Located in a small laneway that connects King William, Hindley and Currie Streets, is Penang, a restaurant that has been serving up Malaysian Chinese cuisine over the last 20 years. The menu offers some Penang signature dishes that includes various fried noodles, noodle soups, rice dishes and curries.
The restaurant has a main dining section and a smaller dining area to the left of the entrance. The decor looks a bit dated but I guess it adds to the ambience. There are windows on both it’s frontages, however, at the time of dining, there wasn’t much natural light coming through.
The Vegetarian Spring Rolls come in a serving of two. They had skin that was crunchy on the outside with an inner layer tasted like it was raw. There wasn’t much vegetable filling inside, and while it was soft and moist, it was a little on the bland side.
The Pad Thai had some resemblance to the Thai version. The noodles were slightly overcooked while the chicken thigh fillets were tender and succulent, although conservatively applied. The inclusion of capsicum provided a nice crunchy texture with a subtle sweetness. The overall flavour and colour of the dish was different to your typical Pad Thai, but it was still edible.
The Pandan Chicken failed in both presentation and taste. The chicken was dry and overcooked.
The Satay Chicken wasn’t too bad. The chicken was tender and succulent, and came with a nice satay dipping sauce.
The Roti Canai was supposed to come with a Dhal Gravy, but that didn’t arrive until 15 minutes later. Although the flat bread was lightly browned on both sides, it was a bit firmer than expected.
The Penang Meat Bone Herbal Soup contains pork ribs, meat slices, meatballs, dried button mushrooms, tofu puffs, dried tofu crepe and iceberg lettuce. The meal was supposed to come with a side dish of fried dough strips but that never arrived. I was told the dish wasn’t too bad, although many of the ingredients listed weren’t found in the soup.
The Combination Mee Goreng looked exactly like the photo on their menu. The noodles were well cooked and the dish was well balanced with good flavours.
The Penang Fried Koey Teow contained prawns that were undercooked. The noodles were well cooked, the beef was lean and tender, and the bean sprouts added a nice crunchy texture. The dish had good depth and the flavours were right. With this meal, the raw prawn centres was a fatal mistake with my friend going home sick afterwards.
We thought this place was understaffed. Components from our orders were forgotten, meals came at different times, and service was generally slower than expected. For a city location, the food here is rather cheap. The Chicken Pad Thai was $9.50 and the serving of Vegetable Spring Rolls was $2.50. Unfortunately, you get what you pay for, as the dishes weren’t well executed. Only 2 out of the 8 dishes ordered were acceptable.
This place was such a disappointment I almost didn’t want to write this review.
WHERE: 22 Gilbert Place, Adelaide