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Here’s another place to go if you long for some good old fashion proper cafe or as we would call it … “Western” food while at Taipa, the artificial, mostly casino filled island of Macao – the restaurant by the name of Common Table.

Common Table, Macao
Common Table, Macao

Common Table is one of the more spacious cafes you can find in Macao, partly because it is located in the newer part of the country on Taipa. The interior decor is a mix of industrial cement walls with tasteful wooden furniture.

The menu here is pretty extensive (find the full menu below)

Starting off with breakfast that’s served from 8 am to 5 pm, you’ll find French toast, egg benedict, various type of walnut toasts, scramble eggs, muesli, or waffles. Prices are from 48 to 78 MOP.

Taipa Salad, Forest Mushroom Risotto, Latte
Taipa Salad, Forest Mushroom Risotto, Latte

For those who likes it green, they have four different salads on the menu at 78 or 88 MOP. We tried the Taipa Salad with Avocado and Balsamic Vinaigrette (88 MOP), it came with generous amount of greens and half an avocado with really thick vinaigrette which I thought was quite nice.

Common Table
Common Table

If you are hungry for a proper meal instead, they do serve some proper Italian dishes, with several choices of pasta, risotto, and even ox tongue. I tried the Forest Mushroom Risotto (88 MOP) from the recommendation of the waitress and thought it was quite a competent dish. The rice was cooked al dante and properly coated with butter/cheese. Rich and satisfying.

Forest Mushroom Risotto
Forest Mushroom Risotto

As for drinks, Common Table serves the usual espresso based caffeinated drinks, as well as a good selection of organic blend full-leaf tea. If those aren’t your cup of.. tea, there’s always lemon soda, juices, or even fresh milk.

map to Common Table, Taipa, Macao

Address:
Common Table
No. 349-365, Avenida de Guimaraes,
Nova City R/C Shop A,
Taipa, Ilhas Macau
GPS: 22.159130, 113.556506
Tel+853 2885 6601

Common Table Menu (1) Common Table Menu (2) Common Table Menu (3)

Common Table Menu (4) Common Table Menu (5) Common Table Menu (6)

When in Macao or Hong Kong, one of the meals you shouldn’t leave out is dimsum. After all, every other dimsum places back in Malaysia called themselves some “XX Hong Kong dimsum”, wait, they don’t call it Macao dimsum… well anyway!

Long Wah Tea House, Macao
Long Wah Tea House, Macao

Long Wah Tea House is one of the more established dim sum restaurants in Macao, the restaurant is located in a corner shop on the first floor at the Northern side of the peninsular, pretty close to China border. Unlike most restaurants in Macao, this one actually has decent space and not overly crammed.

The modus operandi here is self-served. You start off by choosing the type of tea you want for the morning from some 8 different varieties, then help yourself in picking up the dimsum of your choice at the dimsum steamer by one side of the wall.

There were also pots of flower by the balcony, giving it a very classic, relaxing ambiance.

beef tripe, cha siu pao, steamed pork ribs
beef tripe, char siu pao, steamed pork ribs

As we reached there pretty late at around 1 pm at the tail end of their business hour, we only had a few dishes to pick from – the char siu pao, beef tripe, and steamed pork ribs.

The dimsum were on point, with the tripe deliciously soft and flavorful and the ribs properly prepared. The char siu pao though, could use abit more char siu, but they were still pretty good.

choose your favorite tea
choose your favorite tea

Well, after having a meal here, there’s a pretty neat temple about 6-7 minutes walk up north. Enjoy!map to Long Wah Tea House, Macao

Address:
Long Wah Tea House
3 R. Norte do Mercado Alm. Lacerda, Macau
GPS22.205734, 113.545040
Hours: 7 am to 2 pm

My traveling buddy while at Macao is someone whose diet consists of a heavy dosage of avocado, so after a great many days of subjecting herself to the local diet which has none of this “butter fruit” (as locals call it), we embarked in a mission to find one.

Which is how I ended up at Cafe TOFF.

TOFF, Macao
TOFF, Macao

TOFF is situated just a stone’s throw away from Lou Lim Ioc Garden, a public garden with a beautiful lotus lake that’s worthy of visit. If you’re there and have visited enough churches, why not?

