Category / PJ area
When it comes to Chinese tai chao restaurants, you often find very conventional names that usually involves someone’s surname or places of origin. XFrens Cafe & Restaurant though, likes to be a bit different, so I was looking at a map and this name came up, I’d have thought that they probably serve good pastry and maybe some warm pies…
Restaurant Xfrens, Subang Jaya SS18
Well, I have no idea what went through the owners’ thought process when they came up with the name, but we’re here for the food, and in this regard they definitely put in more thoughts than the naming exercise.
XFrens is located at Subang Jaya SS18, with few busy shops around the same short row of shop houses in the evening, parking your car is usually a relatively painless process. However, do plan to get there early as the place usually gets rather busy and fetch quite a long queue on weekend busy dinner hours. I’d say anytime before 6:30 or 6:45 pm and you should have a table immediately.
The menu at Xfrens is pretty comprehensive, with different sections offering dishes involving poultry, seafood, vegetable, tofu, and such.
For the group of 6 of us over dinner, we ordered five dishes to share.
“siong thong” lala, pumpkin tofu, paku with chili padi
Siong Thong Lala was a pretty decent dish that provides some spicy soup to open up the appetite, the shellfish was of decent size and freshness. Pumpkin tofu was one of their signature dishes, and one that provides a nice contrast in texture and taste, crispy on the outside with stronger tasting sauce, while soft and mild within.
I was also very glad that we ordered paku with chili padi, one of my favorite type of vegetable that should be more popular here (as they are in Borneo). This is one vege that I’ll order again.
garlic pork, teow chew style steamed red snapper
Garlic pork is another must-order at Xfrens, and it is what we’re here for. The dish was basically a dish of deep fried pork with many, many cloves of garlic. It was as simple as it was tasty, the combination was an assault to the senses in the best ways.
The last dish we shared was steamed red snapper teow chew style. This dish was executed rather well, with ingredients you’d expect from a typical toew chew steamed fish – tomato, tofu, salted vegetable, garlic, ginger, cilantro, and chili. I enjoyed this quite a lot too.
The dinner came to be around RM 40 per pax including drinks, a fair price considering the fact that we ordered quality fish as well as lala. Would definitely come here again.
51, Jalan SS 18/1b, Ss 18,
47500 Subang Jaya, Selangor
GPS: 3.072748, 101.584083
Tel: 03-5611 0488
Hours: Lunch & Dinners
Sarawak Laksa seems like the flavor of the year, so before the end of 2017 I decided to give yet another highly recommended Sarawak Laksa place a try – SALTed at Mutiara Damansara.
SALTed, Mutiara Damansara
As it turns out SALTed does stand for something – Sarawak Authentic Local Taste Extra Delicious!
The restaurant is located quite deep within Mutiara Damansara, and while it is perhaps only 5 minutes away from IKEA and Curve, you can’t really get there by walking from the big furniture shop.
The Sarawak laksa comes in three different versions, basic (RM 6) comes with chicken stripes but no prawns, original (RM 9) comes with normal prawns, and special (RM 15) gets you some cuttlefish as well as three pretty large size sea caught “meng har” (明虾) prawns.
Special version of Sarawak Laksa with extra prawns & cuttlefish
I went for the “special” and happy to report that the dish definitely did not disappoint. The broth was thick and flavorful, and the seafood perfectly compliments the meehun and all other ingredients. I also enjoyed the pretty hot sambal as well. Will definitely put this in place in my list of recommendations (which I need to create, I think)
simple menu at SALTed
Other than laksa Sarawak, the restaurant also offers kolo mee, belacan meehun, and mee Jawa Sarawak. .My mission was only for the laksa, so no I did not try any of these dishes.
30-1 Jalan PJU 7/16a,
47810 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
GPS: 3.159828, 101.602412
Tel: 03-7733 4566
Hours: 10 am to 3:30 pm
Sungai Way, situated across from Heineken factory divided by Federal Highway, is a pretty old part of Petaling Jaya. The main road at Sungai Way has a few rows of shop houses near the morning wet market and police station, with a few kopitiam open for business, which make for a perfect spot for weekday breakfasts.
Nasi Lemak at Sungai Way, Petaling Jaya
Arguably, the busiest stalls at the center of Sungai Way has got to be the nasi lemak stall at Wing Lee kopitiam, situated just before the wet market if you’re coming from Federal Highway. The little stall operated by a few Chinese ladies always sell out their goods by around 8ish in the morning.
