Buffet Steamboat at Yuen Steamboat

Posted by : foongpc | Wednesday, November 5, 2008 | Published in


Last Sunday, I went to Yuen Steamboat in Sunway Mentari for a buffet steamboat. It was my first time there, after friends and my own brother had countlessly gushed praises on the food there.

But they had one warning for me. Be there early or risk queuing up outside the restaurant. And being early means I must be there at 5.30pm when it opens.

Together with my three other friends, we reached there slightly later than 5pm and already we could see that the three storey restaurant was full of customers inside. We were led to our table for four on the highest floor.

I quickly did a scan of the various food available. Not bad! Besides the different varieties of seafood and vegetables, there were fried rice, fried noodles, fruits, kueh, jelly, chicken wings and ice cream!

Unlike other steamboats, this one offered us a choice of clear soup or tom yam soup or both in the same hotpot which was separated into two compartments. We opted for both.

I did not find the tom yam soup that nice. It's not the spicy and sour type that I like. Or maybe I simply no longer like Malaysian tom yam after having tasted Thai tom yam while in Bangkok. This was like a huge letdown for me.

There were lots of mussels, clams, lala, and even snails or should I say, escargots? I didn't really like the snails. I don't know, maybe they were not that fresh?

All the seafood photos I took were raw ones, that is before I put them into the hotpot to cook. After they were cooked, I did not bother to take photos anymore as I just could not wait to eat them!

There were a lot of fishes, prawns and octopuses. I am not a fan of octopuses, but I took the fishes and prawns by the truckloads!

They had a large variety of balls - fishballs, beefballs, but no porkballs. I guess it's a halal restaurant although I did not see any Malay or Muslim diners.

There were also the usual yong tau foo stuffs which I took once only and did not really eat them because you can eat these outside.

Oh, the ones I like were the bluish looking crabs. Yes, you can eat unlimited amount of crabs here! I took plates after plates of these crabs. Look, aren't they beautiful?

I would also like to relate a special dish at this restaurant that seemed to bring out the uncivilised characteristics of Malaysians. I am talking about their fried chicken wings! Or was it grilled chicken wings? Or braised? And was it honey chicken wings? Or teriyaki? Or coca cola chicken wings? I really don't know, but they tasted sweet and unique.

I tell you, these chicken wings were so popularly high in demand that once they were taken out from the kitchen, everyone would be rushing to grab it. And believe it or not, these people were so uncivilised they practically fight with one another just to grab their piece of the chickens!

I could not believe that in the commotion, some chicken wings actually ended up on the floor! What a mess! And what a waste of food! Looking at how they fight over the chickens, you would have thought they had not eaten for days!

And believe it or not, once the tray containing the chickens that came out from the kitchen were placed on the table, the chickens would be completely gone within 10 seconds! I swear it's true because I actually timed it!

I gave up after three times failing to grab my share. But as the saying goes, if you can't beat them, join them! I sure as hell was not going to miss the popular chicken wings by giving in to these people! Well, at least I need to taste the chickens once so that I would be able to understand why they were so popular. So we just watched and observed how the "successful" uncivilised people grabbed the chickens. And boy, did we learn fast!

So here's the technique we learnt. Oh gosh, maybe I should not reveal the secret here. Otherwise, I would have to really put in a fight the next time I go there! But on second thoughts, why not? Everyone should be given a chance to taste those chickens! Now you can say anything bad about me, but you will never ever say I'm not generous, will you?

So here's what you need to do to successfully outwit, outplay and outlast everyone else. Oops! Watched too much Survivor here. Haha! We actually noticed that the fried chickens would be brought out from the kitchen every 30 minutes or so. And the "veterans" who already knew would be lining up or should I say gather at the table 10 minutes beforehand! So plan your attack early!

Get ready 2 big empty plates. Hold one plate on each hand and gather at the table 5 minutes before the chickens arrive. No need to be there 10 minutes beforehand as you don't want to look like a desperado. Or a loser. I don't know which is worse.

When the lady carrying the chickens place the tray on the table, cut through the crowd mercilessly with the two plates in front of you. Then go for the attack! Lunge yourself forward and scoop the chickens with your two big plates! Take in as many chickens as you could possibly manage and get your butt out immediately leaving those losers to fight among themselves! Brilliant, no?

Anyway, we were so eager to taste the chicken wings we forgot to take photos! So, I only managed to take this photo of whatever chickens remaining on the plate.

I did not bother to take any photos of the fried rice, kueh, fruits and jelly as they were just the usual stuffs that can be found outside this restaurant. In fact, I did not eat very much of them.

As for the ice cream, I found their sago honeydew ice cream delicious! But when I went for a second helping, it was gone! So I settled for other flavours which was nothing much to shout about.

