Thursday, February 29, 2024

[Year 2024] Food Hunting- of Cafes/ Must-Eats @ Taiping, Perak.

Known as the Rain Town- Taiping is approximately one hour drive away from Penang island. The small town has a big Chinese population and home to many delicious food. Our previous visit was somewhere in 2021 and the town has many new, exciting food places to be discovered. Follow us in this food guide as we walk you through some of the interesting food places in Taiping!  

1) Baking Khaki
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 416, Jalan Kamunting, Taman Saujana, 34600, Taiping, Perak. 
Business Hours: 8 am to 5 pm on every Thursday to Tuesday; 8 am to 9:30 pm on every Friday and Saturday. Closed on Wednesdays.
Contact Number: 6011-3683 0409

Poppy Seed Bagel (Rm 4.80) + Smoked Salmon (Rm 16.70)

Black Pink Bagel (Rm 5.50) + Sea Salt Chocolate (Rm 8.50)

Guacamole (Rm 11.90)

Baking Khaki is our favorite for this whole food trip- an unexpected find in Taiping. Baking Khaki specializes in baking Bagels, there are plenty of choices for Bagels, be it classic version or some creative flavors (like Black Pink, Pandan, Jalapeno etc). After choosing the Bagel, you can choose the toppings- whether you like your Bagel sweet or savory. We had both and our savory choice was the timeless Smoked Salmon, coupled with extra Guacamole for the creamier touch. They were very generous with the Smoked Salmon and we love how fresh everything was. The Bagel was good too- slightly chewier to the bite but not overly so. The sweet version with Sea Salt Chocolate did not seem convincing at first but it was beautifully concocted. The Chocolate flavor was there and it was not cloyingly sweet... yet, with a mild salty essence. A must-visit place in Taiping if you so happen to be in the neighborhood.

2) Seafood Koay Teow Th'ng @ OK Coffee Shop Taiping
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: No. 25, Jalan Stesen, 34000, Taiping, Perak. 
Business Hours: 6 am to 3 pm. Opens Daily.
Contact Number: 6012-463 8866

Seafood Koay Teow Th'ng (Rm 12) with extra Fried Fish (Rm 4)

Seafood Curry Mee (Rm 12)

If you need a decadent breakfast to celebrate the day- try OK Coffee Shop. The place is most crowded on weekend mornings- with regulars patronizing the place. We recommend trying their Seafood Noodles (you get to pick Koay Teow, Yellow Noodles, Vermicelli Noodles, Lou Shu Fan etc). You will get plenty of Seafood like fresh Fish meat and Prawns; the result is a clean tasting with an underlying Seafood sweetness broth... almost like an upgraded version of clear soup noodles! If you need an extra boost, try adding Fried Fish meat too. Likewise, you get to do the same to the Curry noodles too. We prefer the clear soup version over the Curry version but that is just our personal preference. 

3) RE Coffee
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: No. 87, 1st Floor, Jalan TBC 5, Taiping Business Centre, 34000, Taiping, Perak. 
Business Hours: 12 pm to 8 pm. Closed on Wednesdays. 
Contact Number: 6016-512 7217

Taro Mochi Basque (Rm 16)

Dutch Baby Pancake (Rm 21.90)

Slightly out of Taiping town, RE Coffee's location is a little tricky and it is located on the upper floor unit. Traipse up the stairs and you will find yourself in a cozy, air-conditioned, brightly-lit space. The cafe has a Western menu, featuring some grills, Pasta, brunch dishes etc. The dessert choices are far more interesting- with some seasonal items on offer. The Taro Mochi Basque is one of them. We love the mellow Taro-flavor and more importantly, the addictive creamy-chewy Mochi sandwiched in between. The whole concoction felt light and easy on the palate, it was not monotonous too. The Dutch Baby Pancake paled when in comparison with the Cheese Cake. Though it was served to us piping hot, the Pancake was single-dimension and barely registered any flavor (except some Egg aroma). 

