Thursday, July 16, 2009

15 Goulburn Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Ph : (02) 9211 1668

One of my major barriers with regards to visiting Mamak has been the queues. The queues are, quite simply, ridiculous. Almost as ridiculous at the Chat Thai ones, which are so bad that I have yet to actually try it. I can’t get it around my head that in order to get in without having to queue, I’d have to go to Chat Thai at maybe 5pm for dinner.

As the new Mamak promised to be double the size, I figured that logically, if I arrived at 6pm, give or take a few minutes, I’d not have to wait, would I?

HA! As was the case with GrabYourFork who blogged about her own experience of the new Mamak on the day prior, there were still queues. Even arriving at about 6.05pm meant that we were 5th in line. Sure I thought, fifth is okay. Shouldn’t take long at all.

In fact it didn’t, barely more than a few minutes, as it seemed that the restaurant wasn’t entirely full, they were just dripfeeding the final few tables inside, perhaps for the kitchen’s sake?

The new place looks bright, shiny, clean and with greater roti making capacity.

Roti Canai ($5)

The self described “original roti”. Served with two curry dips and spicy sambal sauce, tearing off bits with my hand and dunking into the sauce is a pleasure that I realise I have deprived myself of for too long.

Immediate success did not come for the Kangkung Belacan ($13). This dish of stir fried water spinach (also called “ong choi”) with chillis and shrimp paste is one of my favourite vegetable dishes. I love the crunch of water spinach and the salt and chilli kick.

This was Attempt the First :

.....and this the Attempt the Second

The first one was also cold when it arrived....There was more sauce in the one that was turned back to the kitchen but the second one was freshly cooked and quite different. I didn’t eat any of the first plate, but the second one, apart from looking a lot better, tasted perfectly fine, though perhaps a bit chilli for some palates.

The next dish was Kari ayam ($15), a classic chicken curry cooked with freshly ground spices and chunky potatoes.

For a number of years now I have been “off” chicken. I can’t identify why, but I just started to not really like the taste of it. I’d eat it maybe once or twice a year, usually in the form of chicken wings. It is only this year that I’ve tried to go back to chicken, which is why I “agreed” to the Kari ayam. It won lots of points from the Mamak Novice, who likes a bit of bone in their chicken curry. I really enjoyed the curry, and due to it not being finished on the night, continued to enjoy the leftovers with “fa guen” versions of mantou.

At this point the ½ doz Beef Satay ($8) still had not arrived. In fact the satay orders for the surrounding five tables were still outstanding; they either had all their other dishes on the table already or in two cases, had actually finished their meals bar that one dish. There were several reminders to the waiters from all the tables concerned but it was a long wait before all the tables were served. I have no idea whether there were teething problems with the new kitchen or what the reasons were for the delay but the satay, served with the ever more-ish peanut sauce, were as good as I remembered.

I reall love the Mamak satays. They are perhaps slightly more sweetish than some would like but they suit my tastes. Worth the wait? The surrounding tables seemed happy with theirs despite the wait.



Helen said...

How very odd re: your first serving of the kang kung. Lunch leftovers? And oh no, no chicken? How could you deny yourself the pleasures of ayam goreng? lol

Betty said...

Ahh I can't wait to go to Mamak! I really want some roti! Did you get any desserts? Oh, such a bad idea to read this before bed! lol. Now I'm hungry again ;)

The Sydney Tarts said...

Helen - the first Kangkung was just weird. Cold and flat looking. Hey I'm trying to get back into chicken LOL :)
Betty - Love roti! No desserts, I'm trying to not eat desserts as part of a who-am-I-Kidding "healthy eating" thing hahaha.

Helen (AugustusGloop) said...

oh weird, above comment was from me btw.

The Sydney Tarts said...

Helen - Tres weird and yup, I knew it was you :)