Drink and Dine
Sabindo Hawker Center offers a variety of seafood stalls at Sabindo centre. From Chinese, Malay and Thai tomyam seafood stall, it is just located along the waterfront in town. The stalls offer very competitive prices for selective catch of the day.
Makanan Laut 101 serves excellent crab and shellfishes with vegetables at incredibly low prices.
Mongolian Chicken Rice on Jalan Chester offers one of the tastiest Chicken Rice in town. The small outlet is always crowded.
Kam Ling Seafood, 25 Sabindo Open Air SeaFood Stall, Tel: 089-756457, 016-8262511, 017-8982511, 019-8832511. Contact Mr Wong to place reservation if you like to taste fresh seafood. Dinner for 2 with fish and 2 dishes costs about RM35. You may like to try Kam Ling’s very own Kam Kat Lemon (????, lime lemon juice, RM3.10) drink after seafood to clear the heat.
At night, numerous stalls set up around the town. Many sell Sulawesi Soto Makassar (buffalo soup), a Bugis specialty; Pisang Goreng (fried bananas), Ubi Goreng (fried tapioca), Onde-onde (glutinous rice with savoury taste roasted in banana leaves), Kuih Pandan (Pandan rice cake), Karipap (Curry Puff), Kuih kacang (Peanut pancake spread with coconut jam), Bubur Chaca (a dessert broth with tapioca, sweet potato and sago), etc.
Nasi Kuning or yellow rice is an Indonesian specialty that cannot be found anywhere else in Malaysia. The rice is cooked with coconut milk and turmeric (known as kunyit in Malay), which in turn made the rice look yellow in colour. In Tawau it is usually served with a piece of fish deep-fried in dried chilli sauce. This can be found in almost any Malay restaurants or stalls around Tawau but sometimes also sold in some Chinese coffee shops. To further enhance the taste, the rice is usually wrapped in banana leaves. Price ranges from RM 0.40 to RM 3.00 per serving.
Where: Most Malay restaurants and some Chinese coffee shops.
Char Kway Teow or fried glass noodles – there are only two good char koay teow places in Tawau and this 21-year-old shop is one of them. The noodles are fried with dark soy sauce, bean sprouts, egg, prawns, cockles and chives. It is a style very similar to the char koay teow in the southern part of West Malaysia – but with the addition of lard fritters, which makes it really yummy.
The noodles are non-oily and very fragrant. They get better with each mouthful, so it is no surprise that the place does such a roaring trade. Service is fast, and the best time to eat here is mid-morning when the breakfast crowd has eased. (Courtesy of The Star, Malaysia)
Where: Kedai Kopi Bunga, 1722, Jln Kuhara. Open 6.45am to 5pm. Closed on alternate Mondays.