Johor Kaki Travels for Food

Singapore based personal blog of true stories by johorkaki@gmail about best food, people & places around the world

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Tried & Tasted. Johor Bak Kut Teh Lover's Guide. Some Say JB BKT is Best in Malaysia


Coming to Johor, one of the essential food experiences is to taste Johor bak kut teh. JB folks are crazy about bak kut teh (more so than Singaporeans). They eat BKT from morning till night and there are BKT stalls everywhere (BKT to Johoreans is like chicken rice to Singaporeans). Johor has its own style of bak kut teh - fresh pork served in mildly savoury, light to medium body broth with subtle underlying herbal notes. Fresh pork is taken for granted in Johor as Johoreans are allergic to frozen pork 😄

When Kuangming Daily 光明日報 organised a search for the best bak kut teh in Malaysia in 2006, the judging panel led by renowned food critic Chua Lam 蔡瀾 picked Bak Cheng, a JB BKT as the surprise winner beating their much fancied counterparts in Klang.

So, here we go - 8 tried and tasted bak kut teh in Johor. 

This is not a copy and paste list - I have personally tried and tasted every bak kut teh on this list (some many times).


Shoon Huat Bak Kut Teh 顺发肉骨茶

This is the biggest name in Johor BKT with the most outlets in Johor, if not the world. There are over 23 Shoon Huat outlets and still counting. Shoon Huat's clear broth is light bodied, mildly savoury herbal with sweetness from fresh pork. The founders are still active at the outlets though the second generation is firmly established.

Address: 11, Jalan Sutera Satu, Taman Sentosa, Johor Bahru (parent outlet)
GPS: 1.490861,103.767779 | 1°29'27.1"N 103°46'04.0"E 
Tel: 019 778 0709 
Hours: Daily 8:00am to 8:00pm (closed at 5:00pm on Monday)


Hwa Mei Bak Kut Teh 华肉骨茶

An established name in Johor Bahru, now in the second generation (run by a nephew of founder Ah B who has retired). The broth is brown, medium bodied, moderately savoury with underlying herbal notes. Only one shop and still loved by locals who pack the shop. Walking distance from JB CIQ via Jalan Jim Quee (10 minutes walk).

Address: 146, Jalan Lumba Kuda, Bukit Chagar, Johor Bahru 
GPS: 1.460851,103.767564 | 1°27'39.1"N 103°46'03.2"E 
Hours: 08:30am to 2:00pm (Monday off)


Restoran Kota Zheng Zong 哥打正宗肉骨茶

This new bak kut teh shop that opened in early 2018 serving Kota Tinggi style BKT has taken Johor Bahru by storm. The broth is dark brown, robustly savoury with mild herbalness. The broth has full round body like Klang BKT (almost.... ).

Address: 177, Jalan Sutera, Taman Sentosa, Johor Bahru (directly opposite SK Sri Tebrau school) 
GPS: 1°29'37.2"N 103°46'30.0"E 
Waze: SK Sri Tebrau (directly opposite) 
Hours: 8:00am to 3:00pm (Monday off)


Bak Cheng Bak Kut Teh 木清肉骨茶 

The legendary Johor BKT that beat all of Malaysia in 2006. Founder Bak Cheng has passed on. Known for his fiery temper - the day he dumped a whole pot of bak kut teh into Sungai Segget is part of JB food lore. Bak Cheng serves tea coloured savoury sweet herbal broth with fresh pork. Bak Cheng's wife is still active at the stall and shop run by her daughters.

Address: Junction of Jalan Badik and Jalan Badik 1, Taman Sri Tebrau, Johor Bahru (elder daughter's stall)
GPS:  1°29'10.6"N 103°46'07.7"E | 1.486290, 103.768801 
Hours: 4:00pm to 9:30pm

Address: 81, Jalan Harmonium 35/1, Taman Desa Tebrau, Johor Bahru, Malaysia (younger daughter's shop)
GPS: 1.557455, 103.789056 
Hours: 8:30am to 5:30pm (closed on alternate Thurs)


Crystal Bakuuteh 水晶肉骨茶

Another bak kut teh with the Bak Cheng DNA, this by his daughter-in-law. Crystal BKT has the signature savoury brown broth with underlying herbalness and sweetness. (Needless to say, it's fresh pork here too - it is redundant to mention as this is Johor 😄 )

Address: 141 Jalan Sutera, Taman Sentosa, Johor Bahru 
GPS: 1°29'36.4"N 103°46'20.0"E | 1.493445, 103.772222 
Tel: 016 721 1108 
Hours: 8:00am to 5:00pm (alternate Weds off)


Kedai Kopi Malaysian 馬來西亞人民茶室

Another Bak Cheng legacy BKT shop, this time by his niece. Same broth, same flavours and fresh pork - it's all in the DNA. Tucked away in a quiet nook at Jalan Bukit Meldrum, it is about 10 minutes walk from JB CIQ via Jalan Jim Quee.

