After much talk by my father-in-law, we finally tried out this joint! This Koay Teow Th'ng with homemade fish balls is situated in this kopitiam along Jalan Burmah, just after the turn in from Penang Road. The kopitiam name is Hai Oan, which is also famous for its 'chu char' and Hainanese chicken chop.

The Koay Teow Th'ng(KTT) is actually a family business, that still sees the mother a her two sons still running this family trade. The main outlet is situated at the corner shop, Heng Seng Coffee Shop, off Lebuh Armenian and Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling(formerly known as Pitt Street). This outlet opens from 10:00am to 4:40pm daily except for Sunday and Monday.

The outlet we visited was the one at Hai Oan, which is being run by the one of the sons and his wife. This outlet is open for business from 8:00AM to 2:00PM daily except Mondays. It was only last Sunday we visited this makan stall after Sunday Service. After having a light breakfast at Lorong Macalister, we were not satisfied with the quality of food there, thus we decided to go for a second round. Or you could had our lunch at breakfast time. Hahaha....

What is so famous about this KTT business, is actually their homemade fish balls. But for Gill and me, their uniqueness doesn't stop there. As our usual self, we stood there for sometime and observed the goings of the business, then finally I asked the wife and sister what is their specialty there. To my surprise they told me not only the fish balls are their specialty, even their mince pork patties are hand made. This I must try, because I have been searching high and low for the kind of mince pork patties that have eluded me for so many years.

When I was still living in Rifle Range, we use to get KTT from a stall opposite the Air Itam market for breakfast on certain Sundays. The stall was located next to the alley way, but during our recent food hunt last Monday, I found out that it has already disappeared. The taste and texture of the mince meat patties is still in my memories, juicy tender patties cooked to just the right with the optimum composition of fats and meat. The closes that I can get now is in Breikfeilds in KL, Peter Chu Yuk Fun.

The KTT soup served at Hai Oan is very light, but with the condiments of fried garlic bits and pork lard it is immediately transformed. Even the soya sauce dip is specially concocted with raw garlic, chilies and a special type of soy. I know the brand of the soya sauce from their description, but I obliged not to reveal. We used to use it at home when my mom was still around with us. It was her favourite. The way to best try the bowl of KTT is to first take it as it come without dipping in the soya sauce, you will experience the sweetness and freshness contained in the fish balls and minced pork pattie. After a few mouthful, then you may take it with the special soya sauce. That will be another taste experience from the same bowl that you had. The garlic and chilly gives it an extra punch for those who enjoy heavier taste KTT.

Other than KTT, they also serve 'Kon Lo Bihun' (dry rice vermicelli in dark soya sauce). We got to know that to maintain the quality or texture of the bihun, they have opted to use individually packed bihun rather than the commercial and cheaper packed bihun. Much care was put in preparing the bowl of 'Kon Lo Bihun', they poached and mixed the bihun in their sauce and left it to sit for while to let the bihun soaked up the sauces before serving to us. Every strain of the bihun was coated with their sauce. The texture was fine and aroma fragrant like fried bihun minus the frying. It is a must try also!

Buy looking at the fried pork lard, you can also that the business owner really take pride in their business and work. They only used the centre piece of fats without the hard skin surface and the coarse part which is attached to the meaty part. Thus, is was crispy, smooth and fragrant without the bitter taste and rough texture. My favourite! The garlic bits were also fried to just the right consistancy. We did even found a bit burnt garlic. The garlic and lard provided the otherwise light soup, rich and smokey taste. Don't worry! Once in a while won't kill you!

Why should they take pride of their business and food, is because everything is hand made. The fish balls are made from a species of eel that is found here.

The fish balls starts from this fish.

The fishes is pain stakingly being de-boned. Only the vertebrae is de-boned at this stage.

Then the fish fillets are passed through this machine to separate the skin and small bones.

After the fish fillets are de-boned and de-skinned, it put through and special blending machine to start the mashing process. After the fish meat is blended and starts to produce the sticky substance to make the fish mash hold up togather, it is then hand moulded to your every day fish balls.

Even the minced pork meat are hand press to form the patties that are served there. Every individual piece shares the same thickness and consistency. Nice!

On average, I would give this place:
  • 4.5/5 for value (hand made and much care is taken to prepare the fish balls and pork patties)
  • 4.2/5 for taste & texture
  • 4.5/5 for service
  • 4.1/5 for cleanliness
  • 3.5/5 for atmosphere
GPS Coordinates: to be added!


  1. Allie // December 12, 2008 at 10:15 PM  

    The fish ball looks good. I luv fish ball.

  2. cariso // December 13, 2008 at 11:34 AM  

    Documentary kinda post! I like it! :)

  3. thenomadGourmand // December 13, 2008 at 4:40 PM  

    wahhh.. i feel so deprived now! Antr that i like is Chulia St, at night. Also very bouncy fish balls!

  4. Food Paradise // December 13, 2008 at 9:13 PM  

    We loves the fish balls. Very yummy. lol Gill Gill - I just reply you on the direction to Keat Seng Restaurant, please check my blog. Thanks!

  5. email2me // December 14, 2008 at 1:48 PM  

    This bowl of koey teow soup and dry bee hoon are enough to die for .... I had 2 big bowls last week on the morning before I drove back to KL.

  6. Big Boys Oven // December 14, 2008 at 10:43 PM  

    this is looks really delicious indeed, the way how the fish ball made is authentic. . . could be another dying art of malaysian chinese culinary! so you had captured it for the future to see!

  7. ck lam // December 15, 2008 at 9:22 AM  

    Sure taste good...took so many photos when I went with Ken.

  8. Lingzie // December 15, 2008 at 10:15 AM  

    beh tahan liao!!!! i want the kon lo bi hun and the fish ball and the mince meat patties!!!!!!!!!
    die la how to 'kam fei' liddat?! :P

  9. Steven Goh // December 16, 2008 at 12:38 AM  

    wah lau, seem like is a week for KTT. The stall that u talk about really near to the one that I blogged. I tried the stall that you mentioned at "hai oon" and they have the introduction from rasa-rasa penang. One thing I like for this stall is after taking the ktt I don't feel very thirsty else I will know the add in a lot of ajinamoto. Btw, still feeling like sick people after eating ktt.