Foodcourts are great for a quick meal. Or even an elaborated brunch with friends. Be it the al fresco ones at wet markets or the upscaled version at megamalls, one is never deprived of choices. If the 80’s saw children getting excited over the infamous sizzling hotplate yee mee, these days, colourful arrays of sushi, bibimbap and kebab are the orders of the day. Quality is another matter, of course.
And when it comes to extensiveness, Food Republic (part of the Singaporean-owned BreadTalk group) definitely impressed. Well, me at least. From Vietnamese to Korean to local favourites, the choices are endless. The modernistic interior was spacious and at lunchtime on weekends, one is still able to secure a seat without having to prey for leaving patrons. A treat, I’d say, especially if you’ve visited Wisma Atria’s or VivoCity’s.
Thye Hong’s Fried Prawn Mee (RM7) is synonymous with Food Republic. It is always at this stall that you’ll find the longest queue. Served on a scoop-shaped opei leaf, it was visually appetizing. With ingredients such as prawns and squids, a sweet/savoury broth was ensured. A squeeze of lime juice added zest to the dish while the chili sauce enhanced the flavour of the rich broth. However, I still prefer Singapore’s version as rice noodle was used instead of the starch type and the broth was richer.
The Assam Laksa (RM7.20) from the Pan Mee stall was colourful and fragrant as well, thanks to the generous amount of chopped bunga kantan (torch ginger). For the price, the serving was commendable. Chopped pieces of pineapple and onion added flavour and crunch while the mint leaves provided a touch of freshness. The shrimp paste infused soup was flavourful and sourness was well controlled. The score would have been higher if it was served hot with a few significant pieces of fish meat thrown in.
Another dish served cold was the Mee Jawa (RM8.50) from the Penang Street Food stall. The portion was generous and the sauce was sweet. Ground peanuts and crackers added crunch to the dish while the chili paste gave a touch of heat. For better texture and flavour, go for the bee hoon (rice vermicelli) and yellow noodle combination. A flavourful ensemble which was disappointingly cold.
Judging from the queue, the very DIY toasts from Toast Box seemed to be a great hit with the patrons as well although some did complain of the price versus the simplicity of the snacks. The thick toast with peanut butter (RM2.80) was rather enjoyable as the peanut butter sauce was rich while the bread was soft with a crispy skin. Similarly, the Traditional Toast (RM2.80) consisted of well-textured slices of white bread sandwiching a slab of butter and generous amount of kaya. Though simple, I believe KLites prefer to pay for convenience these days, which is a pity, actually.
It will take more than a few visits to actually declare that one has done Food Republic at Pavilion. And it doesn’t get any easier when Yo!, Crystal Jade, Madam Kwan, Ichiban Boshi, Tony Roma’s, Dragon-I, etc are situated adjacent to the foodcourt.
Can we emulate BreadTalk’s fantastic vision and create a buzz in the Lion City as well? Perhaps with our inimitable style of Hokkien Mee?
1.41.00 – 1.51.00 & K1.18.00 – K1.25.00
Pavilion Kuala Lumpur.