Tim Ho Wan (添好運) @ Toa Payoh Central

Riding on the success of it’s first restaurant in Singapore at Plaza Singapura, Michelin star Hong Kong dim sum restaurant, Tim Ho Wan (添好運) has opened a second outlet in Singapore.

Tim Ho Wan at Toa Payoh
Tim Ho Wan at Toa Payoh

I am super happy because it is located in Toa Payoh Central, my residential neighbourhood. Now, I can boast to others that I stay near a Michelin star restaurant!

I had always wanted to try the dim sum at Tim Ho Wan, but I cannot bring myself to join the long queue at the Plaza Singapura restaurant. Queuing more than an hour for food is too crazy for me.

Now with a second outlet opened and a third one upcoming in Bedok, hopefully, the queue will spread itself out among the three restaurants. 

I was among the fortunate few who were invited for a private dinner tasting at the Toa Payoh outlet opening together with Tim Ho Wan’s chef-founder Mak Kwai Pui and the Singapore restaurants co-owner, Singapore-born, Hong Kong-based Mr Robert Chua, a well-known television personality often credited for being one of Asia’s pioneer broadcasters.

Chef Mak on the left with me and my friend, Han Joo
Chef Mak Kwai Pui on the left with me and my friend, Han Joo
Han Joo and I with the super friendly Mr Robert Chua
Han Joo and I with the super friendly Mr Robert Chua

These are the dishes I sampled:

The signature Baked Bun with BBQ Pork (S$4.50 for 3)
The signature Baked Bun with BBQ Pork (S$4.50 for 3) – Top must-try item!
A little crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside
A little crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside
Prawn dumplings ($$5.50 for 4) - I love these, the skin is thin and it's juicy inside
Prawn dumplings ($$5.50 for 4) – I love these, the skin is thin and it’s juicy inside
Fried Noodle with BBQ Pork and Soy Sauce (S$6.00)
Fried Noodle with BBQ Pork and Soy Sauce (S$6.00)
Deep Fried Dumpling with Salted Meat (S$3.80)
Deep Fried Dumpling with Salted Meat (S$3.80)
The filling
The filling
 Vermicelli Roll with Sweet and Sesame Sauce (S$4.20)
Vermicelli Roll with Sweet and Sesame Sauce (S$4.20)
Wasabi Salad Prawn Dumpling (S$5)
Wasabi Salad Prawn Dumpling (S$5)
Pan Fried Carrot Cake (S$4.50 for 3)
Pan Fried Carrot Cake (S$4.50 for 3)
Steamed Spinach Dumpling with Shrimp (S$3.80 for 4)
Steamed Spinach Dumpling with Shrimp (S$3.80 for 4)
Steamed Chicken Feet with Abalone Sauce (S$5)
Steamed Chicken Feet with Abalone Sauce (S$5)
Steamed Egg Cake (S$3.80)
Steamed Egg Cake (S$3.80) – must-try
Mango Pomelo Sago (S$5.00)
Mango Pomelo Sago (S$5.00)
Tonic Medlar & Osmanthus Cake (S$3.50) - this is good, must-try
Tonic Medlar & Osmanthus Cake (S$3.50) – this is good, must-try

Delighted with what I tried, I braved the queue over the next weekend with my wife and son, determined that my family should also savour the good stuff I had tried.

Surprisingly, the queue took only about half an hour even though it extended all the way from the restaurant entrance to the elevator. There are also seats for those queuing, so the experience was not too bad. Rachel and I did some reading while Asher was fast asleep in his stroller.

Queue outside the restaurant
Queue outside the restaurant

The food was really good. Here are some additional items I tried with my family:

Vermicelli Roll with Pig’s Liver (S$5.50) - must-try
Vermicelli Roll with Pig’s Liver (S$5.50) – must-try
Porridge for Asher
Porridge for Asher
Asher enjoying his meal
Asher enjoying his meal

So good I went back again a few days later for my farewell lunch with two of my omy.sg colleagues. I also ordered 15 boxes of the signature char siew buns to bring back as treats for my SPH colleagues. Note that the restaurant does not offer takeaway service – they will provide you with styrofoam boxes and plastic bags, but the 10% service charge and 7% GST still apply for takeaway orders.

After having eaten at Tim Ho Wan, I now understand why people are willing to queue for over two hours for it. You have to try it to understand. 🙂

Tim Ho Wan (添好運)

Address: ERA Centre, 450 Toa Payoh Lorong 6, #02-02, Singapore 319394
Tel: +65-6483-2000 (no, they do not accept reservations)

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