Odd, charming, quirky, nostalgic are just a few adjectives to describe this new cafe that’s barely a week’s old in Damansara Uptown. A visit to Fat Spoon is like taking a step into its proprietor’s 3D scrapbook which holds together pieces of her days gone by and things of sentimental past. Its odd interior made of mismatched pre-owned furniture and decor somehow chaotically come together nicely. I applaud them for not taking the obvious decor route when it came to setting up a new Nyonya-inspired restaurant. It is by far, the most whimsical one I’ve every visited. And, I’m definitely smitten by the shop’s warm eclectic charm.
I felt like EatDrinkKL while I dined here with my close group of friends on its opening night last Sunday. Only difference was that I was eating and drinking in PJ with a food bill probably equivalent to 1/10 of his usual dinner. It’s a different experience dining in a place on its first day, especially in a small establishment. The place was packed with festivities, love from friends and family and plenty of congratulatory flowers mixed in with their own decor added more colours to the already colourful cafe. To be honest, I’ve actually been curious about Fat Spoon since it started its renovation a couple of weeks back. I kept passing it on the way back to the office and made a mental note to try them out when they’re finally opened.
Once inside, chances are you’ll be greeted and seated by its enthusiastic owner, Chelle, or one of her cheerful staffs. They were all smiles and definitely not showing signs of any fatigue yet. Don’t be alarmed when they bring you a couple of Ladybird Peter & Jane books to your table. The menu is cleverly mounted between the pages of these books. I remember reading these books as a child, but reading some of these lines again now with a not so innocent mind can give these story a whole new meaning!
The menu claims to make homely dishes from Grandma’s recipes like their highly recommended Assam Perut Ikan. However, it was the Fried Ulam Rice (RM11.90) which caught my attention. The rice was mixed with a whole range of daintily cut herb and served with a piece of fried chicken and vinegary fruit salad. While the overall dish was nice, I found the rice itself too wet for my liking. Perhaps the herbs were soggy when it was added into the rice or they were too cold and started to condensed under the heat of the fried rice. Also noticeably missing was the use of salted fish in this version of Nasi Ulam, which is usually what makes the dish fragrant and appetising. But nothing the addictive sambal belachan on the side couldn’t fix. Ivan’s order of the Sambal Fried Rice (RM11.90) was much better with enough wok hei (breath of wok) and flavour in the rice. This time the rice was also fried to perfection with each grain of rice separated nicely. It also comes with a piece of fried chicken and fruit salad.
As one of us just had a wisdom teeth extracted, Chelle recommended the Salmon & Seaweed Congee (RM13.90), she was also kind enough to bring along a smaller bowl to help separate and cool down the congee in smaller portions. Kudos for her attention to details. The recipe didn’t strike me as local or Nyonya for that matter and was like a watery rice dish. It was also a little fishy for our taste. Maybe the use of other fishes may help “sweetened” the dish more. I’ve always loved fried ma-yau fish bits in my porridge. Another non-spicy dish served here is the Watercress Noodle Soup (RM8.90) which uses Nissin noodles instead of regular yellow noodles and comes with a chicken drumstick. However, they are flexible to give you breast meat if you request for it.
It’s a fair mix of hits and misses at this new place, granted its their first night opened. Perhaps its just a teething problem and opening night nerves. Given its close proximity to my office and gym, and its affordable prices, I’m sure I’ll be back for another meal or two. I’m actually tempted to try the DIY Popiah Wraps, Lord knows how I love interactive food. It also is a great place to just chill and enjoy a cup of freshly brewed espresso – yup, they’ve got an espresso machine and it’s red! That’s totally hot.
No.73, Jalan SS21/1A,
(located next to Hon Kee Porridge)
Damansara Utama / Uptown,
47400 Petaling Jaya.
Tel: +603-7728 3323