Mala is not just an expensive bowl of spicy, stir-fried food, it has become an obsession and a way of life.

The Mala craze has been in Singapore for quite a bit, and fortunately (or unfortunately), it’s here to stay.

What makes a good mala? To me, it has to be well seasoned, backed with a spicy kick, and punctuated with the fragrance of peppercorns.

A good mala is made out of fresh ingredients, with each one cooked to perfection: the noodles should be cooked through but springy, the lotus root should hold a nice crunch, and there has to be an undeniable fragrance and ‘wok hei’ taste to the dish.

So where are the best Mala Xiang Guo places in Singapore? Here are a few hot spots across Singapore, as well as a few hidden gems for you to check out.

Central Singapore 1. Ri Ri Hong Mala Xiang