Monday, November 23, 2009

Restoran Pan Heong @ Lorong Medan Batu Caves 2, Batu Caves

I must be one of those last ones who went and then blogged about this famous Pan Heong. The truth is that I didn't even know the existence of such a great place to eat if not for the Queen of DSLR's blog on Pan Heong in January this year. The sight of kau yuk mai fun and nam yue char yuk was too much for me to take. Jotting the name and address down in my little 555-like book, I made Pan Heong as my must-visit list for the longest time.

Sadly, the motivation ran out of steam after a while as I was busy with works and with the arrival of Sher Ryn in March... I totally forgot about it! That is.. until I read becky's blog and then Bangsar Babe's in June. Their description on the sang har hor fun re-ignited my fire once again!!! I'd tried Greenview's version of sang har mee but I thought that it was so so only, and while Soo Kee's version (Imbi) was good, full of wok hei but the prawn's size was pale in comparison with Pan Heong's!

However, I have not gone to non-air conditioned restaurants since the arrival of Sher Ryn. Jenn is very (and I mean... VERY!) particular when it comes to dining out with Sher Ryn along. Most of the time, we would only go to shopping malls or those with air-conds :( She wouldn't wanna risk making Sher Ryn sweat like her dad (what a pampered little princess) so I had been deprived of a lot of food and interesting places to eat. No wonder my must-visit lists are getting longer and longer lah... (Sorry dear! I'm not complaining here... I love Sher Ryn very much too)

Opportunity came one lovely Saturday morning... I had to attend Joe's BBQ party in Lakefield Sg Besi in the evening and therefore, I was free for the whole morning and afternoon! I managed to call one of my friend, Kim Seng, who agreed to go out for brunch with me. Picking him up from Cheras, we headed straight to this place as I want to beat the lunch crowd. Even though I pride myself with a good sense of direction, I gotta admit that I am not that familar with Batu Caves area but fret not... my trusted Garmin got me there in no time!

Parking is very hard to find even though we arrived shortly before 11am... it took me 10 min before finding one! Lucky for us, we managed to find ourselves a table shortly after arriving.

We looked around and noticed that almost every table has a plate of hor fun and porridge... of course, the choices are not limited to these 2 dishes only. We were recommended to try their mee mamak by the lady boss... but since there were only 2 of us, we couldn't order too many stuff to eat.

Newspaper cuttings, magazine reviews and pictures were seen hanging at one section of the restaurant's wall. Upon reading through it, I realised that the lady boss was MBA holder but decided to help her husband fulltime to operate this fledging business. What a waste to the professional qualification but I guess she might put her knowedge to good use in managing this business.

It didn't take a long time for our dishes to arrive - starting with Sang har hor fun which caught my attention at the first place. For those who has not been here before, the minimum order for this dish is 2 servings which translate to 2 freshwater prawns and hor fun enough for 2 pax. The egg gravy was by far one of the best (if not the best) that I'd ever tried in my life, and the flavour was further enhanced by the sweet prawn roe. The hor fun was full of wok hei while the prawns (quite big I mind you) were amazingly fresh and succulent! I instantly forgot about the cholesterol issue and the fact that I had crabbie in Seremban the previous evening :) and the plate was very clean and shiny after that, as the gravy was too good to be wasted!

Kau yuk mee hoon came next.. and this dish also has to be ordered minimum 2 servings. Again the meehoon retained its springy texture and full of wok hei. The sinful kau yuk which has a higher fat to lean meat ratio was like icing on the cake! Comparable to my mom's version :) even though both of us were quite stuffed by the time we finished the hor fun, we simply couldn't stop eating the meehoon + kau yuk!

Nam yue pork belly was another dish that we ordered. Nam yue is actually fermented red beancurd which is used to marinate the pork belly for at least one day (in order to give the dish full flavour) before deep fried. Crispy and crunchy on the outside, soft and tender on the inside are the best words to describe this dish. It is recommended to eat the dish while it's hot.

Leo's verdict - By the time we finished everything, a long queue were seen waiting outside for tables. They normally use numbering system whenever there's huge crowd. Parking is definitely hard to find.. try to come here during lunch time and you might have to spend some time to find one. Not to mention that the restaurant is located right next to chinese school. The second time I came, I had to park quite far from the restaurant as there was school activity that morning :( having said that, the food was superb and quite fast too! Price was reasonable and service was attentive!


Sean said...

u're not the last! i've never been here before :D
i really love sang har meen, but the best version i've tried was at soo kee. if u say this one is even better, then i better go!!!

Bangsar-bAbE said...

Next time, you can order the mee mamak for 1 person. It's not a big plate. Or better still, just call me to come with you! I'll help you sapu all....muahahaha =P

J2Kfm said...

I'd probably order the same signatures like yours, for I doubt I can go for a second visit.
it's out of the way, and the intimidating wait's kinda deterring.

J said...

Mmmm.... it's like the pork is calling out to me from your photo... *drool*

thule a.k.a leo said...

sean - they open from 8am till afternoon... not sure about dinner though :)

bangsar babe - yeah! I'm thinking to try their porridge and mee mamak next time! maybe u can tag along so we can eat more varieties!

j2kfm - bring a group of hungry people and you can order different stuff to eat bro

j - well, it is that good.. similar to what my mom cooks :)

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

i havent eaten here b4!! since u knw where i stay, u shud come fetch me b4 u go haha..

thenomadGourmand said...

yup..this is one of those rare places that deserves its raving reviews!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Mmmmm....was supposed to go there again last Friday but rancangan tergendala, and this Fri is a holiday so I guess next Fri is the earliest! hehe. Your pictures are lovely!

UnkaLeong said...

The best Sang Har Mein, by my taste buds lar. Better than greenview or soo kee. Cheaper too!

~Christine~Leng said...

I wanna chow down at this place long time ago!! Must do so before I start work. huhu :(

Paranoid Android said...

On of those little places like the Holy Grail of foodies. Heard about it even from non foodies, yet unattainable mostly due to bad traffic and laziness to travel out of the city. So near, yet so far. And you travelled all the way from Kuala Lipis for this. Ironic hor?

CUMI & CIKI said...

ar.. an oldie but a goodie! well shot thule!

thule a.k.a leo said...

joe - eh ! I thought that you'd gone here already la :P

becky - truth is.. my second time going back there, the prawns were not fresh.. complained to the boss but she only apologised.. I expected her to replace the prawns with fresher ones

meena - wait for your post on this again ok?

unka - I can see that :) just looking at your pictures with the steel plate in becky's blog revealed it all... lol!!

christine - tomorrow is your first day :) have you gone there?

paranoid android - it is worth the hassle :) by the way, I went there on my way back to pahang after spending my weekends in KL!

cumi&ciki - thanks!!