Reasons…

We have not been here

Sri Pelita Cafe price tags

…for a while now for no particular reason but this is one of our favourite places in town when it comes to Indian/Malay kind of cuisine and my girl loves their thosai but they only have that till 11.00 a.m. so we can’t order that for lunch. Their other outlet in the town centre has closed down now but they have another one in the Permai area and according to the Indian guy that day, that one opens till late, up till 11.00 p.m. at night.

One reason why I like this place is how they keep their food in this cabinet…

Sri Pelita Cafe food cabinet

Looking at the knobs, I think this doubles as a food warmer to keep everything warm though maybe, not those dishes on the upper racks…

Sri Pelita Cafe food on the racks

…and it is good that they take the trouble to keep it covered all the time. When there are customers, they will remove the sliding doors with mosquito netting for them to look around…

Sri Pelita Cafe curries

…and pick what they fancy…

Sri Pelita Cafe all the rest

…and as soon as they are done, they will put the doors back right away unlike some places here where the food is left there exposed the whole time.

We decided to go for the nasi campur (mixed rice) that day and my missus had this (RM6.00)…

Sri Pelita Cafe missus' picks

…with a special request for only half the usual amount of rice they would give.

She had the sambal terung (brinjal)…

Sri Pelita Cafe sambal terung

…our favourite in town by virtue of its very very nice sambal, different from all the rest elsewhere and a whole lot nicer.

She also had the sambal telur (egg)…

Sri Pelita Cafe sambal egg

…which had the same sambal and of course, that made it very nice too and together with the two, she had their cangkuk manis.

Likewise, my girl had the sambal terung as well – she loves brinjal no matter how it is done and she asked for their nasi bryani that came with one piece of papadum (RM9.00)…

Sri Pelita Cafe nasi bryani fish curry with sambal terung

…and she had their fish curry with one piece of the brinjal and one of the ladies fingers in the dish.

I did not feel like having the bryani rice so I had the plain, just like my missus, and I also asked for half of the usual serving (RM8.00)…

Sri Pelita Cafe my picks

Of course, like everyone else, I had the sambal terung and I also had the sambal telur…and as always, I just can’t resist salted egg when I see any and along with the three, I also had a slice of fish.

We certainly enjoyed our lunch that day and I must say what we had was much cheaper than what I had at another place here just a few days earlier. Needless to say, for all those aforementioned reasons, rest assured that we would definitely be coming back here again.

SRI PELITA CAFE (2.293579, 111.820700) is located along Lorong Kampung Datu 11, off Jalan Kampung Datu, the first shop in the block to the right of Paramount Hotel.

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Something extra…

This was sometime ago – Peter, the very nice boss of Payung Café, made these lovely popiah (spring rolls)…

Popiah from Peter 1

…for his mum and he made some extra and went through the trouble of sending them all the way to my house for me. Luckily, I had not cooked dinner yet so I could just enjoy those…

Popiah from Peter 2

…that evening.

Then when we dropped by the café the other day, he let us try this…

Fish with sak chai & potatoes

– a dish cooked by one of his boys, a Bangladeshi. He and his team will go round on Sundays to do some people’s gardens and there was one where they had a lot of this vegetable and they were asked to help themselves and take all they wanted and the Bangladeshi said he knew how to cook it and he did.

I don’t know what vegetable that was – they call it sak chai in Hokkien, probably a variety of spinach, maybe Ceylon spinach. My missus said that it is easily available at the market but she has never bought it as according to her, it has a certain smell that she is not particularly fond of. However, there was no smell in what we had that day – the fish (ikan sultan/sotan) cooked with the vegetable and potatoes. We thought that was really very nice and we finished all of it! Peter said that he would consider adding it to his menu since at this point in time, they do not have many fish options for customers to choose.

And that wasn’t all! He also treated us to this special dessert…

Payung Cafe dessert, dreamy nite

…with a lovely name – Dreamy Nite. I used to enjoy it a lot but I have not ordered it for a while now as there is wheat in it and oats too, I think, so it is not gluten free. My girl could not eat that and my missus just ate a bit as she said she was way too full after our very lovely lunch so in the end, I got to finish it off all by myself.

