York Hotel - Penang's Hawker Fare
York Hotel's Penang Hawker Fare is back again for its second edition for 2017 from 1st September 2017 to 17th September 2017.
This has to be one of the longest running buffet as it is even well known not just amongst my parents but also my grandparents! The buffet showcases some of the best Penang that have got to offer such as your all times favourites like Penang Char Koay Teow, Assam Laksa, Prawn Noodles, Penang Rojak and many more.
You know that York Hotel is serious about authencity when the Penang Street Hawkers are flown into Singapore to just satisfy our craving for Penang delicacies.
My favourite and the first dish which I targeted was the classical Penang Char Koay Teow, even just by ordering the dish, the preparation process itself invokes all your senses. The strong smokey wok-hei, the sizzling and sound of click clak click clak stir fry.
The force is strong on this dish, with thinner koay teow fried in generous serving of pork lard, stir fried with fresh cockles, juicy beansprouts drizzled with savory superior soy sauce and their special chilli sauce.
I am definitely in Penang, so or am I not?
The next on the list is traditional Penang Lor Bak platter with five spice rolls, deep fried beancurd, yam fritters and prawn fritters. Be sure to dip the lor bak in their signature thick braised sauce for an additional kick!
The good food just keep coming!
The Nasi Lemak is literally nasi lemak, rich with coconut milk and the sambal is pretty good! The chicken was great, with a rich Tumeric taste. This dish would be great on its own but it pales in comparison to the other Penang delights.
The Penang Laksa was the devil of the evening, causing almost everyone on our table to sweat as we battle through the rich mackerel broth that is boiled for hours with lemongrass, galangal, mint, fresh pineapple slices before served with fresh noodles and drizzled generously with sedap (delicious in malay) prawn paste.
The oyster omelette is something different, it is more eggy than our usual Singapore version with a higher egg to starch proportion.
The dishes are served in tasting portions with the main purpose to ensure that we do not over-eat and have plenty of space to try out other dishes. As we reached our mid point of our meal, we took a walk around the buffet spread and observe some of the "live preparation performance" that the Penang Hawkers have to offer. This also gives us time to settle the food down!
We kicked off second round with a healthy (or so I hope) Penang Rojak, with a mixture of local fruits such as mangoes, cucumbers, ban guang, pineapples and rose apple drizzled with top quality prawn paste and crush peanuts. I love the prawn paste and how well it complements the fruits in this dish.
There is definitely more to come with piping hot Prawn Noodles Soup. The savory and rich prawn stock is derived from hours of boiling fresh prawn heads, shells and quality pork ribs with their signature chilli sauce that gives a distinctive punch to this savory dish.
A hidden tip, ask for pork ribs when ordering and the Hawker will dip into a pot of tender pork ribs and place one in your bowl (while stocks last and only when requested!)
We always have a hidden storage compartment in our tummy. Whenever we are full, we do manage to squeeze out some space to satisfy our sweet tooth.
The desserts station serve both options of traditional Ice kachang or Chendol. Both are great on its own, with my preference that the Chendol should have a tad more Gula Melaka drizzled over it.
Another hidden tips, for Sarsi lover, you may request for a Sarsi Ice-Kachang which you will enjoy a mountain of ice with traditional ice kachang toppings drizzled generously with Sarsi Syrup that actually brought me back to my childhood days.
I never expect such great quality Penang Hawker food during a buffet and I have to take my hats out for this buffet rendition that has been going on for 3 decades. I would definitely return for a second helping before the hawkers return to Penang. For friends who are heading down, please note that the restaurant does not take reservations hence do head there early to "chope" your seats as it is down to first come first serve basis!
This post is sponsored by York Hotel, however, all views expressed above are of my own.
21 Mount Elizabeth