RM Cahaya, Tarakan: The Perfect Delight of Chinese-style Dining

The Perfect Delight of Seafood Flavor at RM Cahaya, Tarakan.

Kalimantan is undeniably abundant, not only in terms of its natural beauty, culture, and biodiversity but also in its reputation for offering unparalleled culinary experiences. This third-largest island in the world is celebrated for its delectable cuisine.

Among the renowned culinary treasures of Kalimantan is the diverse array of river and seafood dishes, complemented by locally sourced vegetables, found in "Little Singapore" – the city of Tarakan in North Kalimantan.

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Kitchen secrets.

Just found out to me. After asking for permission photos at the locus of the kitchen, where all the dishes, are cooked. Then served. Not allowed. When asked, "Can you meet the owner?" it is always answered, "Away".

So always. In fact, my guess is, one of the team, or the nciks in that kitchen, is the owner. Only obtained information, from one of the ncik (a Chinese mistress). That RM (restaurant) Cahaya has existed in Tarakan city since 1977. So, it's been quite a long age.

Sunday afternoon, April 12, 2021.

The sky is blue. Pure white clouds. Tarakan Airport seemed to smile to welcome us, literacy activists. After about 30 minutes of sitting sweetly waiting for transit passengers on board the Batik Air plane, in Balikpapan, from dawn flights take about 2.5 hours from Halim Perdana Kusuma Airport, Jakarta.

Kalimantan is spoiled by the goodness of the Creator. One of them is a culinary dish that is not only the most complete, but also the most delicious in the world.

After disembarking from the plane, while Pepih Nugraha, Dodi Mawardi, and I were waiting for our luggage to arrive on the carousel, our cell phones began to ring. 

It was Dr. Yansen TP, who had just landed at the same airport on a private jet with the Governor of East Kalimantan, Zaenal Paliwang. He asked, "Have we arranged to meet and have lunch at RM Cahaya, right?"

Evidently, the person who was supposed to pick us up had accurately remembered the meeting place. RM Cahaya is an upscale restaurant renowned in Tarakan City, situated right in the heart of the oil-rich city at:

Jl. Jendral Sudirman, Karang Anyar, Tarakan City.

We made our way to the designated location, where Yansen was already waiting for us.

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For me, this marks the second occasion when I've had the pleasure of indulging in the delectable seafood and island specialties that are simply out of this world. The first experience was back in July 2020 when I was graciously invited by Norhayati Andris, the chairman of the Kaltara Provincial Parliament. He treated me to a delightful lunch with the purpose of gathering material for his biography.

The only appropriate gesture for the deliciousness of the food here is: Thumbs up!

The menu at RM Cahaya boasts an array of options, but there are a few standout dishes that have truly won me over. Allow me to highly recommend their special menu items, which, in my opinion, are incomparably delicious:

  1. Deep-fried crab claws, brimming with succulent meat.
  2. Crispy dry-fried chicken.
  3. Stir-fried kailan vegetables.
  4. Savory beef fried noodles.

When dining here, you won't find the usual list of menu prices on the right-hand side. Instead, you'll see a visual menu with pictures of the dishes. 

So, don't be surprised when it's time to settle the bill after your meal. The price you pay is a small token for the culinary satisfaction you've experienced and has the power to warm your heart.

Furthermore, it's advisable to come prepared with sufficient cash or top up your debit card balance before your visit. (Rangkaya Bada)

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