Actually, we went there that day as my girl said that she liked their chicken dish (RM16.00, with rice)…

Payung Cafe Payung chicken with rice

…with its thick rich yogurt-based gravy but personally, I was not so fond of it as it was very strong with the smell/taste of the green peppers in it. I was thinking that she would want to order that and enjoy it for lunch but when we got there, she said she would like one of her favourites here, the lamb masala (RM19.00, with rice)…

Payung Cafe lamb masala

…and in the end, we had both!

The lamb was great, as always and we were delighted that the chicken was also very nice. I noticed that they seemed to have toned down the green peppers a bit – it was still there but it was not as strong and I did enjoy it very much.

I asked for the very popular and one-of-its-kind Payung rojak (RM12.00)…

Payung Cafe Payung rojak

…and Andy served us one very huge serving of that!

My missus stuck to one of her favourites here, the green curry chicken (RM16.00, with rice)…

Payung Cafe green curry chicken with rice

…but she was not able to put in her usual request – for it to be extra spicy as we were sharing our orders and my girl, though she can handle some very hot stuff, is not into it as much as her mum. In the end, Andy gave my missus this…

Extra chili

– their own-made extra hot habanero chili dip, to add as it pleased her.

Yes, the green curry chicken…

Payung Cafe green curry chicken

…was really good too and we thoroughly enjoyed our lunch that day. My girl was absolutely delighted – she always is every time we come here as she enjoys the food a great deal and she likes the place, the ambiance and all, and the people are so very friendly that it makes her feel so at home.

We were so very full after all these, including the special treats from Peter, that we just had a light and simple dinner at home that evening.

PAYUNG CAFÉ (2.284049, 111.833014) is located at No.20F, Lanang Road, Sibu, Malaysia, back to back with the multi-storey car park of the Kingwood Hotel which faces the majestic Rejang River.

Not surprised…

The other day, my girl wanted the thosai masala (RM3.50)…

Curry House thosai masala 1

here – she enjoys it a lot. Inside, there are some potatoes mixed with bits of their chicken masala from here…

Curry House choices

…and the mum wanted the same…

Curry House thosai masala 2

…so they both had that, one each.

I was drawn to what they had for their nasi campur (mixed rice), all the lovely looking curries but this time, unlike the first time we were here, I was prepared to fork out quite a bit of money when I picked these…

Curry House nasi campur, my picks 1

…to go with the rice.

The beef liver…

Curry House beef liver

…(or was it chicken?) looked so good and I had a tough time resisting the temptation to add that to my plate of rice, hardly visible already with my picks of two meat and two vegetables.

Of course, I was not surprised that the total came up to RM14.50, RM5.00 for the beautiful mutton curry (though my girl was not as impressed – she placed it third after the one here and also the one here), RM4.00 for the sotong (squid) curry, RM2.00 for the aforementioned potatoes and RM2.00 for the cangkuk manis and pumpkin…plus RM1.50 for the rice.

That sure is a lot of money for something in a regular coffee shop setting, nothing fancy, nothing grand and actually, we can get something cheaper or for around that same price or a bit more in some more comfortable, more impressive café or restaurant here…and enjoy it just as much.

Never mind! I knew that was coming so I was not in the least surprised and what mattered most as the fact that I did enjoy all that I picked. I think I scooped more of everything and luckily I was not charged double for each of the items…

Curry House nasi campur 2

– I think normally, we will not be given that much. There should be a bit more of the curries than what you can see in the snapshots but I had already started eating before I remembered that I had not taken the photograph. They looked so good, you see, so I could not wait to dive straight in.

It certainly was consoling when I shared this on Facebook and a friend in Kuala Lumpur said that it was cheap – over there, that would come up to over RM20.00. Gosh!!!!

So will we be going back there again? Well, I would say yes, we would definitely go back again for their very nice thosai masala…and perhaps, if I restrain from taking so much with my rice, beef, chicken and fish being cheaper than mutton, just one meat and vegetable, the total that I would need to pay would not be that shocking. LOL!!!

CURRY HOUSE (2.304051, 111.848937) is located along Lorong Pahlawan 7B/3, the lane heading straight towards the Sibu Bus Terminal, on the right.

Incompatible…

We have not been here for a long long time for the simple reason that there is nothing much on their menu that is gluten-free. Most of the things either have soy sauce or are made from wheat flour.

