I went to the Soo Kee Restaurant in Jalan Imbi TWICE this week. John and Jeff took me to this place on separate occasions. The Soo Kee Restaurant is famous for its “sung har meen” (fresh water prawns) and fried beef hor fun. It is not located exactly on Jalan Imbi but just around the detour/bend when one try to get into Jalan Imbi.
I was told that the owner of the Soo Kee restaurant was from the original Lebuh Pudu’s “tai see tow”. Across the road from Soo Kee is another restaurant that specializes on the same thing. It’s called Soo Kee’s Son Restaurant. Does anyone know the story behind this Soo Kee’s Son restaurant? Is it really owned by Soo Kee’s son?
Anyway, it is Soo Kee Restaurant that is busier. It’s a favourite among the lunch and dinner crowd. Their kitchen is just by the roadside. You can see a lot of cars and buses driving past the congested area.
In terms of comfort, Soo Kee is terrible. It is hot and the restaurant poorly ventilated. Despite this, the restaurant is packed with diners every day. Service wise, it is extremely poor by western standards. However, the food is superb.
Their signature dish is the sung har meen. It is a fried noodle dish with large fresh water prawns. This dish alone costs RM25 (about CAD$8) — very expensive for noodles in Malaysia where noodles could be bought as cheap as RM4. It is the huge prawn that is costs the most.
Their other favourite dish is the fried beef hor fun (hor fun is flat rice noodles). The gravy is exceptionally tasty and thick. I see that almost every table ordered this dish. This does not cost as much as the sung har meen.
John ordered two pieces of jee pow gai (marinated chicken wrapped in paper). This is a favourite of mine and goes very well with rice.
A good jee pow gai had lots of juicy gravy. They are prepared by marinating the chicken for a couple of hours and then wrapped with cooking paper. The whole thing is then deep fried until the chicken is fully cooked.
Although the food was great, I must say again that the service is poor. This is so characteristic of many popular Malaysian restaurants. Their business is so good that they think they can afford to choose their customers.