Michelin stars are probably the culinary world’s Oscars—they are difficult to attain, and even more difficult to keep. Until a few years ago, they were reserved for the elite, and were only given to some of the most exclusive restaurants in the world.

In a move so unprecedented, the body awarded a hawker stand in Singapore with a star for the first time in its history.

For under $2, the soya sauce chicken at Hawker Chan was the world’s cheapest Michelin-starred meal. The story of chef Chan Hon Meng became legend soon after, and his 30 year-old recipe turned his tiny Chinatown stand into an international star. Soon after, Hawker Chan started opening its first franchises abroad, and has now landed here, in Manila.

Partnering with Hershing Group and locally, FOODEE Group, the restaurant is sticking to affordability, with nothing above PHP180 on the menu. This provided them with a unique challenge in order to meet the standards of chef Chan Hon Meng, so expect the quality of everything from the chicken, to the noodles, to the sambal belachan, to be on the same level. Expect the lines in its first branch in MOA to snake around the corner, but don’t fret: Hawker Chan will be opening three more branches in the city before the year ends.

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