The famous Tao Yuan grill fish stall 桃源铁板烧鱼 in Pekan Nanas was one of the stops of our 2 Day/ 1 Night food trail in Johor.
Tao Yuan Grill Fish is sandwiched between a charming kampung style kopitiam and a canal. No smells from the canal at all - the only smell I got was the pungent aroma of the sambal chili from the sizzling griddle :-D
The boss was extremely busy working on his large sizzling griddle non-stop while we were there.
Other people's sea bass with a sambal chili blanket. Looks so good.
The fish at Tao Yuan Grill Fish were all fresh and wild caught. We picked that small 1 kilo grouper fish. That's a wild sea bass on the bottom left - it tastes completely different from farm raised sea bass.
All the stingrays which are ideal for grilling with sambal chili had already been sold out :-(( We were at Tao Yuan at 6:30pm, it was hardly late :-p Anyway, we learnt our lesson - call ahead to reserve our orders at 6012-765 1335 before coming :-D
We had half the grouper Teochew steamed 潮州蒸 which is the natural choice for such a fresh fish. The fish was garnished with cubes of fresh tofu and a bit of mushrooms, preserved lime and preserved vegetables. Done perfectly, all we had was the natural sweet taste of the fish's tender juicy meat. The slightly salty, tangy garnish brought out the fish's sweetness for our enjoyment.
The other half of the grouper, we asked for it to be cooked with asam pedas. It was good too. The asam pedas was just mildly spicy, tangy, sweet so that we can still taste the natural fresh fish flavour with every bite.
I was able to drink the gravy of both the steamed fish and asam pedas fish.
Fresh sea prawns fried with a bit of sambal chili. The sambal chili was mildly savoury spicy flavoured without detracting anything from the fresh prawns at all. The prawns were also not overly greasy and the shells had a slight crisp. The meat was juicy and tender.
Crunchy, juicy lady fingers and petai (stinky beans) with a bit of sambal chili. One of my favourite dishes which was very well executed here.
There was a long Saturday night queue ahead of us, so we lim kopi (drink coffee) while we waited. It's a "white coffee" which is the local style in the Pontian/ Pekan Nanas area. White coffee means just pure Robusta beans without adding maize, sugar and margarine in the roast (which is the Singapore kopitiam style).
This is only part one of the post about Tao Yuan Grill Fish because we must come back for their famous grilled stingray :-D
Our 2 Day/ 1 Night food tour during which we visited Tao Yuan in Pekan Nanas <- click
Restaurant name: Sin Tao Yuan Grill Fish 兴桃源铁板烧鱼
Address: Junction of Lorong B-1 and B-6, Pekan Nanas, 81300 Johor, Malaysia
GPS: 1.509340, 103.511949 / 1°30'33.6"N 103°30'43.0"E
Hours: Tue to Fri 5:00pm to 9:00pm | Sat & Sun 3:00pm to 10:00pm (closed on Mon)
Tel: 012-765 1335 (call beforehand to book your stingray)
Date visited: 1 Aug 2015, 7 May 2016
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