April 4, 2011

Restaurant Wan Jia: Seafood Extravaganza

Our KIP excursion leads us to another exceptional seafood restaurant located in Taman Wangsa Permai, a nearby neighboourhood. What I love about finding such hidden gems are that these are all very humble restaurants that actually play a background role in the food industry despite their aptitude to present unique and fantastic dishes!

It was after lunch hour when we arrive, hence the place was quite empty. We quickly ordered and sat down, anticipating quietly for the recommended food to arrive, hence I did my usual round of checking out the restaurant surroundings.

I saw some live crabs and frogs in tanks when we sat down. I couldn’t resist checking them out. Just in time, as I caught a crab performing its daily exercise by walking around its fellow crabs despite being tied up… J

I notice the restaurant was also featured in one of the Chinese newspaper from this framed poster on its wall.

Deep Fried Seaweed Rolls with Jelly Fish Salad (RM25) was beautifully laid in front of us. I took one look at the effort of the decorations and felt heavy hearted to shatter the skillfully prepared dish.

Deep fried seaweed roll was ever so lightly deep fried from its mixture of fish and prawn paste, delicately wrapped around salted egg yolk, century egg and carrot. Lovely and light, this was even better with its accompanying slightly sour chili sauce. The centerpiece of crunchy jelly fish, carelessly tossed with shallots, cucumber, chili and local lime juice was refreshing and lovely with a perfect balance of sourness to enhance its cohort of rolls.

Claypot ‘Wan Yue’ (RM3 and above per 100gm) or Chinese Carp arrived with a sizzled! Three slices of fresh carp baked in claypot with a supreme soy sauce was alluring. Despite the fish being filled with bones, I could not resist picking out its sweet flesh and soaking it with the lovely sauce accompanying it.

We also had a nicely Poached Village Chicken or ‘Siong Shue Kai’ (RM48 whole or RM24 half), served on a heated plate with its sauce bubbling gently beneath. Light yellow skin, the chicken was smooth and firm with a wonderful essence from the sauce to enhance it further. The soy sauce was light, the accompanying sliced cucumber and veggies was crunchy, and the whole experience was amazing.

The poached chicken also had an accompanying sauce of ‘Keong Yong’. The sauce is made from pounded Bentong ginger, tumeric, scallion and other secret ingredients. I think this sauce was average, as I didn’t think it tasted the same as other ‘Keong Yong’ sauce I had, probably due to the tumeric.

The next dish totally had me doing cartwheels! Baked 'Kong Nam' River Prawns (RM10 and above per 100gm) was oh-so-scrumptious. Check out these fresh ‘Sang Har’ and its size. We were told that this is the chef’s creation by using special ‘Tong Kwai’ powder to develop its unique taste.

I just cannot resist showing off another close up view of these luscious crustaceans. The prawns were encrusted with bits of crumbs that were delicious to boot! The heads of the prawns were full of roes and I wanted to swallow the whole prawns, shells and all. This is my first time having prawns in this style and I truly believe this is a masterpiece! A MUST order!!!

Another crustacean delight was the ‘Siong Tong La la’ or Supreme Broth Clams (RM4.50 per 100gm). This is one of their most ordered dishes and I could see why. The clams we had that day was huge compared to others I have had.

Lots of shredded ginger, garlic and chili padi were cooked with the clams in a lovely broth. Decent and the huge clams imported from Philippines is an added bonus to the dish. As we saw a few more tables getting filled up, we did notice that most of the table had this dish as well.

Kong Sai Yong Tau Foo Pok (RM9) came in a little steel wok. Simmered in a light broth with spinach and Goji berry, these Bentong Tau Foo Poks were stuffed to the brimmed with fish paste and ‘Kau Choi’. Wish there were more ‘Kau Choi’ but the fish paste was quite bouncy. I recently discovered that I adore Bentong Tau Foo Pok as they are more meaty and soft in texture. I was told that these have to be ordered from Bentong directly.

Since we had seen some fresh crabs, we had to order Salted Egg Yolk Crab(RM48 per kg). Oo… look at its claws! All steeped with crumbly bits of salted egg yolk goodness. These meat crabs are from Indonesia as I was told. Crab was fresh but the bits of the egg yolks were course and not as creamy. Taste wise was still good though.

The next dish was a nice surprise. Bentong Ginger Deep Fried Frogs was anything but ordinary. Huge and meaty pieces of fresh frogs were lightly battered and fried to perfection. I love this method as the overall lightness and moist taste was lovely with the crunchy pieces of ginger (which tasted like crispy chicken skin!). J

We ended our meal with a simple Homemade Egg Yolk Beancurd with Abalone. Chef’s homemade beancurd made from egg yolk and fresh soy milk was smooth and eggy. A velvety abalone sauce and slivers of abalone added some more depth to the dish.

Pickled Kedongdong to round up our high cholesterol meal! J

Map of Restaurant Wan Jie

It was certainly a lovely Sunday meal and we had indulged in quite a glamorous seafood spread! My tummy was more than satiated and it certainly made my day… overall verdict was value for money and there were some nice surprises in this humble restaurant.

Restaurant Wan Jia may play a humble role among the folks of Taman Wangsa Permai but I sincerely hope their name will spread further for more people to appreciate their food because I certainly do.

Restaurant Wan Jia
2 & 4, Jalan Wangsa 3/6,
Taman Wangsa Permai
52200 Kepong, Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03 6277 9802


  1. The frog leg really looks like chicken drumstick under ur lens :P

    PS: I had their lala before, it was really good!

  2. CY: Ya, the frog was so big, it almost look like chicken drumstick but the meat was so smooth and soft. :)