WHENEVER Bishan resident Paul Crinis greeted his neighbours with a boisterous: ‘Hello, how you doing?’ they would mutter in Hokkien, ‘Siow ang mo’.
So he’s gone and named his Western food stall what they call him: Crazy Ang Mo.
The three-week-old stall, located in a bright, clean, recently-refurbished coffee shop in Bishan Street 24, has been packing them in with its Australian-style menu.
There’s sausages and chips, chicken schnitzel and chips, fish and chips, steak and chips and burger and chips.
A word about the chips: Unless you order the steak, which comes with proper steak chips, you get crinkle cut fries.
Forget crinkle. Add $1 to the main meal and get the steak chips instead. They are the most crisp-on-the-outside, fluffy-on- the-inside thick cut potato chips ever to emerge from a deep fryer. You can also order a basket of them for $2.50. I urge you to do it.
The steak ($11.90) was overdone when I had it and the chicken schnitzel ($6.90) was dry and hard, but I’m still going back there.
For one, the fish and chips ($6.50) is delicious. Dory fillets are encased in a thin, very crisp shell that manages not to be oil-logged. The tartar sauce tastes pretty good, although I’d prefer a more vinegary kick.
And instead of the obligatory Western food stall scoop of dodgy coleslaw, I got a proper salad with tomatoes and upmarket radicchio, a red-leafed, slightly bitter vegetable.
Mr Crinis, 34, who is also a tennis coach, came here from Wollongong in New South Wales, Australia, about seven years ago.
Now a Singapore permanent resident, he is married to Singaporean Ong Bee Ling, 33. They have a five-year-old daughter, La-Mia, who sometimes shouts out to customers when their orders are ready.
He says: ‘I miss eating Aussie food and I knew there was a market for it. If people will eat McDonald’s burgers, they’ll eat mine.’
They should order the Crazy Burger With The Lot ($7.90), the best item on the menu.
The ‘burger with the lot’ is practically an Australian institution, with a beef patty, bacon, a fried egg, lettuce, tomato, cheese and – here’s what makes it so fun to eat – slices of canned beetroot and a pineapple ring.
I like Crazy’s juicy patty, made in-house with Aussie beef. Everything comes together perfectly – the beetroot provides a zingy footnote, and the pineapple ring, with cheese melted into it, some sweetness.
Don’t leave without ordering the Banana Pudding ($3.90), which is light, full of ripe bananas and crunchy walnut pieces and topped with gooey caramel.
This dessert is served with some sliced kiwi fruit and the biggest scoop of vanilla ice cream I’ve ever seen.
It is literally the size of a tennis ball. And it is sprinkled with crunchy chocolate pieces. You’d be crazy to miss it.