Sunday, June 22, 2014

Food Hunters' Guide @ Parit Buntar (巴里文打), Perak.

Planning on a short getaway from Penang? Why not head to one of the nearest places (to Penang) with many hidden gems around? Parit Buntar is approximately 45 minutes drive from Penang island and it is an ideal place for food hunters to spend half a day there for a great food adventure. During my recent visit there, I did manage to hunt down a few decent places which I thought it will be great for me to share them out with my readers and fellow food hunters. This blog post includes some worth-trying eateries in Nibong Tebal as well. 

First Stop: Ang Poh Kuan's Nasi Lemak



Start your day with one of the first few Pork-Free eateries in Parit Buntar/ Nibong Tebal- Ang Poh Kuan's Nasi Lemak (Rm 1.30). This humble Nasi Lemak is the locals' favorite. They started selling the Nasi Lemak by the road side many years ago and has since moved into this shop. From Jawi toll, turn left into Nibong Tebal direction and you will find Ang Poh Kuan's shop shortly on your left. Extra add-ons are available too and we would recommend you to have more Sambal added for the extra chili kick. Their Nasi Lemak may not be mind-blowing, but it is definitely a good start and lovely addition to your food adventure. 


Additional Information:
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Pork-Free
Address: Lorong Sintar Indah 1, 14300, Nibong Tebal, Penang. 
Business Hours: 8am to 6pm. Closed on every Tuesday.
GPS Location: N 5.18630 E100.48760


Second Stop: Pang Long Assam Laksa


Famous amongst the locals, it is not easy to find this hidden gem which sells good Assam Laksa (Rm 2.50). Make your way to the narrow and labyrinthine alley in between two wooden houses along Jalan Dennistown (a stone's throw distance away from the huge signage of Parit Buntar near Sungai Kerian), and you will be greeted with a faint aroma of Assam Laksa. Selling for more than 28 years, this place has proven to be the favorite place for many to satiate their cravings when it comes to Assam Laksa. 

Unlike many Assam Laksa found in Penang island, Pang Long's Assam Laksa is veering to the sour side and served with a generous amount of Fish. Diners can opt to have Shrimp Paste added but we certainly love that, for that extra touch of seafood-sweetness. Pang Long's Assam Laksa stands out when it comes to the Noodles. There are 3 types of noodles available- Vermicelli Noodles, steamed Laksa Noodles and Lai Fan (濑粉). We seemed to enjoy the latter one though, for its sleek and al-dente texture. However, do take note that this place opens for business on weekends only and the Assam Laksa tends to be sold out in a glimpse of an eye. Advance reservation is strongly recommended. 


Additional Information:
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Pork-Free
Address: 642, Jalan Dennistown, 34200, Parit Buntar, Perak.
Business Hours: 11:15am to 12:30pm. Opens on Weekends ONLY. *Please be there as early as possible to avoid disappointment*
Contact Number: 605- 717 4540

Third Stop: Shangri-La Restaurant


Curry Prawns (Rm 24- Small)/ White Bread (Rm 2 for 4 slices)


Sizzling Squid (Rm 13)


Inche Kabin (Rm 15)


Nasi Goreng/ Fried Rice (Rm 5)


From Left- Lemon Freeze (Rm 3.20), Lemon Float (Rm 4.50), Butterscotch and Cashew Nut Sundae (Rm 5.50) and One scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream (Rm 1.70)

For lunch, check out Shangri-la restaurant along Jalan Taiping. We were amazed by the crowd which thronged the place during our visit (on a fine Saturday). The fully air-conditioned restaurant serves unabashed Malaysian cuisine at wallet-friendly prices. Choices are aplenty, you can expect to see Hainanese food, Nyonya eats and Western dishes on their menu. One of the first few Chinese restaurants opened in Parit Buntar many years back, this restaurant seems to be the usual dining place for any family occasions at Parit Buntar. We were introduced Curry Prawns, one of their signature dishes and to be served with Buns or Bread (to be dipped into the savory Curry sauce). The curry was decent but it was not overwhelmingly impressive. However, the Prawns were perfectly cooked. They were very fresh, juicy and succulent. 

The Sizzling Squid and Inche Kabin, on the other hand, were unexpectedly toothsome. We love how fresh the Squid was and well-executed with a slight resilient but not rubbery to the bite. The crispy Inche Kabin was equally great with its remarkable flavors. We were astonished with the shattering crisp yet, the Chicken manages to lock the moisture within. Deep fried food lovers will definitely find it hard to stop at one. 


Additional Information:
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Pork-Free
Address: 27 & 29, Jalan Taiping, 34200, Parit Buntar, Perak. 
Contact Number: 605- 716 4378/ 605- 716 1231
Business Hours: 12:30pm to 2:45pm, 6pm to 10pm. Closed on every Friday.

Fourth Stop: 888 Rojak 


888 (发发发) Rojak (Rm 6- Medium)

Ask the locals to recommend a place for tea-time snack and most of them will suggest you to go for 888 Rojak at Bee Chuan Coffee House. Interviewed and featured on local TV program, 888 Rojak is not only famous amongst the locals but many tourists are hunting for this hidden gem as well. While their fruit ingredients and the Rojak sauce were not outstanding, the real draw of this Rojak was the addition of their home-made Vegetarian Crackers, which added a bit of crunch Rojak and unique personal touch to the otherwise predictable flavors. We were also pleased by the hearty serving portion, budget-conscious diners would be glad to know that the serving portion (of Rm 6) was good enough for the 5 of us. 


Additional Information:
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Pork-Free
Address: 1, Jalan Temenggong 2, 34200, Parit Buntar, Perak.
Business Hours: 12:45pm to 5pm. Closed on Mondays.
Contact Number: 6012- 558 6361

Jalan Temenggong, Pusat Bandar Parit Buntar, 34200 Parit Buntar, Perak

Fifth Stop: Chop Chuan Guan


Kong Th'ng/ Kacang Tumbuk/ Candied Peanuts (Rm 4.80 for 10 pieces)


Ak-Am (Rm 5.30 per packet)- traditional Teo Chew Sweet made of sugar, flour, peanuts, rice syrup and generously coated with toasted Sesame Seeds (source: The Malay Mail)

Stop by Chop Chuan Guan- one of the few traditional Teo Chew biscuit shops at Nibong Tebal and grab some sweet treats for your love ones. Guests can witness the making of Kong Th'ng and Ak-Am and freshness is guaranteed. We would prefer Ak-Am over Kong Th'ng as we thought the latter one was too sweet for our palates while the former one was pleasingly delectable. The freshly made Ak-Am has a chewy, soft with a slight resilient texture on the outside and crisply-sweet for the filling. The outer layer cuts through the sweetness of the filling by a little while the toasted Sesame Seeds added another layer of dimension to the traditional Teo Chew sweet. Their home-made Tambun Biscuits/ Tau Sah Piah is also worth a look.

For dinner, walk across the street to Law Chang Kee for their lip-smacking yet inexpensive Crab Porridge. Their Blanched Octopus is something to die for too. You may also check out another famous restaurant nearby- Swee Garden (behind Maybank at Nibong Tebal) for their signature dish- Thai Pork Knuckle. 


Additional Information:
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: No. 80 & 81, Jalan Pangkalan Rawa, 14300, Nibong Tebal, Penang.
Business Hours: 8:30am to 7pm on every Monday to Saturday. 10am to 12pm on Sundays.
Contact Number: 604- 593 1391