I lost track of the number of times I’ve brought friends and business associates from overseas to Lau Pa Sat to try our local delicacies. The local beers, char kway teow, satay, prawn noodles and all in undisputedly Singapore’s nicest food centre never fail to impress my guests! Lau Pa Sat has received many facelifts over the decades, but care has always been taken to ensure the gazetted national monument’s unique elements were kept intact. A gorgeous Singapore landmark since 1894.
Just last month, the FairPrice Group officially launched Food Folks, Singapore’s first local food retail and F&B blended space. Food Folks @ Lau Pa Sat takes up a 7000 sqft space that houses 10 F&B brands and more than 800 food-related products from 120 local brands!
At Food Folks, you can enjoy delectable dishes from different F&B brands run by a good mix of relatively new entrepreneurs and second or third-generation owners. Some of these partners have even developed a variety of modern-Singaporean inspired dishes exclusive to Food Folks!
Different F&B Brands Serving up Delectable Cuisines at Food Folks
For all you foodies looking for a diverse food selection, there are 10 F&B brands at Food Folks to pick and choose from. You have Chef Kang’s prawn noodles, Creme and Cone’s first permanent gelateria with its freshly made gourmet waffle cones, waffle lollies, as well as unique gelato flavours like the ‘ondeh ondeh’ and sea salt Horlicks, Li Xin Teochew Fishball Noodles, and SHI HUI YUAN’s Singapore-invented Hor Fun, just to name a few!
4-year Consecutive Michelin Bib Gourmand Award Winner – SHI HUI YUAN
A queue was starting to form at SHI HUI YUAN as it was nearing lunchtime when I visited Food Folks. The Singaporean in me could not resist joining in because their signature dish – the Blissful Set – looked rather tantalising! Honestly, at $7.80, with a plethora of succulent duck, fall-off-the-bone pork ribs and tender chicken that soaked up the goodness of the really ‘gao’ (packed with flavour) braising sauce), it’s great value for your bucks. Don’t even get me started on the silky-smooth and flavourful hor fun buried under the generous servings of meat.
I found that they started from a hawker stall in Mei Ling Market in 1969. Now, they’re a 4-year consecutive Michelin Bib Gourmand Award winner (2016 – 2019). SHI HUI YUAN’s famed collagen-rich gravy and nutrient-loaded herbal braising sauce has been cooked – listen to this – uninterrupted for the last 30 years! It all started because SHI HUI YUAN’s founders, Mr Fong Pak Thim and his wife, wanted to create their special version of Singapore hor fun that is both nutritious and affordable. Over 30 herbs are used in the braising sauce – loads of goodies in this sauce to bring health & wellness benefits.
I will definitely be back to try the dishes from the other stalls. Next on my to-try list is the Michelin-starred Chef Kang’s Prawn Noodle. The prawn broth from the next table smelt heavenly and the dish looked really enticing too!
Food Folks Supports Local Brands Amidst The Pandemic
After lunch or dinner, patrons can also pick up amazing (read: addictive) goodies from the F&B retail area which is divided into 5 retail zones: Grab & Go, Love Healthy, Love Singapore, Local Delights and World Favourites. (Psst, also look out for the instagrammable spot where you can take your chio-est OOTD shots.) Trust me, you won’t be able to resist the medley of local-inspired foodstuff and snacks! For the lucky ones working in the CBD, this place opens just in time for stocking up your office pantries now that office reopening might just be on the horizon…
This latest concept at Food Folks provides an avenue to help local food retail and F&B brands grow their brand presence. Now, 70% of the over 120 retail brands available here are home-grown. This is really the perfect place to grab those mala chips, fried chicken skin and laksa potato chips for all your Christmas and New Year parties!
If you ask me, this new concept at Food Folks will go a long way in giving the sector a much-needed boost and helping local brands develop and grow even amidst the pandemic. To further support the retail and F&B businesses, Food Folks provides year-long marketing efforts and has waived the initial set-up fees (inclusive of administrative, processing and listing charges). As NTUC Enterprise and FairPrice Group CEO Seah Kian Peng says, “We understand the concerns and challenges faced by the food businesses amid the Covid-19 pandemic. To support our local food brands during this time as well as to help them plan for their future business developments, FairPrice Group will avail our various support initiatives and network for them to leverage.”
This holiday season, won’t you show some love to our homegrown food brands at Food Folks? Now, this reminds me of the time I carried 5 huge packets of salted egg potato chips in my luggage for my BFF overseas… Flavours from home warm the heart indeed – this retail spot will no doubt be a hit with tourists and travellers when global travel resumes!
Address: 18 Raffles Quay, Singapore 048582
Food Folks @ Lau Pa Sat opens daily from 10am to 10pm.