Mamak is a Malaysian Roti and Satay eatery with a street market feel. It was voted "Best Asian" SMH Good Food Guide 2009.
It can be recognised by it's long queue, extending for meters down Goulbourn St, Haymarket.
I have wanted to dine at Mamak for a while now, I had noticed the line of patrons outside before and was eager to see what all the fuss was about.
This was my second visit, but first successful one, as the wait was way too long the first time. Unfortunately bookings cannot be made. So I suggest arriving a few minutes before it opens, at 5:30pm to ensure you are in the first sitting. As they turn over five times a night.
Waiting in line is similar to waiting for a ride of an amusement park. The chefs entertain the hungry patrons through the front window by rolling and flicking the roti dough until it's wafer thin...
After being seated we start by sharing a Teh tarik, a classic Malaysian sweetened tea. ‘Stretched’ for a frothy topping with a hint of ginger.
We order our selections. We are told there is a wait for the roti as the kitchen if filled with orders already, which is understandable. The rest of the food however starts to arrive within ten minutes.
Nasi lemak. Fragrant coconut rice accompanied by an ensemble of sambal prawns, peanuts, crispy anchovies, cucumber and hard-boiled egg.
Arguably Malaysia’s national dish.
Rojak. Prawn and coconut fritters, fried tofu, hard-boiled eggs, freshly shredded yambean and cucumber, topped with a thick spicy peanut sauce.
The fritters are slightly sweet and balance the heat of the sauce. Cucumber is refreshing and cleanses palate.
Kari ikan. A tangy fish curry cooked with fresh tomatoes, okra and eggplant. The fish was cod and fell apart with ease. The curry was smooth and salty, great with coconut rice.
Chicken Satay skewers, half dozen. Flame grilled over charcoal which gave it a slightly smokey flavour. Served with the best satay I've ever tasted. Sweet and Spicy.
Our Roti arrive last. Somehow we manage to stuff them in.
Roti canai. The original roti. Crispy on the outside, fluffy and doughy on the inside.
Roti bawang. Folded with lashings of sweet red onions.
Both served with two curry dips and spicy sambal sauce.
Very bold flavours. Spicy, but not overwhelming and very affordable. All this roughly came to $60, between two.
We leave with sniffely noses but very satisfied.
15 Golbourn Street