Located within the hustle and bustle of the city, Precious Old China Cafe in Central Market Malaysia is definitely one of the very precious restaurants boosting with its own unique dining environment that brings you back to the olden days of Chinese community life in the early of 20th century.
Stepping into the cafe we were stunned at the impressive architecture and furnishings. The entire restaurant was huge and spacious, with wooden furnitures as the main elements. From the vase to drawings, paintings, chandeliars and marble tables, everything here seemed to be a treasure trove of antique.
While the interior of Precious Old China is welcoming, the real reason that draws us here is their authentic Nyonya food. Being the sister restaurant of Old China Cafe in Balai Polis, Precious Old China Cafe no doubt has inherited all the good Nyonya flavours as the first premise. We tried out several dishes here last weekend, and would say that most of them passed with fairly good marks.
Pie Tee/Top Hats 娘惹小金杯 (RM9.80)
Pie Tee, the well known traditional Nyonya appetizer was first served. Comes in portion of six, the pie tee has shredded turnip, minced meat and egg encased within a huge crispy hat-shaped cone made from rice flour, topped with a dollop of chilli for some fiery kick. Munching on the plentiful filled pie tee, we were glad to tuck into satisfying mouthful of texture just at the very beginning of our meal.
Chicken Lobak 娘惹五香卷 (RM7.80)
Continued on we had Chicken Lobak, which was minced chicken meat and turnip roll wrapped in bean curd skin and deep fried till golden brown. Very meaty and flavourful treat.
Lemak Nenas Prawn 椰香鳳梨蝦 (RM41.80)
Coming to the mains, we had Lemak Nenas Prawn, the traditional Nyonya dish from Malacca. Generous amount of prawns served in a pot of thick gravy that brings in a potent combination of coconuty, creaminess, spiciness, sourish and umami flavours.
Ayam Pong Teh 豆醬悶雞肉 (RM18.80)
Precious Old China Cafe prepared this Peranakan dish the authentic way, with chicken stew cooked with brown bean paste, shallot, garlic, potatoes and mushroom to create a thick, flavoursome gravy. Potatoes was sweet and starchy while the chicken stew was tender, deeply flavoured from the long stew, promoting a rich savory flavours owing to the fermented soy bean paste.
Asam Fish Fillet 亞三醬蒸魚片 (RM22.80)
A classic favourite with soft, fresh Dory fish fillet drenched in a bed of gravy that delivers a moderate level of spiciness with a touch of zesty flavours from tamarind juice. Very appetizing and pairing only with the gravy itself can make us finish up bowlful of rice.
Belacan Pucuk Paku Kerabu 馬來盞吵芭古菜 (RM11.80)
A humble dish that still managed to shines it way among all the delicious fares on table that night. It comprised of fern shoot stir fried with spicy shrimp paste and garlic, simple but hit the right notes to earn our liking.
Coconut Rice 藍花飯 (RM1.90)
While rice is always just part of the essential carbs for a more filling meal, and also to balance up the heavy flavours in Nyonya dishes, the rice in Old China Cafe is however, noteworthy, more than just a plate of rice to fill the tummy. Fluffy and soft aside, the coconut rice which was delicately tinged with Bunga Telang was very aromatic, with a subtle fragrance of coconut milk infused within. So good that the girl who doesn’t like eating rice ask for a second, and third helpings later on.
Sago Gula Melaka 椰糖沙谷米凍 (RM4.90)
Finally it was dessert time. The Sago Gula Melaka was lovely. Sago pearl pudding was pale in flavours by nature, so dressing up the pudding with coconut cream and palm sugar had instantly bring this dessert into another level of sweet and creamy concoction. Especially love the aroma of palm sugar.
Quench your thirst with a range of house speciality drinks of the restaurant, ranging from the chilling De Rozelle Flower Juice, sour plum juice to the traditional Iced Local Coffee.
Iced Local Coffee 南洋冰咖啡 (RM6.90)
De Rozelle Flower Juice 洛神花水 (RM6.90)
Precious Old China
Lot 2, Mezzanine Floor,
Jalan Hang Kasturi,
50050 Kuala Lumpur.
Business Hours: 12:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Tel no: 03 – 2273 7372