So I decided to take a stab at what they have to offer.
Other than the standard hard boiled egg, deep fried anchovies, peanuts, fresh cucumber, and sambal on coconut milk rice, there are also a couple add-ons you can ask for to spice up the dish, namely cuttlefish, potato, and curry chicken.
love my nasi lemak with potato curry & cuttlefish
While I find that this version of nasi lemak isn’t the most fragrant when it comes to the amount of santan in the rice, the coconut & curry chicken were on point, and I also particularly like their the texture of their cuttlefish.
Overall it is not hard to see why they sell out so early in the morning. Prices are reasonable, and the nasi lemak is certainly above average. Will tapao for work again!
Nasi Lemak at Sungai Way
Kedai Kopi Wing Lee
Jalan SS 9a/1,
Sungai Way, Petaling Jaya
GPS: 3.086479, 101.620678
One of the earliest food post that I wrote on this site was about a certain laksa Sarawak in Bangsar way back in 2006, introduced to me then by my friend Lorna who hailed from East Malaysia.
Well, Lorna is still from East Malaysia, but t he very same stall – Aunty Christina’s laksa Sarawak, has now moved to its very own shop lot in Seapark, Petaling Jaya. I had the chance to stop by and grab a bowl for lunch a some weeks ago.
Aunty Christina’s Laksa Sarawak, PJ Seapark
The restaurant is now located along the same row of shops with KFC in PJ Sea Park, which means parking during busy periods can be a bit of a challenge to those who are impatience. However, the restaurant itself is cleaner and much more comfortable than the kopitiam it came from.
The menu too has been bumped up a bit. There’s now laksa with 2 king size prawns that goes for RM 20, there’s Hakka abacus seeds, kacangma (some sort of wine chicken), kolo mee, and even black pepper pork/chicken soup.
For the die-hards though, you can always opt for the old regular Laksa Sarawak at RM 9, with a choice of meehun, mee, or both.
original laksa sarawak, just like how they are supposed to be
I’m happy to report that while there’s been an upgrade to the price and ambiance, Aunty Christina’s laksa still remains true to it’s origin and tastes exactly the same as it did when I first tried it over ten years ago. There’s still the prawn, strips of chicken, shredded egg, bean sprout, and some greens as garnish. Still lovely as ever.
For the faithful, this is where you should go.
For everyone else, there’s also quite a few other laksa Sarawak places especially in PJ area to check out these days. The more the merrier.
26, Jalan 21/19, Sea Park,
46300 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
GPS: 3.109249, 101.622051
Tel: 016-315 3213
While Penang and Ipoh hawker food has been quite a staple in Klang Valley, what Sarawak has to offer has just recently enter a lot of street food lover’s radar. And when it comes to Sarawakian simple eats, none is more popular than a good old fashion bowl of Sarawak Laksa.
Restaurant NZX Food Court, at Ara Damansara
One of the latest places to offer a good bowl is the newly revived NZX at Ara Damansara. NZX, or Niuzexui, was once the latest and hippest commercial area in PJ when it first opened several years ago. There were Starbucks, Big Apple donuts (when it was at its peak), and many more. I mean, it had semi-outdoor air conditioning, the place was great.
The biggest issue around NZX though, was access roads. You had to go through a dodgy and often congested tunnel under NKVE to get there via Taman Emas in PJ.
The access has been sorted out since, and there’s even the Lembah Subang LRT station just a stone’s throw away, so it was prime that NZX is experiencing a bit of a revival of late.
proper Sarawak Laksa, with decent size prawns too
Anyway, back onto the laksa Sarawak.
I was first notified about this place by one of the people who now manages the area, and after Anna Wong (a proper Sarawakian) gave her approval of this stall, I knew I had to give it a try.
And true to what the Sarawakian girl said, the laksa here was proper (at least to me). The soup was on point, and ingredients were rather generous. I also like the fact that they do not skimp on those prawns. It was quite a treat.
Penang char kuih teow here is decent as well
Oh, there are other stalls at this kopitiam as well. The char kuih teow I had on my first visit when the Sarawak stall sold out was pretty decent as well. I still need to try their kuih chap and other dishes.