Visiting Malaysia has always been a challenge for tourists such as you who are coming to Malaysia for the first time since there are so many things that you must see and try within such a limited period of time. Therefore, it is imperative for you to go to the right places to get the best visiting experience in Malaysia.
If you are going to ask us what is the best way to discover Malaysia, we would suggest you to do it through food. Why? We, Malaysians love food. We may be known as laid back and even lazy at times but when it comes to food, we mean serious business because our food is the real reflection of our identity as Malaysians.
In lieu with your coming to Malaysia this August, just in time for our 60th Merdeka celebration as well as the up-coming SEA Games, here are 10 places that you absolutely must put in your list for a fulfilling visit to Malaysia.
1. Siti Li Food Studio @ KitaKita, Kuala Lumpur
When you come to Malaysia, you must try the variety of Malay cuisine offered here. However, for you to get the full, authentic experience, there is no other place to have it than at Siti Li Food Studio @ KitaKita Bukit Damansara.
Although it is only a small cafe with a small menu selection but be assured that everything listed is as good as you expect a Mak Cik from the villages to prepare. When dining there, you must try their Asam Laksa Johor as well as Siti Li’s cekodok. These two dishes are more than enough to show you what exactly Malay cuisine is all about.
Want souvenirs to take back home? you can get quality bags, clothes, dining sets and refined china made by local designers from the KitaKita gallery itself. For more information, check out KitaKita’s website to make reservations.
M: +603 20961323
2. Tajuddin Hussain, Penang
If you love Nasi Kandar, you are going to love this restaurant even more. Also known as one of the oldest nasi kandar eateries in Penang, Tajuddin Hussain stands out from the other nasi kandar restaurants around because of its unique and different menu list that you cannot find anywhere else in Penang and even the whole of Malaysia.
With their offerings of delectable quail, turkey, goose and other game curries, even the most rigid and vanilla among us will be tempted to try.
3. Satay Kajang Haji Samuri, Selangor
Everybody, be it the locals or even foreigners, loves a good satay. Satay is made up of pieces of meat skewered on a piece of stick that is then grilled on top of a flaming grill til charred and caramelised. With a little spicy peanut sauce, a satay goes from an ordinary dish to an extraordinary one.
Among all the types of satay you can find in Malaysia, none tastes as good as Satay Kajang Haji Samuri. Why it is so good? The meat is soaked in a special marinate overnight so that the meat is totally infused with the spice and herbs of the special marinate.
Want to know where is the nearest Satay Kajang outlet to you? Check out Haji Samuri’s website and call up to reserve a seat.
M: +6038926 5624 / 8622 1094 / 8926 3662
4. MeeMee Authentic Thai, Kuala Perlis
To all the Thai food lovers out there, do not be afraid of not be able to get you fix of Thai food when coming to Malaysia. However, not all Thai eateries opened here in Malaysia offer the exact, authentic Thai eating experience that you are used to but the best would be in Perlis, a small state in the north of Peninsular Malaysia.
When you are there, do not forget to drop by MeeMee Authentic Thai to get a taste of their delectable roast beef (daging bakar) with their special spicy sauce that will definitely makes you forget all about tomyam.
5. Nasi Ganja Kedai Kopi Yong Suan, Perak
You know how people jokingly say that popular eateries people are addicted to are using drugs in their food? In the case of Nasi Ganja Kedai Kopi Yong Suan, they literally use a name of a drug as a symbol of people’s addiction to their food!
In Perak, nasi vanggey or nasi ganja is one of the famous dishes there and one of the famous brands of nasi ganja in Perak is the eatery listed here! What makes Nasi Ganja Kedai Kopi Yong Suan so special is the Ayam Merah dish served there. Want to know how it tastes like? Get in your car and drive down to Perak yourself!
6. MAJ Capati, Penang
In Malaysia, you can find a different take of food from all over the world. Why? Because Malaysia is the melting pot of all these different cultures, thanks to years of being colonised by the British. Therefore, it is no surprise to know that Malaysians have their very own Indian cuisine that is as good as the original version in India.
Take MAJ Capati in Penang, for example, its homemade capati and thick mutton curry may taste different than the ones you can find at the roadside dabhas of India, but it sure does hit the spot, especially when you are having such bad cravings for some Indian food goodness.
7. Nasi Royale, Kedah
If you want to know what the “royalties” in Kedah eat, head to one of the outlets of Nasi Royale in Alor Setar, Kedah. Well, the reason why Nasi Royale is given its name is because of the richness on the colour and spices used in the cooking of the curries that everyone surely will not miss with every mouthful.
Beware if this is the first time you are trying curries as rich as the ones prepared there. We do not want you racing to the nearest toilet and ruin the whole experience. Build your curry tolerance first, okay.
8. Straits Garden, Johor Bahru
Are you heading to Singapore after days visiting Malaysia? Do not forget to stop for awhile at Straits Garden, Johor Bahru to have a taste of the famous fried fish with sweet sour apple sauce there. Trust us when we say that you must stop by there because your trip to Malaysia will not be complete without dining there.
Why that particular dish is so famous? The apple sauce is to die for. Sweet yet sour, creamy but not too indulging, it brings a perfect balance in enhancing and highlighting the freshness of the fish. Seriously, do not waste a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity or you are going to regret it.
9. 3rd Mile Wet Market, Kuching, Sarawak
Visiting Malaysia makes it compulsory for you to come to Sarawak. No, not because of the girls, the tuak, or the Sarawak layer cake. It is a must for anyone to visit Sarawak, purely for its Kolok Mee. If you want to get the best Kolok Mee, come down to the 3rd Mile Wet Market and get a taste of Sarawak in a bowl for just RM3.
10. Asam Pedas Kedai Lama Jadi Baru, Botak, Johor Bahru
The last and final place that you must go to when visiting Malaysia is trying authentic Johor asam pedas. Asam pedas is a red colour fish-based dish that taste spicy and sour at the same time. It is delicious to eat with hot rice and some fresh ulam. In Malaysia, there are two types of asam pedas; one in Melaka and one in Johor.
In the sense of taste and flavour, most Malaysians prefer the Johor version compared to the Melaka one. Why? We have no answer for that. Why not try it yourself by going to the restaurant suggested and tell us what you think.
M: +60 72249225
Malaysia is a big and vast country to explore. Our culture is as diverse as our food and it is impossible to list all of it in just one article. We hope these 10 places we suggested are able to showcase you the colours and flavours of Malaysia with just one mouthful. Bring back not just the memories of your visit here but also with a full stomach.