Although steamboat is well-known in Cameron Highlands, there are other foods which are widely available as well. There is a fast food outlet in each town (Brinchang and Tanah Rata), local mamak shops here and there, cafes and restaurants.
But, if you are craving for some local favourites / delights, Uncle Chow Kopitiam is perhaps the place to go for some hearty yet simple meal. Established and run by a couple who hailed from PJ, one can safely assume that Uncle Chow Kopitiam is the Old Town White Coffee / PappaRich of Cameron Highlands.
It is located at Taman Raya Lily in Tanah Rata, off the main road. It may be quite hard to locate at first but if you know your way to Maybank, then it should be easy after that. Alternatively, look at the ‘map’ below!
The coffee shop is clean, tidy and cosy with the option to dine al-fresco style (to enjoy the cooling weather). The menu is somewhat extensive but still retains the local charm. It has what the locals usually eat; i.e. curry laksa, nasi lemak, kuey teow soup, fried rice, fried tom yam bee hoon, bubur cha cha, red bean soup, and etc.
Since the weather was cooling (or cold to somebody) and we had not had breakfast (it was close to lunch time, btw), we were in the mood from some hot stuff to warm our souls. First up was the curry laksa (RM8.90). The bowl was filled with ingredients such as fish cakes, pieces of chicken meat, fried tofu puffs, long beans, bean sprouts and noodles (kuey teow, yellow mee and/or rice vermicelli). The coconut-infused soup was thick, fragrant with mild spicy. Whilst it did not knock our socks off, it was good enough to leave decent impression especially at such a place in Cameron Highland.
The nasi lemak (RM8.90) was simple yet fulfilling. While we did not like the sambal paste, the rice was fluffy and fragrant. The chicken rendang was alright; mildly flavoured with herbs and spices but the portion was small.
The mushroom omelette (RM8) was ordered as side dish and it came along with coffee/tea (technically, it was a set meal). The appearance may be deceiving but it was a simple affair. It came with two toasts and butter and they were nice complement to the dish.
A meal is not over until dessert is served. And by that sentence, we opted for bubur cha cha (RM3.50) to end our meal. Came in a bowl, the sweetish coconut milk (soup) was served piping hot with lots of sweet potatoes, yams, tapioca and sago in it. It was perfect for cooling weather in Cameron Highlands.
We returned to the same place on the next day before our departure back to KL since we skipped our breakfast (again!). This time, we went for one of the set meals, fried kuey teow and yam cake.
The fried kuey teow (RM6) and yam cake (RM3) were decent, just decent. And it can’t be compared with the heavyweights from Penang or Klang Valley. The flat noodles (kuey teow) were covered/loaded with bean sprouts, fish cakes, chives and egg.
The set meal A (RM6) consists of two half-boiled eggs, toasts with kaya and butter and coffee/tea. The toasts were crisp outside yet light and fluffy inside. The mixture of kaya and butter was somewhat meh while the eggs were slightly undercooked.
All in all, we kinda liked this place. It has decent local delights/food although there were some hits and misses but we can’t complain much since this was the closest thing we can get away from the city centre. The drinks (coffee, white coffee, the tarik and 3 layered tea) were a-okay. The service can be slow especially when there are plenty of waiting customers but seriously, why rush?
Taman Royal Lily,
39000 Tanah Rata,
Contact Number : +6012 205 2778