Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Dinner at Penang Malaysian Cuisine

With the imminent closing of Kuala Lumpur, I started looking for other Malaysian restaurant options and came upon Penang, which is in the Hong Kong Plaza in West Covina. Since it was only my Mom and I for dinner, we only ordered 6 dishes to share: an appetizer, 4 main dishes and a dessert.

It was a very interesting meal such that I either really liked a particular dish a lot or I didn't.

Likes: 1) Iced Barley Tea - I liked this drink a lot. It was very refreshing and I liked having the barley to chew on. Usually the only time I find barley in soup, so this drink was really interesting.

2) BBQ Roasted Pork Lo Mee Soup (Special egg noodles with BBQ roasted pork and vegetables in a chicken broth)

**This was a great soup. The noodles were firm. The pork meat was delicious and the chicken broth was just perfect. Definitely a great soup for winter weather.

3) Lady Finger Belacan (Sauteed okra with spicy Malaysian shrimp paste sauce)

**Normally, I'm not much of an okra fan because I find the insides too gooey, but that gooey factor was missing in this dish.
The okra was fried well, firm and still had a"bite" to it and I loved the pungency of the shrimp paste that the okra was cooked in.

4) Mango Pudding and Ice Cream - I enjoyed both the pudding and the ice cream and especially since both had significant chunks of mango.


1) Roti Canai (Malaysian crispy Indian-style pancake served with curry chicken as a dipping sauce)
- While the menu description says crispy, this roti was actually bready and chewy and all in all, not that great.

2) Mango Chicken - Sauce was just too overwhelmingly sweet for my taste.

3) Volcano Spareribs (Spareribs that were cooked with some kind of sweet honey bbq glaze??)

** The meat was tender, but the sauce was just too sweet, similar to the Mango Chicken, so a couple was morethan enough for me to consume. It was just an instance where the dish looked much tastier than it was.

I'd say that I had an almost 50% success rate when it came to choosing the right things. :) If those 4 items I had ended up liking a lot were just okay, I probably wouldn't make a return trip, but I enjoyed them so much that I'm interested in sampling other Penang dishes. With the menu being quite extensive, the odds are hopefully in my favor that I'd choose wiser the second time around and would just make sure to steer clear from "sweeter" dishes.

To see pics, go to:


Penang Malaysian Cuisine (in Hong Kong Plaza)
987 S Glendora Ave
West Covina, CA 91790
(626) 338-6138

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