Saturday, 8 December 2012

Where to Eat in Sandakan

Where to Eat in Sandakan
by Kristin Cosgrove
Now that's food with a view!
(The Eatery, Four Points)
If you’re looking for good eats in Sandakan, one need not leave Four Points by Sheraton to find something to suit your tastes. All three of the Four Points signature restaurants were quite good - a rather large notch above the usual “hotel food”.  It is not bragging when Four Points management says they “will elevate the Sandakan dining scene!” 

The Eatery, Four Points by Sheraton
Offering all-day dining, the Eatery also offers a fantastic view with which to start your morning. I especially appreciated the friendliness of the staff who were extremely attentive. My coffee cup was kept full without having to ask, something that is always high on my priority list! Food was tasty and featured all the usual choices – western, Chinese, Malaysian and Indian breakfast staples. 

Mon-Sun: 6:30 am–11pm

Modern Decor at the Eatery, Four Points by Sheraton 
Wrapped Deli, Four Points by Sheraton
When we arrived for lunch at Wrapped I expected the usual deli fare, but was surprised and pleased to find several other options also available.  We began with a fabulous pineapple soda, which I could have made my whole meal it was so good! Light meals, tasty cakes and gourmet coffee are available here with convenient hours. 

Sun-Thurs: 8am-10pm
Fri-Sat: 8am-11pm

Best Brews, Four Points by Sheraton
My favorite of the Four Points signature restaurants, Best Brews, is a fun pub venue overlooking the Sulu sea. Food is pub fare, and it is well done. My group spent a really fun evening there eating, drinking and enjoying the live band – who were very good!  Patrons can imbibe with Carlsberg and Hoegaarden on tap, a wide variety of wines and a wide assortment of alcoholic beverages. If for you the luxuries in life are a nice whiskey and cigar, you can find that too at the adjacent lounge, complete with stoic leather chairs and suit stands where you can hang your jacket.  

Sun-Thurs: 5pm-12am 
Fri-Sat: 5pm-2am  (No live music on Mondays)

Stall Style - Food at Central Market
Love to eat local? Does stall food make your mouth water? Experience local food at local prices at Central Market, just steps from the front doors of Four Points by Sheraton in Sandakan. You'll find an entire floor dedicated to local food. It can be hard to figure out which stall is the best to order from, so we went with a sign boasting, “Since 1940”. My friends ordered Mee Ko Lo and Hor Fun at around RM3 per dish. You can’t beat the price! I had already eaten when my group ventured over, but my compatriots were very happy with their meals and while they ate I enjoyed a really nice iced coffee.
When in doubt, I go with longevity.
Locals enjoying breakfast at Central Market, Sandakan
A beautiful setting for lunch or dinner, the English Tea House and Restaurant was designed to complement the neighboring historical site of Agnes Keith’s house, now a museum. Both design and the menu is in keeping with British colonial era, and with a gorgeous view and great food, it’s not hard to see why this is a tourist and local favourite in Sandakan. 

Our group enjoyed a beautiful evening here and had a catered meal in which service was attentive, but the time between courses was atypically long. Come to find out, the food was worth the wait.

The soup course was a delicious wild mushroom soup and despite my usual opposition to the fungus, I really loved the flavour and consistency. For a main, I opted for the pan-roasted chicken with bacon sautéed French beans and mashed potatoes and black pepper sauce. The sauce made the dish; it was creamy with just the right amount of spice and left me pondering, “Is it rude to lick the plate?” 

The bread and butter pudding for dessert left me stuffed and happy. Our group left sleepy from full bellies and the satisfaction of a lovely meal. 

English Tea House
No.2002, Jalan Istana, 90000 Sandakan, Sabah, Malaysia
Tel: +6 089-222-545
Website: Click Here

After our sojourn to the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre, our group stopped at the nearby Sepilok Jungle Resort for a catered buffet lunch. Only open for group events, the food was good and the restaurant was set back in the jungle a bit, overlooking the resorts lovely pool area. Check it out if you’ve got a group event to host. 

While there, we were introduced to a fruit close in relation to the jack fruit and durian, the terap (in Philippines these are called marang.) Let it be known that I’ve not tried durian [gasp], though I know many dear readers and fellow Yum List-er, Polly, love them. I just can’t stand the smell. But I digress…

The terap is supposedly “superior” to the durian – in what way I don’t know - but I do know that I couldn’t stop eating the refreshing fruit. Its large seeds were banana-like in texture, but juicier and with a pit inside.  I have not seen these in Kuala Lumpur (or perhaps I have and just assumed they were durian) but next time I do, I will surely buy one. And, If you know where to find one in KL, please let me know!


  1. Certainly a meal with a view in your first pic! Such lovely scenery should wake up even the dullest appetite!