4) Kheng Noodle House 翠瓊面屋
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 9, Lot 3, Ground Floor, Jalan Tupai, 34000, Taiping, Perak. 
Business Hours: 7:30 am to 2:30 pm. Closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Contact Number: 6014-306 2030

Boiled Chicken with Sprouts (Rm 8)

Dried Koay Teow with shredded Chicken (Rm 5)

Koay Teow Th'ng with Old Hen (Rm 6.50)

For a Bean Sprouts Chicken meal, check out Kheng Noodle House. A short walk from Novotel Taiping or Taiping Mall, Kheng Noodle House is known for its boiled Chicken with various noodle options. One of the popular items would be the boiled Chicken with Koay Teow... almost like Koay Teow Th'ng in Chicken broth but with more meat. The portion is unexpectedly big but a bowl of Koay Teow costs as affordable as RM5. We recommend trying their Koay Teow with Old Hen, the meat is chewier but carries bolder Chicken-flavor. We've also found out that they use Ipoh-like round, fat Bean Sprouts... which tend to be sweeter. This is a place where you will find comfort food without putting a dent on the wallet, our meal costs a little over RM20 with drinks.

5) Figtopia Fresh Fig Farm
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: Lot 765, Jalan Parit Menteri, Batu 6, 34850, Changkat Jering, Perak. 
Business Hours: 9 am to 4 pm. Closed on Fridays.
Contact Number: 6011-5330 9525

Fig Croffle (Rm 10)

Ice Blended Fig (Rm 10)

Fig Ice Popsicle with Syrup Bandung (Rm 6)

The one and only Fig Farm in Taiping- Figtopia is a place where you can bring your younger ones to experience farm-activities. Be there earlier as many did not have any luck with the fresh Figs. Figtopia is located at Changkat Jering, approximately 15-min drive from Taiping town. There will be a small entrance fee to go into the farm. We did not go into the farm but just a brief visit just to see on the plants and they are farmed. Our main goal was the Fig-infused treats; not all were available unfortunately, especially the Fresh Fig Platter but we had the Croffle, served with whipped Cream and fresh Figs. The Figs were underripe, not exactly sweet but the whipped Cream saved the day. Ice Blended Fig was refreshing though.  

6) Chok Kee Confectionery 祝记咖椰角 
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 1106-D, Jalan Permaisuri, Aulong, 34000, Taiping, Perak.
Business Hours: 9 am to 6 pm. Closed on Thursdays.
Contact Number: 05-807 4136

Kaya Puff (Rm 8.50/ 5 pieces)

Hap Tou Sou (Rm 1.70 each)

There are a few places in Au Long that are famous for Chinese pastries and biscuits. This trip brought us to Chok Kee Confectionery, a long-established brand popular for its Kaya Puff. It is a little tricky to locate this place so you will need your navigation system (narrow, bumpy ride too). We ran out of luck on our first visit as we were told that their famous Kaya Puffs were completely sold out. So we pre-ordered and came back to collect on the next day. We tried the Kaya Puff- thin pastry skin with buttery aroma, Kaya was sweet with a bold eggy aroma. If you wish to try these, do ring them up beforehand. 

7) TeoChew People Cafe 潮粥人 
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 4, Jalan Boo Bee, 34000, Taiping, Perak.
Business Hours: 11 am to 10 pm. Opens Daily.
Contact Number: 010-888 6688

Crab Meat Fried Porridge (Rm 24.90)

Braised Egg (Rm 2.30 each)

TeoChew People Cafe is a place where you will find Fried Porridge and Teo Chew delicacies. Unlike the authentic Serdang Fried Porridge, TeoChew People's comes with their own rendition and probably some upgrades. More Seafood items (like Crab meat) are added to their Fried Porridge too. The place is air-conditioned and it offers a comfortable space for family eat-out. We did not manage to try many dishes but only their Signature Shredded Crab Meat Fried Porridge. It did not possess a strong Wok Hei but a rather mild one. The absence of Cuttlefish left us underwhelmed but they have added Conch meat, introducing a chewy bite to the Fried Porridge. 

