KUALA LUMPUR, August 17 – There is a section on Old Klang Road where Chinese restaurants of all shapes and sizes can be found, from tiny holes in the wall to large multi-story air-conditioned spaces.
It can be difficult to distinguish one restaurant from another, especially the second type, where the canon of served food revolves around the same few classic dishes, except for a few variations here and there.
So what is the determining factor?
For some it may be production, for others it may be traditional recipes or cooking techniques.
Often times, many places that emphasize the quality of their products sell some expensive imported stuff, which is generally good, but a bit boring for me.
FENIX Restaurant focuses on local produce, including all things meat, vegetables and freshwater seafood.
An outpost of the famous Loong Kee Restaurant in Gohtong Jaya, most of the produce is sourced from Bukit Tinggi, Pahang, and delivered directly to the restaurant every day.
Freshwater fish and river prawns are the focus of a meal here, and for my taste they are prepared to best capture their natural flavor.
Traditional Style Steamed Wild Patin (29.80 RM per 100 grams) is probably the best way to eat steamed fish, no bar.
Barely steamed to preserve its characteristic supple and delicate flesh, a spicy soy sauce blend is served on the side, allowing you to ladle the fish over it while it’s kept warm by a shimmering flame underneath.
Why are you asking?
When you spoon that salty, savory flavor elixir over a giant fish of a fish, some deep primitive parts of your brain will immediately recognize the unmistakable scent of animal fat – the odor of patina – released as its delicious natural oils mingle and mingle. SOS.
He changes everything, and the best part has to be a bite of his bouncing, quivering belly, where oil, skin, and sauce combine to leave a utterly luxurious feel in the mouth.
Steamed River Prawns with Chinese Wine and Egg White (RM 15.80 per 100 grams) is another deceptively simple preparation where the intrinsic flavor of the product is allowed to shine through.
The tough flesh slides right out of the shell of these large shrimp, a testament to their quality, and the sugar from the Chinese wine greatly enhances the crustacean’s already slightly sweet flavor.
The steamed egg white, which now looks like custard, is also fully loaded with the intense aroma of shrimp eggs.
I’ve talked at length about letting the produce shine here, but how about an off-the-menu gem with little more than the humble egg?
Fried Eggs with Chinese Yellow Wine (RM38) is an odd-looking dish, vaguely reminiscent of an omelet dipped in a hot ginger and yellow wine broth.
The fumes from the wine and a pinch of ginger will clear up any sinus issues, but the taste of real eggs and broth is actually incredibly sweet, with the hearty warmth provided by the ginger.
It’s a real treat when eaten over rice.
Two more must-have products, both from Bukit Tinggi: Crispy Pork Belly (RM28) and Wat Tan Tian Qi Leaves (RM18).
The first is a dish that sells itself: paper-thin slices of pork that are brittle in the bite, covered in a small amount of sweet, thick, sticky sauce. What’s not to like about this combination?
The latter is a textural ride, perhaps more viscous than most people are used to: Tian Qi leaves have a naturally slippery texture that can be repulsive when stir-fried, but instead works like a charm when cooked smooth. almost sticky egg drop-like sauce like here.
FENIX Restaurant currently has the best steamed patina I’ve ever tasted and the rest of the food is right up there.
The relaxed environment and easy parking make multiple repeat visits more appealing.
5, Jalan 1a/114, Out of Old Klang Road, Kuala Lumpur.
It is open from Wednesday to Monday between 11.30-15.00, 17.30-23.00.
Tel: 017-301 7399
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