Phase four takeaway: Get a taste of Sarawak at Kepong's Borneo Kopitiam with 'kolo mee', 'kampua mee', laksa and more

The star of Borneo Kopitiam is their 'kolo mee' with 'char siu' and minced meat – Pictures by Lee Khang Yi
The star of Borneo Kopitiam is their 'kolo mee' with 'char siu' and minced meat – Pictures by Lee Khang Yi

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KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 17 – With the mushrooming of more Sarawak eateries in the Klang Valley, I have been eating lots of kolo mee and laksa. Although I'm not from Sarawak, I'm happy to indulge in all these goodies.

I recently discovered Borneo Kopitiam from Facebook. Opened since September this year, the eatery is hidden inside KIP or Kepong Industrial Park.

Their menu of Sarawak offerings is probably the most extensive I have seen in the Klang Valley. For instance, their signature kolo mee has five versions including a fried variant and a pairing I have not seen before, where noodles are served with pork leg.

If you prefer the thicker kampua noodles, they also offer that here. You also have the ubiquitous laksa with three different toppings. Noodle fiends can relish the rarely seen Foochow mee, which is fried noodles with a brown sauce. You also have the comforting tomato mee, belacan bee hoon and mee Jawa.

For those who can't live without rice, there's fried rice with different flavours. There's a Borneo twist where the rice is served with stir fried sayur manis. There's also another version with cassava leaves or daun jabang. There are also special dishes such as pork cooked pansuh style with torch ginger flower, salai ikan baung or smoked fish, and kasam babi or preserved pork.

Even though they're from Kapit, most of the dishes follow the Kuching style. It's only the kampua mee that is cooked Sibu style.

Since I'm not over adventurous, I stuck to my usual favourites first like the kolo mee. You can't go wrong with the classic kolo mee (RM8) where fine noodles are topped with char siu slices and minced pork. It's pure comfort food and you can polish off the mountain of noodles easily. There are two versions, the plain type and the reddish version that is tossed in the sweet char siu sauce. You can also ask for an extra three prawns at an additional cost of RM5.

If you want something different, try their fried 'kolo mee' with egg
If you want something different, try their fried 'kolo mee' with egg

If you're adventurous, try their fried version for RM10. Instead of just blanching the noodles, they go an extra mile by stir frying the noodles with a soy sauce mixture that tinge the strands with a slight sweet taste. You also have fluffy beaten eggs fried with the noodles.

Here, the kolo mee is also served with pork liver and intestines (a choice of dry or soup). This is my first time seeing this version in the Klang Valley. If you want something more substantial, there's braised trotters in soy sauce.

You can also get 'kampua mee' here with 'char siu'
You can also get 'kampua mee' here with 'char siu'

If you prefer noodles with more bite, there's kampua mee Sibu style here. The strands are thicker and it is only served with char siu. These noodles also come with the mixed pork soup special. I sampled the version with the braised trotters.

The braised pork leg is lovely with fork tender meat and gelatinous skin
The braised pork leg is lovely with fork tender meat and gelatinous skin
Portions for the braised pork leg is huge as you get a lot of broth, meat and a whole hard boiled egg
Portions for the braised pork leg is huge as you get a lot of broth, meat and a whole hard boiled egg

I really liked the braised meat with the gelatinous skin. It may look like vinegar pork trotters but the broth is just soy sauce and sliced onions for a slightly sweet taste. It's a pretty substantial portion too for RM14.90 as it comes with a whole hard boiled egg.

Laksa here is not too rich but hits the right notes with large fresh prawns, 'char siu' slices and fluffy omelette strips
Laksa here is not too rich but hits the right notes with large fresh prawns, 'char siu' slices and fluffy omelette strips

You can get various toppings for your laksa here. I picked pork and it was served with char siu slices versus the usual chicken for RM10.90. Usually a bowl of laksa with the typical topping is RM9. If you want to indulge, they also offer large prawns with the laksa for RM24.90.

Tastewise, the laksa is decent fare with a nice not overly rich broth that you can happily drink up. I liked the sambal that wasn't too spicy but with small prawns inside it. Even the toppings are nice with the fluffy omelette strips.

Their tomato mee can be ordered with 'yee mee' or your choice of noodles that is served with a more subtle sauce
Their tomato mee can be ordered with 'yee mee' or your choice of noodles that is served with a more subtle sauce

I am a big fan of tomato mee (RM10) hence I ordered one to try. It ticked all the right boxes with a more subtle, sweet tasting sauce. You can order different types of noodles and they also do the crunchy yee mee which would be great with the sauce but I opted for my favourite kuey teow. Leave the noodles to soak up the sauce for some time to give it flavour. The toppings aren't too exciting though as it's only sliced fish cake and pieces of pork.

There's no need to worry about spills as they tie each packet very well with rubber bands
There's no need to worry about spills as they tie each packet very well with rubber bands

I'll definitely return to try the other items. What grabbed my eye was the belacan beehoon and other dishes I have not tried before like the kasam babi.

Borneo Kopitiam, No. 3A, Persiaran Kip 3, Taman Perindustrian Kip, Kuala Lumpur. Open: 8am to 5pm (Monday to Thursday), 8am to 8pm (Friday to Sunday and public holidays). They are closed on December 24 and 25. Tel: +6017-3902881. Facebook: @Borneo-Kopitiam-100710252157282/

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