Zi Char - Fu Shan Seafood

Zi Char - Fu Shan Seafood
21 Toa Payoh Lorong 7 #01-298

101 Yishun Avenue 5 #01-93

447A Fernvale Road #01-01

721 Clementi West Street 2 #01-100

Chili Crab (SGD $4.80 / 100g)

Decent Heartland Zi Char

(Ratings: On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 = Worst and 10 = Best)
Overall: 7
Ambience & Setting: 4
Food & Beverage: 7
Service: 8
Value for Money: 7
Spent about SGD $21 per person.


Operating several outlets across Singapore, Fu Shan Seafood is a Chinese style Zi Char that serves up affordable, wallet-friendly, yet tasty food. Located mainly in the middle of large, busy heartland housing estates, Fu Shan Seafood usually has several competitors nearby, yet still manages to do brisk business.

Ambience at Fu Shan Seafood is casual. Normally located within a coffeeshop, there usually is ample, brightly lit seating around the place, with both indoor and outdoor seats. Expect a noisy, bustling atmosphere, and crowds of families during peak periods. While the open, spacious layout allows for cool winds, it's also subject to the weather, and rain tends to affect the place.

Service at Fu Shan Seafood is fast, efficient, yet polite. Staff are quick to seat diners, directing them to a table, as well as quick to take orders. Ask for recommendations, the staff are more than able to suggest dishes to try, and I like that they don't try to hard sell only the expensive items. Waiting time for food during peak periods is acceptable, around 15 - 20 minutes or so. I notice staff are proactive and helpful, quickly assisting diners with requests. Memorable service!

Food at Fu Shan Seafood is Chinese style Zi Char, and the menu is rather extensive, with decent options for chicken, fish, seafood, pork, vegetables, and tofu. However, they don't have too many beef or venison dishes. Generally, I find taste to be above average for dishes, tasty and well executed. Portions are designed for sharing, and prices are reasonable, budget about SGD $21 per person for a meal here.


Fu Shan Seafood Facade

Fu Shan Seafood Menu

Fu Shan Seafood Menu Signature Dishes

The White Rice (SGD $0.50) here is rather firm in texture, so my guess is the fried rice here should be pretty good!

White Rice (SGD $0.50)

The Seafood Fish Maw Soup (SGD $20 / $40) has a generous amount of chewy, spongy fish maw, along with slices of earthy shiitake mushroom. The warm, savoury soup / broth is thickened with egg, and also has crab stick meat, but lacks the sweetness of other versions that use actual crab meat. Decent rendition.

Seafood Fish Maw Soup (SGD $20 / $40)

Seafood Fish Maw Soup

The Nai Bai / Milk Cabbage With Braised Shiitake Mushrooms (SGD $8 / $16) has fresh, crunchy nai bai / milk cabbage in a savoury earthy mushroom gravy, with tender slices of shiitake mushroom and carrots. Pretty decent dish, goes well on white rice. Worth ordering!

Milk Cabbage With Braised Shiitake Mushrooms (SGD $8 / $16)

Milk Cabbage With Braised Shiitake Mushrooms

The Oyster Sauce Baby Kai-Lan (SGD $7 / $13) is a decent, straight-forward dish, with fresh, medium-large stalks of crunchy baby kai-lan / Chinese kale / Chinese broccoli. The oyster sauce lends a touch of savoury sweet taste, but doesn't distract from the freshness of the vegetables.

Oyster Sauce Baby Kai-Lan (SGD $7 / $13)

Oyster Sauce Baby Kai-Lan

Inspired by the Malaysian curries, this Malay Coconut Prawn (SGD $16 / $22 / $30) features a completely yummy, mild curry that is savoury sour, fruity, with only a small hint of chili heat. Very mild, almost like a tame version of an assam gravy. The onions, okra / lady's fingers within are fresh, as is the meaty, deshelled prawns. Pairs excellently with white rice. Great!

Malay Coconut Prawn (SGD $16 / $22 / $30)

Malay Coconut Prawn

The Prawn Paste Chicken (SGD $8 / $12 / $16) is well fried, moist and tender, with the chicken meat coming easily off the bone. The skin is crisp and delicious, but the prawn paste taste is rather faint. Above average as a dish, but those who prefer a stronger prawn paste flavour may be disappointed.

