It is never being easy to acquire a decent Tom Yam dish in Sibu as the cuisine is not on the top favorite's list among the people of Swan City.
However, there are still some eateries who specialized in Tom Yam based dishes which get quite positive response from the locals. One of them is this one called "Yong Chuan Fish Noodles House" near Jaya Li Hua Commercial Center, Jalan Pahlawan area, behind Good Happiness Restaurant building, just beside Wikitea Sibu.
Just as its shop's name, this eatery is specializing in fish based noodles. I had been hearing about their Tom Yam soup base fish noodles which happened to be "delicious" quite few years ago, but only today I have a chance to go and try it out.
I heard that the eatery is flooded with patrons most of the time who are craving for their fish noodles variants, until a point that at peak hours, customers have to practice self-service as in fast food restaurants where they have to queue up to order the foods, then carry their own foods to their table before start eating.
I also heard about the unfriendliness and arrogant attitude of the owner which after I experienced it myself, it happens to be quite true as when I ordered the food directly from the taokenio (the lady boss), she gave me a very cold and unfriendly facial expression and response. But who care? Normally this kind of situation frequently heard on those eateries with overwhelmed business, but their business (money) still never stop flowing in. So attitude is not always a problem, isn't it?
About the self-service stuff, I discovered it is quite true also since at the time of my visit where it was still early with not many customers around, some of the patrons ordered and carried the foods bowl by bowl all by themselves without been served. Bet those are the regular customers who clearly aware the culture of the eatery while the first timer like me just sit there reading newspaper while waiting for the food to reach my table! :p
I ordered a bowl of Tom Yam fish rice vermicelli which is consider a signature dish there. Actually their main dish is not noodles, but the wider version of rice vermicelli or local Foochow called it "Hung Ngang". See their advertisement in the shop, all the fish-base serving is about Hung Ngang and not the Mee. Of course if you are not too favor about rice vermicelli, you can opt for Mee... I presume! ;)
The Tom Yam soup has a very strong lemon grass smell, not too spicy nor sour which I believe it will be lacking of some "kicks" for the die hard Tom Yam fans out there and may be considered as not thick enough, but for average eaters, it should be something more acceptable with Tom Yam taste to satisfy their taste buds.
I am not sure what is the exact fish used in the dish, it's like some "white fish" texture, but definitely they're boneless, lightly fried to the golden and don't have bad smell. Besides fish fillets, the oval shape stuffs are actually some homemade porky meat paste which are very sweet and fresh, and they're quite tasty yet a little salty.
One bowl of regular Tom Yam fish rice vermicelli is RM6 which is "highlighted" on the display board with paper tape. Oh... it's so because of inflation's fault lah... whereby before this I heard it is just RM5 per bowl.
You can order the version with big prawns, but I am not sure at all about the price.
If you like Tom Yam, you should go and give it a try since you don't have much choice of the dish in Sibu. If there is any chances for revisiting in the future, I think I would like to try the "Foochow style marinated vege + fish rice vermicelli" a.k.a. "zhou cai hung ngang", which I saw some customer ordered and I could smell the strong Chinese red wine! Yummy!