Behind the scenes at PappaRich
It’s easy to tell if a restaurant loves making their food – it all boils down to effort. From exploring faraway places to find the best recipes to listening attentively to their customers’ feedback, a great restaurant goes far and beyond to make you believe in their food.
Thankfully, PappaRich checks off all these boxes. We sat down with them and uncovered 6 high-effort things they’ve been doing behind the scenes since 2012 to bring us great Malaysian cuisine without leaving Singapore.
1. They once camped in KL for 2 months to purchase the rights to a street hawker’s recipe
KL Lor Mee
It was love at first night. While scouring the streets of KL for new menu items, one of the bosses at PappaRich chanced upon a stall selling superb Lor Mee and Hokkien Mee. And just like every recipe they loved, they tried to buy it – only to be rejected.
KL Hokkien Mee
Undeterred, they visited every day for 2 months to convince the stall owners to share their recipes. After 2 months, the owners finally accepted, which is how the newest items on PappaRich’s menu*, KL Lor Mee ($10.90) and KL Hokkien Mee ($10.90), came about.
Their Lor Mee is prepared ulu yam style – using thick yellow noodles with a satisfying bite and premium black vinegar, giving it a sweet and gao feeling. If you love savoury food, opt for the Hokkien Mee as the noodles are braised in chicken oil and cooked with rich soy sauce.
*Only available at their new Stevens Road outlet.
2. PappaRich really listens to its customers
Sometimes giving feedback on a restaurant’s dish results in a template reply that’ll leave you wondering if they’ve even read it. Here, every single piece of feedback – whether from staff or customers – is highly valued. If enough people asked for the same thing, you could even influence the menu at PappaRich.
Take their Fish Head Noodles ($13.90++), for instance. It was once removed from their menu as they couldn’t secure their preferred ingredients to make the dish. However, customers went up in arms as they really loved the noodles and wanted it back.
Instead of immediately reinstating it on the menu to appease customers, PappaRich waited 3 months to secure the best supplier and reintroduced the dish after that, showing that they will be responsive, but not at the cost of quality.
3. They bought over an entire factory just because they loved the bread it made
Steamed Hainanese bread is something most restaurants can’t pull off as their bread ends up being soggy. You won’t find this problem at PappaRich as their recipe uses minimal artificial enzymes, producing more air pockets in the bread. This makes the bread super fluffy and not cling to your teeth.
Their founder loved this bread so much that he bought over the factory that made this bread and now, they supply these mini clouds exclusively to PappaRich.
4. They use only the freshest ingredients and follow authentic Malaysian recipes
You’ll no longer have to make a beeline for the Causeway to get great Malaysian food as PappaRich utilises the freshest seafood and authentic Malaysian recipes in their dishes.
Look no further than their Penang Prawn Mee ($10.90++) to see how well this marriage can go. Those fresh prawns are packed with umami. When spooled together with the rich broth, made from ground prawn shells and prawn paste made from fresh Kelantanese prawns, you’ll get a shockwave of savoury goodness with every bite.
If you need further convincing, the Penang Assam Laksa ($10.90++) is made with fresh mackerel. The broth is cooked with tamarind and pineapple for hours, giving it an intense tang while still retaining spicy and sweet notes.
5. Outlet managers clock in early just to QC every dish
You’ve probably experienced the “wah, sian” feeling of waiting ages for your food to come, only to discover that the taste is wayyy off.
To avoid leaving a bad taste in their customers’ mouths, duty managers come in early to sample every batch of food and ensure that it matches the recipe right down to the exact flavour. Dishes that fall short are consigned to the trash and a whole new batch is made from scratch.
This QC process is done 3 times a day which means that every time you dine here, you’re getting the best version of their dish!
6. They custom-made a machine to ensure the consistency of their half-boiled eggs
Cracking open a half-boiled egg is always a Russian roulette as you’ll never know if you will suay suay get one with a watery yolk or one that’s three-quarters cooked. PappaRich removes the gun altogether by cooking their eggs in a machine that their R&D department specially made!
Unlike normal boilers which heat at inconsistent temperatures, PappaRich’s machine cooks the eggs at a uniform temperature throughout. The exact setting for that sweet spot: 60 – 70 ℃ for 45 minutes.
As a result, their half-boiled eggs have firm, custard-like whites and warm, runny yolks.
Old school Malaysian food & decor at PappaRich
Having spent an entire afternoon at PappaRich, it’s easy to see how they’ve spared no expense to throw you into thinking you’re in Malaysia – from tasty dishes that follow authentic Malaysian recipes to the Peranakan and Colonial accented decor like dark wood ceilings and lattice grills.
All these lend to its cosy ambience, which makes PappaRich the best place to chill and enjoy a taste of Malaysia, right here in Singapore.
If your life is more fast-paced but you’d still like to eat great Malaysian nosh, keep an eye out for their Stevens Road outlet which has an express concept, allowing you to grab-and-go or dine in while enjoying shorter waiting times.
This post was brought to you by PappaRich.