Eat First has reopened in Geylang with famous zi char
If you were on the zi char circuit pre-2015, you most probably would have heard of legendary Cantonese zi char eatery Sik Wai Sin in Geylang. Post-2015, you might have gone instead to one of their two sons’ restaurants: Sik Bao Sin, AKA Desmond’s Creation, or Eat First, AKA 食之為鮮 (shí zhī wèi xiān), which closed their Siglap location back in May. They’ve finally reopened—and in a nod to his parents’ eatery, Eat First is now located back where it all began, at 287 Geylang Road.
Image credit: Eat First SG
Back in the day, Sik Wai Sin was known for its very concise menu of just 12 dishes: four steamed and eight stir-fried. It’s said that the OG founder of Sik Wai Sin made his two sons each specialise in one technique, of which Desmond was taught the art of stir-fry, while Steve, who now cooks at Eat First, learned how to master his father’s steamed dishes.
Image credit: Alvin Choo
You’ll find 13 dishes on the menu at Eat First today, with Steamed Chicken ($20/$28) in place of the Sesame Oil Chicken that Steve’s father used to have. Simply steamed with chicken fat and scallions, a tip for enjoying this dish is to tip a bowl of rice in at the end and mix it up with all the drippings.
Image credit: Alvin Choo
A must-order is Bean Curd w Prawns ($22/$30), where deep-fried rectangles of tofu and prawns sit in a wok-kissed seafood gravy, laced with swirls of egg. You’ll definitely want to have this with rice.
Image credit: @thetwoeaters
It’s hard to pick the best items to order; it’s such a short menu of well-done dishes. There’s Steamed Mince Pork w Salted Fish ($18)—unlike at most other eateries, the minced pork here is hand-chopped so you really get good texture and bite in each mouthful.
Image credit: SL Wong
Another steamed dish is Steamed Fish Head ($30), which can be found on almost every table dining at Eat First. The star of this dish is the fermented bean sauce, which is supposedly mixed and left to stand for at least three months before it’s spooned on the fish to steam. If that wasn’t flavour enough, you’ll also get pork lard, shallots, and sliced red chilli on the super fresh fish head.
Image credit: @bradeatsmarj
Balance out the steamed dishes with Sweet n Sour Pork ($20/$28) or Fried Ginger Chicken ($28)—both of these are crowd favourites.
Image credit: @brainkoh
Otherwise, there’s Fried Kailan w Prawns or Beef. Whichever protein you pick, it’s priced at $22 or $30 for small or medium portions respectively. Round off the meal with Black Chicken Soup ($30) or Watercress Soup ($20) too.
Address: 287 Geylang Road, Singapore 389334
Opening hours: Daily 11:45am to 2:30pm, 5:45pm to 9:30pm
Tel: 6443 8434
Eat First is not a halal-certified eatery