However, last Sunday, after the 11.00 a.m. service at the cathedral in the town, we stopped by here for lunch and my missus had their sizzling spicy sambal seafood kampua (RM14.73, incusive of GST)…

Noodle House spicy seafood sambal kampua 1

…which I do recall having before way back in 2010 when it was only RM12.90 – I guess it was not all that cheap then and it is even worse now! I did not think the two were all that compatible at the time and I did not like it at all – given a choice, I would much sooner go for the sizzling beef kampua.

My missus said it was good though – the kampua was to her liking and she enjoyed the spicy sambal seafood…

Noodle House spicy sambal seafood kampua 2

I guess my mistake then was I mixed everything together and ended with something that tasted quite weird, or to me, at least and I did not see her doing that but frankly, for that kind of money, I would much rather go for something a whole lot nicer here…or here or elsewhere. Obviously, a lot of people think otherwise for this place is always so very crowded (and noisy) and not only is it often difficult to grab a table, there is a problem as well when it comes to parking one’s car…unless you park at a distance and walk, not something I would be all that keen to do especially in the scorchingly hot midday sun.

I had their kway chap special (RM8.69, inclusive of GST, up from RM8.37 before)…

Noodle House kway chap special 1

It did not matter than it did not quite taste the same – even the chili dip was no longer like what we used to enjoy before. It used to be something like the dip for chicken rice but now, it is thick and sticky like chili sauce, Thai chili sauce, to be more precise, but thankfully, the saving grace was that it was very nice and very spicy too and I quite enjoyed eating the “kway chap” with a whole lot of it.

But wait a minute!!! Kway chap, you said? Where were the broad white rice sheets? Why was there kway teow

Noodle House kway chap special 2

…in it instead? If I wanted kway teow, I would have gone some place else to eat that and the worse thing was they did not even have the decency and courtesy to apologise and ask, “We’re sorry we’re out of kway chap. Would you mind if we use kway teow instead?”  No, they just served it like that as if nothing was amiss.

I ordered their grilled pork chop mantao (RM10.39, inclusive of GST, for two pieces)…

Noodle House grilled pork chop mantao

…to try but at best, I would say it was all right – not all that compatible, the meat and the steamed bun and definitely not anything I would want to order again. It would have been a lot nicer with their stewed pork belly but still, considering the price, if that is what I want, I would just come here for that at less than half the price for three!!!

Actually, my real intention in dropping by there that day was to buy some of their very nice pork belly kompia (RM5.51, inclusive of GST, for a set of 3)  for my mum and their salted caramel macarons (RM10.00, exclusive of GST, for a set of 3) that she liked a lot the last time I got some for her. She was not able to chew the kompia all that well though so I guess I would not be buying those for her anymore next time…but yes, she still enjoyed the macarons.

NOODLE HOUSE (2.291369, 111.829233) is located in the vicinity right behind the Sibu Central Police Station at No, 2B Ground Floor, Lorong Lai Chee 1, on your left if you are turning in from Hua Kiew Road or on your right if you are coming from Jalan Lai Chee.

Two doors down…

Two doors down from this coffee shop…

Syarikat Kiong Chuong Cafe

…is a TOTO shop so every week, I would pass by here to go and try my luck.

It has been around for a long long time and I do know there is a chu char stall that is very nice. I can recall dropping by here for the Foochow fried noodles and as far as I can remember, it was very good. The problem is I always go so very early in the morning and it is still closed or we would be around the vicinity on Tuesdays and it looks like that is their day off.

The kampua mee stall…

Kiong Chuong Cafe kampua mee stall

…in front would be the only one going full swing already that early in the morning and last Saturday morning, I decided to stop by and give it a try.

I had the mee, of course…

Kiong Chuong Cafe kampua mee 1

…and yes, it was all right, nice enough for anyone around there who feels like having it…

Kiong Chuong Cafe kampua mee 2

I also ordered their liver soup…

Kiong Chuong Cafe liver soup 1

…and I thought it was good, better than some that I have tried elsewhere – lots of ginger and the traditional Foochow red wine…

Kiong Chuong Cafe liver soup 2

…but I do think the one here has an edge over it.

I was in for a pleasant surprise when I asked for the total and was told that it was only RM5.80, RM2.80 for the noodles and only RM3.00 for the big bowl of liver soup. The aforementioned one that I said was nicer was RM3.50 for a very small bowl and that was in 2015 – I don’t know how much that would cost now.