Prawn Paste Chicken (SGD $8 / $12 / $16)

Prawn Paste Chicken

The Mantou (SGD $3) has a crisp exterior, and a soft, doughy interior that is able to soak up gravy / sauces well. A serving has 6 of these small Chinese buns.

Mantou (SGD $3)

The Salted Egg Crab With Egg Yolk Butter (SGD $4.80 / 100g) has a large, meaty, sweet, fresh Sri Lankan female crab, with a good amount of roe within. But the highlight is the decadent, thick, buttery, salted egg with egg yolk butter gravy / sauce, which is spicy, savoury, salty, floral, and totally delicious! Super unhealthy, but completely unstoppable. Highly recommended!

Salted Egg Crab With Egg Yolk Butter (SGD $4.80 / 100g)

Salted Egg Crab With Egg Yolk Butter

Just as meaty and fresh, the Chili Crab (SGD $4.80 / 100g) has a chili gravy that is more sweet and savoury, with only a mild spicy heat. Love how eggy it is, but I think they used too much tomato ketchup here. At least you can still taste the fresh sweetness of the crab meat. Personally, I prefer a more savoury spicy version, but this is still executed well, and is a decent dish.

Chili Crab (SGD $4.80 / 100g)

The texture of the Yang Zhou Fried Rice (SGD $4 / $7 / $10) is firm, which is nice. But overall, it seems to lack that savoury smoky flavour of good wok hei / breath of the wok, making this a rather underwhelming, below average dish. Skip this.

Yang Zhou Fried Rice (SGD $4 / $7 / $10)

The chilled White Fungus And Apple Soup (SGD $ Complimentary) is sweet and fruity, with the white fungus, apple slices, and red dates providing a crunchy, chewy texture. They only serve this occasionally, more often on weekends, or when the place is crowded.

White Fungus And Apple Soup (SGD $ Complimentary)


Update Oct-2016: Revisit to Fu Shan Seafood, glad to say the ambience, service, and food largely remain as good as before. They are still a solid choice for Chinese Zi Char dining in the Toa Payoh area of Singapore.

The Broccoli With Scallop (SGD $16 / $22 / $30) is simple, straight forward, and executed decently. The broccoli is fresh and crunchy, the shiitake mushrooms and carrot properly tender. Major difference is the oyster sauce is light, so you taste more of the earthy grassy freshness of the vegetables. The scallops are small but plump and tender, with a delicate sweet flavour. Good!

Broccoli With Scallop (SGD $16 / $22 / $30)

Broccoli With Scallop

Feel conflicted over the Chye Poh Beancurd (SGD $10 / $15). On one hand, this signature dish has a delicious tofu beancurd, which is soft, wobbly, creamy, and rich in flavour. On the other hand, the chye poh / preserved radish bits are oddly crunchy and sweet, instead of being tender and salty. My fellow diners ended up scrapping away the garnish of chye poh / preserved radish bits, and just eating the tofu beancurd alone.

Chye Poh Beancurd (SGD $10 / $15)

Chye Poh Beancurd

Based on my last good experience here, I was confident the Salted Egg Prawn Ball (SGD $16 / $22 / $30) would be good, and I'm glad it lived up to expectations. The fresh, meaty sweet prawn / shrimp is coated in a salty savoury salted egg yolk batter that is rich and tasty, with a hint of curry spice that gives it a good depth of flavour. Delicious with a satisfiying crunch, then you get the tender prawn / shrimp flesh beneath. Highly recommended!

Salted Egg Prawn Ball (SGD $16 / $22 / $30)

Salted Egg Prawn Ball

Was a little hesitant about the Prawn Paste Chicken (SGD $8 / $12 / $16), based on a previous underwhelming experience here, but my fellow diners really wanted to eat this. Fortunately, they've improved upon the recipe and technique since my last visit, and this dish is now pretty good! It remains crisp on the outside, and tender juicy on the inside, but I can now taste the prawn paste flavour layered over the taste of the savoury sweet chicken meat. Good!

Prawn Paste Chicken (SGD $8 / $12 / $16)

Prawn Paste Chicken