Overall, I would say that the steamboat was not particularly special or good, but there were certainly lots of varieties of seafood and vegetables. And the fried chicken we fought hard for was pretty good too.

The total bill was RM87.35 which came up to about RM22 per person. Not bad! Pretty cheap considering the amount of fishes, crabs and prawns we ate! Maybe that's why it was so popular. As we left the restaurant at about 8pm, we could see a long line of people queuing outside!

Oh, by the way, I do not know why my friends who recommended me this place did not advise me to make bookings beforehand. You can do that to avoid ending up queuing outside, which is most likely what you will do if you arrive at the restaurant after 6pm especially during weekends.

(29) Comments

  1. Anonymous

    Wow...all the food for just RM22! That's a good deal and I must say they have quite a variety there...seafood and all..most places would not give you that much for that kind of price. I think I may have visited this restaurant before coz I remembered one opp Sunway Pyramid but can't remember its name..though it was only a 1 storey shoplot then.

    What the management can do to curb this food commotion is have the ppl order what they want and serve them by table..so there's no need for all the fighting...this can still work for all-you-can-eat.

    Gosh...I don't think I can fight with someone over food...not that I am putting anyone down but I don't think I can do it..it's just not me.

    Hey same goes for me..I don't like tom yam soup base for steamboat. It's always clear soup for me :)

    November 5, 2008 at 8:42 AM
  2. lina said...

    LOL. You should make a video on how to get those chicken wings.

    I suck at fighting for food, always depended on friends or Zaini to do the fighting and jostling for me. :D

    November 5, 2008 at 8:48 AM
  3. Johnny Ong said...

    ok ok, u qualify for the 'survivor'

    November 5, 2008 at 9:16 AM
  4. Anonymous

    Sounds worth the try!

    November 5, 2008 at 9:25 AM
  5. HappySurfer said...

    I recently went to one buffet seafood steamboat too and was pleasantly surprised by the spread. All that you listed were available. The item that got me going back for repeats was the prawns. They were not only fresh but were big too. Too bad, no oysters, but there was a lot of shellfish. Snails - reminded me of garden snails, so I passed.

    Lesson learned - too much shellfish in the soup made it taste 'shelly' - more like mud water. Yikes!

    Chicken wings sold out the minute they were out. I didn't manage to get any. Oh well...

    Considering the amount of prawns we took, the price was worth it.

    Foong, have you tried the steamboat at Coca? Give it a shot if you haven't.

    November 5, 2008 at 12:02 PM
  6. day-dreamer said...

    HAHAHA YEAH! Their chicken wings are damn good... my classmates and I went there after our final exams that day and I must give credit to the guys because every time the chicken wings were served, we are sure to have 2-3 plates FULL on our tables. So after the meal, almost half the table was covered with chicken bones... LOL.

    I love their variety of food available... indeed very filling. We reached like 6.15pm and there were no tables for us already. We had to sit outside the restaurant, beside and behind - near the kitchen leh!

    Initially I took a lot of chicken wings because nobody was there (probably there were a few tables with Malay diners waiting for buka puasa) but after my first (and last) "stint", I couldn't keep up the queue and fierce grabbing so it was the guys' turn to do something. And they succeeded. One of them was even sampat until he secretly hid all the penyepit thingy so that people would spend time finding it while he scooped as many chicken wings as he could...

    As well, miss those times.

    November 5, 2008 at 12:36 PM
  7. foongpc said...

    my bug life, yes it's really worth the price! That explains the long queue.

    I think it was a one storey shoplot years ago, probably business was so good, they expanded to three storeys. Even then, not enough space as people still need to queue up after 6pm!

    I agree with you, the management should do what you suggested, but maybe they purposely let it be to add in the fun. People are actually having fun fighting for those chickens!

    I actually like tom yam soup, just that this particular soup was neither spicy nor sour. I don't know why it's even called tom yam at all!

    November 5, 2008 at 3:06 PM
  8. foongpc said...

    lina, I think in the commotion, I might just drop my video camera. I don't want to risk that!

    Lucky you have Zaini and friends to help you fight for the food! : )

    November 5, 2008 at 3:09 PM
  9. foongpc said...

    johnny ong, haha! This is nothing compared to what contestants in Survivor need to go through! : )

    gallivanter, yeah, give it a try! : )

    November 5, 2008 at 3:11 PM
  10. foongpc said...

    happysurfer, where is this buffet steamboat? I love prawns and if they are fresh like you said, I want them!!

    Garden snails? Yucks! I think I don't like snails too!

    You should try the method I learnt to grab those chicken wings! Haha!

