Good Chance Popiah
When Chinese migrants arrived at a new place, they bring with them cultural traditions from their hometown or villages. These skills are important components for the migrants to reconstruct their cultural life.
One of the most significant of these cultural capitals is food knowledge and offered opportunities for migrants who can prepare food consumed in their native regions of origin. Typically, the first generation migrant starts the business and passed it to their children along with the secret recipes that made the dishes popular and even famous.
One such story is Good chance Popiah. Founded more than 30 years ago, their first business was established in Telok Ayer part of Singapore Chinatown. From there, they moved to Neil Road and now Silat Road. Good Chance Popiah is believed to be the oldest surviving Popiah restaurant in Singapore.
By this time, the business has passed into the third generation’s management. Their star attraction is still the Popiah, a Hokkien dish offered in standard and vegetarian versions. Customers also have the option to create personalized versions of their favorite popiah by ordering additional condiments such as Chinese sausages, prawn and even crab meat.
The vegetable, ingredients and condiments are presented separately for customers to mix and match to produce their ideal popiah. If you are vegetarian, stay away from the meat. If you like prawns, you can add as much as you like. If you have nut allergy, avoid them. You can share the popiah and yet meet everyone’s needs and preference. How many types of food can offer that flexibility?
For customers who want more, there a selection of Chinese dishes and Hokkien specialties, both meat and vegetables to choose from. Some of their popular items include stewed pork belly with bao, Hokkien mee, steamed fish, and vegetables.
Many people have been to Good Chance. Some are very old regular customers who have followed them since their previous locations. Others are there because of word of mouth referrals. Even tourists and expatriates have discovered them.
A visit to good Chance Popiah is not just about food. It is also about tasting a traditional food heritage that has been brought over by migrants and transferred from one generation to the next. It is this history that earned them the distinction of being the oldest surviving popiah restaurant in Singapore.