Food Review: Friends Kitchen HK At Neil Road | Nostalgic Shophouse Hong Kong Teahouse Cafe Near Maxwell MRT Station
The Place After a successful opening in Springside Walk at The Brooks for Friends Cafe HK (朋友冰室) in 2021, Friends Kitchen HK (朋友小厨) at Neil Road is the newest casual HK teahouse restaurant concept by the same husband and wife duo team. It is a two-storey shophouse space at Neil Road for the casual Hong Kong style ‘char can teng’ teahouse with a signboard at its entrance which says “朋友” (friends in English).
With an al fresco outdoor space and an interior dining which takes after the quintessential teahouse decor and vibes in Hong Kong with a mix of tables and banquette seating.
The outdoor space is quite spacious, though I would not imagine anyone sitting here in the middle of the day.
There is also a dining space on level two.
The Food The main difference of Friends Kitchen HK and Friends Cafe HK is that the new Friends Kitchen HK focuses more on classic Hong Kong “Da Pai Dang” (大排档) dishes like Stir-fried Beef Cube In Wasabi Sauce (S$18) and Braised Pork Belly With Red Beancurd Pot (S$20).
For a start, I had the Pork Chop Pineapple Bolo Bun (S$9.60) where I added butter (S$1) to it. It sounds pricey for a Bolo Bun dish, though it comes with a huge slab of pork chop. There are also slices of pineapple within, though I thought that it would be much better and easier to eat if the pork chop is boneless. The Bolo Bun itself could be more buttery too.
There are also various set meals to choose from, where I tried the Luncheon Meat & Fried Egg With Noodles (S$10) which comes with a complimentary toast with butter, and a free side dish of your choice where I chose the scrambled eggs.
A sinful treat, this is a classic Hong Kong cafe dish where the chicken broth is comforting, and the two thick slices of luncheon meat are satisfying.
My favourite dish here is the Baked Pork Chop Rice (S$14), a tomato base baked rice with cheese. The texture of the rice is moist and the pork chop here is interestingly more tender than the one I had within the Bolo Bun.
In terms of beverages, go for the Homemade HK Milk Tea (S$3.60/hot), Yuan Yang (S$4/hot) or the Red Bean With Ice & Milk (S$4.60).
Dessert wise, I had the Fresh Milk Steamed Egg (S$5), a dessert I often order whenever I am in a teahouse in Hong Kong. This version is not too sweet, and you can expect a fresh milk flavour with a pudding texture.
Rants Prices of some dishes are on the higher end (rental is a killer I bet). No credit cards accepted for now, though you can pay via PayNow or PayLah!.
Will I Return Again? It is interesting that Friends Kitchen HK has chosen to open along Neil Road as there is no similar concept in the vicinity. There is no doubt that it is challenging to run a shophouse dining concept in a prime location, and the best part of this concept is the wide variety of dishes which remind you of what you could get in Hong Kong, as well as the Hong Kong teahouse vibes.
Taste bud: 3.5/5
Hole in the pocket: 3/5
Overall Experience: 3.5/5
Friends Kitchen HK (朋友小厨)
78 Neil Road
Monday to Sunday: 11am to 3pm; 5pm to 10:30pm
Ranted by The Ranter
Taste like HK yummy
Nearest we can get in SG!
Good foods excellent service.
Glad you like it