The restaurant, like many other in Macau, is pretty diminutive in size, capable of serving perhaps two dozen customers snugly at any one time. Lucky for us, it was quite empty at 1pm or so on a Monday.

cozy interior inside TOFF
cozy interior inside TOFF

The menu though, is rather comprehensive (see below). They have a decent selection of espresso based coffee from latte, long black, to mocha, and even Marnier mocha, which comes with alcohol. Each cup costs between 28 to 50 MOP.

There’s also a selection of tea if that’s what you fancy.

breakfasts with coffee
breakfasts with coffee

As for food, there’s a dozen different types of salad and sandwiches, some with interesting ingredients like parma ham, squid and shrimp, Okinawa pork slices, or even shrimps and avocado. They’re priced between 50 to 68 MOP.

For our brunch, we went with the Big Breakfast (118 MOP) and Toff Veggie Breakfast (108 MOP), each comes with a black coffee or latte, and a selection of different ingredients to choose from.

TOFF Veggie Breakfast & TOFF All Day Breakfast
TOFF Veggie Breakfast & TOFF All Day Breakfast

Overall the food were pretty competent, and coffee did tastes like any good coffee would. It is a Western breakfast that would make it pretty much anywhere, except when it’s in Macau, you do pay Macau prices. Cute place though, certainly would not mind visiting again

map to TOFF Cafe, Macao

Address:
TOFF
G/F, 72 R. da Esperanca,
Ferreira de Almeida, Macao
GPS: 22.199902, 113.547208
Tel: +853 28930014

  

  

 

I think Macao people has got life all figured out, instead of having shops and restaurants all day long, if you go out on the streets at 11 am, you’d see that most shops are still tightly shut. It isn’t until around noon that they get started, and of course, by 8 pm it’s going home time again. Which probably contributes to them having one of the longest life expectancy in the world.

Don’t work overly hard, have a balanced work-life, I guess?

合誠小食店
合誠小食店

Anyway, walking from Ole Tai Sum hotel in the morning looking for breakfast at around 10 in the morning, we spotted one of the very few eateries that conduct business in the first half of the day – this super small restaurant by the name o f Hap Seng by the corner of R. da Felicidade.

In fact, this is the smallest ever restaurant I’ve ever been. Take a look at the video above and tell me if you’ve been anywhere smaller. There’s one round table you may squeeze 3 pax uncomfortably, and another rectangular bench the size of ironing board fit for 2.

That’s all.

porridge with fish or innards?
porridge with fish or innards?

Hap Seng is manned by a lady who loved to chat and showed off the fresh ingredients (fish, in this case). We ordered a fish porridge, and a pork innards porridge. Both were cooked on the spot, with the thick creamy congee tasted rather proper. Definitely fitting as stomach warmer in the morning.

They also offer a type of fried noodle (seen on video), but my advise is to skip that, stick to the porridge.

hap seng porridge, macao

Address:
合誠小食店
2 R. da Felicidade, Macau
GPS22.193545, 113.537961
Tel+853 2855 9106
Hours: mornings till noon

Following my only dive trip at Pulau Kapas back in 2017, I actually managed another underwater excursion in October 2018 while on a work trip to Kota Kinabalu that involved staying over the weekends.

Since this is still a blog documenting my travel & food adventures, here’s the short entry to serve as sort of an online dive-log of mine. Do check out the short video I made using the Olympus TG-Trekker, which since died after that trip for reasons unknown (I gotta call the service center, been weeks!)

Anyway, back to the trip.

Kota Kinabalu is a great city to live in if you love to go underwater. The jetty heading out to the islands is conveniently located just a few minute’s drive from the city center. In fact, you can realistically walk there.

a lousy day out diving is better than any day at the office!
a lousy day out diving is better than any day at the office!

The dive trip itself was arranged by Yann May with the local guide (Johny), and during this trip we were the only two divers, which made for a relaxing trip that doesn’t involved being hurried or having to wait for others.

You can get a 3-dive package for RM 250-300 or so around here, usually with a meal thrown in.

star fish, shrimp manicure, angry puffer, clown fish

While visibility wasn’t the best during our dives, they were relaxing, and we did see a few eagle rays (first minute of first dive!), some clown fish, cleaning shrimps, starfish, pencil fish, lion fish, puffer fish, and more, mostly documented in the video.

I should plan for a few more dive trips for 2019!