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Review: Sisters Place Restaurant, Pacific Place, Ara Damansara

>> Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Overall comment: Delicious Penang-style food with "wok hei"! Some of the non-Penang-style food are equally delectable, like the curry chicken chee cheong fun & the nasi lemak :)
Halal: Pork-free

I was delighted to find a passionate Penang-foodie-owner restaurant that serves good Penang-style food where I can actually enjoy such dishes together with my Muslim friends/those who do not fancy having pork in their dishes. Sisters Place isn't foreign in the industry, especially to those who live around the USJ16 area, where the 1st Sisters Place restaurant started 6 years ago. With the success of their 1st outlet, Sisters Place started their 2nd outlet at Pacific Place, Ara Damansara (shops around the new Evolve Mall) last year on 1st October 2015!

While the 1st outlet is founded & managed by Mr Ray Cheng, the 2nd outlet is managed by his son, Eugene, also Penang-born & an enthusiast to further his mum's "best halal-friendly Char Kuey Teow"! I can testify that after tasting their Char Kuey Teow, it's indeed one of the best I've pork-free versions that I've tasted :)

I'll be sharing based on the order of my personal preference:

Sisters Special Char Kuey Teow (RM13.90/serving); Sisters Char Kuey Teow (RM8.50/serving)
Their vast difference between the special CKT & the normal CKT is the added seafood i.e. more prawns, more cockles & even pieces of squid! I rarely come across such generous load of seafood in a simple plate of CKT. To add to my enjoyment, this humble plate of fried kuey teow has the lovely "wok hei"/sufficient wok-heat flavor, which is usually lacking in most kopitiams/cafes. I found it even better & more impressive that Eugene himself is the head chef, who personally fried & cooked all the dishes served to me :D *recommended* Oh, it's served spicy as the default, so if you're not used to eating spicy CKT, you can just inform the waiter upon ordering.
*only the CKT shows the actual serving portion. The rest are tasting portions, which have much lesser noodles/rice*

Penang Curry Mee (RM8.50/serving)
I miss the Penang white curry mee tremendously! Sisters Place serves pretty good Penang curry mee although it doesn't have the cubes of pig's blood that I fancy in a typical bowl of curry mee all over Penang :P The soup is certainly less heart-stopping (literally)/healthier as well as they have tweaked the original recipe of coconut-milk-loaded soup to be a mixture with milk. Those who are lactose-intolerant may need to think twice before indulging in this aromatic bowl of noodles. I found Sisters Place's version of the Penang white curry mee slightly too "orangey" with the home-made chili oil/paste as well; the authentic Penang-style is white with a side of sambal/chili paste that you can add to your soup according to your preference.
*photo shows tasting portion*

My only wish since it's pork-free is that the piece of "taufupok" is the usual large size, so that it'll soak up the delicious soup & have it bursting in the mouth! The flavor of the soup is well-balanced with my much-loved lemongrass & curry spices plus it's not too spicy nor is it too creamy/diluted. Yums!

Curry Chee Cheong Fun (RM8.50/serving)
Surprise, surprise! I wouldn't have expected anything much from this curry chicken chee cheong fun dish, certainly not from a Penang food influenced restaurant. Boy, was I wrong! When this dish was presented to me, I was like "Oh, doesn't look too special...", but when I took the 1st mouthful, I was hooked to it! The curry was a labour of love & passion for rich ingredients (all home-made by the Cheng family) & it's not like they just used the Penang curry laksa's soup to serve with their chee cheong fun. I enjoyed the smooth layers of rice noodles together with the delish chicken curry. The only ask is to probably sprinkle some crunchy fried shallots on this dish to give it another dimension of texture since most of the textures in this dish is soft, smooth & lacks 'chew'.
*photo shows tasting portion*

Nasi Lemak (RM3.50/serving without chicken; RM7.50/serving with chicken)
I was quite surprised that Eugene came over to ask me with his shy gesture if I would like to also try their latest item on the menu i.e. the nasi lemak. Frankly speaking, I was quite stuffed, but it's nasi lemak! Full-flavored coconut milk-infused fluffy white rice with a generous serving of divine sambal ikan bilis is hard to come by these days, especially at cafes/small restaurants like these. I think Sisters Place nailed it! No wonder he said that many of their patrons enjoyed the nasi lemak here :) The sambal has the typical Malay-style of slightly sweet yet spicy taste with the savory anchovies in each bite. What I like best is the freshness of ingredients on the dish. Even the cucumber slices were freshly cut (and not cut, placed aside & added to a dish before serving - half-dried cucumber slices)! These are little efforts in a dish that I highly appreciate :)

Penang Hokkien Fried Bihun Mee (RM8.50/serving)
I'm actually not a great fan of the Penang Hokkien Fried Bihun Mee. I guess being a pork fanatic has spoiled me to the max that without the taste of pork lard, such Hokkien fried dishes are just not the same. The one good part of this dish is actually the chili that comes with the dish. You can taste the freshness & authenticity of the chili paste that pairs well with the simple fried noodles.
*photo shows tasting portion*

Sisters Fried Rice (RM8.50/serving)
Fried rice? It's such a 'staple'....I wouldn't have bothered offering fried rice on my menu if I'm focusing on Penang-favorites, but here at Sisters Place, Eugene & his family are truly passionate not just for the quality & taste of their food, but for the common preferences of their patrons. Knowing that many Malaysians are rice-lovers who fancy 'fast-cooked meals' that keeps them full through the day, Eugene placed this dish on his menu. I have to say that it's not fantastic (cos it's pork free!), but I must give credit to the "wok hei" that you can still find in this common dish. If they could sprinkle some crispy, fried small anchovies/ikan bilis (Cantonese "ngan yue zhai"), that would bring this dish to the next level :D 
*photo shows tasting portion*

After tasting so many dishes, I was truly stuffed. It's all carbs wei! *fat die me* Thank God for my ex-housemate who accompanied me for this review as she helped me with all the food :) I think my overall impression of Sisters Place is good! I'll certainly recommend this place, especially to those who live or work around Ara Damansara area. 

Barley with Lemon (RM3.90/glass)

For now, parking at Evolve Mall is still free & the easiest way to get to Sisters Place (since all the shop lots look too similar with the many, many blocks of commercial lots) is through the entrance nearest to FOS on the Ground Floor of Evolve Mall. Upon exiting that entrance/exit (with FOS on your right), turn left & walk past 1 block of shops. Sisters Place is facing inside, behind the block of shops that faces Evolve Mall.

Thanks, Eugene for the lovely review experience of tasting your Penang & non-Penang dishes!

Sisters Place @ Pacific Place
Unit D-01-02, Block D, Jalan PJU 1A/4A
Pacific Place Ara Damansara
Petaling Jaya
Tel: (+603)7859 6128
Business hours: 9:00a.m. - 11:00p.m. daily (closes on alternate Mondays)
FB: https://www.facebook.com/sistersplacekopitiam/

Sisters Place @ USJ16
11, Jalan USJ 16/2G
47630 Petaling Jaya
Business hours: 7:00a.m. – 8:00p.m. (closes on alternate Tuesdays)

Presentation: * * * 1/2
Price: * * *
Environment: * * * 1/2
Taste: * * * *
Service: * * * 1/2


Found a good Penang-food place to dine with friends,


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