Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Yu Kee Bak Kut Teh

Feigning fatique, blaming the low water supply in the taps, and wearing my best 'weary and stressed housewife' look, I told Hub that we have to eat out tonight (he prefers home-cooked meals). Men are so gullible. He didn't know that I was at City Mall the whole day, having a great time with a friend at Starbucks and (window) shopping while Wey was sent into some cyber cafe. Of course I came home just before he did and there was nothing on the table.

Syarikat (yes, syarikat) Yu Kee, located in front of Jesselton Hotel on Gaya St., is one of the oldest and most popular bak kut teh (pork ribs in herbal soup) restaurants in KK. There is another good BKT restaurant one block up, called Restaurant Kim Min which was quite good but I wasn't sure if they served veg with their BKT, which is what I wanted. I think we went to the wrong shop. Although Yu Kee was packed onto the sidewalk, I found their BKT hardly tasting of any herbs and the soup was warm instead of piping hot. BKT lovers will tell you that BKT must be served boiling hot. The main reason for the lukewarm soup is because they do not serve the BKT in claypots, which Kim Min does. And the reason Yu Kee doesn't serve their BKT in claypots is when you have customers spilling out onto the streets and standing behind seated customers preying on their tables, there's just no time to heat up those claypots. I think BKT tastes so much better in claypots but it looks like most KK people eating at Yu Kee don't think so.

If the following photos look pale and boring, it's because Yu Kee has these bright warehouse flourescent lights and also Wey and Hub attacked the food so quickly I had to use auto mode to take the pics.
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Pork ribs in herbal soup, about RM5 per tiny bowl which is the standard price for most of their BKT dishes.

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Belly pork in herbal soup.

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Pork liver and kidney in rice wine-herbal soup. Yums.

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Pork-dried cuttlefish balls in herbal soup.

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Tofu 'boks' .

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At last, a plate of greens.

My hub mentioned that West Malaysians disdain Sabah BKT for reasons he can't comprehend. I wondered about that too. After tonight's dinner, I know the reasons. We have grown up eating watered-down BKT. We are used to that standard and can't complain if we can't compare. We also don't get all the trimmings like beancurd sticks, enoki mushrooms and seafood BKT. We can only get BKT for dinner while in West Malaysia, BKT is available even for breakfast (which seems really odd to me), which shows how seriously they take their BKT. I'm not a BKT aficionado so I'm okay with Yu Kee's BKT even though I know a true BKT lover will not approve. Does anyone know of a better place than Yu Kee for BKT in KK??

18 comments:

eXodus said...

hahaha i totally agreed with you. I went there with my friends last summer and i was really surprised that they don't serve in claypot=( and too bad i haven't heard of any nice bkt shops in kk yet=( but i find the one in damai better than the one i had in gaya street..at least its in claypot. btw West Malaysia's dry version bak kut teh roxxxxx ..

Anonymous said...

Johor Bahru's BKT is excellent! Cukup fire.
Raina

Precious Pea said...

I like the watered-down BKT which I was told by a BKT seller is Teochew style, whereas those dark blackish BKT are Hokkien style (those found in Klang). I like the Teochew style as it's much flavourful due to the various herbs. As for the Hokkien style, i find it too thick, can only taste garlic and angelica roots.

NEE said...

yeah the colour looks light. i think precious pea is right..different dialect cooked it differently. my fren told me ipoh ones are light coloured too.

well what can i say. I dont know if kuching even have Kuching Bak kut teh. some places in kuching are really good for theirs but we never say Kuching BKT..at least kk has KK BKT.

now you are making me crave for bak kut teh.

Denise ^ ChiCkyEGG said...

okkay, u are excused not to cook for dinner! since Vero not in da hse, u have to do this & that, and so U're rewarded to eat out ;p


i m sorry, i find Yu kee is the best in town. ;D the rest tastes so peppery...
and i dont like BKT serve in claypot , though i tried KL's one b4.

Denise ^ ChiCkyEGG said...

OMG, I just dropped u my comment, and then W walked iN! hahahahha ;p Shhhss, dun say I blog from office

jC said...

Oh My Dear God, why you show me this website? My mouth watered at the sight of those pictures. Practically almost came to tears.Considering the fact i have to wait a year to eat there. aaHHhhHh....no doubt Great Great BKT.

Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

exodus: good to know i'm not alone. dry bkt doesn't sound so good but then i'll have to try to know. will look out for tt, tq for telling me:)

raina: yes, tt's what is missing in kk's bkt: fire

pp:oh...see, i told ya, westies know their bkt. i don't like too-strong bkt either but yu kee's really too mild.

nee:really, no bkt in kuching?? time to set a bkt stall.

denise: haha, caught u! so weird, tt w actually walked into ur office...:D

jc: r they not feeding u in perth?!

Sharon said...

Yummy !!! I miss that shop! *drooling*

Precious Pea said...

terri, my word of advice, come to KL. I bring you to my all-time favourite bak kut teh place. The taste is just right!

Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

pp: i am going to kl, 16 & 17 June but it's too short a trip so will not bother u...

Precious Pea said...

No problem...if you need help or anything, just give me a call.

Shan said...

LoveloveLOVE that BKT! A dinner there is always followed with dessert at Vedablu across the street :D

Anonymous said...

Awww.. BKT~! i missed it so much.. now it makes me think that i should stay back in KK instead of perth. I miss kk food so much..! Slurp..:P :|

Anonymous said...

that shop near ang's hotel serves their BKT in piping hot claypot too.. even until ur last drop, the bkt is still hot.. which i think is much better than yu kee's lukewarm after-few-minutes-cold bkt.. =)

marie

Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

pp: ok tq

sharon: i'll take u to a better place when u come back!

shan: er, try the place near Ang's Hotel called Kwong Tung Chai Kolombong--it's very popular too, n BKT served in claypot. we would've love to finish up at vedablue like u did but u know what, we both didn't bring our wallets n wey dug out RM50, just enough to pay!!

anon4.14: gosh, what do ppl eat in perth??...

marie: yes, yes! i saw the place last night n haven't been there since 3 yrs ago. thanks, i think we'll make a visit soon. but u know, whenever i see so many ppl in a coffeeshop, i want to bring my own bowls n chopstick, u know??

Mervyn said...

There is one place in Damai which not only serves BKT but other dishes served in claypot ie spiced Pork trotters, Wong Chiu Kai. The shop is called "Man Lee Hiong" just next to Wave KTV. It is also on the same row as Cha Ki Tiam.

Anonymous said...

Hi! I just came across with a good BKT in claypot. U may want to try. It is in Bundusan Plaza. Just opposite Beverly Hills Phase 2, same row the Kedai Kopi Kam Kee (malam). The shop's name is Kedai New Lion (i think)...it is next to a Optical shop...

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