Ya Kun Kaya Toast – tea and coffee shop with Singapore style cuisine
Opening hours: 8am – 9pm
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Price range: Mid-range
We nursed cups of gourmet coffee while we took shelter on the patio overlooking Bo Gyoke Aung San Rd., watching the rain pour down on the people entering Parskon FMI shopping center and browsing the street market. There were plenty of open tables inside the aircon room wrapped in glass windows at Ya Kun Kaya Toast, but the raised and unobstructed front patio gives the feel of an observation deck. You can watch the world below or ignore it with the ‘faster’, free WiFi. The three of us take turns sharing stories and working on laptops at clean modern looking tables and chairs, while the sidewalk market and mosque across the street continue to bustle through the rain.
My first introduction to the Ya Kun franchise was last year in Singapore. The original stall first appeared in the 1940s and has created the reputation for it’s perfectly cooked toast and eggs served with a saucer of kaya sauce, an extremely rich egg and coconut jam. Light and rich are the descriptions of the majority of their menu and I was pleasantly surprised that their taste seems to translate well from Singapore into Myanmar.
The mosque chant begins to ring through the air while we finish our coffee (K1000 for a small cup) and devoured thinly sliced and precisely peanut butter bread (K1600) dipped in kaya sauce alongside deep fried fluffy cheese and ham sandwiches with scrambled eggs (K3000). We take note that the place is open all day, from 8AM-9PM serving breakfast to curries to sandwiches and French fries.
For Yangon locals, this place offers a lot. Your taste buds can have the rekindling of the precise cut and clean prep feel of gourmet food without the cost of a fancy restaurant meal. Inside offers a place to set up a freelance or business base-camp and work with decent Wifi within a decent meeting space. It can also be a place to escape the heat after shopping, under a high functioning aircon unit. One of my friends points out at the world flowing by below and says, “I could sit and watch this all day. This in itself is why I would come here.”
By: Ronin McGeown