Well, if you’re wondering if I struck it rich, no, I didn’t…unfortunately but I did get enough to go for another round of the kampua mee and liver soup and still have 20 sen change. Hehehehehe!!!

SYARIKAT KIONG CHUONG CAFE (2.291062, 111.827381) is located along Jalan Kampung Nyabor at the bend where one turns into Brooke Drive, a stone’s throw from Malaysia Hotel in the next block.

Fourth time around…

Actually, my girl wanted to drop by here that day for their sizzling beef on a hot plate that she likes a lot but I told her that I had a feeling that there would be a bit of tomato sauce in the gravy and maybe some soy sauce too, hence the dark tone so it would be best that we gave that a miss.

In the end, we ended up here, our fourth time so far and yes, the very nice boss who is also the chef/cook, was there to take our orders and as always, he was ever ready to see to all our needs and wants.

If anyone is staying at this hotel in the town centre…

RH Hotel, Sibu

…he or she can walk at an angle of 45° upon coming out of the entrance and will reach this small restaurant in a couple of minutes.

My girl wanted the kian sor hu, literally translated as salty crusty fish…

Home Cook kiam sor hu

…which was to everyone’s liking.

We also had what we ordered before on our previous visits and enjoyed very much and that included the sweet potato leaves, ching chao (fried plain)

Home Cook sweet potato leaves

…with a sprinkling of fried finely-chopped garlic on top.

We loved his homemade tofu

Home Cook ang sio tau hu

…which we would place among the best in town and we had that again and as for the salted fish pork belly minus the soy sauce that we had last time, we asked for dried chili to be added this time…

Home Cook salted fish dried chili pork

…and we liked that too.

We had four dishes that day – on our previous visits, we had three with one soup, one meat and a veg and the total was around RM30.00. For our two meat and two vegetable dishes (including the tofu), the total came up to RM39.00. I guess that’s pretty reasonable and considering that we did like what was served each time we dropped by here, we certainly would not mind coming back again.

HOME COOK CORNER (2.292756, 111.825335) is located at No. 73, Jalan Kampung Nyabor right next to RUBY RESTAURANT with the AmBank Tunku Osman branch in the very next block.

Slow hands…

Be forewarned that you may need to wait for a very long time if you drop by here. They are indeed very slow.

The only thing that will be served very quickly will be their nasi kerabu which will be on your table almost instantly. I guess everything is ready so they will just have to put everything together in a plate and bring it out.

We dropped by there again last Friday and my missus wanted their nasi kerabu ayam percik (RM6.50)…

Warong Cafe nasi kerabu ayam percik 1

…which came out in no time at all…

Warong Cafe nasi kerabu ayam percik 2

Now THAT is the kind of ayam percik that I am more familiar with, with a bit of gravy, not dry like the one here, and yes, it was very nice. My missus sure enjoyed it and kept singing praises of it.

However, we had to wait quite a bit for the drinks but not as long as my order, their mee mamak seafood (RM6.50)…

Warong Cafe mee mamak seafood

It took like forever and thank goodness, it was nice with lots of prawns…

Warong Cafe mee mamak seafood, prawns

…and sotong (squid)…

Warong Cafe mee mamak seafood, sotong

…definitely heaps nicer than what my missus had here and it is cheaper too but if I had to wait THAT long, I sure would not want to order that ever again. After all, seeing how they are both priced the same and I do think the nasi kerabu is nicer, RM6.00 only for the one with fish, I would just stick to the latter, thank you very much.

A friend did drop by for the nasi kerabu kambing bakar but she felt the meat was not really tender and her friend said she could detect the smell of gas and assumed that they grilled it over the gas stove, not over hot burning charcoal. If that is the case, I think I will not bother to give that a try.

I saw a lot of other customers having their noodle dishes and also their fried rice. I guess they did not mind the long wait except for one lady in a group – I don’t know what she wanted but she must have been quite pissed off so she went and cancelled her order.

They even took quite a bit of time in their calculations using a calculator – I kept telling them the total, RM19.00 – RM6.50 X 2 plus RM3.00 X 2 for our drinks. I could work it out mentally so very fast and easily too but no, either they are extra careful or they have very slow hands…

WARONG CAFE (2.318841, 111.831732), formerly Sri Tanjung Cafe, is located among the shops in between Jalan Tapang and Jalan Tapang Timur towards the end of Jalan Kampung Nangka – RTM Sibu is located right across the road on the right.