Koay teow soup (locally called "koay teow th'ng" by Penang's largely Hokkien-Chinese populace) is the quintessential noodle soup dish. Characteristics of the dish include; texture of the flat white, rice noodles used, subtlety/taste of the characteristically clear, porky consomme used, quality & of the ingredients/accompaniments (minced pork, various parts of pig/chicken/duck), and how the whole ensemble comes together to form a delightful, perfect meal-in-a-bowl.
Thus far, I'd had 2 very good koay teow soup at:
1. Kek Seng Coffeeshop, 382/384 Penang Road (Opening hours: 8am - 5pm). This 100+ year old coffeeshop still serves one of the best versions of koay teow soup I've tried anywhere in Penang. Its version includes a tasty slab of minced pork, slivers of pig's blood, chicken livers/kidney, fish balls, pork liver, pig's intestines, beansprouts, bits of Chinese lettuce, and very fine, thin, flat rice noodles. The noodle dish is finished off with a topping of crisp-fried garlic & pork lard. Beautiful!
2. Hai Oan Restaurant, 53/55 Burmah Road (Opening hours: 8am - 2pm. Closed Mondays). Their koay teow soup is simpler: good quality chopped pork (not minced), and fishballs made from eel-meat. Also topped off with golden crisp-fried garlic/lard oil. Great tasting soup, koay teow noodles are thicker than Kek Seng's - I preferred my noodles thinner. Still, it's extremely popular amongst Penang's foodies & food bloggers - to each, his/her own taste, I supposed.
Both koay teow soup stalls are run by 3rd-generation family members, and the cooks have had decades of experience in dishing out these delicious noodles. Yum!
The search goes on for the best koay teow soup in Penang ...