Melaka What to eat : Bukit Cina wantanmee, pork satay, Nadege mille crepe cakes, Roti John, Mods Cafe Jonker Street

In continuation from my day 1 gluttony in the culinary rich scene of Melaka, I started the day with breakfast at The River Cafe, Casa del Rio Melaka. Since I’m hosted here for the next 3 days, I have planned out more exploration for the day; more food explorations of course.

Breakfast semi-buffet and was decent. It was something you can expect from a typical hotel buffet spread where you can pile up on the usual hot meals, cereals, fruits and so forth. Apart from the usual offering, there is a ala-minute menu for you to choose from for your eggs, which appealed to me because the eggs are prepared to order, rather than being prepped in advance and held for service.

We took the usual stuff for breakfast. Bread, pau, muffin and a bowl of cereal. They’re all decent. Nothing to complain but nothing spectacular to rave about either.

Breakfast - the river grill - casa del rio melaka

A big fan of poached eggs and spinach, I ordered the Egg Florentine. It was served with a slice of toasted English muffin, topped with spinach, poached eggs, and Hollandaise sauce. I was really looking forward to it, only to be disappointed with poorly done eggs. Suffice to say that the Egg Florentine was rather bland and the eggs was overcook. Urgh! That’s a sin! The yolk was supposed to be runny, not nearly full-boiled with pudding-like texture! And to add salt to my wound (no pun intended) the Hollandaise sauce was rather lacking in flavour too!

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Guess it was just not my day. Kevin’s Big Breakfast was alright, though.

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The local fare was a saving grace I suppose. The River Cafe served Nasi Lemak in packets and the condiments are displayed separately on the buffet. My choice was spicy sambal, tiny fried anchovies, fried peanuts, hard-boiled egg and a chunk of rendang chicken.
The Nasi Lemak was nicely done; fluffy grains infused with screw-pine leaves (pandan leaves) aroma and the rendang chicken was marvelous.

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The congee was decent and served its sole purpose of warming our growling tummies that morning.

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Last but not least, a cuppa before we set out for MORE FOOD! 😀

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1. The River Cafe
For reservations, please call +606 289 6888
Email:[email protected]
Website: casadelrio-melaka.com

First we went to the Mods Cafe in Jonker Street. This cafe is pretty fancy and one of a kind, so it’s pretty hard to miss. There’s plenty of homey and quaint cafes in the vicinity of the area that practically screams for foodie exploration, but I could only manage one that morning.

It was still early but Jonker Street was already bustling with locals and backpackers alike, going about their business in the morning. There’s ample small hotels and traveler hostels in Jonker Street so do check it out if you’re looking for a clean and decent accommodation at a reasonably cheap price.

One word of advice, though. Parking spaces are almost non-existent during peak hours. And watch out for summons. Don’t go around parking without displaying parking tickets on your car’s dashboard as the authorities gives out summons pretty actively here in Melaka. Parking tickets can be obtained from most sundry shops along this road.

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This is the place that we’re looking for; Mods Cafe.

mods cafe melaka - good coffee - review blog

This greeted us at the entrance – antique vehicles on display.

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As soon as I stepped inside, I spotted something that inspired a smile on my lips. The uniqueness of Mods is this. The coffee work station is creatively decorated in a classic Volkswagen van. Cool isn’t it? You don’t get this anywhere else in Malaysia. 😀

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Another shot from inside out.

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All shots are pulled here, in the classic Volkswagen van. The coffee machine is attached in it like a bar.

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Take a look at this. The big roaster.

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Quirky decor that will send you down the memory lane and back. 😀

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Pachinko machine hanging on the wall, strictly for decorative purpose only, though.

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The atmosphere in here resembles a quaint coffee house one would find walking down the old streets. I love the ambiance here, blanketing me with a sense of comfort with the light toned furnitures,unique wall decors, tiled marbled floors and the smell of fresh-brewed coffee.

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Daniel wasn’t in the mood to go for anything fancy, so he went for his his usual – the Iced Caffe Latte (RM11).

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And here’s a picture of me, enjoying Kevin’s Piccolo Latte (RM8). Slightly nutty, balance, medium blend roast.

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But the best drink for me is the Hot Choc (RM11). Not your usual cheap Cadbury; nor Valhorna. The owner didn’t divulge much about their drinks when we asked , but say it was their very own blend.

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It’s good to have Kevin around for coffee. He normally orders a minimum of 3 shots. Here’s his next one; the Indo Sulawesi (Toraja RM12). The cup of coffee was hand poured and was filled with light-bodied goodness. Low acid and bittersweet, it was really pleasant to drink.

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In a good mood, the owner and a friend of Daniel joined us for a cuppa. The owner specially brewed one of his single origins for our tasting pleasure.

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2. Mods Cafe
Address: 14, Jalan Tokong, 75200 Malacca
Tel: +6012-756 4441
Opening Hours:
Mon – Tue: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Thu – Sun: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
GPS: 2.200158,102.245623

On caffeine high, we rushed back for our Peranakan Lunch date with Chef Baba Nyonya of Case del Rio. You can read about it in detail HERE.

