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May 4, 2011 08:06 AM

Kuala Lumpur - Jalan Alor Eats (Part 1)

This was a last-minute decision - for once, the skies over KL did NOT open up with its daily monsoonal deluge this evening. So as I left office, I decided to traipse over to the popular Bukit Bintang shopping & dining district in downtown KL.

Onward to Jalan Alor, but enroute to my intended destination - the famous Wong Ah Wah Restaurant for its barbecued wings - my curiousity was piqued by a very crowded Dragon View Restaurant on the corner of Jalan Alor and Changkat Bukit Bintang. So, I decided to defer my trip to WAW & detoured into Dragon View instead. After all, they do have this large barbecue at its entrance churning out dozens upon dozens of glistening chicken wings, their golden-brown skin shining like polished lacquer. The chicken wings, like WAW's, were tender, oily and pleasantly smoky. A little dish of spicy chilli-vinegar dip complemented the wings beautifully.

Another interesting dish available at Dragon View was curry mee. This is spicy curried noodles KL-style - yellow Hokkien noodles drenched in a spicy red-hot curried soup which contained tofu puffs (taupok), long beans, aubergines, de-shelled local clams, and poached chicken. The curry's scent was reminiscent of South Indian/Keralan fish curries.

Jalan Alor was a hive of activity, confirming its status as the main hub of street food in Kuala Lumpur. I'll have to come back again for Wong Ah Wah's chicken wings another time!

Dragon View Restaurant
Corner of Jalan Alor & Changkat Bukit Bintang
50200 Kuala Lumpur

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  1. Very nice!
    Are there other streets in KL (and elsewhere) that are converted into pedestrian food areas at night, like what is clearly the case here from your last photo? I see photos of Jalan Alor (from elsewhere) that show it to be a 'normal' street with vehicular traffic during the day. In fact, I thought KL had swept away such types of makan-makan areas off the streets into enclosed food courts? (Excepting areas designed to be so, such as the enclosed pedestrians-only part of Petaling Street)

    9 Replies
    1. re: huiray

      Oh, huiray, Jalan Alor has NOT been converted into a pedestrian-only stretch at night - you should have seen when vehicles passed by within 2 inches of a restaurant patron's seat :-D

      But so far, I've not seen any other streets in KL which are teeming with hawkers likewise. Maybe I'll go down to Chow Kit Road one evening & see if there's a Malay version of a hawker street food spot.

      1. re: klyeoh

        Oh. Well, it LOOKED like it from that photo of yours! :-)

        1. re: huiray

          Ha-ha! I was waiting for a moment when the street was free of vehicles before I snapped this pic - a car nearly ran over my foot as I was standing near the middle of the street, and a large, slow-moving van obscured my view for a few minutes before it finally got out of the picture :-D

          I'm planning a return visit to Jalan Alor soon (maybe next week, I'm going back to S'pore this weekend for the General Elections) - Wong Ah Wah's barbecued chicken wings beckon, and I got to try Meng Kee's grilled stingray & sambal-marinated seafoods (no, it's not the same as Meng Kee of the barbecued char-siu fame) as well as that yu-char-kueh (in Singapore, we call it yu-tiao) stall just outside Dragon View (opposite the 24-hour KFC outlet) at the intersection of Changkat Bukit Bintang & Jalan Alor. I heard their deep-fried Chinese fritters, especially the butterfly-shaped, sesame-flavored ones and the ones with sweet glutinous rice centre, are fabulous!

          1. re: klyeoh

            The butterfly shaped fried dough twists were new to me, and excellent. Have been avoiding the hotel breakfast and hitting Alor the past few mornings in spite of its reputation of being too touristy. The fried dough stall has been opening late though. I waited from 8 am to 9, but he did not turn up.

            1. re: antonego07

              You should only look for it only in the late-afternoon. The stall opens from 3pm till 9pm (though they can sell out earlier). Peak period is 4pm onwards & they are closed on Sundays.

              1. re: antonego07

                Thank you. Flight arrived early morning and I got my carbohydrate fix at 8 in the morning!

                1. re: antonego07

                  Went at 4pm and they had four types of yu-char-kueh: got to see the sweet glutinous rice centre thingies for the first time and they were great! In Malaka, I say the sesame seed variant twisted into a y-loop: good taste.

                  I trawl cyberspace for local reviews as they know the neighbourhood. But they often don't have experience of the original dish to compare against, and this has a detrimental effect on the conclusions they reach. Here it was just a bad palate:


                  The food was stale: the prawns seemed to have been stored in the freezer (without de-veining) and the duck was fried in stale oil!

                  Maybe this is a case of the lesser popularity of Thai food in this Chinese locality, with consequently slower turnover?


                  The coconut nectar drink was good though: kept getting refills.

          2. re: klyeoh

            "Maybe I'll go down to Chow Kit Road one evening & see if there's a Malay version of a hawker street food spot"
            What about Brickfields Road? How's that nowadays, I wonder. (Maybe not hawker stalls spilling out everywhere but there were a fair number of half-in-the-store-half-outside-the-store type Indian places once, many specializing in "banana-leaf" and eating-with-your-thumb-and-fingertips food scenarios.

            1. re: huiray

              I think Brickfields been beautified quite a bit recently - Indian mosaics on the pavements & roads, Indian-influenced street-lamps, etc. - it looked better than Singapore's Little India by far. Haven't checked out its eating places yet this time, but will definitely remedy that soon :-D

        2. Back to Dragon View again for its BBQ chicken wings & curry noodles. But also tried the steamed clams ("see hum") which were nice & juicy, plus a very good barbecued stingray with sambal chilli & turmeric dressing.

          2 Replies
          1. re: klyeoh

            You have to open your own see-ham? :-)

            Looks good, really. I can't say I particularly miss cockles, but they do figure large in my memories of various dishes - e.g. rice noodles fried in a VERY hot wok with dollops of minced garlic, chopped scallions, egg, dark soy sauce, bean sprouts, cockles.....

            1. re: huiray

              Yes, very strangely, they par-boil their cockles but not long enough to make them open up! But we could easily pry open those cockles though.