Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Pantai Seafood Restaurant

If not for Tony, never in a million years will I be able to find this restaurant by myself. Comfortably tucked in Kampung Sungai Kayu Ara in Petaling Jaya, this fishing village themed seafood restaurant has been attracting throngs of seafood aficionados in the city. Dinner usually requires reservation (seriously) and therefore we (me and some close relatives) went for lunch instead, to avoid the crowd and screaming children.

The two-storey restaurant looked exotic yet grand as it boasted countless displays of live seafood, waiting to be served on the table. Since it was our first time there, we went for some of the signature dishes.

Service was very efficient and within 15 minutes, the Two Varieties Chinese Kale (RM18) was served. It was not too oily eventhough the leaves of the kale was deep fried while the anchovies gave extra crisp to the dish.

Next came the clams cooked in heaps of chopped garlic and ginger (RM26). The fresh clams were cooked just right. It is interesting to note that the garlic overpowered the flavour of the ginger. Not in a bad way though, as it was an interesting twist to the generic stir-fried clam dish. A taste of the sauce revealed a refreshing flavour that combined the freshness of the clams and the fried garlic. A very good compliment to a bowl of white rice too.

The Baked Japanese Snail With Cheese (RM1.50 per piece) was the most disappointing dish of the day. The textures were all wrong where the meat was rubbery while the cheese was hard. Cheese was supposed to provide a rich taste to the snails but not in this case. It was not even melted properly, in the first place.

Moving on to more satisfying dishes, the Crispy Pork Trotter (RM30) looked appetising. The meat was done just right, judging from its colour and texture. However, it was slightly dry. Reheated, perhaps? It was also not too oily, much to everyone's delight. By adding more flavours and moisture, this dish could have scored even better.

Cantonese Style Steamed Red Snapper (RM56) arrived looking not so red. Dad mentioned that it was not the original breed, judging from its appearance. The fish was well cooked but the soya sauce did not provide enough savouriness to the dish, thus, making this it a bland combination. Freshness of the fish should be mentioned, though.

Closing the meal was the Buttermilk Crabs In Claypot (RM35). The crabs were meaty and fresh but the buttermilk sauce was not up to the mark. The generous amount of butter in the sauce provided a very thick texture (think of peanut butter) and the addition of curry powder did not make the dish more appetising. In fact, the curry powder overpowered the freshness of the curry leaves. Since the sauce was not exciting, the fried mantous (steamed buns) were left untouched by many. Less thicker sauce, less curry powder and more curry leaves are needed if they want to go against Crab King's version of the dish.

The bill came up to about RM230 for 8 persons. Not too expensive considering the freshness of the clams, fish and crabs. However, something must be done to the bland taste of most of the dishes.

Pantai Seafood Restaurant
Lot 13575, Jln. Cempaka PJU 6A,
Kg. Sg. Kayu Ara,
47400 PJ, Selangor.
Tel: 03-77255099/1099

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