This is one noodle stall I want to visit again when I’m in JB. It was a serendipitous discovery – we were looking for that great waffle + ice cream place we visited some 2(?) years ago and we couldn’t find it. What we did find was this noodle place that had quite a few diners though it was just after 5pm and not quite dinner time yet. And there’s that cute caricature of a certain ‘Grandma Ong’ and a general vibe that this place must serve up pretty good homely cuisine. The menus are also totally falling apart; a sign that this place must be popular, but what caught my attention were the posters advertising a certain 火山黑面, loosely translated to mean ‘volcanic black noodles’…
It’s a hearty bowl of noodles (not sure why they are black; doesn’t taste like squid ink) with ikan bilis, a poached egg, meatballs, fishballs that are too yummy, etc. We ordered the ‘medium spicy’ version though I’ll probably get the super spicy version next time. Medium’s kind of boring.
We also ordered two side dishes – the otah and ngoh hiang. Both are unremarkable so we just might skip them next time. Just two large bowls of the volcano black noodles will do!
Now, if you’re wondering why this place is named Grandma Ong, here’s the story: In 1997, due to the financial crisis, Grandpa Ong got retrenched and had difficulty finding a job. Grandma thus made her own noodles in order to feed the family of five. She usually included a vegetable they call ‘mani vegetable’ and whenever the family got bored of this dish, she’d add a “kampong koh” chili sauce. Just when the family was about to run out of options, a relative’s food stall was available for rent. Grandpa and Grandma Ong became hawkers out of necessity and have been delighting customers since with their noodle dishes since.
This particular outlet is at 58 Jalan Sutera Tanjung 8/3, Taman Sutera Utama, 81300 Johor Bahru, Johor.