KARAK town in Pahang is a place where you would least expect to find a decent plate of char koay teow.
I started visiting this frontier township seven years ago since Ah Pan, my old fishing buddy and cycling kaki, relocated there from Bandar Sunway in Petaling Jaya.
And it was by fate that I was introduced to Mee Fong coffeeshop, which is managed by a Hainanese family.
For starters, the coffee here is really good and at RM1.10 a cup, I couldn’t ask for more.
“Eh Sam ah, you should try their Char Koay Teow ah! Very good,” said Ah Pan.
Being sceptical at first, I hesitated, but when the plate of fried koay teow-mee arrived on my table, I gave it a try and it turned out to be quite decent.
My benchmark for the black char koay teow is a shop in Taman Melawis in Klang and if there are any other stalls that could match its quality, it is definitely worth the mention.
As a matter of fact, the ‘perfect 10’ rating which I gave drew some interesting reactions from char koay teow “experts” around the Klang Valley.
This led to a crank-call from a reader who claimed he was doing a doctorate thesis on behalf of the International Institute for Char Koay Teow Research. He claimed that no such fried noodle dish in the country could chalk up such a high rating.
Jokes aside, I’ve never come across people who take their char koay teow so seriously.
Okay, back on track, I would give Mee Fong’s fried noodles a 5 out of 10 on the Samo-scale.
It is pretty cheap (RM4) and also quite tasty.
Now the “shocking” part is this: the person behind the wok is an Indonesian woman.
Mee Fong coffee shop (N 03 24 772, E 102 02 149) is located directly opposite the Karak mosque and is accessible by car via the East Coast Highway.
The char koay teow is served only during breakfast and lunch.