Once an icon, FMS Ipoh (Federated Malay State) the oldest bar in our homeland shut its doors and bided goodbye to fellow Ipoh patrons a decade ago. Fast forward to 2019, it is back! Refined and upgraded to Durbar at FMS. To the uninformed, the FMS building has been a landmark of Ipoh for 113 years, founded by Hainanese migrants back in 1906.
In the heart of Greentown Business Center lies a small red shop that resembles an Irish bar. However it is not what it seems. The Museum indeed was a bar back in 2013 but it has changed to serving Chinese Cuisines since 2018. It is considered a newcomer and not very well-known yet. When I first suggested this restaurant, our family members were clueless. Little did they know, this place serves one of the best char siew ever in Ipoh! (not an exaggeration I swear) Living up to its name, the restaurant has a cozy ambience with historical elements. It is the perfect place to unwind, enjoy quality Chinese food with a glass of wine or two with some friends and family.
Nestled in the historical town of Ipoh, sits a small traditional restaurant along Jalan Dato Tahwil Azar (Osborne Street) that serves one of the best Hainanese Chicken Chop. At first glance, the shop does not attract your attention but don’t be fooled by its outlook. For decades, they have been pampering the taste buds of Ipoh Mali for generations. I first heard about this restaurant from our baby boomer family member who is an avid foodie, who used to come here when he was just a child. It’s a delight for a youngster like me to see how the restaurant has been holding up. Decked with marble tables and tiled walls, it was a trip back to the 70s. Cathay Restaurant offers Hainanese chops, steamed bread, French toast, half boiled eggs, Chinese dishes with rice, coffee and tea. There are also food stalls which are open for breakfast. Surrounding the restaurant are office blocks, and knew that we had to beat the lunch crowd.
Introducing the new kid on the block, Jack & Grill Steak House. Our neighbor has finally opened its doors and is ready to serve. Being the foodie we are, we wasted no time and scrambled over to taste some of their signature dishes. Founded by Jack Neo, there is another branch located at Medan Ipoh, just behind Kinta City Mall. They serve western dishes with a twist, curated to local taste buds. We guarantee that you will be spoilt with choice. Jack has over 20 years of experience in the F&B industry and he has traveled all over to look for inspiration in his recipes. According to Jack, his first branch was open since 2016 before he decided on opening a second branch. Lucky for us, it is a few steps away from our home.
According to Lonely Planet, Ipoh is the ‘lesser known’ food capital in Malaysia. With food courts, local restaurants and hawker stalls serving the same recipe for decades, therefore provides a divine culinary experience. Whenever there is a long holiday, Ipoh is usually flooded with tourists and food hunters. This time around, we have brought some of our family members to Tuck Kee Ipoh, one of the fried noodle “specialists” restaurant that has been around since 1963 at the same location, 55 years ago