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In a state of hibernation. My backlog has long become unsustainable. Will probably tweet more and write less full-length stuff.

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Friday
Jan272006

Kopitiam

So my first couple of weeks at school have been busier than expected. The weather is getting seriously cold here, but I'm still glad to be back. It'd been a solid 8 months since I'd seen my Boston friends, so I've had a lot of catching up to do. Still a lot of people I need to hang out with.

 

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In any case, I'll finally continue with my Australia posting. Another one of my favorites throughout the semester was Kopitiam in nearby Ultimo, just down the street from the University of Technology, Sydney. This was a gem from the SBS Guide. Like I mentioned before, Sydney has a ton of Malaysian and Singaporean restaurants. Kopitiam was one of the best - simple, down to earth, cheap, and just delicious. The decor and service are pretty bare, but the food is great.

roti canai - A$3.5 Kopitiam's version of roti canai was more pancakey than the one at, say, Aneka Rasa. Very hot and crisp on the edges, with a nice doughiness inside. Paired with the awesome chicken curry dipping sauce, this dish was a must-order for me during every meal. I totally got my roommate Dan addicted.

nasi lemak - A$8.8 Their nasi lemak, using more of that great chicken curry, was also quite good. Though the curry is the star, I enjoyed the condiments - sambal, a boiled egg, peanuts, anchovies and cucumber. The rice was a little disappointing - I'm pretty sure it was just white rice, and didn't have that subtle fragrance of coconut to it. Still, a good rendition if you like nasi lemak.

Hainan chicken rice - A$8.5 The real reason to go to Kopitiam though is the Hainan chicken rice. They only serve it on Sunday, and I tried to get to Kopitiam on as many Sundays as possible. The chicken is beautifully tender, tasty, and perfectly sauced. The chili sauce on the side was awesome, though I'm not sure it was chili exactly because it had a combined tangy, slightly sweet, slightly hot flavor. And the rice... oh man, the rice is great, and I'd happily eat it plain.

Kopitiam also makes good versions of char kway teow, Hokkien noodles and laksa. I don't have any photos cuz I was always too busy ordering the chicken rice... Dan will attest to the char kway teow's excellence though. And Kopitiam's teh tarik was the best rendition of iced milk tea I had in Sydney. I got one with every meal, and I usually got one to go afterwards... :)

Reader Comments (7)

Mmmmm, Hainanese chicken, one of my faves. That looks really good. I bet you can't find decent H.C. in Boston. From my experience in Vancouver, decent H.C. can be found at The Banana Leaf (now fast expanding), The Singapore Restaurant and couple other Singaporean places in Richmond.
Saturday, January 28, 2006 at 8:48AM | Unregistered CommenterSaabKen
Oh man, you are making me miss Southeast Asia!
Sunday, January 29, 2006 at 9:45AM | Unregistered CommenterLauren
Yes indeed, Arthur speaks the truth...Kopitiam was my first and favorite experience with Malaysian/Singaporean food. Those Roti are so good! Also, they have some sort of tea drink (teh tarik) which I actually liked and I usually don't like those wierd tea drinks. I recommend both the Char Kuay Teow and the Hokkien noodles...they pack the plate full of seafoods, meats, veggies, noodles and mix it up and it's great. So good I can't stop thinking about it!
Sunday, January 29, 2006 at 4:23PM | Unregistered CommenterDaniel
SK - we've actually got some decent HC in Boston at a place called Aneka Rasa near my house. Not as good as Kopitiam though.

Lauren - I've been to Singapore and Bali once each, and I was a pretty small kid, but I do remember some great chicken rice in SG. I really hope to visit Singapore again and also hit Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines...

Dan, always so eloquent...
Wednesday, February 1, 2006 at 4:39AM | Unregistered CommenterArthur Che
Oh my god, I love chicken rice! That rice alone I can eat on its own too! Its high in fat but who cares, you only live once!
Wednesday, February 8, 2006 at 12:54PM | Unregistered CommenterPhilip
one more thing talking about kopitiam, have you been to Singapore. If or when you do, you must try Singapore's Oyster Omelette, its heaven on a plate!
Wednesday, February 8, 2006 at 12:55PM | Unregistered CommenterPhilip
I have been to Singapore, though it was quite a while back. I don't really remember an oyster omelette, but I'll be sure to try it. I've got a friend to visit in Singapore so I'll be heading there soon, hopefully...
Thursday, February 9, 2006 at 6:11AM | Unregistered CommenterArthur Che

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