    I haven't tried Coca before. I heard it's rather expensive, not like this buffet steamboat which is worth my money : )

    November 5, 2008 at 3:18 PM
  11. foongpc said...

    day-dreamer, must be people like your friends who contributed to this uncivilised grabbing of the chicken wings! LOL

    Ooh, what dirty trick your friend played - hiding the "penyepit". But if I am there, I don't need the "penyepit". Just scoop those chickens with 2 big plates! Fast and effective. Haha!

    November 5, 2008 at 3:23 PM
  12. Angie Tan said...

    I recalled that I got severe food poisoning when I went to Yuen steamboat. So, the only thing I worry about such buffet places is the food safety.

    Anyway, I heard about the chicken wings and how people fight over it. Clearly demonstrates how "educated" we M'sians are...

    November 5, 2008 at 5:29 PM
  13. Anonymous

    RM22 per head? Cheap!!! Here, a new place charges RM19.00 and they do not have all that good stuff. I would not bother to go there!...I go KL, you take me there, ok? LOL!!!

    November 5, 2008 at 7:42 PM
  14. Monica said...

    LOL! yeah, I love Yuen Steamboat's chicken wings..YUM! YUM! but I didn't fight for it...hahahah..

    November 5, 2008 at 8:54 PM
  15. Bengbeng said...

    no wonder people r queuing up for it. 22.00 is ridiculously cheap for what u have mentioned

    November 5, 2008 at 9:20 PM
  16. Anonymous

    LOL I love your plan of attack! I see a similar situation here in the US. They're fighting for crab legs though, not chicken wings. :o)

    November 6, 2008 at 8:39 AM
  17. Anonymous

    one thing though, i wonder why they dont serve fresh meat, eg chicken/pork/beef there.

    November 6, 2008 at 2:48 PM
  18. Mariuca said...

    He he loser or desperado, I oso don know which is worse ha ha!

    November 6, 2008 at 3:44 PM
  19. Mariuca said...

    Aiyo!!! So malu-fying la these ppl grabbing the wings ha ha...but lucky u joined in as well or not terlepas chance eh? For me, I don't eat chicken wings, so for sure I won be clamoring for it if I do go to this rest. :):):)

    November 6, 2008 at 3:46 PM
  20. Pete said...

    Wah, pay money some more have to fight for the chicken wings. Nice and informative post abt this place. Might check it out and use your recomended tactics to get the chicken wings! LOL

    November 7, 2008 at 12:05 AM
  21. eiling lim said...

    sometimes I just skip all the hassle of fighting with people for food and space by opting for ala carte steamboat - more comfortable and quality food. I was at Yuen Steamboat once and I know what people will do for the chicken wings. It's crazy and so uncivillised. In the end, we only managed to get 2 because we were too polite.

    November 7, 2008 at 1:19 AM
  22. curryegg said...

    You know what! I love steamboat! ahhwww.... I wanna go too!

    November 7, 2008 at 1:33 AM
  23. foongpc said...

    angie tan, come to think of it, I did have a slight stomach discomfort after the buffet. I guess there might be cross contamination between the raw food and the cooked ones : )
    Luckily, I quickly took a dose of good stomach bacterias and the discomfort went away.

    suituapui, no problem, you foot the bill I bring you there! Haha! : )

    monica, I guess you got somebody to bring those chicken wings for you : )

    November 7, 2008 at 3:38 PM
  24. foongpc said...

    bengbeng, yes it's definitely worth the money! : )

    life ramblings, actually they don't have to rush for the chickens. There are enough for everyone, but I guess Malaysians are just so uncivilised. What to do, can't beat them, gotta join them! LOL

    babette, thanks! You have such uncivilised behaviour in the US? That's surprising! Well, then we are not that bad after all. Haha!

    November 7, 2008 at 3:43 PM
  25. foongpc said...

    xin, I don't know about that. I guess they focus on sea food only : )

    mariuca, actually I don't really eat chicken wings too, prefer other more meaty parts of the chicken. Haha! But I want to see what's all the fuss about, so gotta fight for a taste of it! : )

    pete, yes, go try this restaurant and use my proven tactic to grab those chickens! : )

    November 7, 2008 at 3:47 PM
  26. foongpc said...

    eiling, wah so polite also can get 2 pieces of chicken. Not bad already. I didn't even get one when I was polite in the beginning : )

    curryegg, oh if you love steramboat, you definitely must go!! : )

    November 7, 2008 at 3:51 PM
  27. Anonymous

    Come on, over a plate of chicken wings? I certainly won't do that.

    November 9, 2008 at 3:33 PM
  28. foongpc said...

    jam, haha! Haven't you heard of if you can't beat them, join them? : ) I was not going to leave the place without finding out what was so good about the chickens!

    November 9, 2008 at 5:05 PM
  29. Faisal Admar said...

    eh how you make picture (thumbnail) below the post?

    these foods really make me hungry :D

    July 28, 2009 at 8:51 AM