[Singapore] Hainanese chicken rice from Chicken House, Upper Thomson Road

Chicken House on Upper Thomson Road prides itself on using “kampung” (literally meaning “village” in Malay, but refers to free-range) chicken for their Hainanese chicken rice, yellow-skinned fowls which yielded firm-textured, deep-flavored meat.

  1. One of the best-tasting poached chicken dishes I’d had anywhere in Singapore.

  2. Poached chicken livers and gizzards - must-haves for a truly complete Hainanese chicken rice meal.

  3. Blanched beansprouts, dressed in chicken drippings, soy sauce, shallot oil, garlic oil, and other condiments, garnished with chopped scallions, crisp-fried shallots and some red chilis.
    This dish was first popularized in Ipoh, Malaysia, where chicken rice or chicken noodles are usually paired with beansprouts.

  4. Ngoh hiang - 5-spiced pork rolls in bean-sheets. These were delicious - a very “untraditional” accompaniment to Hainanese chicken rice, but a sure winner here.

  5. Very good condiments, especially its ground fresh ginger in chicken drippings, and the red chili sauce, plus some good quality thick, dark soy sauce.

For decades, Nam Kee at 201 Upper Thomson Road traditionally ruled the roost in this neighborhood where Hainanese chicken rice is concerned. But looked like it has a serious competitor in Chicken House nowadays.

Chicken House
255 Upper Thomson Road, Singapore 574382
Tel: +65 6456 0698
Opening hours: 10.30am to 7.30pm daily


Thanks! Added to the to-eat list for next trip!

Love me some poached chicken. Bean sprouts are an under appreciated side dish!


It’s amazing how, oftentimes, regional cuisines are differentiated by minute, little things. In Ipoh, one of their most popular street food is simply called “Nga Choy Kai”, literally “Beansprouts Chicken”. Their poached chicken is of Cantonese origin - which is still quite similar to Hainanese poached chicken.

The main difference, I’d say, is that the Cantonese serve their chicken alongside plain, steamed white rice, instead of the Hainanese-style, where the rice is flavored with chicken drippings, ginger and scallions, and cooked with chicken stock. But here, in Ipoh, Lou Wong and its main competitors like Onn Kee, will serve chicken-flavored rice as well - though they’d insist theirs aren’t “Hainanese-style”.


Why they have crab as a logo though? They serve crab as well? Chicken looks top!


Now that you mentioned it! I didn’t even think about that - but I’ll make sure to ask them when I go back there next time.

And, no, they didn’t have any crab dish on their menu!


Eating poached goose in Taiwan, always order livers and gizzards when available. Goose intestines are also a must have!!!


Isn’t it a prosperity/luck symbol?

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Oh wow, goose intestines sounded divine!

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Not really. For aquatic-themed symbols, the Chinese would regard a picture of 9 swimming carp fishes as auspicious. But a crab, and especially on large signboard? I really need to ask the owner when I go back there. Maybe a feng shui consultant advised him on that.


Thanks Peter.

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Or a Western astrologer learned that the owner’s birthday made him a Cancer, explained, and the owner embraced the star sign with an enigmatic storefront announcement.



I’m actually trying to find out if it was a former seafood restaurant offering chili crabs.


The chicken and gizzards look really good! The skin on the chicken looks outstanding! Makes me want to snack on that first. And the pork rolls look like a real treat, too.
Thank you for posting these reports, Peter!

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The pork rolls are known as “ngoh hiang” (Mandarin: 五香肉卷, wǔxiāng ròu juàn) in Singapore, but “lor bak” in Penang.

One of Penang’s top Hainanese chicken rice places, Wen Chang, also served that: