Whenever I passed through the old part of downtown Johor Bahru, I would catch a glimpse of this quaint, dingy hole-in-the-wall shop without stopping or slowing down. Today, I slowed my pace a little, and let the glasses of herbal tea enticed me to stop, and find out what this shop was all about.
This turned out to be a more than 100-year old piece of living history! This old shop known as Kok Yow Yong 霍有用 has been a household name here since the time of its founder over a hundred years ago. Today, it is run by a grandmother, mother and son team who are direct descendants of the founder.
Through the years, Kok Yow Yong 霍有用 herbal tea had built up a loyal following from all ethnic groups from the surrounding areas, and also from Singaporean day trippers. Today, I saw a Singapore customer bring a vacuum flask to take home her herbal tea :)
|Cooling chrysanthemum tea 菊花|
|Wong lo kat 王老吉 great for driving away heatiness|
Kok Yow Yong herbal tea shop offers regular chrysanthemum tea 菊花 and wong lo kat 王老吉 at 70 sens. Made from real herbs, it felt like drinking herbal tea that our mums brew at home.
If you have a cough or a cold or just needed a vitality boost, the lady can make you an extra strength, special tea for RM5 to RM10. I asked for the RM5 brew and swallowed the bitter, grainy concoction in a couple of quick gulps. The lady then poured me half a glass of chrysanthemum tea to wash off the bitterness in the mouth. I did felt energised from the 3 herbal drinks which I sampled in quick succession.
Try it, this is the oldest traditional herbal tea shop in Johor Bahru.
Click on the picture to view the video on Kok Yow Yong by Fatbook Production.
Restaurant name: Kok Yow Yong 霍有用
Address: Junction of Jalan Trus and Jalan Pasar, Old Downtown Johor Bahru (near City Square)
Hour: (closed on Sunday)
Date visited: 29 May 2012