LRT No. 06/50 articles – MRT BANDAR UTAMA: Prasarana x Malay Mail x Rebecca Saw
NOTE: This is my year long collaboration with Malay Mail and I am charged to explore gastronomic around (within 600 m walk) fifty selected (Prasarana Malaysia Bhd (RapidKL) train stations (LRT & MRT).
** Written work (pre-edit by editor) and images are mine.
Published article: Published 31st JULY 2017
1. In Malay Mail e-Paper:
2. On Malay Mail.com: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/print/eat-drink/delightfully-diverse-cuisine
ORIGINAL submitted article: My long winded one!
The first phase of the MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang (SBK) line was launched recently and offered relief to many who rely on public transportation. At last, there is connectivy to areas which previously had no rail connection or had endured irregular bus services.
For instance, the Bandar Utama MRT now benefits the dense residential and commercial areas of Bandar Utama, Taman Tun, Damansara Uptown and even Tropicana, all of which previously were dependent on Kelana Jaya LRT.
Once 100% completed, a elevated pedestrian walkway will link the station to 1 Utama Shopping Centre. For now commuters can board 1 Utama’s free shuttles from 10:40 am-11.00pm daily or opt for the MRT feeder bus which runs at 10 – 15 minutes intervals.
If you choose to walk, it is merely 300 – 500 metres to One World Hotel, First Avenue and 1 Utama Shopping Centre. These 3 buildings combined house hundreds of food outlets with cuisine from almost all parts of the world.
The Roof at First Avenue:
The Roof is a premium gastro and entertainment hub with 7 outlets on the top floors of First Avenue.
Signature by The Hill offers Asian and international fusion cuisine with an expansive view of Petaling Jaya while Yezi is the first of its kind concept steamboat in the country that serves coconut-based broth. Its strict emphasis on premium, fresh and mostly housemade ingredients anchored its reputation as one of the best steamboat restaurants in Malaysia. Even their dipping sauces are excellent.
Below: Luxurious ingredients such as snow crab and Japanese beef are available for the steamboat.
As one of the largest mall in Malaysia, 1 Utama houses a mind-boggling number of food outlets.
How does one decide on an outlet over the other?
Well, over the years there had been efforts to group the eateries.
The food street over at the Lower Ground floor Old Wing is where most of the non-halal hawker delights are. One of the more unique outlets here is Teo Chew Lor where traditional braised Teochew style meals are possible for below RM12. If you are a seafood fan, check out Sekinchan Catch for the freshest daily catch from a local fishing village. For more fish protein, The Fish Bowl serves great, full-hearted poke bowls. Ko Hyang Korean Country Delights is a solid option for affordable Korean dining and is suitable for single diners as well as small groups.
Over at the Arena Court Food in Aeon a mix of local and international food are available at wallet friendly prices albeit in a basic dining environment.
Food Republic is a pork-free food court on the 2nd floor of the New Wing with almost 15 tenants with a wide mix of cuisines ranging from Malay, Chinese, Japanese, Middle Eastern, Western, Taiwanese and Malaysian.
Fans of Penang and Melaka favourites should bookmark Melaka Corner, Nyonya Colors, Penang Flavours, Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul, Little Cravings and Peranakan Place.
These are outlets where delicious Nyonya cuisine reigned supreme in addition to local favourites. Their menus are diverse and cater to single diners as well as group dining. Personally I enjoyed the food and local kuih at Melaka Corner and Nyonya Colors.
For good home-style Chinese fare I’ll recommend Oriental Cravings. It is perpetually packed during meal times but they offer a decent deal for ‘teatime’ between 3-6pm.
Granted, some dishes are better than others but the Duck Yee Mee, Claypot Loh Shee Fun and the Roast Pork Curry Laksa remained safe bets.
Fancy some Michelin –star related fare?
Putien, Tim Ho Wan (closed now) and Mak’s Chee Authentic Wonton are not the star-awarded outlets but branches that offers dishes from the original stores.
Putien serves Heng Hwa (or Xing Hua) cuisine, a regional specialty that has its roots traced to Putian, a beautiful coastal town located in the Fujian province of China. I find the food a nice deviation from your average Cantonese fare.
