July 17, 2018

319 Chin Siang Seafood @Hock Kui Commercial Centre, Kuching

Address: 3125 - 3126, Lrg Tun Ahmad Zaidi Adruce 20, Hock Kui Commercial Centre, 93150 Kuching, Sarawak
Business hours: Wednesday - Monday 10:30am - 10:00pm (Every Tuesday off)

The day landed in Kuching from Taiwan trip, my bro brought us here for dinner. The location is not so noticeable because its location is not facing main road. It's quite risky to open a restaurant here though. Unless someone has spread the word and recommended it, otherwise I don't think I would ever find out there's a restaurant there.

Butter prawns, this one was good. The butter sauce was thick enough and flavourful.

Sea cucumber soup, this is usually the soup we would order whenever we dine out.

Stir-fried kangkung (water spinach) with garlic. This was good, usually we get the kangkung stir-fried with garlic, and they have this deep-fried garlic on top. Awesome.

This is my bro's favourite, crabs with egg. I like crabs too but not as much as him. Usually it takes me long time to extract the crab meat and end up I lost appetite to finish my bowl of rice.

The first visit was good, and I got quite impressed with the food quality here. However, the second visit we got a let down. The steamed grouper fish smelled so fishy and too rough in texture. Usually the boss will be honest with you if the fish is fresh or not ok. But for some reasons, that grouper fish was really not ok for us. Price wise, quite reasonable. The service was good, served the food fast. It's a good place to bring big family or guests here for lunch or dinner.

The map to 319 Chin Siang Seafood:

July 7, 2018

Sarawak Laksa @Jia Yan Cafe 佳燕美食坊, Jln Simpang Tiga, Kuching

Location: Jalan Simpang Tiga, Kampung Kenyalang Park, 93300 Kuching, Sarawak (Opposite The Spring Shopping Mall, behind ST3)

The other day I overheard someone commented that the laksa at Jia Yan Cafe is the best laksa in Kuching. That really made me curious, so I made a visit on purpose.

The mentioned laksa stall. There's a typo here: Your "Preffered" Laksa. Small bowl RM5, big bowl RM6, special RM8.

I ordered a small bowl of laksa. The taste was quite good actually, slightly salty. The shrimps were fresh and the portion was acceptable for the price of RM5.

The next visit, I ordered black vinegar kolo mee from the kolo mee stall. The texture is not to my liking. The seasonings was not evenly mixed, and the taste was rather bland. However, my mum commented that their kampua was nice.

There's a stall selling variety of sandwiches too. Unfortunately they don't have the traditional toast.

The coffee shop was formerly known as Top One Food Court. The map of Jia Yan Cafe:

July 3, 2018

Fun Taiwan Day 9: Taipei (Fuhang Soy Milk 阜杭豆浆, Emanuel Fish Soup 以馬內利鮮魚湯 & Ximending 西門町)

It comes to the end of our Taiwan trip. Tuesday morning, finally got chance to buy breakfast at Fuhang Soy Milk again. The queue line during weekend morning is very ridiculously long every time. I ever tried to go after 6am, still got frightened off because of the queue. Back in 2010 and 2011, Fuhang was not that famous yet. I didn't have to queue, could still find a seat at window side and enjoy breakfast.

As I was impressed with the good taste of its thick bread with egg many years ago, I wanted my mum to have a bite of it too. Fuhang is closed on Monday. So Tuesday we went there to try our luck. Lucky enough, the queue was not long. Didn't have to queue at the staircase. They are very efficient, except some customers take long pause to order. The process is to order and pay to the assigned staff, then collect at the end of the counter.

The menu and pricing. The price is still reasonable. Refer back to the picture I took in 2010, they have increased price NT$5 for every item.

The menu board in 2010.

Thick bread with egg (厚餅夾蛋) NT$40,  soy milk (豆漿) NT$30, total NT$70.

I had it in 2010.

And I had it too in 2011.

My verdict, I was quite disappointed with the taste now. Its thickness was thinner, and the aroma of the bread wasn't fragrant like I had it in 2010 and 2011. The taste pretty ordinary, nothing is worth to brag about. Perhaps, it's due to the result of mass production? Nevertheless, their soy milk still remained good. Anyway, I don't think I'll revisit again after this visit.

Map to Fuhang Soy Milk:

After my breakfast at Fuhang Soy Milk, time to hunt food for my mum. I used Google map to search the food nearby with good review ratings. And found this dish that my mum would be interested to try, fish soup 鮮魚湯. The little food stall is located in a street alley. There are a row of food stalls here selling different dishes. This stall named Emanuel (以馬內利) has higher review rating though.

This is one of the best food I had in Taiwan during this trip. The fish is fresh enough so you don't find the soup with fishy smell. The soup base is clear but flavourful because of the strong aroma of basil leaves. My mum loves it, me too.

Ordered this fried rice vermicelli for my mum, she liked it too. She finished it all alone.

