Celebrity-favourite Founder Bak Kut Teh opened its second branch at Hotel Boss last month. Made using the freshest pork, a blend of pepper (white pepper and black pepper) and spices from a recipe created by Mr Chua Chwee Whatt, the founder, Founder Bak Kut Teh is famous for its Teochew-style peppery pork rib soup.
Mr Chua was a pig farmer in Seletar in the ‘60s and ‘70s and loved eating Bak Kut Teh. There were not many versions that live up to his expectations—the raw ingredients commonly used were not of good quality. So he decided to make his own using pork from his own farm and concocting his own recipe using herbs and spices. After successful testing and tweaking through the feedback of friends and neighbours, he opened a small Bak Kut Teh eatery in Choa Chu Kang in 1978. He named it Founder, as he founded and invented the recipes himself.
Mr Chua had to move out of Choa Chu Kang and also give up his pig farming business when Singapore underwent urbanisation. By 1988, he had transitioned from farmer to restauranteur with the growing success of Founder Bak Kut Teh. Given Mr Chua’s experience as a pig farmer before he became a restauranteur, Founder Bak Kut Teh uses only superior cuts of meaty long ribs, premium short ribs and a delectable mix of both in its signature dish. Now, Founder regularly ranks as one of Singapore’s top Bak Kut Teh restaurants, and is poised to expand to neighbouring countries with its first stop in Jakarta last year.
Moving from Chua Chu Kang to Balestier in 1998, Founder Bak Kut Teh quickly became a favourite among international celebrities who would make their pit stops there for their Bak Kut Teh while in Singapore. Photos of celebrities like Chinese, Taiwanese and Hong Kong stars Jay Chou, Emil Chau, Eason Chan, S.H.E, Zhang Zi Yi and local celebrities such as Fann Wong and Stefanie Sun are plastered all over the walls of the both Balestier and Hotel Boss branch.
A smorgasbord of side dishes makes for perfect accompaniment:
If eating at Founder Bak Kut Teh is not enough, you can bring Founder Bak Kut Teh soup home and have it at the comfort of your home (with the TV on for late night supper). Founder Bak Kut Teh Spices seasoning is sold at the Balestier and Hotel Boss outlets for $20 per box, make sure you have fresh pork ribs and a good pot ready to cook the soup.
347 Balestier Road, Singapore 329777 Tel: +65 6352 6192 Business Hours: 12 to 2.30pm, 6pm to 2am (daily except Tuesdays)
500 Jalan Sultan #01-09 Singapore 199020 Tel: +65 6816 2582 Business hours: 11 am to 5 am daily
Puri Indah Mall 2nd Floor, Unit #240, Jakarta Barat 11610 Tel: +62 (021) 582 2580 Business hours: 10 am to 10 pm