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Brisbane Devoured: Sydney - Mamak

November 30, 2010

Sydney - Mamak

Mamak on Urbanspoon

Whilst we were in Sydney we knew we wanted to sample some of the food on offer in Sydney’s Chinatown, particularly as it was a fairly short walking distance from our hotel.
I didn’t particularly know where to go of course, so checked up on the trusty Urbanspoon website to see where was good. This is how I found out about Mamak. Mamak is apparently one of the most blogged about restaurants in Sydney, so I was keen to find out how good it was.
We walked down there on the Monday at lunchtime without really knowing exactly where it was, but managed to find it regardless. 

Mamak is described as offering authentic Malaysian cuisine and specialises in all types of both savoury and sweet roti. We regularly eat at Little Singapore up in Brisbane, so I was interested to know how it was going to compare.
Prices are really quite cheap, with mains at around $13-$18, but lunch specials are on offer for a cheaper price, with smaller dishes. 

We elected to go for roti canai for $5 to share, which is a crispy but soft and buttery bread served with two sauces and sambal. I grabbed Kari ayam (lunch price was around $9.50 but cant actually remember?) which is a chicken curry with potatoes, served with rice. L decided on Sambal udang which was stirfried prawns in a spicy sambal sauce (lunch price of $11.50?) with rice. 

L was boring and ordered a coke, whilst I ordered Limau ais ($3.50) which is basically a lime and sugar syrup drink with ice. It is almost like a cordial in taste, but much sweeter and tastier. 

Limau ais

Our meals and drinks were promptly served. L was quite happy with the taste of his dish but not with the size... being a big eater he would probably have needed the dinner sized version. My meal had a great spicy flavour, but the pieces of chicken were unidentifiable. I felt they could use a better quality piece of chicken, such as thigh or offer a drumstick or something? The pieces that I was served hardly had any meat on them at all.

prawns in sambal sauce
chicken curry

Our roti canai came out just after our meals did, and the roti was delicious and fluffy as were the accompanying sauces. One sauce had a really strong shrimp paste flavour so I ignored that one and dug into the other which was quite beanlike in taste. I pretty much forgot about my chicken curry in favour of the roti. If you hover at the entrance of the restaurant, you can see one of the cooks making the roti, its pretty amazing!

roti canai with accompanying sauces
 Of course there was the inevitable comparison made to Little Singapore, and we both felt that Mamak was not as good, but we are probably biased, hee hee. It still made for a very delicious lunch though and with prices as good as this, no wonder people love it here!


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