JB Durian trip 2

Here we go again, making a trip to JB for Durian. Now is certainly the ripe time to go, with Durian supplies ramping up and prices coming down. In my opinion, the prices are still not that cheap. I’ll just quickly state here the prices of those varieties i have sampled for your information (per kg):

Lao Tai Po (老太婆) RM 25 (pictured above – sweet and creamy)
Sultan RM 30
D101 RM 38
Tekka (Bamboo) RM 38
Mao Shan Wang or Musang King RM 48

It doesn’t make sense to drive across the causeway just for half an hour of Durian consumption, so, as usual, we did a one day itinerary. This time, we went to an area we have never been before, Kota Tinggi. I was not interested in seeing the waterfall, the attraction most associated with Kota Tinggi. Instead, i planned to try out Kiang Kee Bak Kut Teh, followed by a short walk in the woods of Hutan Lipur Gunung Panti.

Kiang Kee, housed in a hut built in the middle of nowhere.
Kiang Kee, housed in a hut built in the middle of nowhere.

We arrived past 11am, and the place was still crowded. It took more than half an hour for the food to arrive. Honestly speaking, the Bak Kut Teh cannot be compared to Klang Bak Kut Teh. The soup was a little bland and lacks aroma. But still, it was good enough. You’re given a pot full of tender fresh pork, with a 90 to 10 ratio of flesh to bone, and you can’t help but feel satisfied.

The pot is filled to the brim with pieces of pork, buried underneath the Tau Gee (fried bean curd skin)
The pot is filled to the brim with pieces of pork, buried underneath the Tau Gee (fried bean curd skin)

The best part is the price. The pot in the photo is for 2 persons, at only RM 20 (RM 10 per individual portion). You pay more and get less pork (the frozen type, no less) if you had Bak Kut Teh in Singapore.

Pork trotters, also very tender meat
Pork trotters, also very tender meat

Hutan Lipur Gunung Panti was just 2 minutes from Kiang Kee. Apparently, it is a good place for bird watching. Unfortunately, it started pouring soon after we got there.

The artificial swampy area at the park entrance of Hutan Lipur Gunung Panti
The artificial swampy area at the park entrance of Hutan Lipur Gunung Panti

My plan was to get toast and kopi at Wah Tong Kopitiam (华东茶室) at Kota Tinggi. It didn’t work out either, as they were closed on Sunday (i should have paid attention to the opening hours mentioned in the article from which i discovered about them). Anyway, at least i had a look at Kota Tinggi town, which looks like it is struggling to stay relevant. Their proximity to Johor Bahru is likely the cause, because all needs are met in Johor Bahru, barely half an hour away, and this would have stalled the economic development.

Instead of toast and kopi, we went for Durian, the primary objective of the trip. There were actually a few Durian stalls along the way, with likely cheaper prices, but they did not allow you to sit down and eat, so we went to Durian King at Mount Austin Update: the durian stall at this location is closed for good. They are quite easy to find, because they are right next to McDonald’s. In fact, some Durian customers simply parked in the McDonald’s parking area.

Durian King @ Mount Austin. Inside a florist, below a high voltage tower, next to McDonald's and Austin Heights International School, you can't miss it!
Durian King @ Mount Austin. Inside a florist, below a high voltage tower, next to McDonald’s and Austin Heights International School, you can’t miss it!
The seating area is quite pleasant
The seating area is quite pleasant
D101, cannot be faulted
D101, cannot be faulted
Kampong durian. The flesh was a little lumpy, and it was not as aromatic as the special breed Durian, but at only RM 15 each, it was not bad for the price
Kampong durian. The flesh was a little lumpy, and it was not nearly as aromatic as the special breed Durian, but at only RM 15 each, it was not bad for the price

After Durian, we had a look at Aeon Tebrau. We haven’t been there for a long time, and it was getting a makeover currently. Well, besides the improved car park, there wasn’t a lot of difference to the place, except, almost a third of the shops were not occupied. They probably lost many tenants due to an increase in rental.

Time passed rather quickly, and it was time for coffee. I chose to visit Just Want Coffee The Factory, which was also within the vicinity.

We were seated next to the showcase coffee roaster
We were seated next to the showcase coffee roaster
Original cheesecake, nicely glazed
Original cheesecake, nicely glazed
Smoked ham and cheese bagel, quite tasty
Smoked ham and cheese bagel, quite tasty
Black magic latte, 10 oz and containing 4 shots, supplies enough caffeine to cure headache
Black magic latte, 10 oz and containing 4 shots, supplies enough caffeine to cure headache

After a short rest at the hotel, we did our customary visit to Tesco, followed by round 2 of Durian. We visited Durian King yet again (twice within a day), this time at their Taman Sutera Utama flagship store. If you read my original JB Durian trip posting, this would be stall #4.

Tekka or Bamboo is superb
Tekka or Bamboo is superb. Now you see it.
Now you don't. Look at the huge cavity!
Now you don’t. Look at the huge cavity!
Don't make the same mistake of going for Sultan. It is not so fragrant, might be a little clumpy. Not worth letting it take up space, and it will because it is usually rather huge.
Don’t make the same mistake of going for Sultan. It is not so fragrant and might be a little lumpy. Not worth letting it take up space, and it will because it is usually rather huge.
Mao Shan Wang is Shiok as ever
Mao Shan Wang is good as ever
It is worthwhile having Mao Shan Wang despite the slightly higher price, because the seed is usually smaller!
It is worthwhile having Mao Shan Wang despite the slightly higher price, because the seed is usually smaller!

I guess i would blame this on the huge Sultan Durian, we had no room for supper, so back to the hotel we went.

While looking for breakfast, i discovered an area that had quite a few eateries in Bukit Indah. There were many options for breakfast. We will probably be back for more next time.

Restoran Pearl
Restoran Pearl (珍珠坊). Guess what was the name of the Kopitiam next door? Chinatown (牛车水)
Wanton noodles was not bad, as was the 炸肉面 (fried meat noodles).
Wanton noodles was not bad, as was the 炸肉面 (fried meat noodles).
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