Chyuan’s Tiffin Underground Supper Club Rocks!
Call it what you Iike, underground supper club, closed door restaurant, guestaurant, it is basically a dining establishment run from one’s home. It’s fairly new here in our country but supper clubs have been storming the food scenes in other countries like Europe, America and even Hong Kong. I have pure admiration for the people who run underground supper clubs. To run supper club, one has to basically cook and serve to a small group of diners in the privacy of his or her home. Diners pay a fee and sometimes may even dine with unknown guests at the same dining experience. While there are quite a few here that is gaining popularity, we heard of a new one blooming in Sri Petaling.
One evening, we head over to Chyuan’s Tiffin Underground Supper Club to meet up with brothers-in-crime, Eddy and Raymond and his wife, Muk. The three owners are the passionate cooks behind Chyuan’s Tiffin Underground Supper Club run in the vicinity of their home.
We were thoroughly excited about this dining experience. The moment we walked into Chyuan’s, we immediately felt comfortable as Eddy and his team were so welcoming and friendly. Conversations launched like we were all old friends. While Eddy is the outgoing one, Raymond and Muk were shy and more reserved. The three of them were seen scurrying around to prepare out dinner that evening.
Their home is really very beautifully decorated. Eddy and Raymond have a Baba Nyonya heritage while Muk is from Thai. The three of them designed their home filled with influences from both culture.
The kitchen stole the limelight. Designed with an island in the middle of the kitchen, the kitchen has that back-to-basic look. Although it is small, the kitchen is neat and well-spaced with minimal kitchen items. There is a wet kitchen where all the cooking is done beside this dry one.
The dining room shares a space in the living room area. I love the old wooden cabinet filled with knick knacks from the past. Tables, chairs, mirror and other décor stuff are also a blast from the past. The living room is simple but bold. I really love the red entertainment cabinet that sits at the tv wall. Soft Shanghai 30s and 40s music softly pipes in the backdrop, providing more nostalgia moments.
It’s like being transported back in time to those days when I was so much younger living in my parent’s home.
While we waited for other guests, we do what we do best. Our lens zeroed in on the food.
Chyuan’s Tiffin Underground Supper Club has a self-serve concept for bigger groups while small groups of four or less will enjoy a sit-down dinner menu. Eddy and his team offer different dishes each time to showcase all their repertoire of Nyonya and Thai cuisine. If you have some specific dishes you like, you may also want to check with Eddy while making your reservations. We let Eddy have his creativity when it came to our menu that evening.
For appetizers, we had a Thai Fruit Salad and Fried Chicken with Lime Leaves & Lemongrass. Served in miniature cups and plates, the appetizers make great small snacks.
The Thai Fruit Salad was fresh and bursting with juiciness from the lightly spicy and tangy dressing, something a little similar to our rojak but with Thai influences.
The Fried Chicken with Lime Leaves & Lemongrass is very fragrant from all the herbs used. It’s very tasty and the herbs are all fried to a crisp where we could also enjoy them.
Moving on to main highlights of the night, our menu consisted of a Salted Fish Tofu, Raw Prawn with Thai Pesto Sauce, Stir Fry Petai with Prawns, Herb Steamed Fish and Thai Sardine Laksa.
Our mouths were literally drooling already when we first saw the spread. Though many of us were a bit hesitant when it came to the Raw Prawn with Thai Pesto Sauce, after a first taste, this dish became the star of the night! Fresh chilled raw prawns are nicely presented on a bowl and serve with a kick-ass Thai green pesto sauce. That sauce rocks!! Made from herbs and Thai bird eye chilies, a little of it goes a long way.
The raw prawns had a light firm bouncy texture and the spicy sourish pesto sauce compliments the light sweetness of the prawns very well. I loved the Thai pesto sauce so much, I spooned it on almost everything I ate that night. It has the perfect balance of sour, sweet and savory coupled with a high level of spiciness that makes your senses go wow… I think we polished off Eddy’s large stash of sauce that night.
Long fingers of Salted Fish Paste Tofu is fried to golden brown and served with a bowl of pinkish Cincalok Sauce. An interesting combination with salted fish and fermented dried shrimps. The tofu has a firm texture. It’s very flavorful from the salted fish and tends to be a bit more salty with the sauce. I did the unthinkable thing and soak this in the sardine laksa gravy… yum…
Everyone obviously enjoy petai and so the Stir Fried Petai with Prawns was a much welcome dish. Instead of the usual heavy spicy chili sauce that goes with petai and prawns, we savored the petai in its original flavor. Though it is often called the stink bean, when you eat it, it has a unique flavor so you’ll either love it or hate it.
When the Herb Steam Fish came out, the room was scented with a fragrant herb aroma. A large red tilapia sat snuggly on banana leaves in a bamboo steamer stuffed with bits of herb paste. Eddy showed us how to savor the dish. Best enjoyed piping hot, simply take a lettuce leaf and top it with a chunk of the fish. Add on the fresh herbs like mint, coriander, daum kesom and a generous dollop of the Thai pesto sauce and its ready to be enjoyed.
We loved it. It’s fresh and sweet with a nice spiciness. The lettuce provided a lovely crunch texture to the soft sweet flesh while the herbs added body and aroma. I lost count of how lettuce cups I ate… all I know is that it was super scrumptious.
The main course with carb that night was the Thai Sardine Laksa. A basket of thin white noodles boiled and laid nicely coiled for easy pick up. A claypot filled with luscious spicy thick laksa gravy made with sardines. Combine these and add on herbs of coriander, mint and daun kesom for more oomph.
My bowl of Thai Sardine Laksa had awesome flavors of sourness with savory and spicy notes. The gravy of Sardine Laksa is robust and very appetizing. It seems to attract my sense of taste, luring it with comfort and satisfaction. Of course, I added on the Thai pesto sauce again for extra heat.
It is indeed a very satisfying bowl of laksa! My second bowl, I had the Salted Fish Paste Tofu soaked in it and it taste pretty darn good too…
Eddy confessed to his passion in making desserts. He made all the 3 desserts we had that night.
A lovely white Coconut Cake is filled with green peas paste and coconut flesh. Though the cake sponge is a little dense, the flavors are sweet and delicious. I just couldn’t resist and had two slices because I love the coconut taste in the cake paired up with a creamy green pea paste filling.
The Santan Marshmallow Pudding won everyone’s vote with its utterly soft and cloud like texture. A clever use of coconut milk as it made the marshmallow creamy and dreamy without the heaviness. Covered in fresh shredded coconut, this dessert was polished off in a jiffy.
Little packets of Steam Banana Cake with Coconut Milk are decent too. It has a kueh texture. The banana flavor is further enhanced by the coconut milk with fresh grated coconut.
We literally polished the whole lot of dishes between the eight of us that night happily. New friends made, new dishes tried, new found loves… that is what makes Chyuan’s Tiffin Underground Supper Club a fabulous dining experience.
Towards the end of the evening, most of us were still lingering there as we all happily chatted like old friends, sharing food experience and taste, interrogating Eddy and team for their creations… especially for that awesome Thai pesto sauce. This is one of the best supper clubs I have had. It’s the personal touch from Eddy, Raymond and Muk that really sums up the whole dining supper club.
I heard Eddy telling us he makes a mean Roasted Pork with Pickled Leeks… can’t wait to come back for that alone!
To enjoy Chyuan’s Tiffin Underground Supper Club at Sri Petaling, make your reservations with Eddy:
Phone: 012 917 6268
*Full address to be revealed upon confirmation
**More photos available at my Facebook: Chasing Food Dreams