This eatery is what I’d call an organized mess. There are sooo many things everywhere, every direction you turn. All kinds of things all under one roof that its unlikely that you’d be able to connect it to just one single theme. There are antiques, there is a random drum set halfway up the wall, a little gothic, definitely old school, a part of it looks like a perfect setting to direct a horror movie, another part looks like it could pass off as one of those old Chinese coffeeshops, pre WW II.. the only thing missing was Chinese opera music, lol. I honestly dont know what to call it except for an organized mess, on the inside atleast. The outside, is all green, with chickens and random birds moving about. It is calm, soothing.
In regards to its name – The Curiousity Iron River … I think I figured it out. Your “Curiousity” will certainly be piqued and tickled when you visit this eatery. You simply cant make sense of it. As for the “Iron River”, it is a literal translation of where it is located, Sg. BESI = Iron River. Malay to English.
HOW TO GET HERE?? If you are not familiar with the area, I’d recommend using Google Maps. Not Waze but Google Maps. Why? On Waze, while the location is tagged properly, the road it connects you to somehow cant compute the back alleys, which is where this eatery is located on. Google Maps will lead you right to it. In a way, I’d say that this is a hidden cafe. It is certainly not one of those eateries where you driveby and see/notice it on the way. This is located in a back alley that most of us often overlook. Unless you are familiar with the area, you would not come across The Curiousity Iron River. So, yup. It is hidden.
An organized mess, right? Told ya.
As for the food, it is pricey. This is also a Wine Bar in some ways, it perhaps would explain the high price point. It is affordable to a seleect group of people, I suppose. While this eatery may look like one of those crowd favorite ol’ school cafes and restaurants in Petaling Street area, it is not as conveniently located nor as affordable.
Sambal Petai Fried Rice, RM 28 + Soft Shell Crab Carbonara, RM 38
Good thing is that there is no Service Tax here. However, considering that the dishes are pricey to begin with, there was no sigh of relief from me as I ended up forking out RM 66 for 2 dishes.
The Fried Rice was nice, tasted as it should. There were lots of petai, egg, prawns. It tasted similar to a plate of Belacan Fried Rice I’ve had elsewhere. Besides a large portion of fried rice, you’d get some keropok on the side, as well as some greens and a bullseye. I would not mind giving it another go.
This dish I did not like and I think paying RM 38 for it was a little too much. I do understand that whenever soft shell crabs are involved, there usually is an increased in price, fair enough. I’ve had soft shell crab burger at some of the cafes here and it usually cost the highest among all burgers served there. With this pasta dish, the carbonara was very ordinary. There was pasta with some watery cream sauce, mushrooms and parley. It was rather basic as carbonara should be but something was lacking tastewise. The crab certainly tasted better, it was well seasoned and was nice enough to eat on its own. I honestly do not think this dish is worth RM 38 but the rather pricey menu is how it is here and so, consistent with that, you can expect to spend more $$$ than you’d anticipated here.
All in all, minus the pricey menu, everything ekse was good. I especially like the ambiance and the fascinating clutter, mess. I like that every corner I tyrn, there is something to see. There apparently is a second floor to this eatery. I did not head up as I did not have the time. Maybe you guys could, if you do visit and fill me in on what I missed, yeah?
Address: 138, Jalan Sungai Besi, Chan Sow Lin, Kuala Lumpur.
Opening hours: Everyday. Mondays, 5 pm – 10 pm. Tuesdays to Sundays, 10 am – 10 pm.
Contact Num.: 012 – 638 6660
Signing out now, Ciao.