Thursday, December 24, 2009

Sai Lam Coffee Shop And Padang Brown Hawker Centre

We’ve made some good decisions during this trip, like skipping Ipoh to make more time for Penang. With that, we were able to take a much needed rest before...

...waking up to a plate of wanton mee at Sai Lam. The first thing I noticed was the absence of dark soy sauce in the dry-tossed version. Replacement came in form of a light stew infused with sweet juice of the beef that topped the springy wanton mee. To have that much of brisket and tendon for a fraction of the price of some well-known beef institutions deserves a mention. Tenderly good too, I must say. A dash of pepper gave the subtle taste a zing.

We couldn’t help but be attracted to the luscious build of the wantons. Skills are required in ensuring that each piece of skin is filled with a generous spoonful of minced fatty pork without breaking. As we frantically took pictures of the wantons, the elderly wrapper asked if we were tourists and immediately switched to speaking in Cantonese upon knowing that we were from KL. She further explained that they try to speak a few dialects to accommodate their customers from all over the country and beyond. That's cool. Combined with the charm of an old kopitiam, Sai Lam definitely deserves that place in the Lonely Planet guide.


There were 2 opposing rows of stalls at the Padang Brown Hawker Centre. One side was practically deserted while the other was in full swing, with tables and chairs spilling beyond the shelters. I wonder if geomancy has got anything to do with it. Back at the busy row, the attraction was the popiah stall. What’s interesting was the inclusion of crab meat in the filling which obviously added some umami-ness to the popiah. It came wetter than our usual type at home and apparently, it’s a signature that gives it a good body and taste. The wait was long but was much appreciated as our stomachs were still busy digesting the copious amount of duck meat we had for breakfast.

Into the late afternoon hours, the hawker centre was still buzzing with throngs of weekend faces, all eager to indulge in some solid, local fare. This atmospheric sight alone deserves a slot in any Penang guide.

Sai Lam Coffee Shop
Corner of Chulia Street and Carnarvon Street


Padang Brown Hawker Centre
The junction of Perak Road and Anson Road

Penang, Malaysia


Selba said...

The "raw" wantons look like mini balls, cute :D

Is that a gate picture? Nice...

J said...

Wah. Looks like such a yummy (albeit fattening) trip so far... :)

UnkaLeong said...

The signage to the stalls look like they have seen better times, but that normally means good food available, no? Heheh. Merry Christmas Hairy and Have a Happy New Year to you and XLB ;)

Ciki said...

coolest shots in town! Merry Christmas and happy new year babes..see you in 2010!! muaks!

qwazymonkey said...

Oooh finally, I've not been to this place! Are u seriously done with Penang yet? LOL

Love the uncooked wanton shots!

Rebecca Saw said...

Merry Xmas Hairy!
Darn..u make me miss Pg,..which is aint often!

choi yen said...

Hardly see those plumb wonton at KL hor...*sad*

Merry X'mas & Happy New Year!!!

Kenny Mah said...

Ooh, the plate of uncooked wontons remind me of how my mom/sis/niece will keep a separate platter just for me during CNY, all for frying not cooked in stock.

I know it's Xmas but already I'm fantasizing abt CNY! :P

red fir said...

Merry Christmas Nic!

sc said...

food looks ultra delish! merry Xmas and here's to loads of good food for the new year!

Fen said...

Merry Christmas, Nic :D

HairyBerry said...

selba, yupe, that was a pretty arch at padang brown ;D

j, haha....more "akan datang" ! ;D

unkaleong, cumi & ciki, thenomadgourmand, mimi, ice, sc, fen, Merry Christmas and Happy, Healthy New Year to y'all too! have a good holiday! ;D and eat lotsa! ;D ;D

qwazymonkey, a few more to go! :D which means the whole of december la...hehehehe thanks for the compliment, dude! ;D

kenny, glad to have met up on Xmas day...have a wantonful new year celebration, bro! ;D

Ciki said...

hairy hairy... ahahaha .. i also cannot help but be attracted to the luscious build of the wantons! you sure have a way with words my eloquent friend! hehe