Georgetown, Penang aka Guide to Food Paradise

By Shu - 07:00

Last summer I finally fulfilled my dream to visit Penang after hearing so many mouthwatering stories about the place. So, a very full belly and many months later, here's my take on How to Eat Your Way through Penang. (But first, let me take a selfie... - yes for 3 days, I took an unbelievable number of photos, but hey the murals in Georgetown are so cute!).

Breakfast @ Prosperous Dim Sum
Lorong Abu Siti, 10400 Georgetown


NOMNOM. I chose this place specifically because it had custard egg yolk buns (not all dimsum places have this). Seriously cheap and nice, though we walked rather far out for this. We spent <SGD10 each (not all food ordered is pictured above), and left feeling so satisfied. I love dimsum so much!

Random Penang Laksa

We randomly decided to pop by a Penang laksa street stall because well, the dish has Penang in its name so maybe it'd be nice?? I'm not a fan of the Penang laksa they serve in Singapore 'cause it's too fishy and taut for me but unfortunately the flavours here are even stronger :X Sorry Penang Laksa, I guess we're just not meant to be.



Georgetown is so quaint and pretty. There's a cute photo opp at almost every corner and I felt like such the tourist with my giant camera snapping away gleefully. I love the mix of colonial, oriental and Peranakan architecture, and if you're not the kind of tourist who loves to eat you'd be just as delighted wandering around the little alleys in Georgetown and marvelling at the colourful shophouses.

Batik Painting Museum

This wasn't on our planned itinerary but I'm so glad we visited it. (Actually, we only went in because it started pouring heavily and we only had one umbrella to share.) My impression of batik before I entered this museum was solely defined by those perankan batik styled clothes or table cloths or what have you, but boy was I wrong! I was so impressed by the variety of subjects and landscapes exhibited. I never knew batik could be used like this haha. There were some really gorgeous pieces of art, and I especially love how batik colours can be so rich and translucent at the same time.

Mural Hunting


 



Georgetown is also famous for its random murals and street art lurking at every corner. There are some very cute ones around, including the minion and the ginormous cat! We had a lot of fun following this guide by TimeOut and hunting all over for these paintings. Some of the murals are really creative and I love some of the installations engage you to interact with it as well (see the swing above, and there was a bicycle somewhere else too hehe).


Clan Jetties
Pengkalan Weld, 10300 Pulau Pinang



This was another interesting stop on our itinerary. Remants of Penang's Chinese settlement history, there are six clan jetties along the coast, each named after a Chinese clan. We visited a couple of them, but the Chew Jetty is probably the most tourist friendly with many shops and a substantially wide and long walkway such that I didn't feel like I was intruding into people's homes. People actually still live here. It has modernised a lot with electricity cables and water pipes running everywhere, but it still amazes me every time I visit such places. Citygirl93 or entitledkid93?

Wheeler's Coffee
67, Lorong Love, Georgetown, 10200

I don't know which came first, Singapore's wheeler's yard or this one, but this cafe had a bicycle theme as well. We ate here when we first touched down into Penang as we only managed to reach Georgetown past 9pm, AND BARELY ANYTHING WAS OPEN (I can't believe it??). We had aglio olio and a lava cake to share but meh, food was mediocre.

Over our next two days in Penang we visited a couple other more 'atas' Western cafes (we went to Behind 50 and Mugshot Cafe too) but they all seemed lacklustre. Not saying the food wasn't good, but it was relatively expensive. I mean definitely cheap as compared to Singapore cafe standards, but I have such a soft spot for hawker food and with hawker food at just about every corner in Penang, it just seemed like a waste of stomach space to visit these cafes hahaha.

Tiger Char Kway Teow
Intersection of Lebuh Carnavon and Melayu

I love CKT!!! This one was special, as they use duck eggs to fry with the CKT instead of the usual chicken eggs, making the flavour much richer. The next time I go to Penang I must totally starve myself before that so I have extra stomach space to eat more of these nomnomnomnom.

Joo Hooi Cafe
475 Jalan Penang

This is the famous chendol place that everyone goes to. You have to pay more to sit in the store so most people just hold the bowl and stand around. I was quite disappointed though. I've heard so many raves about this place but I felt it was just meh. There was a nice thick coconut taste and they were very generous with the ingredients but I was feeling so hot and sweaty from all the walking around and I guess my stomach just wasn't craving chendol at that point in time. The bowl warmed up pretty fast too because of the scorching sun. Oh well. If you're a chendol fan I guess you should still give this a try!



And that's it! Penang is such a fun destination (see crazy photo above). We ate much much more than everything I've covered above but I was too busy eating to take photos at every stop haha. Oh, also, DO NOT EVER WALK TO GURNEY DRIVE FROM GEORGETOWN. I have no idea what we were thinking when we decided, at 8pm, to take the treacherous 30min to Gurney Drive. Well, burning off some calories was probably the impetus, but nope. Never Again. Firstly, the roads are not very pedestrian friendly. Not only are there no side walks, we had to jaywalk across many VERY BUSY intersections that were not very well lit. Also, yes, I felt like I could get mugged any time. Thankfully the final stretch of the road leading to Gurney along the coast was full of posh Penang condominiums so I felt a little more safe. But, very bad idea. You will thank me for the warning hahaha.

Alright, update with more trips next time! If you're heading to Penang soon and would like a map of where I visited in Penang you can find it here xx

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