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Sunday, June 8, 2014

Yi Shen Su - Ipoh

For the vegetarian locals in Ipoh, arguably the most famous vegetarian restaurant in the entire town is Yi Shen Su.  Over the years, the restaurant has franchised out and now has identical outlets in Kampar, Petaling Jaya and Bandar Bukit Tinggi.  For more information on this restaurant, you can refer to their official website here.  Let's begin!

Yi Shen Su
Location: No. 19-21 Jalan Medan Ipoh 6, Medan Baru, Ipoh, Perak
Contact: 012-453 7246
Opening Hours: Daily 9.45am-2.45pm & 3.00pm-10.00pm 

The interior of Yi Shen Su is that of a typical traditional Chinese restaurant.
On the walls are pictures of celebrities who have visited the restaurant over the years.  In case you are wondering, no Hungry Ang Mo isn't on there.
Looking through the menu there is a large variety of mock meats, vegetables and mushroom dishes.  One thing that will be a reoccuring theme in this review is the usage of egg in many of the dishes.  The majority of vegetarian places in Malaysia have egg, so eggless vegetarians and vegans have to be extremely careful.

First dish we ordered was the Yishensu Fried 'Kuew Teow'.  This is one of those dishes you must make sure to order without egg - The staff unfortunately don't bother to ask you if you can consume egg or not - Therefore you must be proactive as a customer.  If not, by default it will come with egg.  This was a pretty delicious char kway teow overall.  I was really impressed by the large portion size.  After sprinkling the fresh lime, the flavour is really magnified.  The kway teow texture was perfect, and I loved the different varieties of mushroom that was inside.  Great aroma to the dish also.

Price: RM6.00.     8/10
Next up we have the Braised Assorted Mushroom with Broccoli.  I often get a little frustrated with Chinese vegetarian food, because every vegetable dish one orders is always cooked the same way, and tastes exactly the same.  Due to this reason, I seldom order vegetable dishes when I do my reviews, as I find I am just writing about the same thing over and over again.  This dish was fresh and tasted good, but fell into the category that I was just describing.

Price: RM15.00.     6/10
Another dish that could potentially cause a headache from vegans (or vegetarians who don't take egg) will be the House Emperor Tofu.  The default tofu for this contains egg, so unfortunately you must request - They won't bother asking you.  I liked the needle mushrooms that was scattered over the top of the tofu like fallen soliders.  The gravy that the tofu was soaking in was a little on the salty side, and had quite simple flavours.  The tofu (which I switched to regular non-egg tofu) was a little bland, and couldn't really come to life, even with the gravy and other ingredients.

Price: RM15.00.     6/10
Lastly we have the Portugese Fish.  Although this was the most expensive dish of the meal, it was also the best in terms of quality.  The pieces of mock fish were sitting on a banana lead, whilst simultaneously soaking in the rich yellow sauce.  The turmeric infused sauce was mild and complex, and went perfectly with the mock fish.  Definitely a delicious dish.

Price: RM18.00.     8/10

Conclusion - Yi Shen Su is definitely a big name in the vegetarian scene in Malaysia, and overall I had quite a positive experience from my visit to this eatery.  The only issue I have is the obsession with egg that seems to exist at this place.  It can really be tricky to avoid egg here, so customers really need to be careful when ordering.

Overall Rating
Food - 7/10
Ambiance- 7/10
Service - 6/10
Value - 7/10

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