Tony Johor Kaki Travels for Food · Heritage · Culture · History

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De A Mano Always Handmade Private Chef in Kluang Johor Malaysia

Evonne was excited to bring us to De A Mano in Kluang, a Western cuisine private chef place our mutual friend Sarah recently discovered. Sarah celebrated her birthday here and she loves the food and experience at De A Mano.

Restaurant name: De A Mano

Address: 21, Jalan Ismail, Kampung Masjid Lama, 86000 Kluang, Johor, Malaysia

Tel: +6011 7395 4791

Hours: By appointment only ● 12 noon - 3pm | 6pm - 10pm 

Memorable Tok Panjang @ Allspice Institute ● Peranakan Culinary Extravaganza

So excited that buddy Jasmine invited me to the tok panjang at Allspice Institute located at Bukit Merah Central in Singapore. Tok panjang are grand occasions, special events for the hosts as well as guests.

Allspice Institute (culinary & hospitality school) 

Address: 162 Bukit Merah Central, #07-3545, Singapore 150162

Nearest MRT: 10 minutes walk from Redhill station

Tel: 6377 9303

Hours: Tok panjang is by prior arrangement / appointment only

MTR Vegetarian South Indian Restaurant in Singapore ● Mavalli Tiffin Rooms

Buddies brought me to MTR Vegetarian when I said I wanted to learn more about South Indian cuisine. MTR is a great place to start on my South Indian journey. Grateful for buddies who always support my learning journey 🙏 Thank you!

Restautant name: MTR Singapore

Address: 440 Serangoon Road, Singapore 218134

Nearest MRT: 5 minutes walk Farrer Park station

Tel: 6296 5800

Hours: 8:30 am - 3:30 pm | 5:30pm - 10:00 pm (Mon off)

Nanjing Impressions @ Plaza Singapura Orchard Road ● Salted Duck & Lion Head My Favourites

Wanted to try Nanjing Impressions @ Plaza Singapura and we were finally here 🕺

Restaurant name: Nanjing Impressions

Address: 68 Orchard Rd, #04-46, Singapore 238839 (restaurant inside Plaza Singapura)

Nearest MRT: At Dhoby Ghaut station

Tel: 6352 7877

Hours 11:00am - 3:00pm | 5:00pm - 9:30pm (no afternoon break on Sat & Sun)

Okinawa Food KK Kitchen Japanese Cuisine @ 92 Toa Payoh

After enjoying Okinawa cuisine at Shinn Sato at Orchard Plaza recently, I was excited to hear that there is a coffee shop stall in Toa Payoh serving Okinawa dishes.

Stall name: K. K. Kitchen

Address: BLK 92 Lor 4 Toa Payoh, #01-264, Singapore 310092 (food stall inside Ocean 92 coffee shop)

Nearest MRT: 10 minutes walk from Braddell station

Tel: 9679 2503

Hours:10:30 am - 3 pm | 4:30pm - 8 pm (Tues off)

Bak Kut Teh a Poor Coolies' Breakfast? Maybe Not

A report on "Comparison of Coolie Workers' Wages in the Past and the Present" in "Nanyang Siang Pau" on January 8, 1934.

This 1934 report is the earliest known document mentioning the "bak kut teh" dish.

Paloh Mee Sua @ Lai Wang Coffee Shop ● Feel the Kick with Every Mouthful 来旺茶餐室

During our trip to Kluang, Evonne brought us to her primary school teacher Mrs Khoo's regular hangout in Paloh for her favourite red rice wine mee sua. 

Restaurant name: Lai Wang Kopitiam 来旺茶餐室

Address: 37 Jalan Abu Bakar, Kampung Muhibbah, Paloh, Johor, Malaysia

Tel: +6019 743 1668

Hours: 7:00am - 2:00pm (Thurs off)

Chola Indian Roots of Southeast Asian Cuisine

The Chola dynasty ruled south India for over 1,500 years from 300BC to 1279. The Cholas is one of the longest ruling dynasties in human history. During its heyday, the Chola empire was an economic, political and cultural powerhouse in South India and Southeast Asia.

Mekong River & Singapore River ● Different but Same

Singapore River and Mekong River cannot be any more different. One is nearly 5,000 km long (4,909km to be exact), the other is..... 3km or 3.2km to be exact. One runs through six countries - China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. The other runs its entire course in the tiny island state of Singapore, itself only 729 sq km in total in land area.

Little Myanmar @ Peninsula Plaza near City Hall MRT ● Home Away from Home

Always knew there is a Little Myanmar in Peninsula Plaza but never stopped to take a real close look until now. Over the past one year, I am delighted to discover that Little Myanmar is a wonderful enclave with so much to see, eat and learn. It's a little gem of authentic Myanmar in Singapore.

Little Myanmar / Burma

Address: 111 North Bridge Road, Singapore 179098 (Peninsula Plaza)

Nearest MRT: At City Hall station (use exit D)

History of Lahpet ● Myanmar Pickled Fermented Tea Leaf ● Unique Myanmese Tea Culture


Recently, I tried Myanmese pickled fermented tea leaf. The olive greenish colour fermented tea leaves were soaked in oil and blended with bits of raw garlic and chili pepper. The fermented tea leaves were soft, very gently chewy and moist, wrapped in oil. It tasted somewhat unfamiliar at first. It has a certain subtle smell (like pickled bamboo shoot), slightly tannic in the mouth and tasted bitter with a bit of spicy heat from garlic and chili. (There are non spicy versions too.)

Now I am hooked. 

History of Vietnam Rice Paper Spring Roll

Besides pho and banh mi, another iconic Vietnamese dish is 
gỏi cuốn or Vietnam spring roll. Okay, there is also Vietnamese coffee 😄

Gỏi cuốn is literally "salad roll" but is conventionally called "spring roll".

Food as Living Edible Monument ● Stories of People & Kingdoms through their Cuisine

Monuments are usually made of stone or metal. Unlike artefacts made of wood or leather which can be burned to ashes by enemies, drowned by floods, swallowed by forests, or simply reduced to dust by time, stone and metal can withstand the passage of many seasons.