Yi Kou Fan

Update: This business has ceased its operations.

For lunch today, our destination is Yi Kou Fan Restaurant (一口饭) at Chime Heritage. Chime Heritage is a new row of shops near One Corner Cafe.
This Chinese restaurant has very limited number of tables at the ground floor. Fortunately, there are larger tables at the upper floor.
Yi Kou Fan Restaurant has several set meal packages for different numbers of people. Our choice today is Value Set Meal B (超值套餐B) for RM59.80. This package allows us to choose any 3 meat dishes and any 1 vegetable dish. This set meal is meant for 4 or 5 persons, but I feel that it is just right for 3 very hungry diners. Rice and Chinese tea are provided in this package.

The first meat dish is Steamed Spare Rib With Taro & Black Bean (芋头豆豉蒸排骨). Chunks of pork ribs are stewed with slices of taro and douchi (fermented black beans). Douchi lends some salty flavor, but I feel that the main contributor of flavor is the savory gravy itself.
The pork ribs are extremely succulent; I cannot stress this point highly enough. The crunchy muscle tissues near the rib bones are particularly tasty as they are good in absorbing flavors from other ingredients. Perhaps my only complain about this dish is that a significant proportion of it is bones.

The second dish is Steamed Fish In Thai Style (暹蒸鱼片). Admittedly, the fish slices are well-cooked such that they are soft and refined. However, I find that the Thai-style gravy somehow does not work so well with the fish. One of the reasons is that the pungent gravy irritates my throat annoyingly. Perhaps this type of gravy is more suitable to be used with whole steamed fish.
The next dish is Deep Fried Prawn With Nutmeg & Mayonnaise (沙律虾球), which turns out to be very appetizing even for children. The shrimp balls are fried to the right level of crisp. Yet, the flavor of shrimps is not completely overwhelmed by mayonnaise dressing, which is well formulated too.
This dish is supposed to contain nutmegs but I do not perceive them. Instead, I think nata de coco is used instead.

Finally for vegetables, the choice is Minced Garlic Broccoli (蒜茸西兰花). Despite the use of garlic, I find the overall taste to be quite bland. But in the grand scheme of things, having a milder-flavored vegetable dish is a good counterbalance against three richly-flavored meat dishes.
My verdict for Yi Kou Fan is generally favorable. Most dishes are above par in terms of flavor. Despite having set meal packages, the pricing is still not at a level which I can afford on regular basis. Nevertheless, I will not be shy to bring visitors to this restaurant if they are looking for Chinese cooking in a relaxed setting.
Address: 5, Jalan Bawasah, 10050 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-228-2007
Business hours: 11:00pm-2:30pm, 5:30pm-10:00pm, closed on alternate Wednesdays

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