Mak’s Chee offers authentic Hong Kong style wonton noodles while Tim Ho Wan (closed now), which opens as early as 8:30 am daily, is where you can devour Hong Kong dim sum to your heart’s content.
Speaking of Hong Kong and Cantonese cuisine, fans of both can rejoice as choices are aplenty with outlets like Hong Kong Sheng Kee Dessert, Chatterbox HK Cuisine Restaurant, Canton-I, Dragon-I, Din Tai Fung, Hong Kong Kim Gary Restaurant and Wong Kok Chan Char Teng all conveniently located within 1 Utama.
BELOW: The delicious char siew bao from Sheng Kee.
For Vietnamese food buffs, there are Pho Viet, Obanhmi and Vietnam Kitchen to satisfy your pho, banh mi and Vietnamese coffee cravings.
BELOW: Kickass Vietnamese coffee from Obanhmi. This was the Vietnamese Coconut Milk Coffee (RM8).
My picks for excellent Thai cuisine are Thai Hou Sek and Ngam. The latter’s Tom Yum Super Bowl is a glorious portion of salmon, giant prawns, fish balls, mussels and eggs.
BELOW: Tom Yam at Ngam.
BELOW: Thai Hou Sek – porki-licious Thai fare.
Cantonese and Asian fare aside, 1 Utama is a haven for Japanese cuisine. In addition to stand-alone outlets like Hokkaido Sushi, Sushi and Pasta Zanmai, Eat Paradise at Isetan 1 Utama is a cluster of impressive Japanese outlets. Savour the freshest sushi at Ichiro Sushi (coincidentally my favourite outlet for sushi in Malaysia), juicy pork cutlets at Tonkatsu by Ma Maison and robust flavoured ramen from Menya Musashi.
Izakaya dining style with air-flown ingredients imported from Japan is available over at Robataya.
BELOW: The IchiRoll is my favourite order. On Wednesdays, ladies are entitled to a RM25 nett lunch sets consisting of a main, chawanmushi, miso soup and ice cream. This is the best Japanese lunch deal in town!
Health buffs can go organic at Opika and BMS Organics. The former offers largely western, hearty fares while the latter is more inclined to Asian fare.
For western, pork based meals, I swear by Dave’s Bistro Bar & Grill and Ante.
BELOW: Pork chop from Ante.
BELOW: More pork from Dave’s.
In addition to the above, almost all the fast food chains in Malaysia are available within 1 Utama so take your pick from Burger King, Carl’s Jr., Kenny Rogers, KFC, McDonald’s and more.
There is an abundance of bakeries too so whether it is simple sweet buns or intricate Japanese desserts that you’re craving for, you can find them from Sun Moulin, Komugi, Lavender, La Boheme, Roti Boy or Châteraisé.
1. Yezi @ The Roof, First Avenue:
Once you exit the fare gates, head toward 1 Utama Shopping Centre. Once inside, look for Grand Imperial Restaurant on the Ground Floor. There is a connecting corridor that takes you into One World Hotel. Exit One Word Hotel and walk towards the entrance of First Avenue. Take the lift up to the SKY level.
2. One World Hotel:
Once you exit the fare gates, head toward 1 Utama Shopping Centre. Once inside, look for Grand Imperial Restaurant on the Ground Floor. There is a connecting corridor that takes you into One World Hotel.
3. 1 Utama Shopping Centre:
Once you exit the fare gates, head toward 1 Utama Shopping Centre. Once inside, look for the information counter on the ground floor.
Last but not least….
My original article is usually longer/ ‘more complete’ since I wrote on and on without restriction.
Understandably, due to space constraints, the original was edited prior to publication. Thus I’ve shared my original article as above.
You may also find that my articles for this Prasarana x Malay Mail x Rebecca Saw series rather diplomatic/non- opinionated, but it is meant to be so as per the brief given.
Anyhow, if you think I’ve missed out on some eateries worth highlighting near any MRT/LRT stations, please let me know! I’ll be sure to go check it out.
Please do be in touch via FB message HERE.
Thank you and I look forward to your suggestions! 🙂