There are so many eateries in SS2, the area that is my hometown, it will take months just to try them all. This time round, I made my maiden visits to Chan Meng Kee, a restaurant specializing in roast meat, as well as Le Bread Days, a bakery cafe i came across on Facebook.
Chan Meng Kee is famous for their Char Siew. The Char Siew was very good indeed. Characteristics of good Char Siew – good mix of fat and lean meat, juicy and soft lean meat, well marinated, having the right level of sweetness in the maltose coating, and finally sufficiently charred but not burnt. Chan Meng Kee’s Char Siew satisfies all these requirements. It still does not match up to my all time favourite Char Siew though, at Hee Lai Ton, where the fat and lean portions are intertwined and almost indistinguishable. I think that the chefs at Hee Lai Ton are truly experts at picking out and slicing up the pork to make Char Siew. It is also better charred. Anyway, these chefs who do the Char Siew at Hee Lai Ton are only there on Sunday morning, with a special stall set up. I suppose the extra attention given to the preparation of a smaller batch of Char Siew results in better Char Siew, as compared to Chan Meng Kee’s which is mass produced for a very large number of customers. Having that said, Chan Meng Kee’s Char Siew is very satisfying and better than most.
All in all, Chan Meng Kee is very nice for what it is. Don’t expect fine dining here, it positions itself as a mass market roasted meat specialist, and it delivers. It is certainly a lot better than what you normally get from Kopitiams. Address: 44-G, Jalan SS 2/66, 47300 Petaling Jaya
I learned about Le Bread Days from a shared Facebook post and was surprised to find them to be located in SS2, my hometown! Everyone comes here for the one thing that catapulted them towards the cult status they are enjoying – molten salted egg yolk croissants. It is basically fusing the concept of the golden lava bun with the croissant. I know what the golden lava tastes like, and i know what a croissant tastes like, so i can imagine what a molten salted egg yolk croissant would taste like. Still, the novelty of this creation makes me curious enough to want to try it.
I arrived at Le Bread Days at about 415pm, and i noted a sign on the entrance that reads – they make 2 batches of the molten salted egg yolk croissant, at 1130am and 330pm, and the queue starts here. Well, no queue was to be seen. Obviously the molten egg yolk croissants were already sold out. If you’re reading this, please take note of the timing to avoid disappointment (Update 6 Jun 2016: there is all day availability of the croissant provided it hasn’t sell out for the day, see below). I had a salted caramel cheese cake and latte as consolation, and as proof that i have been there. I’ll be back. Address: 68, Jalan SS 2/72, Seksyen 19, 46300 Petaling Jaya
As further consolation, we went over to Wai Sek Gai to have fritters (they’re really good!) from stall 1 (the stall probably opens around 3-7pm), and to check out a new trend that is taking hold in SS2 – mobile kiosks selling Thai coffee. A latte cost RM8.50, and except for the use of sugar syrup which isn’t really to my liking, it was better (and cheaper of course) than the latte from Le Bread Days. I think this concept may take off in Singapore as well.
Over the past few days we developed a new night time routine to go for dessert after dinner. Tonight we decided to check out a shop that has been open for some time, though it looked virtually empty most of the time – Sweet Bean. It must be doing something right to survive in SS2.
This was a good find and we’ll probably be back. Address: 27, Ground Floor, Jalan SS2/67
Update 11 Feb 2016: Decided to make this post a registry of food places in SS2, so i’ll be adding on as and when i try new places, though i tend to just revisit the same old places.
3A Yong Tau Foo is one of those “same old places” that i visit virtually every time. The food they serve have not changed a bit over the years. Consistency is certainly the key to success in F&B business. The must order items here, besides Yong Tau Foo of course, are the Curry Sauce Chee Cheong Fun and the Fu Chuk Barley (腐竹薏米).
Address: 12, Jalan 19/3, 46300 Petaling Jaya (Strictly speaking not SS2 but is probably more associated to SS2 than Section 19)
Hailam Kopitiam is the another one of the “same old places” we never fail to visit each time. It is the longest surviving Cha Chan Teng (茶餐厅) style cafe in SS2. No fewer than 10 others have sprung up and closed down in the past decade. The success of Hailam Kopitiam lies in their consistency in delivering above average food. You can hardly fault them in any of the item they serve, though you can’t say that any of them is particularly spectacular. The variety they offer is amazing, and i believe this is the other half of their winning formula. Also, save for the first day of Chinese New Year, they are always open!
Address: 20, Jalan SS 2/67, 47300 Petaling Jaya
Finally got around to trying Murni. We were seated in their new air-conditioned section which was also brightly lit. “Malaysian fusion”, if there’s such a thing, is probably an apt description of the food. Roti Hawaiian is the classic example – Hawaiian pizza filling wrapped in Indian Roti. The menu spans Indian, Malay and Western dishes, with Chinese influence. The drinks menu is full of wacky concoctions, which was probably what catapulted them to fame. Judging by the crowd flocking this place, you know the formula works.
I think it’s not really the taste, but the presentation and the portion that wins patrons over. The taste simply plays a complementary role, but it still does more than meet expectations. A satisfying meal, you will find here.
Address: 53, Jalan SS 2/75, SS 2, 47300 Petaling Jaya
Visited Le Bread Days and managed to get hold of their molten salted egg yolk croissant this time. Apparently, they have ramped up their production sufficiently to be able to satisfy the demand, so no more disappointment. No disappointment with the croissant too. They’ve inspired many to copycat their idea, but I’ve not tried any other molten salted egg yolk croissant (a mouthful!) prior to this, and all i can say is well done Le Bread Days, the croissant rocks! The other pastry items look just as tantalizing. Tried the Kouign Amann and it was fantastic too. No gimmicks here!
Made another visit on 11 Sep 2016, and they have maintained the standard and even improved on the coffee latte served.
Visit on 27 Mar 2017
Le Bread Days still going strong and they continue to innovate.
Rekindle has been around in SS2 since 2013, but I haven’t had a chance to visit until now. The cake selection is impressive and the coffee is not bad.
Address: 25, Jalan SS 2/64
I guess you could say it’s unbelievable that I’ve not dined at the mamak stalls of the Medan Selera even after decades of hanging around SS2. I’ve finally visited on the Eve of Chinese New Year. This place starts kicking into live from 5pm.
We will definitely be back for mee goreng someday.
Address: Jalan SS 2/60
SS2 has become a haunt for setting up cafes, and new ones were added every few months. P.S. Tokyo is a one year old new kid, and I didn’t know its existence until it showed up on Google search today (28 Mar 2017). It has taken the bold move of setting up shop on the second level instead of the more visible ground level shop lot.
As their name suggests, they do Japanese style cakes, parfait and soft serve, complemented by Japanese style tea and the usual hot coffee beverages. The pricing is on the high side, with cakes and Japanese tea at RM 15.90, soft serve at RM 12.90 and coffee at RM 12.90 as well.
The huge glass panel allows one to people watch like how you can do so in those multi-storey cafes in Seoul, but I think the hot weather in Malaysia may be a deterrent for a large part of the day. The brightly lit interior can be a nice change for those who got bored of dark interior themed cafes.
Overall, I think they need to work harder on their menu. The parfait were expensive and I didn’t try them, and other than that, there was nothing compelling. This is unlike Le Bread Days, which continues to attract a steady stream of customers despite their obscure location, and even after the novelty of their star product has run out.
Address: 80, Jalan SS 2/60