Ask any foodie to share their favourite hae mee haunts in Singapore and there’s a good chance that Adam Rd Noo Cheng Big Prawn Noodle would be on the list.
The Michelin Bib Gourmand stall at Adam Food Centre was founded over 30 years ago by Teo Aik Cheng, 58, who perfected their family recipe with his twin brother Teo Aik Hua after inheriting the stall from their parents, who used to sell prawn mee, fishball noodles and laksa.
Teo Aik Hua later ventured out to establish Zhi Wei Xian Zion Big Prawn Noodle, formerly known as Noo Cheng Adam Road Prawn Mee (Zion Road), at Zion Riverside Centre.
During our previous interview in 2021, Teo Aik Hua explained that he changed the stall name in 2018 to establish a distinct brand identity, emphasising that both brothers manage their prawn mee businesses independently.
Two years ago, the hawker opened a fancier restaurant under the same name at South Bridge Road, which regrettably closed in the same year. He continues to helm Zhi Wei Xian, which also has a Bib Gourmand accolade.
The Adam Road prawn mee legacy continues with Jack Teo, 62, older brother of the twins, who recently opened Adam Road Prawn Noodle (San Ge) at Newton Food Centre. The term ‘San Ge’, which translates to ‘Third Brother’ in Chinese, is a reference to Jack Teo’s position among his six siblings.
HOW DOES HIS FOOD COMPARE TO HIS BROTHERS’ VERSIONS?
When asked if his prawn mee is similar to his brothers’, the owner had a punny response: “Our ‘mian’ (face in Chinese) looks different, so how can our ‘xia mian’ (prawn noodle in Chinese) be identical?” That said, Teo affirms that his broth is based on the same family recipe used by his brothers, with each attracting their own loyal customers over the years.
“The way I prepare the prawns is also slightly different (from my brothers). The difference in taste is hard to describe, but it’s something that my regulars can discern,” he added cryptically. Teo prefers to use wild-caught tiger prawns, while Noo Cheng’s signage indicates the use of fresh sea prawns.
IS THERE RIVALRY BETWEEN THE THREE BROS?
“I’ve been busy setting up my new stall and I don’t know their thoughts on it. Since it’s my own venture, I don’t intend to ask them either,” said the hawker. “Personally, I think it’s a good thing that each of us is carrying on with our family legacy. I’m happy for my brothers who have created successful businesses of their own.” He also mentions that Teo Aik Cheng has been graciously spreading the word about his Newton stall to customers who enquire about him.
SIMILAR MENU AND PRICES, WITH NEW S$5 PRAWN-ONLY OPTION
Despite the higher rental costs at Newton, a basic bowl of prawn mee with pork rib costs S$7, which matches the price for a similar order at Adam Road.
Teo has also introduced a cheaper S$5 option with “mid-sized” prawns. Additionally, bowls with fancier combos like larger prawns and pig’s tails start from S$10. The owner asserts that portions are similar to what he used to offer at Adam Road.
“I’m hoping to boost sales with slimmer profit margins,” he shared. Seafood dishes like cold crab and clams in prawn broth will also be available at the Newton stall.
Adam Road Prawn Noodle (San Ge) is at 500 Clemenceau Avenue North, #01-16, Newton Food Centre, Singapore 229495. Open daily (except Sun), 8am to 2.30pm, 5.30pm to 9.30pm.
This story was originally published in 8Days.
For more 8Days stories, visit https://www.8days.sg/