Scott Garden might not seem like a desirable destination for KL's food hunters, but Dai Dai Dong is striving to change that, serving a well-curated selection of East Asian street food - mainly Chinese, Japanese & Taiwanese, from noodles to soups & grilled fare - that raises the bar in admirably ambitious ways.
Start with seafood; Dai Dai Dong's owners have scoured the coast for some of the freshest, most succulent prawns, fetched from the fishing boats of Kuala Selangor at least twice a week. Nine-inch jumbo prawns, packed with ravishingly savoury juices, clock in at RM27 for two pieces. Certain to satisfy crustacean cravings.
Prefer even plumper prawns? 'Monster prawns' that measure 13 inches (RM60 each) are available by pre-order, perfect for gargantuan appetites. Seasoned in sea salt, they're the pinnacle of prawn pleasure.
Tentacle temptation: Grilled octopus (RM15), another creature from Kuala Selangor's deep seas, also awesome.
Hailing from farther north, the Japanese squid (RM27) is also recommended, thanks to its tender bite, nicely complemented by an interesting mix of chopped wasabi & olive oil.
Dai Dai Dong offers a respectable range of kushiyaki skewers; our best bet's the pork-&-mushroom combo (bacon-enoki, RM6).
Other options span quail eggs marinated in yakitori sauce (RM3), crisp chicken skin wrapped over garlic (RM3), black pepper beef tongue (RM6), wasabi oysters (RM9), chicken heart & gizzard (RM3).
Lamb shoulder comes chopped up in convenient bite-sized portions & pan-fried in a hearty portion. RM25.
Dai Dai Dong is also steadily building a reputation for its noodle soups: The Supreme Beef (RM26) is a bountiful bowl brimming with brisket, balls, muscle meat, tripe & tendons, accompanied by a tenderloin skewer on the side.
Bovine brilliance, elevated further by the restaurant's kitchen-made chilli sauce. Two light eaters can share this; Dai Dai Dong opens all day long, from before lunchtime to way past midnight, so this could conveniently be brunch or supper.
Signature Supreme Pork (RM26), a mildly peppery pleasure for pursuers of pork, powered by pig's maw, rib, soft bone, belly, balls, mince & lovable lard. Another princely, protein-heavy portion.
We were too stuffed to savour more, but Dai Dai Dong also boasts seafood noodles that come with scallops, squid, salmon, a jumbo prawn, mussels & clams that customers can slurp up while enjoying Dai Dai Dong's surprisingly light-&-easy soundtrack (think Julie London & Sarah McLachlan).
Coming full circle, back to beginning with Dai Dai Dong's welcome soup, a salted-veggie treat. Many thanks to Dai Dai Dong's show-runners, Lester & Benson, for hosting this meal.
Dai Dai Dong Street Food
1st Floor, Scott Garden, Old Klang Road, Kuala Lumpur
Daily, 1030am-230am. Tel: 03-7980-1232
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