Guan Hoe Soon: Singapore’s oldest Peranakan restaurant

By HungryGoWhere July 11, 2021
Guan Hoe Soon: Singapore’s oldest Peranakan restaurant
Table of Contents

Most nyonyas (Peranakan women) will have you believe that the most wholesome Peranakan cuisine can only be churned out from their own kitchens.

No doubt about that.

But the truth is that Peranakan food preparation is both tedious and time consuming. And with most modern nyonyas shying away from the kitchen these days, rempah- (Peranakan spice paste) making or the hands-on preparation of nyonya food in Singapore is fast becoming a dying art.

Needless to say, the local Peranakan community has been booking tables at Peranakan restaurants in droves.

One Peranakan restaurant that has benefited immensely from this trend is Guan Hoe Soon. Since year 1953, the oldest Peranakan restaurant in Singapore has been dishing out no-frills Peranakan cuisine from a pre-war shop house unit in Joo Chiat Road.

But since October 2009, it has ‘upgraded’ to a bigger and brighter unit at a renovated shophouse along Joo Chiat Place.

Gone are the dreary tables covered with dated pink table cloths and accompanying metallic chairs; and in their place are marble-topped wooden tables in a brightly-lit dining room overhung with Oriental red lanterns. The only sign of the restaurant’s maturity is a weary-looking business plaque bearing the eatery’s Chinese name, hung proudly next to an altar.

It is reassuring to know that the enterprising third generation owner, Jenny Yap, has expanded her Peranakan restaurant empire, with openings further afield from the Eastern strip.

But despite the hubbub of changes, Guan Hoe Soon continues to be a draw with its lush Peranakan cuisine and wallet-friendly prices.



Read More
Scroll to top