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3. The River Cafe, Peranakan “Tingkat” Set Lunch by Chef Baba William @ Casa del Rio Melaka
Address: Casa del Rio, Melaka
88, Jalan Kota Laksamana 75200
Melaka Malaysia
Tel: +60 6 289 6888 Fax: +60 6 289 6999
Email: [email protected]
GPS: 2.193438, 102.246086

After a long chat and a good lunch we retired to our rooms to rest. It wasn’t long before we felt peckish again so we headed out for the Melaka famous mille crepes cake at the outlet that started it all – Nadeje.

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For those in the dark, mille crepe cakes is a classic French cake that translates to “thousand crepe cake”. Traditionally, the crepes are layered with maple-scotch pastry cream to form a layer cake, and the top of the cake is covered in a thin layer of crisp caramelized sugar.

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We ordered an alcoholic rum & raisin and another Royal Milk Tea. Quality remains consistent. Each slices were creamy but not cloying. The crepe was dense, creamy and moist with a delightful array of textures in each bite.

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4. Nadeje Jaya 99
Address: G-01, Bangunan Jaya 99, Block A, Jalan Tun Sri Lanang, 75100 Melaka.
Tel No : 06-2277750.
Operation Hours: Daily : 11:00am – 10:00pm
GPS: TBU – 2.189539, 102.246419

We walked back to Casa del Rio after that. Taxis in Melaka are as bad as the ones in Ipoh and Penang. 🙁
The drivers simply refuse to use the meter and their asking price starts from RM15 for very short distances.

Along the way we passed the famous pohpiah on Jalan Bunga Raya. Since the queue wasn’t long, I joined the queue for 2 lard-laden rolls of pohpiah. You can see my comparison of other pork lard pohpiah – Bunga Raya, Pohpiah Lwee and Oriental Cafe on Jalan Tengkera HERE

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5. Bunga Raya Pohpiah
Address: Jalan Bunga Raya,
75200 Melaka
Business Hours: Opens Mon – Sat from 1.30pm – 8pm and Sun from 1.30pm – 5.30pm.
Pork Free: No
GPS: 2.199685, 102.251347

I held on to my purchase til we reached Sun May Hiong Satay House.

sun may hiong satay house - pork satay melaka

It was around 6pm + and there wasn’t much choice of satay left. The intestines and other spare parts were already finished for the day so we contended ourselves with the basic satay offerings.

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I have always love Melaka satay – for one they use pork. Satay is traditionally a Malay dish. And since most Malays are Muslims and abstain from pork, pork satay is rarely found outside Melaka. The ones here in Sun May Hiong are nicely charred and crisp at the sides.The combination of a coat of this delicious, tangy sauce on the properly charred, tasty, salty pieces of skewered pork is a gastronomic bliss. The satay was marvelous enough on its own so I didn’t see a need for the accompanying peanut sauce. But much has been said of this sauce, and it is one of the reason why Sun May Hiong is so popular. The peanut sauce was thick and nutty, with tang thanks to the pineapple added. Overall, the sauce was mildly spicy, but nothing I couldn’t tolerate. 😀

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I washed my cholesterol fest down with the drink uniquely or popularly found in Melaka; the 925 preserved plum drink. Those sticks of satay and the drink cost us only RM9.00. 😀 A very satisfying treat indeed.

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6. Sun May Hiong Satay House
50/50A Jalan Kota Laksamana 1/1
Taman Kota Laksamana
75200 Melaka
Malaysia
Phone: +606 281 7281
GPS:N2 11.523 E102 14.655

You might be surprised but right after this we had dinner barely an hour after. As part of my ground work before a hotel review, I browsed the net and flipped through the brochure of Casa del Rio for an idea about the place. My attention was diverted instantly with the claim ” we serve the best steak on town”. As you guys would probably know, I’m a blood thirsty carnivore so I was curious on how good it is and couldn’t let that opportunity to sample the “best steak” pass. In between chowing down kuey teow, laksa, cakes, satay and spring rolls, I set aside stomach space for a rib eye steak.

Here’s our parmesan cheese in balsamic 7 bread for starters as we contemplated on the menu.

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There is a parmesan cheese wheel here.

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Salmon blinis – amuse bouche.

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Steaks at The River Cafe starts at 300 g per serving. For RM85 it’s considered reasonable; considering the fact that it tasted as good and even better than some of the ones we had before in KL.

When the plate is set down on our table my eyes widened at the sheer size.

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A few quick shots later, the 3 of us chewed on perfectly medium rare and flavorful Angus beef.

The Ribeye, River Grill, Casa del Rio, Malacca

As expected of rib eye, it was a good cut of lean meat and fat.

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We enjoyed the sides as well. As advertised, the steak is good. I’m not in the position to pass judgment though, as I have we not eaten any other steaks in Melaka. Vincent, a local Malaccan said it’s good, but not the best.

