THE Cathay coffee shop in Port Klang, Selangor, is a makan place that needs no introduction.
And to top it all, you won’t find another food outlet like this that is packed to the brim with Malay, Chinese and Indian customers.
To sum it up, the spirit of ‘1Malaysia’ is alive in this family-owned Hainanese coffee shop.
I came to know of it through my colleague Frederick Fernandez who mentioned the makan place which is famous for their mee Hailam, chicken chop and roti bakar.
And since I am searching for a suitable ‘cycle and makan’ route from Kuala Lumpur to Port Klang, I have listed Cathay coffeeshop (N 03 00 065, E 101 23 831) or ‘Sin Kok Thye’ on my route map.
So, to sample what they have, my wife Michelle and I took a trip to Port Klang on a Saturday afternoon to locate this place.
We took the Kesas highway from our home in Subang Jaya and reached the South Port area in less than 20-minutes.
Now, locating the coffee shop may be tricky as it is situated below a flyover on the main road in Port Klang.
First, you must locate the RHB bank and find the makan place which is the corner shop opposite the bank.
One clue is the Port Klang wet market which you can use as a landmark.
When we got there, we were surprised to find a crowd making a beeline to the dining tables in this quaint little coffeeshop.
The menu is simple — fried rice, lamb chop, chicken chop, steak, Hailam noodles, Singapore noodles, fish and chips and fried beehon.
Since the chicken chop (RM8) came highly recommended, we ordered a plate.
Now, before I get into the details, let me warn you that this is a crowded makan place and on Saturdays, it is packed.
Luckily for us, one of the cooks had taken our order and served the dishes under five minutes.
I was astonished by the fast service at the restaurant.
We shared a plate of Hailam mee (RM5) and the dishes were pretty good.
On the Samo-scale, the chicken chop would easily score a 7.5 out of 10 and the Hailam mee would rate at 6 out of 10.
The Cathay coffeeshop’s food is pork-free, so many of the regular diners here are from the Malay community in Klang.
But since it has a widespread reputation, people come from as far as Singapore to get a taste of authentic Hainanese cooking at this place.
Finding parking is difficult in this area, so if you want to embark on a little adventure, you can park at any KTM Komuter station and take a train there.
The walking distance from Port Klang’s Komuter station to the restaurant is roughly about 15 minutes.
And if you need to get directions —refer to ‘Google Maps’.
The shop opens daily except Sundays.