Thursday, 17 December 2015
Rockwater Oil and Gas Cafe Masai Johor near Pasar Borneo JK1337
Today, we were food spotting at the Pasar Borneo area in Masai which is the only Borneo market in Malaysia outside of Sarawak and Sabah.
Pasar Borneo opens from 12:00 noon till around 7:00pm on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. The best days to visit are the weekends when almost all the stalls are opened. Pasar Borneo sells many types of Sarawak and Sabah produce and food.
I love this sayur midin, a wild fern from Sarawak.
We were exploring the shops around Pasar Borneo, looking for any eatery that serves sayur midin. But, it was in vain so far.
As we passed this shop, I heard a voice called out "Tony".
It was Robert whom I met at Barra Groove bistro (near the JB CIQ).
Robert is an Iban who hailed from the rural, river side town of Kapit deep in Sarawak's interior. Trained as a school teacher, Robert ventured into oil and gas as well as the food and beverage industry. Robert worked several years in Singapore in famous night spots such as Zouk and 1-Altitude in UOB Building (roof top) where he was Assistant Outlet Manager. When I first met Robert, he was Operations Manager at Barra Groove Bistro in JB.
After over 20 years helping others setup and manage F & B outlets, Robert took the plunge to start his own bistro. He teamed up with buddy Darryl to set up Rockwater Oil and Gas Cafe.
As the name Rockwater Oil and Gas alludes, the cafe reflects Robert's extensive experience in both fields. Darryl too has an oil and gas background, specialising in rope access. The cafe have an oil and gas theme... of course.
The idea of Rockwater Oil and Gas Cafe is a cosy place for people to enjoy simple meals and relax with the company of friends over drinks and snacks.
Robert and Darryl are still renovating and setting up Rockwater. In the meantime, Rockwater started business just a month ago with a simple menu while bigger things are being set up.
We ordered a kolo mee putih to try.
This kolo mee was made by Monica, Robert's wife. Monica had been working at her uncle's Sarawak restaurant in Miri since her high school days.
This kolo mee is good!
Monica cooked the egg noodles al dente, expertly. The springy bite was excellent. The noodles were tossed in a simple blended sauce mainly of shallot oil and topped with freshly fried diced garlic, fried minced pork and char siew. All the toppings including the char siew are house made by Monica.
This simple pork and chicken bone broth was flavoursome too.
This is one of the best kolo mee that I have tasted in Johor Bahru, Miri or Kuching.
Hearing how I love sayur midin, Robert popped over to Pasar Borneo and bought a bunch for me. Monica stir fried it for us with sambal belacan and garlic cloves.
The sayur midin was excellent, the way only this unique vegetable can be. Crunchy, juicy with a fresh taste underlying the mildly crustacean, savoury, spicy sambal belacan.
I asked Robert if he will be having Sayur Midin in his menu. He said it is unlikely, as demand is low as Sarawakians cook this dish at home. Non Sarawakians rarely ask for this vegetable.
We sat and chatted a while over beer and stout, and Robert let us try this "Salai Ikan Baung". It's a traditional Iban smoked river fish. Nice mildly savoury smokey flavours in the crispy crackly smoked flesh. Perfect nibble to go with beer and stout.
Robert also let us try this traditional Iban sweet snack known as "Penyaram". It's made with flour and coconut palm sugar and fried in oil. It is sweet and spongy with a slight crisp at the edges. Good for eating with tea or coffee.
Robert, Monica, their children, Darryl and the staff at Rockwater Oil and Gas Cafe.
->> Rockwater Oil and Gas Cafe is still in progress towards full fledged operations. Meanwhile, this is the place for one of the best kolo mee in Johor Bahru.
Click on photo above for my earlier post on Pasar Borneo.
Restaurant: Rockwater Oil and Gas Cafe
Address: 17, Jalan Bayan 37/1, Taman Megah Ria, 81750 Masai, Johor, Malaysia
GPS: 1.497674, 103.855803
Hours: 12:00 noon - 12:00 midnight (Closed on Monday)
Date visited: 16 Dec 2015
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