Address: Side lane off Jalan Bukit Meldrum, Johor Bahru 
GPS: 1°27'37.0"N 103°46'04.4"E | 1.460287, 103.767886 
Hours: 7:00am to 2:00pm (Monday off)


Kiang Kee Bak Kut Teh @ Kota Tinggi 强记肉骨茶

Kiang Kee is the bak kut teh which Singapore and JB folks happily drive 1.5 hours for. The fresh pork is served bubbly steamy in clay pots filled with a moderately strong savoury herbal broth.

Restaurant name: Kiang Kee Bak Kut Teh 强记肉骨茶
Address: Batu 8, Jalan Mawai, Kota Tinggi, Johor  
GPS: 1.827702, 103.958317 / 1°49'39.7"N 103°57'29.9"E  
Driving Directions: From JB head towards Ulu Tiram, then towards Kota Tinggi (do not enter Kota Tinggi town), then towards Mersing. Kiang Kee is before Mawai, so if you reached Mawai, you have overshot Kiang Kee. Use WAZE App to avoid the pain of getting lost. 
Hours: 7:30am till 12:00 noon (Closed on Mon and Tues)  
Tel: +6019-747-9416 | +607-882-1290


Restoran Sze Hwa @ Kulai 世华肉骨茶

The BKT stalwart from Kulai. A few same name stalls have popped up in JB. At the original shop in Kulai, the fresh pork is served with a savoury salty broth with subtle herbalness and a bit of garlic taste.

Restaurant name: Restoran Sze Hwa 古来世华肉骨茶
Address: 2, Jalan Seruling 1, Taman Sri Kulai Baru 2, Kulai, Johor  
GPS: 1.668189,103.587137 / 1°40'05.5"N 103°35'13.7"E 
Tel: 012 785 2234 
Hours: 8:00am to 1:00pm and 2:00pm to 9:00pm (closed on Monday)

The following links have the full details of the above bak kut teh shops ➣

Shoon Huat 👈 click
Hwa Mei 👈 click
Kota Zheng Zong 👈 click
Bak Cheng 👈 click
Crystal 👈 click
Malaysian 👈 click
Kiang Kee 👈 click
Sze Hwa 👈 click


Johor Kaki's full list of all 37 tried and tasted bak kut teh in Johor 👈 click

I am still adding to this growing list as I try and taste more bak kut teh in Johor. Do you have any recommendations for me?

Date: 25 Apr 2018

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  1. 快乐肉骨茶at masai, not bad too

    1. Thank you. I tried that some years back. Shall visit them again soon. Appreciate much.

    2. so hard to look to BKT at night..thanks for the i know where to look for BKT at night..a bit too heavy eating BKT for breakfast...thanks

  2. There is new bkt shop at Permas ( Thern restaurant) ..opening soon.. Last time the owner open small stall at Permas 6. Really nice. The owner from Klang.. Her vinegar pig trotter is awesome too.

  3. Soo Ling Ong said on Johor Kaki FB: "FYI, Mr Wong in your post [post on Soon Chiang] is Bak Cheng’s nephew. His father is Bak Yong, used to sell bkt in JB central market. Less temperamental and a bit more low key than Bak Cheng."

  4. Lim Chai Hing said on Johor Kaki FB: "Have you try old masai road Happy Garden. This the best i like in johor".

  5. Rebecca Poh Wong said on Johor Kaki FB: "U have to try Yang Shen in Molek Pulai, Taman Molek! It's delicious and soup is different but tasty".

  6. I have tried new bak kut teh shop at jalan Permas 11,bandar baru Permas jaya..Thern Restaurant-Klang bak kut ..Really nice. .Really recommended. .


I share hoping that everyone will have a good time but your experience may differ from mine. I love to know how you enjoyed yourself or if you didn't. All comments with genuine identities are published.