Driving around and looking for a breakfast joint on the second day of Chinese New Year, we found ourselves at Restoran Ipoh Central @ Ipoh.
At least this coffee shop was big enough (though still congested with people) for us to find seats quite easily. Not knowing what is good here, I walked around to 'survey' the stalls. I knew I wanted to try Ipoh's Hor Hee and found 2 stalls in the same coffee shop, one with small fish balls and the other had large fish balls :D
I settled for the stall that had some newspaper clippings adorned (hey, if they're featured in the newspapers, at least I can be assured that it'd be decent....hopefully!). I ordered a bowl of Hor Hee @ RM5 which is actually Ipoh "sar hor fun" (kuey teow/flat rice noodles) or glass noodles with fish balls and fish cakes (very similar to Penang's Kuey Teow Th'ng or KL's Fish Ball Noodles). I chose hor fun.....hor fun in Ipoh is always good...smooth, thin, slippery....slurps!! :D
The fish balls tasted like they were made from pure fish paste. It was nice but small (you can compare the size of the fish balls to the spoon) and the bean sprouts fat and crunchy. The broth, however, didn't do anything for me :( Later, when I left the café and passed by the stall, I saw the hawker putting in some fish skin wantans into a bowl of hor hee but I didn't get any in my bowl...aiyor, fish skin wantans are one of my favourite things to eat T_T (then I saw that the pic at the stall had 2 pcs of fish skin wantans in the bowl of hor hee)! >.<
My spouse had the Ipoh Curry Mee with "siew yoke" (roasted pork). I'm not a fan of Ipoh's curry mee as it's quite different from our KL ones. The Ipoh ones have a stronger spice aroma and the assertiveness of the curry powder is all I taste. It's not as thick and fragrant with "santan" (coconut milk) like the ones in KL (which I love).
When ordering the curry mee, I noticed quite a few people ordering the Chicken Hor Fun from the same stall. The poached chicken looked really good and so I ordered one for sharing. The lady manning the stall was really busy and I could see that her customers would wait and take their bowls of cooked noodles themselves. Not wanting to do that, I waited for her to bring me the noodles. When it arrived, the chicken hor fun was topped with shredded chicken breast :'( instead of the chopped chicken pcs that I asked for. [#Note: And then she mentioned that she's so busy she want to faint (and close shop soon) but there wasn't any mention about receiving money till her hand trembled though! :D :D]
I did prefer the broth of this chicken hor fun to the hor hee soup though. If only they had given me the poached chicken, I would be a much happier person! The Ipoh Curry Mee and Chicken Hor Fun cost RM9.50 in total.
My spouse ordered a plate of "Siew Yoke" (Roasted Pork) @ RM6 which turned out to be good when I was not expecting it to. It was a nice surprise! The crackling was crispy and had the right amount of saltiness and the meat was flavourful too.
My son had a plain nasi lemak (from a Chinese stall) as he couldn't find anything he liked plus he's not fond of any type of soup noodles.
This was my glass of Cold Ipoh White Coffee which was rather nice.
The supposedly good eats from this coffee shop (which I gathered from Motormouth from Ipoh's blog) are the pork chop and chicken chop rice and Canning Garden's "chee cheong fun" (rice noodle rolls)...both of which I didn't get to try as they were closed, of course!
My Personal Opinion
The Ipoh hor hee and chicken hor fun are palatable fare......but the surprise 'find' turned out to be the siew yoke.
This corner coffee shop is a fair place for a quick breakfast or lunch as it offers a lot of options at very reasonable prices.
Restoran Ipoh Central
51 - 53 Jalan Raja Ekram