My love for Nyonya cuisine is crazy! Maybe because I’m half Baba Nyonya, but that still doesn’t justify my love for the cuisine. Nyonya cuisine to me, has the best of both worlds. Think about it, it’s a fusion of Chinese cooking and Malaysian ingredients that has made this cuisine so distinctive. Here are a few of my all time favourite dishes – ayam pongteh, gerang asam fish, sago gula melaka, bubur cha-cha and the list goes on. Before I go on with a long winded introduction, I have selected a few places you should definitely try out.
1. Lima Blas
When you step foot in Lima Blas, it is almost like you’ve been transported back to one of those Malaccan shop house. The interior is inspired by a retro feel, from old typewriters, spice jars, ancient signboards and rusty equipment. Now, let’s shift our attention to the food. The menu ranges from a first class laksa to a spicy sambal udang petai and a creamy cendol. We just want to dig in so badly.
Address: 15 Jalan Mesui, Off Jalan Nagasari
Opening Hours: Mon – Sat: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm, Closed on Sundays
Contact Info: 03-2110 1289
2. The Tranquerah
A meal at The Tranquerah provides an unique dining experience where East-meets-West serving authentic Malacca Nyonya cuisine in a contemporary-meets-heritage setting. The owner believes that the taste of the food lies in the passion of love affair, authenticity of the spices, freshness of produce and commitment to their customers.
Address: Red Carpet Avenue, Encorp Strand, Jalan PJU 5/22, Kota Damansara
Opening Hours: Mon – Sun: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Contact Info: 03-6142 4106
3. Old China Café
This place is definitely a hidden gem. The premise was formerly the guild hall of the Selangor & Federal Territory Laundry Association. The guild was set up at the turn of the century and moved to this part of Chinatown in the 1920s. Most of the architectural details of the building have remained unchanged. Food on the other hand is really good. You can’t get more authentic than this.
Address: 11, Jalan Balai Polis
Opening Hours: Mon – Sun: 11.00am – 11.00pm
Contact Info: 03-2072 5915
4. Nyonya Kitchen
I personally recommend this restaurant to all you foodies out there. Early this year, my family and I had our Chinese New Year reunion dinner here and it was so yummy! The must-try dishes are sotong goreng, ikan geram assam, stir-fried sambal eggplant and for dessert, gula melaka cendol.
Address: 220 – 222, Jalan Batu Unjur 7,Taman Bayu Perdana, 41200 Klang
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun: 11am – 10pm
Contact Info: 03-3324 1151 / 1190
5. The Wok
Located in Puchong, The Wok is a popular choice with residents around the Puchong and Subang area. The decor is unmistakably Peranakan and food wise, you can get one plate dishes such as Char Koay Teow and Penang Hokkien Char as well as Nyonya staples like Sambal Belacan Paku and Assam Prawns. If you’re around the area, this spot is a must-try!
Address: G-3, Jalan Puteri 4/6, Bandar Puteri Puchong, 47100 Puchong
Opening hours: 11am – 3pm and 6pm – 10pm, closed on Mondays
Contact info: 012 – 391 6183 / firstname.lastname@example.org
However, I personally think that my late grandmother cooked the best Nyonya food in town and I’m sure those of you who are of Peranakan descent or part Peranakan would understand where I’m coming from.