Lao Ban Soya Beancurd
Lao Ban Beancurd is one of the most popular in the Beancurd craze ongoing in Singapore. With its silky texture and its pudding-like structure, Lao Ban Beancurd stands apart from its traditional counterparts, quickly gaining popularity with the young and old alike.
Firstly, it is too sweet for me. Perhaps it appeals more to people with a sweet tooth and as taste is subjective it is up to each individual to decide! But it is definitely sweeter than regular soya beancurd so take note if you do not like sweet things!
Secondly, the “silky” texture makes it a little too “Soggy” for me. I like my soya beancurd to be more firm, and the Lao Ban one breaks easily and is the kind that “melts in your mouth”.
Thirdly, to me it doesn’t even taste like soya beancurd at all. It definitely tastes different from regular soyabean so I am not quite sure what they add to it. To me it tastes a lot like bubble tea milk!
Lastly, it is so much more expensive than regular beancurd, going at $1.20 a tub compared to the usual 50-70cents.
Overall I would not return to Lao Ban after trying it for the first time as it just does not suit my taste and does not seem to me as genuine old-fashioned soya beancurd.
Lao Ban tau huey is made up of super smooth tau huey, not like those you can find in Rochor or normal hawker centres. It is so smooth that when you shake it, the whole tau huey wobbles but will not be smashed into pieces. Very sweet and has a custard feel to it, it is no wonder why most people love it! It simply melts in your mouth. Lao Ban tau huey has became my favourite kind of tau huey since then, no more Rochor for me!
Since Lao Ban tau huey gains more popularity, its competition increases as well. Many tau huey stalls sprung up recently, selling the same type of tau huey. However, Lao Ban is still the most authentic one though! Do expect long queues for their goodness, especially at Old Airport Road hawker centre, where people can buy up to 10 boxes of tau huey, no kidding!
Lao Ban tau huey offers a type of beancurd totally different from the previous ones that we used to indulge in. The texture is rubbery, and to some, like me, would think that the top layer is too mechanised or chemicalised such that I would not enjoy after the first mouthful.
But to some others, this different feeling after the first gulp actually does give a refreshing taste that makes him or her crave for more.
Upon the opening this store at Old Kallang Airport hawker centre, inevitable competitions arose in the same hawker centre, with a few other stalls selling the same kind of tau huey, but none could actually match up to this first ever created "rubbery" beancurd. Given their authenticity and success, it has thus opened a few other outlets such as the one at Tanjong Pagar Maxwell Food Centre.
To ensure that you get your share before it quickly gets sold out, it would be advised to ask someone to queue for you during the non-peak hours, if not one can only say bye bye to this unique tau huey.
Shortly after, Lao Ban opened franchises around Singapore which made it easier for customers of Lao Ban living far away from Old Airport Road. However, the hype died down and there were many similar businesses opening. Personally, I feel that Lao Ban is slightly too sweet for my liking and it’s a pity there’s no way to change it.
Although Lao Ban may appeal to the majority due to it’s melt-in-your-mouth texture, I prefer the original beancurd as compared to Lao Ban. Lao Ban is relatively pricier too, which I feel is not very worth it.
However, the craze has died down now and many other beancurd franchises caught wind of how to make similar beancurd. Also, one flaw is that the sweetness of the beancurd can’t be adjusted to the customers preferences unlike the traditional beancurd.
I still prefer the traditional “dou hua” as Lao Ban beancurd doesn’t really bring out the flavour of the soy beans. Also, Lao Ban is a lot more pricey than traditional beancurd from stores such as Selegie Beancurd.
The first time I tried Lao Ban Soya Beancurd, its texture was so fine that I thought I just had pudding. Not a bad thing, just that some might prefer the traditional beancurd you get from hawker centres. My favourite would be the original as well as the almond beancurd. Though I must say, not everyone might like the taste of almond at their first try. The almond taste in Lao Ban however is not too overpowering and people who try it for the first time might just be able to accept its taste.
I must agree that Lao Ban Soya Beancurd is best served chilled, especially during a warm day. For take-outs, be mindful not to sway or move the plastic bag carrying the beancurd around too much as the beancurd might just turn into soyabean milk. Lao Ban Soya Beancurd should not be compared with our traditional beancurd as to me, both are equally good.
It does melts in your mouth but it also tasted like it has been processed. It is as what everyone rave about- silky and smooth, but I prefer the good-old beancurd that your parents use to eat which has a density to it. It is more natural and the honey syrup compliment it just right!
I was so excited when Chong Pang finally have its own branch. But the sad thing is, the delicious bean curd is just no longer that delicious. Even after going back to the main branch, it is just not that delicious anymore. Nowadays I just eat either lao ban bean curd or traditional ones as they are just good as dessert but given the price I do prefer to eat the traditional ones now.
I can't judge the environment as I usually da bao (takeaway). As for the staff service is relatively good and fast so not much to complain too.
However, I think that this dessert can't be compared to the traditional soya beancurd. It shouldn't even be called soya beancurd; it reminds me more of pudding or jelly. Traditional soya beancurd is much softer and smoother, and the taste of the beans is much stronger. Lao Ban's beancurd tastes more processed and too artificially sweet.
I very much prefer the traditional soya beancurd, which is tastier and cheaper. I don't mind having Lao Ban soya beancurd as a dessert on its own, but I think it shouldn't bank on the name of soya beancurd and mislead people from the traditional soya beancurd.
True enough, this bowl of cold soya bean curd is refreshing because it is a new product in the market. Thus, there are many hawkers jumping onto this money-making bandwagon. Now we can hardly find hawkers selling the traditional bean curd. What I dislike about Lao Ban is that there is a lack of soya-bean taste, and it feels as if I'm consuming soya bean flavoured sugar syrup.
As quoted by ieatishootipost, "Now why am I paying $1.80 for a tub of processed chemicals and only $1 for an artisanal Tau Huay which takes years to master?"
I think Lao ban's soya beancurd has just the right amount of sweetness without it overpowering the soya taste and seeming artificial. Also, its silky texture gives a really pleasant sensation as it slides down your tongue, yet in its jelly-like state it is still chewable.
Their other flavours are nice but the original, to me, is still the best.
It is quite pricey as compared to the traditional soya beancurd. Maybe I'm used to the traditional one, I prefer the texture and taste of it compared to Lao Ban on a daily basis (for breakfast). I wouldn't say that I like Lao Ban soya beancurd a lot, but I would say it is not bad for once in a while indulgence.
The very first time I tried it, scooped it and dropped it into my mouth, it slid down my throat right away. I'm not even exaggerating, it was that smooth. I like the silky and even feeling of the beancurd. There are no lumps in the beancurd, it is totally smooth.
What I don't like about it though is that I find it a tad bit too sweet. I would have preferred a stronger soya bean taste over the sweetness. This applies to the Lao Ban soya bean drink too. Except the drink is much sweeter (too sweet).
Overall, I would rate it 10/10 for it's silky-ness. If only it was less sweet, I would love it so much more. Everyone says the queue for Lao Ban is long, well, here's a tip, come to Tampines, the queue here is always short!