The ‘Other’ Choy Kee Restaurant @ Ipoh GardenMay 15, 2013 | 6,010 views
Nyonya Steamed Siakap – Infinitely appetizing, this fairly-sized specimen was steamed with a plethora of ingredients; the usual suspects in a cauldron of curry fish head.
Whenever we are at lost on where to dine, or what to have for dinner, the safest choice would be ‘dai chow’ or ‘chu char’; Chinese restaurants whipping up a rich selection of dishes to go along with white rice; or if you’re feeling fancy … a plateful of fried noodles or two.
Just so happened that Ipoh Garden is blessed with more than a few starlets; the obvious highlight being Sun Marpoh along the row where KFC and Maybank are, near to the main roundabout in the neighbourhood.
I’ve sung enough tunes (and a fair bit of thunderstorm that followed) about Sun Marpoh. Let’s shift our attention to Choy Kee and Yeh Lai Ong within spitting distance (well, not that near … but you get the picture).
If ever you’ve grown lethargic of hearing the same sweet and sour pork being ordered by your kids, don’t punish them by ordering steamed brussel sprouts or blanched bean sprouts. The slices of yam sandwiched between pork belly is a good bet too. Provided that your kids don’t fall from their chairs looking at the dark-toned platter.
Side by side like enemies sleeping under the same blanket, Choy Kee and Yeh Lai Ong have been around for some time. At least, a good decade or so.
Perhaps, the best judge of their popularity would be YOU; whom have grown up tasting their fares in Ipoh. The restaurants are located adjacent to one another, opposite of the Ipoh Garden post office (where this Kacang Puteh stall operates earlier in the afternoon) and constantly packed during dinner hours.
Gradually witnessing an influx of customers to Choy Kee; I was somewhat surprised by the lukewarm response that Yeh Lai Ong was receiving that Sunday evening. Seriously, Choy Kee had eager beavers lining up and standing impatiently, while good old neighbour there was half-empty.
Now this would be a dish that will guarantee to garner votes from your kids. And their grandpas. Braised pre-fried beancurd with ham and vegetables.
The wait for our food was a test of our patience though. Slightly more than half an hour I believe. And not a very pleasant manner to sit and wait when there were at least a dozen or so folks (including the elderly) standing around wishing for napkins to wipe their drool. Metaphorically speaking.
The food was above average, yet paled in comparison to what Sun Marpoh has to offer. The steamed siakap in a piquant and tangy gravy was delicious, largely helped by the freshness of the fish. The signature beancurd (forgot the actual name, but ask for the one with ham) was a killer; and went exceptionally well with rice. The yam and pork belly was a disappointment though, while the generic stir-fried greens with garlic was well …. predictable.
Apparently, Choy Kee is well-known for their freshwater fishes and pork knuckles.
The meal came to RM89/USD30 for the 5 of us, including Chinese tea and rice. Quite reasonable, but not the cheapest by a long shot. Still, the convenience of dining around the neighbourhood was a plus, and the ample parking spaces (well, gotta walk a little anyway) are to their advantage.
Now … let’s look for that ideal time when we cover eateries in Menglembu instead. Still a mystery to us; we wonder if there are delicious ‘dai chow’ places that we have not been to before? Help is appreciated; of course. Throw your recommendations HERE and share with the other 25,000 fans.
p/s : Why the ‘other’ Choy Kee in the title? A throwback to that famous one in Sungkai; for their braised pork’s knuckle.
CHOY KEE RESTAURANT (non-Halal) (map)
111, Jalan Dato Lau Pak Khuan,
31400 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
GPS : 4.612053,101.110202
*next to AmBank Ipoh Garden, and opposite the Ipoh Garden post office