like Huoyanniu in Taiwan’s Ximending night market. Frozen pre-sliced Australian Angus rib-eye beef cubes are served in quaint Chinese takeaway boxes, with or without Japanese rice. The bite-sized cubes are cooked on a teppanyaki griddle and finished with a blowtorch in front of customers, making for quite a show. They come with a choice of three toppings: garlic salt, seaweed and yakitori sauce.   

Each portion weighs 130g and comprises about 10 to 12 pieces, served medium-rare to medium-well, depending on your luck (no, you can’t request for your preferred doneness). They are also considering adding other meats like chicken, in future.

Click on the photo gallery above for our verdict on the food here.

#B2-49 Plaza Singapura, 68 Orchard Rd, S238839. Open daily 11am-9.30pm. Last orders at closing.  www.facebook.com/pg/huoyanshaiziniu

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