I did not try the sushi on offer at the Japanese Restaurant (Kaizen Sushi) or the Coffee Shop Next door but the two identical buildings are ideally located by the river where the water taxis leave for Kampong Ayer. One can sit and watch the many activities on the river while enjoying a coffee or at the sushi restaurant next door. Both buildings have two floors which are partly open at the front offering you a good view.
This food court is located just to the north of the Royal Regalia Museum in amongst a small wood. During the three nights we were in BSB, we came here to eat every night as it was that good and ate at the same stand. It's a great place to go and mix with the locals and the food on offer is good and varied from burgers to seafood, curries to ice cream. The juices are particularly good and make up for the non-existence of alcohol.
Located in the heart of downtown, this large, rather anaemic place serves some good food with dishes from the menu displayed as pictures on the wall which I always like as it helps you know what they consist of before you order. The waitresses are rather cute as well!
When I first arrived in BSB, I went on an exploration trip around downtown in order to seek out a decent place to have breakfast in the mornings as I was staying at the Pusat Belia/Youth Hostel. I stumbled across this place and well, the breakfasts here are superb. For B$5 you get a choice of four egg types such as fried, scrambled etc, chicken sausage, baked beans, toast, pancakes with maple syrup, hash browns plus tea/coffee. It doubles as a bakery so you can also check out their range of tasty bakery items at the front. However, the breakfast can take a while to arrive so don't come here if you're in a hurry.
There are a few smaller venues of night street markets, but the largest is popular nearly every day of the week. It may be a bit quieter and less varied on days with rain.
You may walk around all the different rows and isles of vendors. There are noodles, sates, sweets, pancakes, drinks (milo, fruit juices, etc.), and just about anything else that you can think off.
Prices are cheap and reasonable. Most likely $1 or less for typical foods.
Favorite Dish: There were delicious bbq chicken sates, sweet Malay pancakes and fresh fruit. We ate more food than we needed and only spent about $6 in total.
Dining with some locals, they wanted to take me to Thiam Hock Restaurant to sample some of the best curry that Bandar has to offer. The restaurant is nothing flashy, nor sophisticated, but the food was great and very reasonably priced. It serves several versions of curries, as well as a large variety of Chinese dishes.
Favorite Dish: The restaurant is known for the 'Curry Fish Head', but don't let that scare you. The fish curry that I had was served without the head, with a bit of ginger and it was fantastic!!
Satay is a favourite amongst locals of all ages
meat on skewers, just like miniature shish kebabs...
peanut sauce makes the satay, plus sliced fresh cucumbers and onions to cool the tummy and helps digestion respectively
ketupat is the usual accompaniment in place of rice ie rice in nipah leaf, thus giving it's unique flavour and taste
wash down with fresh young coconut.....
Favorite Dish: satay kambing / mutton
satay urat.... and lemak susu......yeuuuuuuuuuuu, take it whhilst hot and drippy
satay ati kura
This restaurant / coffee shop is conveniently located at the departure terminal of the Brunei International Airport, and you should go there and have a meal before leaving Brunei. Apparently, it is quite popular, especially the dishes Nasi Lemak (traditional Malay dish served with rice and ingredients such as chilli, fish or chicken, vegetables etc) and Murtabak (Indian pancake with choice of fillings such as mutton, chicken etc).
The Golden Leaf Coffee House is very popular among the Chinese people living in Bandar Seri Begawan and it is one of the very few places in the city that serve pork dishes. Delicious dishes here include the roasted duck, roasted pig, bak kut teh (pork in delicious herbal soup) as well as other Chinese dishes. As for drinks, their glass jelly drink (black glass jelly in cold milk tea) is very tasty and a must try when you are there.
What are the local food in Brunei you should try when you are in Bandar Seri Begawan? Here are some examples which you might want to consider.
- Ambuyat (this is a famous local dish, please see my tip on Aminah Arif restaurant for more information).
- Satay (sticks of mutton, beef or chicken barbequed over fire, and served with gravy. This dish is popular in Brunei and surrounding countries, there is a Satay club along the Brunei River at the town centre area).
- The spicy mutton and beef dishes in Brunei are very delicious and worth trying.
- Brunei people likes to eat chocolate, and the Empire Hotel (see my VT Jalan Jerudong page) has very good home-made chocolates.
One good place to have a good taste of local food is at the local food market called Tamu Kianggeh, which is conveniently located at the corner of Jalan Sungai Kianggeh and Jalan Pemancha, next to a canal at the city centre area).
The Emperor's Court Restaurant is one of the best and most popular Chinese Restaurant in Bandar Seri Bagawan. Serves typical Chinese dishes but with no pork (as it is a Halal restaurant). The ambience is also very good and you can go shopping at Hua Ho Mall before and after your meal there :)
Fratini's Restaurant has a branch located at the second floor of Port View building just next to the place where you take the speed boats to visit Kampong Ayer (water village), across the road to Yayasan shopping complex. This italian restaurant serves nice pizzas and pasta, and you can also order local dishes as well. You can either sit in the air-conditioned area, or the outside balcony with great views of the river and Kampong Ayer with many speedboats moving along the river.
The Aminah Arif restaurant is very famous for traditional Bruneian dishes, especially a dish called Ambuyat, which is made of sago that is served in a gluey mass eaten with wooden sticks dipped into fish sauce (see photos). The menus have photographs and should cost about $15-30 Brunei dollars. This restaurant is located at the Gadong surburb of Bandar Seri Begawan and the address and contact numbers are below.
Hainamese Chicken rice is very popular in Asia. Brunei does have a few good hainamese chicken rice, but the best and most popular is Thien Thien Chicken Rice, which has been here since eary 80s.
Favorite Dish: Try the Laksa too!
The cafe is set in the atrium of the Empire Hotel & Country Club. You can see beautiful views of the South China Sea while eating...I love it. This place served variety of delicious local n western cuisine.
Favorite Dish: I love its sweet n sour fish fillet...delicious. Desserts served here...tasty n variety.