BBW by Tie Fun Wan has hearty comfort food like chicken & waffles, massive burgers & torched crème brûlée waffles

by Christabel Tan

Got a hankering for hearty and unpretentious comfort food? Few do it better than BBW by Tie Fun Wan in Kovan, an all-day diner specialising in burgers, beers, and waffles (hence the name BBW — Burger, Beer, and Waffle).

BBW
Photos by Confirm Good

Having rebranded itself from Tie Fun Wan, a Chinese rice bowl concept, BBW is now helmed by hotel-sous-chef-turned-chef-owner Chef Ken Chia and pastry chef Francis Wong (who co-founded the now-defunct Non Entrée Desserts — you can also try his plated desserts at 51 Tras in Tanjong Pagar).

Tucked away in the JForte Sportainment Centre, the diner brands itself as carrying a “sweet and savoury, big, bold, brash, loud, rebellious, irreverent and coming-of-age vibe headlined by a hearty, international-Asian menu“.

Photo: @bbw.burgerbeerwaffle/instagram

Burgers form the bulk of the savoury menu, with the signature Messy Burger (S$20), a gratuitous combination of wagyu beef patty, cheddar cheese, pickles, lettuce, tomato, mushroom ragout, and a sunny-side-up on brioche buns, taking centre stage.

You can also find a selection of fried chicken burgers inspired by the flavours of Asia, like the Thai-style Sawasdee (S$16), which features Thai-style fried chicken and green chilli tartar, and the spicy Korean-style An Nyeong Ha Seyo (S$16) burger with gochujang.

BBW
Photo by Confirm Good

We tried one of the newer additions to the ever-changing menu, the Pork Burger (S$16), minced pork patties slathered in pineapple BBQ sauce with caramelised onions, lettuce, tomato, and pickle on brioche buns, served with curly fries. This was the perfect epitome of the phrase “sweet and savoury”, very fitting for a brand like BBW.

Photo by Confirm Good

A similar concept applies to the selection of savoury waffles with fried chicken, which takes inspiration from the same four Asian countries — Thailand, Japan, Singapore, and Korea.

We decided to go with the Singapore-Style (S$14), juicy and tender prawn paste fried chicken (har cheong gai) and waffles served with maple syrup and spicy mayo. And what a great decision this was! The waffles here were on another level, crisp and fluffy with an indescribable lightness, perfectly complementing the indulgent fried chicken.

BBW
Photos by Confirm Good

A meal at BBW would be incomplete without a couple of sides, all of which are priced at S$9. Highlights include the Thai Basil Pork Fries, Oyster Tempura w Spicy Mayo, and the addictive Chicken Skin w Curry Mayo.

We went for the unassuming Pork Meatballs with Salted Egg Sauce (S$9), tender yet meaty, coated in a thick, umami, and mildly sweet salted egg yolk sauce I couldn’t get enough of.

Photo by Confirm Good

Desserts like sweet waffles, mud pies, and milkshakes conceptualised by Chef Francis are, as always, playful and interactive. The Crème Brulee Waffle (S$11.90) comprises freshly baked waffles topped with custard cream and a layer of sugar, which is then torched till it gets all crackly and caramelised.

All sweet waffles are topped with a scoop of ice cream (S$4 per scoop for a la carte) and we opted for (a very average) Pistachio, which unfortunately lacked that full-bodied nuttiness I deem necessary for anything pistachio.

In hindsight, Baileys Coffee, Milk Chocolate Whiskey, or even Dark Chocolate ice cream, would’ve fared a lot better.

BBW
Photos by Confirm Good

The Tiramisu Waffle (S$12.90) — waffles topped with a tiramisu espuma containing mascarpone cheese, rum and coffee, dusted with cocoa powder, and finished off with a scoop of ice cream, is also a standout.

Alternatively, if you’re in the mood for mud pie, the Baileys & Nanyang Coffee Mud Pie (S$10.90) and Hokkaido Milk & Honeycomb Mud Pie (S$8.90) are crowd favourites many swear by.

BBW
Photo: @bbw.burgerbeerwaffle/instagram

What’s a diner without a good ol’ milkshake or two? You can choose from tried-and-tested flavours like Lotus Biscotti (S$8.90), Salted Caramel Popcorn (S$9.80), and Old Fashioned Vanilla (S$8.90), but naturally, I had my eye on the Butterscotch Whiskey (S$10.90), the only alcoholic milkshake on the menu, from the start.

Photo by Confirm Good

Unlike some other milkshakes I’ve had in the past, which tend to hit you with a cloying sweetness at first sip, this was surprisingly not too over-the-top. It was creamy and a little boozy, reminiscent of Baileys Irish Cream — pretty enjoyable, even for me (I don’t have a huge sweet tooth).

In other words, Chef Francis’ milkshakes are not just made for the ‘gram; they’re actually drinkable.

BBW
Photo by Confirm Good

Big on flavour and bold in presentation — an exciting array of diner fare awaits!

Reservations can be made here.

BBW by Tie Fun Wan
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📍 50 Hougang Ave 1, #01-00 Inside JForte Bowling Centre, Singapore 538885
🕒 11.30am–10pm (Tue to Thu, Sun), 11.30am–11pm (Fri & Sat)

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I would gladly desert you for dessert.

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