Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Muhibbah Seafood Restaurant @ Laman, Kampung Sungai Penchala




Old established restaurants are like old friends - so familiar that you know you will end up enjoying yourself. Just like long forgotten friends, when you dine at these places, everything seems to fall to place once things start up. One such place is Muhibbah Seafood Restaurant, the Chinese Muslim stalwart that has been around since the 1980s. A fixture in the Taman Tun Dr Ismail dining scene, the restaurant recently moved to Kg Sg Penchala to a stand-alone bungalow premises that used to play host to weddings.






Looking around the restaurant set up, one can see the little touches Muhibbah was familiar for - the plate with the dipping sauces, cutlery and wet towels served in the beginning, the pristine clean open kitchen seen through glass panels and the drinks being brought to you in a small metal tray (that always remind me of a baking tin!). Most importantly, food standards are maintained and they still have the best deep fried sotong (RM10 for a small portion) in town. Covered in a crunchy light batter the calamari is always perfectly cooked and never rubbery. Another big favourite here for us is the kerabu paku pakis (RM6 for a small portion), where tender ferntops are served cold and dressed with coconut milk, lime juice, chopped birds eye chillies and lemongrass. It is a tangy yet light dish that seems to bring out the sweet taste of the ferntops. In my opinion, it is one of the best renditions of that humble vegetable I've grown mighty fond of throughout my eating years. 





There's a string of tummy favourites like the Cantonese Fried Noodles (RM6.50 for a small portion), fried lala, fried fish and etc. What's interesting about Muhibbah is the Chinese food served here appeals to everyone including my mega fussy Aunt. If you think my mother was particular about her food, my aunt is worst as her palate is severely limited to the delicate flavours of Chinese food (she never ate roti canai until recently claiming the Indian spices overwhelm her). Ever since we introduced her to this place, she's been returning here for special occasions such as whenever her children return from overseas.





In their previous Taman Tun Dr Ismail outlet, as they were adjacent to a church, you'll often see a mixed bunch of people dining here - the early Chinese crowd especially the ones after church while the Malays dine much later after maghrib prayers. Occasionally, there'll be a stray Westerner (maybe in the form of Eating Asia, who are also big fans of this place), making this place truly muhibbah in all senses.





Here's hoping business at Muhibbah continue to prosper as I'll hate to see one of my absolute favourites dissapear from the food landscape of Malaysia. Quick, go try the deep fried sotong and kerabu pucuk paku and I'm sure you'll end up being an absolute fan of their simple unpretentious Chinese halal food like my whole family.


Muhibbah Seafood Restaurant
Laman
No. 2851, Jalan Seri Penchala
Kg Sg Penchala
Kuala Lumpur


Tel: 03-7727 3153


(Halal. From the LDP highway, turn the turning towards Kg Sg Penchala, go through the small tunnel, keep left and go across, go straight and take a left turn near the car showrooms. Go straight, there'll be banners leading you to the restaurant. From Taman Tun Dr Ismail, take Jalan Datuk Sulaiman, go straight towards the Penchala Link. At traffic lights, go straight  into Kg Sg Penchala, take a left turn at traffic light where the mosque is visible, go straight and at the end of the village, take a right turn up the hill. The restaurant is on the left hand side. For the map and more pictures, see my Flickr set.)

*Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here is entirely based on my personal tastebuds and may vary for others. This review is time sensitive; changes may occur to the place later on that can affect this opinion. The reviewer also declares that she has not received any monetary or non-monetary compensation from this place for writing the review.

18 comments:

minchow said...

Seafood chowdown! Just recovered from a gout attack too, so this is perfect timing! I had the most enlightening conversation with dad over the weekend about pucuk paku - he's only just discovered it, and is completely enamoured by it, at the age of 73!

CUMI & CIKI said...

Here's hoping business at Muhibbah continue to prosper too! really, all these old charming places should be protected i say!

Au and Target said...

i don't know what I envy you for most: the great food you eat or those excellent pics!

http://blog.lepak.com/2011/01/wordless-wednesday-cat-fights-paw.html

J said...

Ooh. The sotong looks good! Gotta open my mind n try out lovely halal Chinese restaurants like this soon. :)

thule a.k.a leo said...

oh.. they have moved to Kg. Penchala?? I didnt know that... love their food. Thought of going back to their TTDI outlet

Sean said...

i've actually never eaten here, but i have a muslim friend who really loves it too! :D

Michelle Chin said...

I've never ventured to TTDI before. :P I guess it's time to do some exploring.

boo_licious said...

minchow - never too late to be in lurve with paku pakis I reckon as it is a great vegetable. Bring him here and let him try this version as its awfully good.

C&C - hear hear!

Au&Target - no need to be envious, just drive here and have the same wonderful food. Go on, its awfully good stuff and not too pricey either.

J - not all halal Chinese places make the mark but this one is exceptionally good.

Leo - yes, just moved in Jan 2011. Place is very spacious and nice, has an outfoor feel to it so hopefully you can make it when u're back in KL/PJ.

Sean - no alcohol of course but give it a try esp if you love deep fried sotong.

boo_licious said...

Michelle - Maybe u shld explore your own backyard since it holds so many great Chinese eats? Glad to hear you have moved already. Am sure love the new place.

Julie said...

Oooo... You had me at calamari.
Thanks for posting this :)

boo_licious said...

Julie, hope you enjoy the calamari as much as we do.

Life for Beginners said...

I didn't know they moved - I used to visit their TTDI/original restaurant with my truly muhibbah group of friends all the time when I was based in PJ. They were very consistent with their food quality, if I remember correctly. :)

qwazymonkey said...

This is one of those places where the true spirit of Muhibbah exist and where I don't cringe and at the sound of the word itself.

McCutie loves their Lemon Chicken!

boo_licious said...

Life for Beginners - still consistent in quality. Give it a try soon.

qwazymonkey - ahhh, yes it's all very happy and multi-racial here. Yet to try the lemon chicken here but if McCutie gives his stamp of approval, I am sure it's wonderful.

Anonymous said...

Just wondering if this website is yours? It appears to be an exact duplicate of your post...

http://food.bonology.com/2011/01/muhibbah-seafood-restaurant-laman.html

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