Despite explosion of brunch places are sprouting out in Penang, there are some locals' favorites which are still standing strong after many years of operations. When asked about the locals' favorite place for brunch, you will often hear the name "Ah Lai Cafe- Under The Big Tree". The simple and no-frills cafe is operating under a huge tree and the ambiance might not be too appealing for some. It offers some old-school dishes with evocative flavors- Instant Noodles, well-executed Hainanese Coffee and some Toast. The place has garnered an appreciate following and regulars since then, you will also find the place throng with office workers during lunch breaks on weekdays. The cafe is located at Church Street Ghaut, opposite an open-space car park along the road.
Their Half Boiled Egg on Buttered Toast (Rm 3.60) is definitely instagram-worthy; simple and straight-forward; though it was a pity that the egg yolks were slightly overcooked. Add a dash of Soya Sauce and sprinkle on some Pepper to enjoy. In case you are wondering, yes, it is definitely that simple, just like anyone could cook at home, nothing to shout over.
I have certainly heard many raving about how good their Instant Noodles (Rm 5) are.... I thought it was decent but not good enough to wow me. The noodles were perfectly cooked with al-dente texture, served with the flavorful broth which was cooked with Cabbage, Carrots and Onions, completed with a Sausage and an Egg. The broth was reasonably flavored with a discernible vegetable-sweetness and it can be a little spicy for some. It was decent but I am not sure if its worth to make another trip down here for a bowl of Instant Noodles though....
Cham Peng/ Iced Coffee + Tea (Rm 2)
Taste: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Price: 7/10 (1-3 expensive, 4-7 average, 8-10 cheap)
Service: 7.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Parking: 5.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Ambiance: 4.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 15, Gat Lebuh Gereja, 10200, Georgetown, Penang.
Business Hours: 9am to 5pm for Weekday; 9am to 1pm for Weekends. Opens Daily.
Contact Number: NA