Nestled along the busy streets of Balestier; an area that is home to famous food joints and cool cafes set amidst a mishmash of heritage and new buildings which allude to its colourful past, Jiang Cantonese Tapas, a casual Cantonese and Asian themed double-storey diner has set up shop.
Serving a mix of Hong Kong street bites and traditional Cantonese cuisine, paired with Asian favourites all designed for sharing, Jiang’s menu offers affordably-priced fare cooked from the heart with quality ingredients and just-enough wok hey.
With the familiar tunes of classic Cantopop playing in the background, enjoy your meal on level one where the retro décor takes inspiration from the traditional 1980s style of Hong Kong tea cafés or relax at the cosy basement of the 1700sqf establishment.
Conceptualised as a not-so-typical casual diner paying homage to popular Hong Kong movies, founder Aaron Tan put together a team of investors for Jiang consisting of family members and close friends who all shared the passion of enjoying Cantonese food in a relaxed environment. The décor is intentionally retro and minimal, reminiscent of the early cha chaan tengs and intended to create a sense of nostalgia, especially since travelling to Hong Kong is quite restricted for now. Dishes on the menu range from $6 onwards and lunch specials include 20% off. The restaurant also has no corkage charge for bringing your own wines and champagne, to encourage more footfall.
No stranger to the nightlife and food and beverage industry, Aaron was the Outlet Manager at The Butter Factory before its closure and was subsequently part of the partnership that started Sum Yi Tai, Dining Club, Mona Lounge and Chikin Yakitori Bar in the central business district, targeting working professionals. He left the nightlife scene to focus on starting his family and set up an F&B consultancy for more regular working hours.
As the Covid19 pandemic hit Singapore, many businesses were affected and a prime space at Balestier became available. Roping in Chef Pam who used to helm Sum Yi Tai’s kitchen, he put together Jiang. Chef Pam’s culinary philosophy revolves around quality produce prepared with rigor and simplicity to bring to the fore the naturally inherent flavours of familiar Cantonese and Asian dishes cooked to perfection.
The menu offers choices to cater to all dining occasions. Whether it’s a course dinner you’re craving or you fancy having fuss-free noodles or rice paired with meats and seafood, or even some light bites for snacks; the selection is diverse and encourages the diner to make several visits to Jiang to sample all that’s available or come in groups of five to work your way through the menu.
Popular dishes include the Signature Wok Fried XO Carrot Cake ($9.80), Crispy Skin Kurobuta Roast Pork ($10.80), King Prawn Wontons in Chilli Oil ($14.80), Salad King Prawns in Citrus Sauce ($21.80), Lychee Sweet & Sour Kurobuta Pork ($14.80) and the Braised Beef Brisket & Tendon Claypot ($15.80). The drinks menu is equally extensive with draft beers, wines, whiskies, sakes and cocktails as well as non-alcoholic beverages for more family-friendly options. Happy Hour happens daily on weekdays and alcoholic drinks are priced at $9++ then.
Jiang Cantonese Tapas
Where: 456 Balestier Road, #01-03/04 (next to the SPC gas station), Singapore 329832.
When: Tuesdays to Sundays | Lunch 11.30am to 2.30pm | Dinner 5.30pm to 10.30pm
Closed on Mondays
Contact: 6518 4728