Rong Guang Seafood BBQ, Ulu Pandan

I’ve always been lucky in finding places before they got famous. For the old Rong Guang at Alexandria Market, my gym was near it, so I chanced upon it before it was famous. The first time I had it, it was stupendously fantastically marvelous. Then, a few years later, I brought my friends there. It was still good, but not as good as before. After it moved to Ulu Pandan, I haven’t gone and this is my first visit.

We ordered:
Fried Baby Squid ($10)

Sambal Sting Ray ($10)

Chili Cray Fish ($18)

Shrimp-Paste Chicken ($8)
The Fried Baby Squid was sweet but slightly sourish, making it very appetizing. However, it was supposed to be as crispy as potato chips but it turned out to be tough and chewy. Hard to bite.
My friends liked the Sambal Sting Ray but not I. I thought the portion was pathetic, and and the sambal lacked a kick to it. Still, the flesh was soft and moist.
I always order Chili Crayfish, that is, crayfish in chili crab sauce (it’s not on the menu, you’ve to order this specially). Because I find crabs have lesser meat and it is inconvenient to get to the meat. A friend said that the sauce wasn’t as sweet as chili crab sauce, but I blame this on the chef because I ate the same dish at Old Rong Guang, and it was so good. This dish here was good too, and easy to get to the meat.
The shrimp-pasted Chicken was disappointing. Where was the shrimp-paste? My friend said to me to judge it as normal chicken wings then. But if I were to do that, I would judge it against Old Chang Kee or Ikea’s chicken wings because if wholesale chicken wings can taste so good, then other shops should be better. But sorry, Rong Guang’s wings were not as tasty–not marinated long enough–as Old Chang Kee’s.
This is by no means a horrible meal. The food was slightly above average, but because I tasted it when it was at its acme, it is such a travesty to allow the standards to drop so much. That being said, I like the kampong atmosphere. Located at the end of ulu pandan road, the “restaurant” has a kampong feel to it. You park at the grass patch, there is a altar for Chinese deities, you eat on those round old tables under the nightsky. The servers are overworked but friendly.
Rong Guang BBQ
301 Ulu Pandan Road
tel: 6468 8290
Daily: 5pm-11pm
Rating: 3.389/5 stars

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