I am quite a picky eater and I'd rather have some bread and yogurt for lunch, than go risk eating bad food at some random food court. Taking the risk of sounding too 'atas', if not the bad food, I get turned off by the constant battle for seats at lunch hour, irked by the sight of packets of tissue representing the act of making a reservation, and just when I think I am safely back at the table with my food, I get mental piercings by glares from hungry (and angry) people, rather vultures-like, waiting around, willing people at the tables to finish their food a.s.a.p so they can swoop down as soon as we stand up to go. After stepping out of the war-zone, I often end up smelling like a garbage bin, where all the different food scraps get dumped into one single location.
Sigh, but I endure because a food court does have its purposes. It's economical and convenient. But when lunch time rolls around and the colleagues suggest somewhere else other than a food court, my heart cannot help but does a little jiggle dance of joy.
One place we frequent often, is Killiney Kopitiam on Purvis St. It offers a variety of food at reasonable prices and being 'open air', I also don't end up smelling too much. 2 to 3 daily lunch specials are priced between $5-$6. Portions are big enough even to challenge the male colleagues. They are served up very quickly too, because of the mass preparation in anticipation of the lunch crowd.
But I usually go for the tze char. Having tried a few things, I find the fried noodles to be the best of the lot. The house special fried kway teow (S$4) comes with skinny rice noodles fried with loads of beansprouts, spring onions, sotong and prawns. The seafood hor fun (S$4), which I recently ate, uses thick rice noodles that had been prefried first for added flavour, before being drenched by much of a tasty and savory (albeit too starchy) sauce. The ingredients can be a little skimpy though - just a few slices of fish fillets, a lone prawn and a few of the crab-wannabes that I simply do not care for. But most importantly, it was decent food.
Be prepared to wait for a while if you do order from the tze char, but I will wait here rather than at the food court.