Michelin-starred hawker to start own chain
A SINGAPORE street-food hawker, who was awarded a Michelin star this year, announced a partnership recently with a multinational culinary company to offer customers across Asia a taste of his prize-winning braised chicken dish.
Chan Hon Meng announced this in a joint press conference with Singapore-based Hersing Culinary, which holds the Asian franchise for the popular Tim Ho Wan chain.
Chan said the partners will collaborate on a new Singaporean restaurant before expanding across the region.
“I’m very happy to find the right partner,” Chan told reporters. “It’s important that they are very enthusiastic about the food and beverage industry and they put their customers first.”
Their first venture will be a restaurant called Hawker Chan, which will offer the signature chicken dishes Chan currently serves at his stall in Singapore’s Chinatown.
Malaysian-born Chan is one of two ‘hawkers’ – so-called because many started out as street peddlers – awarded one star by the culinary bible when it launched its inaugural Singapore guide in July.
The new 80-seater Hawker Chan, just three minutes’ walk from the current stall, will feature air-conditioning and sit-down dining at higher prices.
Chan will get a 50% stake in the restaurant, whose set-up costs are estimated at S$1 million (RM3.1 million).
Chan’s stall, which serves up his award-winning dish for just S$2.50 (RM7.80), has been called the cheapest Michelin-starred food establishment in the world.
His wife and other family members will continue to run his stall while he will oversee operations at both outlets.
Chan in previous interviews indicated his desire to “be like Tim Ho Wan”.
The diminutive cook saw his fortunes change after he was awarded a Michelin star, with diners lining up for hours just to order a plate of chicken and rice.
“I’m very happy that I can bring something small that belongs to Singapore to go across the world,” he said.
“If you work hard, you can be recognised and your day will come.” – AFP-Relaxnews
Chan (left) is going big time as he expands his prizewinning braised chicken rice from a stall on the street into a new S$1 million setup.