06 December 2012

Cafe Kasturi ~ Malaysian & Pan Asian - Chinatown [CLOSED]

At long last, Alison gives in to Mr Shawn's nagging and takes him to Cafe Kasturi for ayam rendang. Twice.


One of our favourite feeds on our recent trip to Kuala Lumpur was served on the street from the boot of a taxi by a lovely Malay mamma at brekky time.

The ayam rendang (the brown blob on the right) was a real mind blower. A chooken thigh slow cooked in a spicy coconut gravy, reduced until it's gloriously gooey.

Back in Sydney we noticed Cafe Kasturi on George Street has very Malay looking folks working the kitchen. And ayam rendang is on the menu. Sold.

We tried the ayam rendang twice and we love it to bits, but we couldn't find another dish that got us quite so food nerdy excited. The menu also includes Thai, Indonesian, Chinese, Singaporean and even a couple of western dishes, so common sense says that not every dish is going to be a hit, the Malaysian classics should be the best bet.

We regularly see elegantly dressed Malay ladies-who-lunch dining at Cafe Kasturi, which gives us the impression that there's at least a couple more corker Malaysian dishes we are yet to try. Mr Shawn's money is on the ayam percik, Malaysian style spicy bbq chicken.

If any Cafe Kasturi fans out there have some Malay food tips, we'd love to know :-)

Cafe Kasturi's Ayam Rendang - $14.80 - is freaking fantastic. The sauce is reduced down to a thick, spicy, coconuty goo, just the way we like it.  We like it even more when we return for a second visit.  We had some other good dishes here but nothing quite 'wowed' us like the rendang did.

Assam Fish  Fish fillet in  hot assam gravy - $15.80. Chunks of fish and some eggplant and a thick, tamarind-y tangy gravy.

3 egg omlette with chilli - about $6. A very eggy omelette  a taste which Alison likes, but makes Shawn gag as he can still taste that godawful bad trip magic mushroom omelette he had in Lake Toba, Indonesia, eighteen years ago. Pass the kecap manis...

Red Curry Duck - sliced barbequed duck meat on the bone in medium hot red chilli and coconut curry - $14.80.

Belecan veggies - $12.80. Packs a fair shrimp paste kick and a good wallop of chili.

Beef Murtabak - Pan grilled filled pancake and served with mild lentil and potato gravy -  $13.80. Not a winner, a little stodgy and not as pastry fluffy as others.

Cafe Kasturi is at 767 - 769 George Street Sydney, http://www.valentineongeorge.com/cafekasturi/

Kudos to the incredibly nice folks who run this joint.

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  1. That ayam rendang was amazing, I've been telling everyone about it.

  2. the murtabak looked like turkish pide for a second!!

    1. That's quite a good comparison for it, or a burek.

  3. according to my auntie who visited from KL, their satay is worth trying :)

    1. Oh good, we like an auntie recommendation! Might try next time we go there.

  4. Their nasi goreng circa 2005 was particularly spectacular.

  5. They've closed now as of March 2014. The place is empty & it's leased to a new tenant according to the sign...

    1. Ah yeah they closed a while ago, forgot to put up the closed sign, thanks heaps for the reminder!


Thanks for your comment joy - please keep your musings happy - if you want to complain about a restaurant please do it on a restaurant review site (or your own blog) - we're all about celebrating cultural diversity and the great eats that come along with it :-)

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