Opened since 1956, the Hainanese beef noodles stall at the always-busy Lai Foong coffeeshop is run by the Tan brothers, William and Thomas, using an old family recipe dating back to their grandfather, Chou Jou’s time.
- I chose to have my noodles “dry”, with the white rice noodles tossed in pork lard, and a variety of soysauce-based condiments. A bowl of clear beef broth, with deep, hearty flavours and with a sourish tinge from the use of Chinese salted vegetables/ hum choi, containing chunks of meltingly-tender beef brisket, beef balls, beef tendons and beef stomach slices, were served on the side. Both the noodles and the hearty bowl of soup were good enough on their own. Paired together, the dish was elevated to the sublime.
- My friends all opted for the more popular soup version. Same ingredients but sans the soysauce-based dressing, as the noodles, meats and all the accompaniments went into the hearty broth.
I gather both the “dry” and the soup versions are delicious in their own ways (I’m just not a noodles-in-soup person). Lai Foong Beef Noodles is 63-years-old this year, cooked using a supposed unchanging 90-something year-old family recipe. Still good, and something which every foodie shouldn’t miss whilst in KL.
Lai Foong Beef Noodles
138, Jalan Tun HS Lee, 50000 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603 20728123 (William Tan or Thomas Tan)
Opening hours: 6.30am-4pm. Closed on Tuesdays except if it’s a public holiday.