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To further satisfied our carnivorous side, there’s the Crisp Mediterranean Lamb (RM40++) with roast pumpkin purée, dates, almonds, coriander, and paprika yogurt. The meat was tender but served without much gravy and this was on the dry side so we find the rib- eye steak was much more enjoyable.

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A drink smoothie for yours truly, a red for Kevin & soft drink for Vincent to wash down our meal with.

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With the meat digesting in our tummy, we hit the streets of Melaka for its wantan noodles.
What is so special about eating wantan noodles in Melaka, you ask? Well the uniquely Malaccan wantan noodles is very different from our Penang or KL version. You’ll notice the difference, as shown in the pictures below.

We started off with one recommended by Vincent. This no-name coffeeshop has only one stall and limited drinks for order. It’s one of those take it or leave it type. To locate this shop its simple just look for Medan Makan Boon Leong where the crazy queue for oyster omelet is.

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The interior of the coffeeshop.

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Medan Makan Boon Leong.

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Perpetual queue for the fried oyster despite of the late hours.

jalan bunga raya - famous fried oyster

This Melaka wantan noodle was added with chili sauce at the bottom, quite different compared to the ones generally sold in KL.

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Jalan Bunga Raya wantan noodles (RM4.50 large) The flavour of this plate of wantan noodle is more subtle. The accompanying dumplings was also rather bland and less tasty. The soup, on the other hand was lighter in flavour. All this is in comparison to the Bukit Cina Wantan noodles later.

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8. Wantan Mee next to one shop beside the Bunga Raya food court
Address: Medan Makan Bunga Raya Boon Leong
Jalan Bunga Raya
75100
Melaka
GPS Coordinates: N2 11.895 E102 15.068

Next up for our gastronomic pleasure is the Bukit Cina wantan noodles. Daniel joined us at this juncture.

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Packed with patrons patiently waiting for their wantan noodles.

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I had better opportunity to take a proper look at the stalls this time around. The Bunga Raya one was at the roadside and it was pretty dark for proper inspection.

Hong Sheng Wan Tan Mee, opposite Bukit Cina

The Melaka, Sarawak and Penang Charsiew – the red lean type versus our KL BBQ, charred and glazed with sugar type.

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Here’s the things that’s supposed to go with the wantan noodles; Soy sauce, sesame, pork lard, chilli boh, vinegar, sugar, minced ginger and of course, the minced pork broth.

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Jalan Bukit Cina wantan noodle costs us RM3.00 per small bowl.

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I’m pleased to say that the accompanying dumplings tasted much better than the previous one. It’s tastier and much more generous on the meat. The soup was also thicker and richer in flavour.

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The striking red char siew was soft and sweet.

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Overall, this particular bowl of noodles is much more satisfying. There’s complexity of flavour and tastier overall due to the myriad of broth, sauce, and condiments added.

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The thing about KL soy sauce wantan noodles is it’s hovering on just savoury and salty while the Melaka version is much more complex in flavour with the addition of chilli tang and flavorful pork broth.

9. Kedai Makanan Dan Minuman Hong Sheng
Jalan Bukit Cina,
Kampung Bukit Cina,
75100 Melaka
GPS: TBU

One of my friends/reader told me of “a very good” duck noodle that’s only sold at night in Melaka. Now, not only wantan noodles is uniquely different here in Melaka, but this Peranakan state is also famous for its duck noodles, namely a few shops.

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However her directions was confusing and both my local guides Vincent & Daniel wasn’t familiar with the shop she was referring to, so we ended up in an entire different shop in the end.

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I’m not certain of the allure of Melaka duck noodles as yet because honestly, the one we had here certainly didn’t live up to its hype. But not to worry, I’m planning for more food hunt trip in Melaka and I’ll be sure to keep you guys updated on where to eat some good duck noodles. 😀

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9. Restoran Mei Wei Xuan
Address: 115, Lorong Temenggong, 75000 Melaka.
Phone: 012-8869189<
GPS: TBU

I was completely exhausted but there was one last stop to make; to hunt for some Roti John somewhere in Tanjung Kling. This famous Roti John is way out of the city area. You can read all about our meal at Barkat Roti John HERE.

Restoran Barkat Roti John, Tanjung Kling, Malacca (2)

The Roti John in this place is quite extraordinary and not exactly similar to the KL version.

Restoran Barkat Roti John, Tanjung Kling, Malacca (3)

Then it was back to the wonderful Casa del Rio. I was so glad to sink into the comforts of the firm, cushy bed. The next day our Melaka food adventure continues for Yong Tau Foo, Char Kuey Kak (fried radish cake) and lots more. I will be publishing the next post on that soon! In the meantime – take some clues of what to eat in Melaka here –> post 1 and post 2.

Last but not least; leave me a suggestion of where I should visit in Melaka – especially for good Nyonya Laksa, Duck Noodles and whatever else you think it’s worth a post here on www.RebeccaSaw.com! 🙂