Influencer's food adventure videos to focus on Sabah's delicacies

Butod (sago worm) served in Tambunan.

KOTA KINABALU: A 40-day food adventure across Sabah by local social media influencer Leo Liew is set to see "distinctive food and places of attractions" featured in a series of 32 videos.

Leo, who goes by Abang Leo or Biao Ge Leo (Brother Leo in Chinese), criss-crossed Sabah's districts between Dec 12 and Jan 19 to savour the local delicacies.

The intrepid foodie, 33, travelled 4,300km by road covering 22 districts and towns to sample popular fare as part of the Sabah Foodie Tour 2023 organised by an events company with the support of Sabah's Tourism, Culture and Environment Ministry.

His food adventure was done in partnership with the Discover Sabah (DEC-Cover Sabah 2023) programme.

He sampled over 260 mouth-watering dishes, local delicacies, pastries and other culinary delights in 73 restaurants, coffeeshops and hawker stalls.

Among the main towns and districts on his journey were Tuaran, Kota Belud, Kudat, Ranau, Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Semporna, Tawau, Kunak, Keningau, Tenom, Sipitang, Beaufort, Kuala Penyu, Papar and Tambunan.

Leo also visited smaller towns like Tamparuli, Weston, Kundasang and Sukau while also visiting the Danum Valley and Maliau Basin Conservation Areas on the east coast.

"My food tour has enriched my knowledge of Sabah's diverse range of food cultures.

"We had tried all Sabah noodles...just name it: Tuaran mee, Tamparuli mee, Kota Belud mee soup, Tenom mee, Beaufort mee, sang nyuk mee and so on," said Leo, who was accompanied by a four-member team.

In Sandakan, he said they tried seafood and salted fish.

"We also enjoyed the ethnic cuisine or traditional food of the Kadazandusun community in Tambunan, such as bambangan (wild mango), tuhau (wild ginger), butod (sago worm) and tapai (rice wine)," he said.

"Above all, we enjoyed Sabah's natural attractions like Mount Kinabalu, Crocker Range, tropical forests, rivers, waterfalls while driving the length and breadth of the state," he said.

State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew acknowledged his achievement and presented Leo with a certificate of recognition at a recent Chinese New Year Segama Night Market event here.

"Leo is aptly a self-made food ambassador for Sabah. We salute him for his unprecedented effort and contribution to our tourism industry. We wish him all the best in his bid to enter the Malaysia Book of Records," she said.

Liew said each of the 32 videos covers a particular district's distinctive food and attractions.

"These videos are targeted at Malaysians and foreign tourists," she said.

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