RedRing Wanton Mee is named for the ring of red sauce that surrounds the noodles (when you order the spicy version). We visited RedRing after reading a recent article about how an entrepreneurial family, with barely any experience in the F&B industry, used science to research the perfect plate of wanton mee.
Chemistry graduate Roy Chan, who is off to Stanford to pursue a PhD in chemistry, researched each aspect of wanton mee with a scientist's eye, resulting in perfect precision in every plate.
The noodles are cooked using a special boiler that can cook and agitate 4 portions of noodles at a time. The timer is set so that each batch is cooked to a perfect springiness. The umami-laden secret sauce uses 14 ingredients, each selected for their natural flavour-enhancing properties.
Even the char siew has not been spared the chemical treatment. Using a cut near the armpit for its flavour and texture, the char siew is smoked onsite. Armed with an understanding of the chemical reactions involved in natural caramelisation of meat, they adjusted their smoking recipe and process to achieve a golden colour without the use of artificial colouring.
But fancy science is nothing if the food doesn't taste good. And the wanton mee at RedRing certainly tastes very, very good. We tried one spicy red sauce one, and one non-spicy. Despite the fact that the red sauce is probably their speciality (hence their name), I actually much prefer the non-spicy. The clean umami flavour of the sauce really comes through, without being distracted by the chilli.
The noodles are perfectly springy, without an excessive alkaline flavour, and both the fried wanton and the char siew are great accompaniments. The char siew is not too fatty, and indeed has a deep smokiness without being burnt.
They also serve boiled wantons doused in their non-spicy sauce. While I prefer their fried wantons, these boiled ones are a nice (healthier) change, and it doesn't hurt to get more of that delicious special sauce.
There's some talk lately about the future of street food, and how it seems to be a dying art. Which is why I have to give big props to RedRing - to me, this is probably the future of hawker food, with increasingly more educated individuals using their talent and knowledge to bring a whole new dimension to hawker classics.
Cheap and good, although the $3 portion is pretty small. Probably so you can get a side of boiled or fried won tons to share.
RedRing Wanton Mee
Block 46, Holland Drive
Chiangs Swallow Coffee Shop
Opening hours: 8.30 am - 7.30 pm