"Singaporean loves food and this passion for food has seen some of us travelling all the way across the causeway to hunt for good food. Recently I get to know Tony aka Johor Kaki who writes on http://johorkaki.blogspot.sg/, "Put every good hawker on the World Wide Web". I like following his blog as it gives me an insight of the hidden gems in JB. I am making a list to visit them in my next trip up north.
With this note, I have invited Johor Kaki to do a blog post to share with us 5 of his favourite food places in Johor Bahru."
[Guest Post by JOHOR KAKI]
Derrick kindly invited me to guest post on sgfoodonfoot about my 5 favourite food joints in Johor Bahru.
There are so many nice places to eat in JB, so it is a big challenge to narrow them down to just 5. I’ve decided to introduce you just 5 of my favourite JB food places that are all within 10 minutes of leisurely walk after clearing Malaysian immigration. There are a few more good eating places within 10 minutes walk in JB’s old downtown area.
Here is the sketch map of where my 5 favourite places are located. After clearing immigration, walk out of City Square shopping centre and go onto the main street, Jalan Wong Ah Fook. .
Walk along Jalan Wong Ah Fook and head towards the direction of Singapore. Look out for this Hindu temple along Jalan Ungku Puan, which you can use as a reference point. Then follow the directions on the sketch map.
If you are there early and need a morning coffee, I suggest you can try the coffee and half boiled eggs at Kin Wah coffee shop. The traditional office here is full bodied and robustly flavoured. The perfectly done half boiled eggs here are made from kampung chicken eggs. The eggs have a heavier texture and more distinct aroma of fresh eggs. This Hainanese kopitiam is packed the whole day with customers of all races and from all walks of life. I haven’t tried their toast buns and breads myself but I can see that they are very popular. Many people also order their mee siam here. Business can get very hectic here and the harried staff can be a bit on edge.
A short walk away is Ah Hua kway teow soup. This old shop has been here for a long time and is today run by the third generation. They still use charcoal to boil the soup stock – something that I have not seen anywhere else. RM16 gets you the “King’s version” loaded with abalone, fresh oysters and all the extra luxuries. Personally, I am perfectly happy with the basic RM5 version to savour the old traditional flavours 古早味 of Teochew kway teow soup.
If you like Western, I suggest you try IT Roo cafe. This is another very old Hainanese café and it is famed for their chicken chops. The chicken chop comes in a big slab of thigh, crispy on the outside and moist and juicy inside. The chicken chop comes with their addictive fresh mushroom sauce. Be early as IT Roo is always packed during lunch and you may have to wait for your seat.
In the same area is Hiap Joo bakery. This traditional bakery still uses their old wood fired oven to bake their cakes and pastries. Hiap Joo’s banana cake is very popular. Go inside the shop and you will see the huge charcoal oven, and all the fresh ingredients like combs of bananas used to make the cakes. No artificial flavouring is used here. You can taste the difference, instantly. I always bring home something from Hiap Joo whenever I pass by this shop.
If you stay beyond 5:00pm, try this BBQ chicken stall in Meldrum Walk. Medrum Walk is a back lane food paradise – something we cannot find anywhere in Singapore anymore. There are many good food stalls here and my favourite is the BBQ chicken stall. The fresh charcoal roasted chicken literally drips with sweet natural juices. The juice was so good, I actually felt bad that some of it inevitably dripped onto the plate when I bite into it – such a waste J
There are many other good food stalls and shops to try out when you are in JB. JB is generally safe but please do be alert and take the usual precautions e.g. move away when approached by “Scratch and Win” scammers.
It is easy to enjoy JB food with a little bit of knowledge of where the good eating places are J.
Wish you happy eating.