The map to Emanuel Fish Soup 以馬內利鮮魚湯:

Every trip I made to Taiwan, I never skipped to have Formosa Chang's minced pork rice. Despite I was superb full, I still ordered one small bowl of minced pork rice 魯肉飯 (NT$39) and reluctantly ordered another plate of bean curd 老皮嫩肉 (NT$29). As it might look not so right to pay only one dish NT$39 for two diners.

Next destination, we went to Ximending 西門町. The weather was hot, we just walked aimlessly.

Stopped by at Ujiemon 宇治右衛門 for matcha soft ice cream.

The matcha was strong in flavour, not bad. A nice retreat on a hot day.

I have tried this Ay-Chung Flour-Rice Noodle on my first Taiwan trip in 2010. The thick gravy was too salty for me. I don't fond on this flavour.

In 2010, they were still using plastic bowl. Now it's served in disposable paper bowl. Something remained the same, we have to stand and savour it outside the shop.

Evening time, we took MRT to Taipei City Hall station again. Attracted to this croquant chou zakuzaku 棒棒泡芙.

A stick of ZAKUZAKU棒棒泡芙 costs NT$88. Even though quite pricey, but the taste was good.

The end of our Taiwan trip. The next morning we took the earliest MRT to Taipei main station, from there and we took the MRT to Taoyuan airport. Managed to catch our flight at 9:55am.

June 26, 2018

Fun Taiwan Day 8: Taipei (Tamsui Old Street 淡水老街, Tamsui Fisherman's Wharf 淡水漁人碼頭, Fort San Domingo 紅毛城 & Raohe Street Night Market 饒河街觀光夜市)

Third day in Taipei, it was on Monday. We chose to have breakfast at 7-Eleven nearby. I had a cup of hot cappuccino and egg sandwich. My plan for the day, a walk at Tamsui (淡水) then go to Raohe Street Night Market (饒河夜市) in the evening time. It was another hot day in Taiwan.

This sour plum tea is famous at Tamsui Old Street. The taste was good. Its sourness was just nice, not overly sour. An effective beverage to quench your thirst on a hot day.

We embarked ferry from Tamsui Old Street to Fisherman's Wharf at this station here. If you have the EasyCard 悠遊卡, you just need to tap it to the sensor and access to ferry. Don't have to purchase ticket at the counter. If not mistaken, the ferry station starts operating at 12pm.

It took about 15 minutes to get to Fisherman's wharf by ferry ride. Miffy bunnies are welcoming you to Fisherman's wharf.

The Lover's Bridge 情人橋.

Got my mum to pose the love gesture at the landmark of Tamsui Fisherman's Wharf.

It was noon time, bought this cup noodles from the only convenient store here for lunch. My sister-in-law likes this flavour of cup noodles very much. Not bad actually, inexpensive too.

Instead of ferry, we took bus on our return to Tamsui Old Street. Stopped by at Fort San Domingo (紅毛城). The entrance fee is NT$80 per adult.

It was first built by Spanish in 1629. Destroyed by the Spanish after losing the war to the Dutch in 1642. Dutch rebuilt it in 1644. In 1867, the British leased the fort from the Qing dynasty and made it their trade consulate.

This is the former British Consular Residence. The location of it provides a beautiful outlook on Guanyin Mountain and the Tamsui River.

Aletheia University 真理大學, founded by Dr. George Leslie Mackay, a missionary from Canada. Completed in 1882, it was formerly named as Oxford College because it was funded in large part by contributions from the residents of Oxford County in Ontario, Canada. Dr. George Leslie Mackay named the school Oxford College as a gesture of thanks to the benefactors.

The former Oxford University College founded by Dr. George Leslie Mackay. It's now a part of Aletheia University.

We went to Raohe Street Night Market around 5:30pm.

First thing to buy at Raohe, the famous pepper bun 胡椒餅. It was originated from the Foochow region of the mainland China. during Tang dynasty. The same baking method like gongpia 光餅, baking in a high-heat clay oven.

We arrived here slightly earlier so the queue was still short. I highly recommend this pepper bun, it's a must-try food at here. The stall is just located at the entrance, very easy to spot.

The fillings was abundant and juicy, not as dry as the one I bought from Shilin Night Market. The dough was crispy. With the aroma of pepper, it was really tasty indeed.

My mum is very picky in food. She didn't want to try out the pepper bun so we had to seek other food that interests her. Opted this at last. I don't know what's it called. The taste was quite bland.

After dinner, must have desserts. I ordered the original taste of tofu pudding 豆腐花.

The original taste of tofu pudding, NT$45 per bowl.

The map to Raohe Night Market:

There are another two night markets which I liked very much too, Shida Night Market and Gongguan Night Market. Didn't have enough of time to visit other night markets in Taipei during this trip. To try out so many night markets in Taipei, it requires 10 days length of stay at least.

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