Penang – KL : Detoured by Ipoh | 31st July 2017
As we made our way in The Big Car, cruising along the 2 laned highway, MrNordin asked, “Would you like to stop to eat in Taiping or Ipoh?” We just spent a 2 days in a food coma thanks to our gastronomic adventure in Penang, and he’s still thinking about food? That’s why I married him.
I frantically started Googling and was dismayed to find that the New Hollywood Kopitiam is closed on Mondays. So we decided to head to the heart of Ipoh’s town and try out the food where all the cool kids are at – Plan B. The Ipoh branch of this popular KL food spot turned 4 years old on 29th July 2017, so we missed the celebrations by 2 days (which also means we’re lagging 4 years behind in terms of trying out hipster food joints lol! But hey better late than never!).
I write way better than I take photos – so please enjoy the narrative but spare me any hate for my photo taking skills. Apologies in advance.
If you’re on foot, look for Jalan Sultan Yusof. It’s a busy main road and if you’re crossing the street, look for the bookstore SS Mubaruk and you’ll find a zebra crossing a few steps near it. Pedestrians beware : vehicles move quite fast on this road and tend to not stop or slow down. I took a deep breath and took a few steps onto the zebra crossing and deliberately walked slowly in the hopes that the vehicles will see me and slow down. Once you cross the street you’ll find a small lane called Lorong Panglima, right next to the new Container Hotel. [Fun fact #2373 : Lorong Panglima used to be called Concubine Lane due to self-explanatory reasons]. Plan B is on the left side of Lorong Panglima. If you terlajak and went all the way across Lorong Panglima, you’ll find Jalan Panglima. Just turn left and you’ll find Plan B.
If you need a place to park, the parking around Plan B isn’t that great and is usually full. So mafan. What we did was we parked at Jalan Dato Sagor, where the majestic Sultan Idris Shah II Mosque is. Jalan Dato Sagor is a one way street so go a little way past the mosque which will be on your right and find parking on either side of the street. From the mosque, it’s less than a 5 minutes walk to Plan B. Go down the street and turn left. You’ll find the SS Mubaruk bookstore and just follow the same directions as per above.
You’ll have to pay for parking via coupons. You can buy a coupon book for RM3 (it’s 60 cents per hour) from the friendly aunty at SS Mubaruk bookstore or any store that has the ejen penjual kupon sign.
Now with that out of the way – time to makan! The ambiance at Plan B is cool, modern chic and child friendly. Their baby high chair is the coolest design for a high chair I’ve ever seen (I’m throwing some serious shade at the Ikea one we’ve got at home – we keep stubbing our toes on its legs! Anyone else have the same problem?).
What I ordered : Halal Guys Inspired Chicken and Rice. Grilled spiced yogurt chicken with Plan B’s very own secret white sauce and a Mediterranean salad. RM30/~USD7.5
The moment I saw Halal Guys on the menu, I knew I needed to try it. Halal guys is my ULTIMATE FAVORITE street food whenever I’m in New York. When I was pregnant with G1, MrNordin drove all the way to the Big Apple from Boston to satisfy my craving for it. Bless him, good man. For those who are not familiar, Halal Guys sells spiced rice with your choice of meat (chicken/lamb/beef) with a white sauce that’s out of this world. I suggest you try the half-chicken-half-beef with extra white sauce. Divine. Location : Opposite The Hilton New York at the corner of W 53rd St and 6th Ave.
My verdict : Close, but no cigar. The white sauce at Plan B was yummy and a close copy of the original, but they were pretty economical with serving it. More like a drizzle compared to the original Halal Guys. However, the chicken was perfectly grilled and was very flavorful. The rice was good too but they should lose the chilli flakes. Did it bring me back to New York? Nopes! But it was a good dish in and of itself. Burp rating : 8/10.
What my daughter ordered : The Strawberry and Lychee Shortcake. RM15/~USD3.75
A fluffy sponge cake layered with cream and stuffed with strawberries and lychee. Heavenly. And no, I did not approve of the way she ate the cake but we’re on holiday so whatevs. The cake was a winner! Soft, not too sweet with the perfect balance of cream and fruit. Burp rating : 9/10
After a leisurely (errrr teanner? – it was 4pm so we decided to roll tea & dinner together), G1 and I roamed around the spots surrounding Plan B. Interesting finds! Loads more to see in the area and this is just a snapshot.
Muslim traveller tip : If you’re looking for a surau, there are none in the area. Do head to the Sultan Idris Shah II Mosque. The muslimah prayer area is on the top floor. The mosque is large and airy with beautiful crenellations on the walls.
Will (probably) find the time to write about our Penang trip but we hope to explore more of Ipoh in the near future! A unique town coming of age in the modern world while retaining its old world charm. A short but sweet stop.
No. 75, Jalan Panglima,
Perak Darul Ridzuan.
Mon – Thurs
10:00am – 11:00pm
10:00am – 12:00am
9:00am – 12:00am
9:00am – 11:00pm
Halal status : All ingredients are sourced from suppliers that are halal certified. However, outlets do not have the Jakim certification due to alcoholic beverages served.
KL-Penang driving durations according to phase of life
Single : 3 hours flat (110 km/h all the way because fefeeling macam The Fast and The Furious and no rest stops needed)
Married : 4 hours (because my husband’s a steady guy and he likes to chill like that. Plus even when I drive and he’s the co-pilot, he insists I drive well within speed limits)
With kids : 9 hours ( why? don’t ask…just, don’t ask…)
Whatever phase of life you’re currently in, please always drive safely! As my best friend’s sister once said and I quote, “Better late than dead”. Word.