8) Komorebi Desserts- Artisanal Gelato
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 42, Jalan Maharajalela, 34000, Taiping, Perak.
Business Hours: 1 pm to 9:30 pm on every Tuesday to Sunday, 5 pm to 9:30 pm on Mondays. Closed on Thursdays.
Contact Number: 010-460 0539

Buttermilk Waffle with 2 Scoops (Rm 19) + Sicily Pistachio (Rm 5) + Cream Cheese Passion Fruit and Biscoff (Rm 1)

Komorebi Desserts is one of the very few (probably the only one) Gelataria in Taiping. It is strategically located in the heart of Taiping town (a short walk from Taiping Mall) and it is known for its artisanal Gelato. Choices are limited when it comes to the Gelato flavor but customers get to try a small scoop before placing orders. We had the Buttermilk Waffle which we thought it was quite good- airy, light with a buttery aroma. It worked perfectly well with our orders- Sicily Pistachio and Cream Cheese Passion Fruit Biscof. As for the Gelato, we prefer the latter one due to its creamier, milkier texture. The Pistachio element did not quite stand out unfortunately; both were inevitably sweet. A good after-meal dessert place nevertheless.

9) Tupai Emas Heong Peng 太平金地园香饼
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: No. 79, Lorong LTS 5, Jalan Taman Sungai Mas, 34000, Taiping, Perak.
Business Hours: 9 am to 6 pm. Opens Daily.
Contact Number: 05-848 2301

Heong Peng (Rm 8.50/ packet)

Meat Floss with Lotus Paste Pastry (Rm 16/ box )

Souvenir shopping is made easier at Tupai Emas Biscuit shop, where you get to find plenty of Chinese pastries including Heong Peng, Sat Keh Mah, Hap Tou Sou etc. They are conveniently packed, making it suitable to be gifted as souvenirs. This brand is said to be one of the very first to bake Heong Peng in Taiping. 

11) Man Man Tan Izakaya 鳗鳗碳
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 168, Jalan Izuddin Shah, 34000, Taiping, Perak.
Business Hours: 11 am to 3 pm, 5:30 pm to 9 pm. Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
Contact Number: 010-385 8161

Pyramid Una Don with Ikura Truffle (Rm 79)

Hokkaido Scallop Don with Ikura (Rm 90)

Ocean Cocktail

Green Tea (Rm 2/ cold)

Probably the busiest Japanese restaurant in Taiping and one of the few options for Japanese restaurants (apart from the usual franchise chain). Man Man Tan housed in a bungalow, approximately 10-min drive away from the Taiping old town. The restaurant specializes in Unagi Don (Japanese Grilled Eel Rice) but also serves some Japanese delights like Tamagoyaki, Ramen and Seafood Don. The menu is not extensive and the price points are slightly above average (by Taiping's standards). Yet, the place is always full on weekends... which testifies the quality of food. The popular choice is Unagi Don but we wanted something more extravagant. We had the Pyramid Una Don with Ikura and Truffle Sauce- expertly grilled Unagi with delicate smoky aroma but a pity that the Unagi lacked the fats and was a little too lean on the palate. The Truffle sauce and Unagi sauce were great but the rice was a little overwhelming in amount (also too mushy to our liking). The Hokkaido Scallop Don with Ikura is the most expensive item on their menu the quality is great. Our order of the Hokkaido Scallop was fresh with a sweet, umami-after taste. Though there were some minor misses, we still think the place is worth a try if you happen to be in Taiping.

12) Sin Kuan Kee
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 41, Jalan Kota, 34000, Taiping, Perak.
Business Hours: 5 am to 5 pm. Opens Daily.
Contact Number: 05-808 4360

If you do enjoy some old-school pastries, make your way to Sin Kuan Kee at Taiping town. The long-established coffee house churns out freshly made traditional Chinese pastries like Kah Lui Peng (Wedding Biscuits), Hap Tou Sou (Walnut Biscuits), Kaya Puff etc. The Kaya Puffs are popular and tend to be sold out by noon. On top of the Cantonese pastries, Sin Kuan Kee also sells some Dim Sum dishes. It is the kind of place where you will find plenty of senior folks mingle with each other over Chinese Tea and some light snacks. Unfortunately we did not get to try the Kaya Puff but we did enjoy the Wedding Biscuits. We thought the pastry skin was thin with buttery fragrant while the filling was not cloyingly sweet. 

Have Fun Exploring Taiping! 

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