Sunday, 23 September 2012

Old Pasar 老巴刹牛腩粉 Beef Noodles in Kluang, Johor, Malaysia

More than 80 years ago, MR Goh Hin started his famous Hainanese beef noodle stall at the Old Pasar (market) 老巴刹 in Kluang, Johor. Goh Hin had seven children, and three sons followed his foot steps to become famous beef noodle sellers themselves, like their father.

The eldest son's beef noodle stall is still in  PKH kopitiam in downtown, Kluang (a stone's throw from Kluang Rail Station). Goh Hin's youngest son's shop (Yean Kee) is now run by his son (Goh Hin's grandson) in Taman Murni, Kluang. Goh Hin's third son, Ah Deng, ran the much loved beef noodle stall in Jalan Lumba Kuda in Johor Bahru, before he retired in 2011.

Ah Deng had already retired when I started Johor Kaki blog on 20 Dec 2011. I traced Goh Hin's youngest son's beef noodle shop Yean Kee in Mar 2012. I recently found Goh Hin's eldest son's stall.

This is a humble looking stall that looked like any other in typical small Malaysian towns. The only hint that this might be a notable stall is a small framed newspaper article hanging (too) high on the weathered, whitewashed wall.

We requested for a lai fun (rice noodles), dry from the friendly lady boss who was the owner's wife i.e. Goh Hin's daughter-in-law and Ah Deng's sister-in-law. This home made lai fun noodle is the signature of the Goh family beef noodle stalls.
The gravy was beefy in flavour and was like kicap in consistency, i.e. not syrupy in texture. (Personally, I am biased in favour of gravy that feels syrupy.)

Stirring the gravy with the lai fun produced a tasty dish. The rice flavoured lai fun was coated with a slippery, salty, beefy, sweet and tangy film. The tanginess came from the squeezed calamansi and chopped chiam chye.

Mixed in the noodles were chopped spring unions, kiam chye (preserved vegetable), fried peanuts, shallot oil and crackles, and a soy based, blended sauce. These, especially, the peanuts, kiam chye and shallot crackles added interesting flavours and texture to the beef noodles.

The beef were cut in strips. The strips of beef, tripe and tendon were tender and beefy in taste. (Personally, I like my beef most when they come in large chunks that let me to chew on them longer and allow the beefy flavour more time to massage my taste buds.) 

The beef soup was slightly herbal and salty.

If you like a taste of really old school beef noodles, here it is :) Definitely must try, at least once.

Restaurant name: Old Pasar Beef Noodles 老巴刹牛腩粉
Address: Junction of Jalan Teoh Siew Khor and Jalan Sultan
GPS: 2.031358,103.319724
Hours: 7:00am to 1:00pm (Closed on Tuesday)
No pork, no lard

Date visited: 20 Sep 2012


  1. Bro JK, this is authentic old school hainanese beef noodles, similar in looks like the Odeon beef noodles in the '70s...damn, got to wait for 45 mins for a bowl after school..sigh...nostalgia

    1. Yes, bro Mike, this is treasured heritage food.

  2. How coincidental! We went to the same stall on 21 Sept, after having obtained information from Ah顶 as to the location of his sister-in-law's stall. I still prefer Ah顶's version of the beef noodles. The main difference is in the sauce used for the dry noodle. Will be going to try the food at his brother's stall soon. :)

    1. One day, we shall co-incidentally meet :)

    2. We have tried his brother's beef noodles. It is now managed by the son and daughter-in-law. Tasted quite like the old Ah顶's noodles. They made their own noodles, which Ah顶 had not done for quite a number of years because he was too busy. If you would like to try for yourself, the shop is called Yean Kee (元记), at No.4 Jalan Murni 1, Taman Murni, Kluang. Mobile: +6012 7733088. They open for lunch and dinner. The mother said to call first if you are going there this coming month or two, as they may not open on some days because they are short-handed.

    3. Hi City Mouse, I tried Yean Kee too about 6 months ago. Time for a revisit. Thanks for sharing. Appreciate it.

  3. So miss Ah Deng's beef noodles. Its really the best!

    1. Many people from Malaysia and Singapore feel the same as you.

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  5. This lady is my family friend. She watched me grew up.. and been eating her noodle since very young. Ah Ding is her brother in law. I think Ah Ding's noodle is the best. It's just sad.. what happened to him. His son, quit his job to help him and take over the business. One day, a fight broke out among a group of indian guys, he went to stop them, and was killed in the process. Ever since then, Ah Ding retired.

  6. Your location a bit off..the intersection is public bank.. it is behind the public bank at the main road.. i made 3rounds along the intersection and couldnt find it..

    Ended up asking waze where is pkh.. guided me to main road and there it is..

    * If bring someone else maybe can spot easily.. ohhh and bro, i tried opening gmaps link and it shows unsupported link.. and bro, can intro new function? Classify the places based on operating time.. :p early morning eat roadside very cooling..


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