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Entertainment, Food & Beverage

The queueing for bak kwa

It is not just Chinese consumers who have joined the lines for bak kwa, spotted in line were tourists and foreign workers of different nationalities.
The New Paper - February 8, 2013
By: Celine Chen
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The queueing for bak kwa

It is not just Chinese consumers who have joined the lines for one of Singapore's most popular bak kwa.

Construction worker Anushamugan Pillai, 30, was at bak kwa brand Lim Chee Guan's shop along New Bridge Road three times last week with at least five other colleagues.

The Indian national told The New Paper on Monday that his site foreman had dropped the group off at the shop.

Their task was to order 30kg each of the signature sliced pork.

He had also queued last Tuesday and Friday, along with different workers.

"We don't know what it's about, but we are given like a day off. I think our boss is buying the bak kwa to give away," said Mr Anushamugam.

One kilogramme of bak kwa was going for $50 at the shop. On Monday, the six of them bought a total of 180kg, worth $9,000.

When approached, the foreman declined to comment and would only say that he was "running an errand for my big boss".

Ms Abigail Luscombe, who works part-time in sales, was in the queue for more than two hours from 10.30am last Tuesday.

She is from India and has been here since 1993, along with her husband.

Ms Luscombe, who does not eat pork, said she was buying it for her Chinese Singaporean neighbours as gifts.

She said: "It's not the first year that I've done so and they really appreciate it."

Other than the shop's signature sliced pork, there are other variations including chilli pork, mini barbecue pork, beef, "goldcoin" pork, bacon, chicken, fish and prawn. These vary in price.

Worth the wait

Mr Vincent Ng, 73, was lining up to buy the bak kwa for his son, who was at work.

"I've been here for 21/2 hours, but I'm retired so I have time. The weather is very hot, but it's worth it," said Mr Ng, who was buying 2kg of the pork.

Miss Sharon Yow, who was also at the shop last Tuesday, complained about the queue.

"Today is a weekday, why are there so many people?" said the 21-year-old student, who had no classes that day and was buying 2kg of bak kwa.

"My mother asked me to queue as it just so happened that I'm coming to Chinatown."

When asked why she didn't go to the other shops, she said: "Lim Chee Guan is so famous so I'm queueing for it."

Another one was Ms Wanyee Chin, a tourist from Taiwan who had been waiting in line for an hour.

"My daughter read about it on a travel guide online and we want to try it because Bee Cheng Hiang can be found easily in Taiwan," said the 55-year-old, who was with her two daughters.

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