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Warong Nasi Pariaman Cooking Tip: A Charcoal Stove Makes All The Difference

This might be a little random, but ever wondered how heavy a cow is? According to, the average cow across all breeds weighs 1,390lbs (or 630.5kg).

And Warong Nasi Pariaman, which has been in Singapore for the past 71 years, goes through “around 500kg of beef” (almost an entire cow!) every month, says chef Jumrin, the second-generation owner of the nasi padang outfit, allegedly the oldest one in Singapore.

Founded in 1948 by Jumrin’s parents (Pak Isrin and Bu Rosnah), the name of the warong (or “stall”, although it has expanded to become more of a corner coffeeshop) references Pariaman – Pak Isrin’s hometown in West Sumatra, Indonesia – and serves close to 20 traditional dishes that originate from Padang, a city close to Pariaman.

The highlight of the offerings at this warong (located at 736/738 North Bridge Road): the beef rendang, of course. And it’s been sampled by everyone from the man and woman in the street to celebs like beloved rocker Ramli Sarip and footballer Fandi Ahmad as well as President Halimah Yacob (below in green).

And the secret to its mouth-watering taste (on top of the fresh ingredients – not paste, mind you – used) is the charcoal stove that is used.

“Cooking with gas is nothing like cooking with charcoal. The heat from the charcoal unites and adds to the flavour of the dish,” says Pak Isrin, who likens cooking to creating art, something that “comes from inside”.

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