RESTAURANT CHEF RASA SAYANG,
Crystal Crown Hotel,
12, Lorong Utara A,
Tel: 03-7958 8981
Business Hours: Daily, lunch (noon-2.30pm);
HAVING started in the kitchens as an adolescent, restaurateur Wong Ling Soon, 68, is best known for his Chef Rasa Sayang Sharksfin restaurants, located in Jalan Imbi, Crystal Crown Hotel Petaling Jaya and Port Klang.
Also known as Ah Soon Koh, Wong set out early to distinguish himself from his competitors by specialising in seafood, particularly shark’s fin and abalone.
“Now it’s mainly the older generation who still orders shark’s fin,” he said, acknowledging the changing tastes of younger consumers and eco-consciousness regarding shark-finning.
Still, Chef Rasa Sayang has a lot to offer in terms of dishes for individual diners and groups.
One of the crowd-pleasers at Chef Rasa Sayang is the “Ah Soon Kor Fried Hor Fun” – consisting of superior stock, scallops, abalone slices, freshwater prawn, snow peas and Chinese chives and kampung chicken egg.
Wong did a live demonstration cooking the hor fun, complete with “wok hei,” tossing the mix of ingredients up and down for an even sear before mixing with the noodle, thickened stock and egg yolk.
Ingredients such as chives and the stock give the hor fun its base signature taste, with the egg adding a different dimension to the rice noodles and the overall dish.
Chef Rasa Sayang’s kitchen also does justice to more “difficult” items such as freshwater fish, done up Cantonese style – resting in a lake of garlic-infused soy sauce and garnished with Chinese celery leaves.
Fresh and firm, the fish has no trace of “mud” taste, while the soy gravy and celery leaves impart a gentle taste almost magical in their simplicity.
Strangely, but as a welcome break from just seafood, you also have other big-ticket items such as Peking Duck.
Oddly served propped up on a spit, the display makes for an interesting conversation piece, though it still goes well with your springy pancake and fillings.
To round up the main meal, you have Abalone Fried Rice (top pic), served with sauce derived from the molluscs.
Wong usually sources his abalone from South Africa, first simmering the abalone stock and separately frying the rice together with mushrooms, softshell crab, gingko nut, clams, kailan and of course, abalone.
This makes for a very rich dish, which is served once the hot abalone gravy has been poured over the rice, infusing it with flavour before the diners dig in.
This is the writer’s personal observation and not an endorsement by StarMetro.