Singapore HeritageFest 2016: A Taste of Heritage


Alright, this is super outdated since it happened about two months ago but then again, almost everything personal on this blog is belated by the time I blogged about it or when you have time to read it so I guess it is not that bad a situation haha.

Despite being a true-blue Singaporean, I never knew the existence of an annual HeritageFest until Xiangchen suggested to go National Museum for dinner on a particular weekend. I can't believe I have missed out on this for the 13 years it has been going on.

Anyway, my immediate reply to her was, "Huh? National Museum got food meh?". Little did I know that she will start spamming me pictures of people enjoying and recommending all the delicious hawker food that are gathered at A Taste of Heritage. Even though I consider myself one who is terribly afraid of crowds and would normally avoid going places that would be packed, I was extremely tempted by these pictures, and quickly found myself agreeing to spend the evening there. I suppose that is just the life of a glutton. I simply cannot say "no" to a potentially satisfying fare.

And so, these are food stalls lining the grounds of our National Museum in the 60s

And food stalls lining the grounds of our National Museum now

115 Tang Shui

Springleaf Prata Place

Here goes the story of our meaningful conquest. As you can see in the pictures, the place was absolutely jam-packed in spite of the fact that we arrived only slightly past the start of the event. We sifted through the crowd and eventually settled at a corner, right beside the Old Chang Kee van which I have no idea why would anyone choose to waste stomach space on Old Chang Kee there when you can get them any day anywhere, granted its significance in the heritage of Singapore street food culture. Eventually, we just decided to hop stall by stall starting with the one right in front of us, which does not seem to have a snake queue YET. P.S. it formed right after we got our hands on our plaster~

Hougang 6 Miles Famous Muah Chee

Abdhus Salam Rojak

We had our plaster while queueing for the muah chee, which was one of most popular stalls with the longest and slowest-moving queue you would think you are getting tickets to Jay Chou concert or something. After all, Hougang 6 Miles Famous Muah Chee dates back to 1953 and is the only stall in Singapore that sells artisanal handmade muah chee! Definitely worth the wait although one probably doesn't have to spend as much time when he visits the actual stall at Toa Payoh HDB Hub on any other day lol.

In any case, we weren't even halfway through the waiting even after finishing our food. Thus we decided to split up the work, with me jumping over to the rojak stall and XC staying in the muah chee line. Unfortunately, there was still a bit more to go when I returned with the rojak subsequently, and the stall still wasn't within an arm's length when we were similarly done with the rojak. Unfaltered, I went on to conquer the wanton mee, another stall with mega long queue.

Cho Kee Noodle since 1960s

I was finally reunited with XC halfway through the wanton mee queue. While enjoying the plate of mouthwatering and painstakingly-obtained muah chee, someone shouted for me. And it was Xingyi, who was right at the end of the same queue and happened to be there with her boyfriend, who was at that time queueing for satays.

I don't know how many times I have used the word "queue" and I kind of hate it because it makes me feel so lacking in my vocabulary. But that is truly what Singaporeans do best and what everyone was doing at the Heritage Fest. Anyway, now that we are stronger in numbers, we must diversify. So XC took over my wanton mee place, XY went for laksa, XY's bf continued with satay, and I head over to the chicken rice stall. Talk about efficiency!

Katong Laksa since 1950s

Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice

It was already dark by the time we got all our food and found a bench to sit down and enjoy the fruits of our labour.

Feeling nostalgia for our unique street food culture..

The Freshman (插班生) was there to serenade us too!

Photo of rojak missing T.T

We definitely didn't manage to try all the food, though it was quite a feat for just XC and myself to have finished all the food in the picture right above. Without a doubt, I love the muah chee the most, so much so that we went through the Jay Chou-worthy queue one more time before we left. I wish the festival lasted longer so it probably won't be as jammed, and we would have the opportunity to continue from where we left off and try the other stalls. I heard the kueh and tang shui stalls were superb and actually sold out.

In overall, A Taste of Heritage was no doubt a nostalgia and purposeful fest. I had a great time reliving our street food culture and movie screening or cultural performances like how our parents did in the past, and I am sure all other visitors did too! The benches, stools and lighting were utterly charming too!

Hope to see you again next year,

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