Thursday, October 1, 2015

Lucky Bo @ Bangkung, Bangsar

If you know your history, this Bangkung address has housed some excellent neighbourhood eateries over the years, from seafood sanctum Four Seas to mod-Oz haven Madisons (plus Tasting Room by Wine Cellar, if you count the space upstairs). Lucky Bo, reputedly named in honour of the beloved dog of the outlet's owner, preserves that tradition; if we're fortunate, this 'community cafe' (more on that a bit later) will enjoy a more enduring presence than its predecessors.

Lucky Bo takes familiar favourites & puts its personal spin on them; expect both Western & Asian offerings, with 'The Boger' (RM18 - it's 'a booger in your nose & a Boger in your mouth') featured prominently on the menu - a serving of two sliders, stuffed with tender & flavoursome seared sirloin beef (a nice change from processed patties), tomatoes & lettuce. From this alone, it seems clear that the restaurant makes a genuine effort to serve feel-good food with an honest quality - the accompanying fries taste fresh & are not an afterthought, while even the side salad is more deliciously dressed than expected.

High marks for the nasi lemak (RM12.50) too, with creamy, satisfyingly fragrant rice matched with all the essential components (each irreproachable), including a choice of prawn sambal (our pick), beef rendang or chicken curry. If it's available, ask for a side serving of Bernie Chan's sambal ikan bilis, a terrific concoction with a beautiful balance of sweet-savoury dimensions (bonus points: it's not too spicy). Other Eastern temptations here include Siamese laksa, Hainanese chicken rice, Hong Kong macaroni beef soup, Mee Siam, fried wantan noodles, yee tau mai fun & kai see hor fan, costing between RM9.80 & RM18.

There's a sense that Lucky Bo's founders appreciate food & have been cooking for a long time - the spaghetti tuak vongole (RM22), loaded wonderfully with clams & cooked with rice wine for a slightly more robust flavour than your regular white-wine variety, feels like the successful result of experimentation in someone's home kitchen. The only dish that wasn't up to mark was the grilled chicken (RM24) - the meat bore the off-flavour of a potential storage issue, but the sides of guacamole, roasted potatoes & rocket were all fine. And a bottle of red, reasonably priced at RM120, made the evening all the more enjoyable.

The 'community cafe' factor is showcased on the shelves - patrons can purchase wide-ranging independently made products, from royal jelly honey & peanut butter for pets to CDs & children's books, many of which seem to emphasise a sense of being Malaysian, a trait that may already have been apparent if you spotted the miniature national flags on the Bogers. Lucky Bo was an oasis of calm on a recent Tuesday night, but expect this to become a crowd magnet soon. Service is warm & efficient.

Lucky Bo
65 Jalan Bangkung, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. Daily, 12pm-10pm. Tel: 03-2092-1222


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16 comments:

  1. Attractive dishes, Sean, and I like the flags, too! Nice ambiance. :)

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    1. Linda: those malaysian flags are a cool touch! :)

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  2. I had clam pasta that day but no, no tuak in mine. Hmmm...I have this thing about ikan bilis with their heads intact, the beady eggs looking at me...one of my pet peeves, me cranky old man. :D

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    1. Suituapui: heheh, it was interesting to try to figure out the difference between the use of tuak versus white wine for the spaghetti :D oooo, i don't mind that about the ikan bilis. the thing is, i actually like the ikan bilis here cos it's crispy in a nice way, not crispy in a 'hard' way like a lot of ikan bilis :D

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  3. I was expecting the place to serve some Chinese dishes but it turns out that they have a fusion-menu!

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    1. Ken: heh, well, they do have several chinese one-plate/bowl dishes, like fish head noodles ... which we almost ordered! :D

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  4. tuak pasta sounds interesting!

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    1. Suanie: ya, we couldn't resist ordering that. i don't think you can actually taste the original flavour of tuak (just like we can't explicitly taste white wine in pasta sauces), but it did seem to add a deep sort of sweetness to the pasta (unless that came from the clams, haha) :D

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  5. The sliders look really cute! And the nasi lemak sambal is so enticing.. I'm going to make nasi lemak this weekend! :D

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    1. Iamthewitch: heh, yeah, it was fun photographing those sliders .... Hope you enjoy your nasi lemak!!! :D

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  6. Yummy nasi lemak always a yes for me, and I want to try the tuak vongole too.

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    1. CK: yeah, i'm glad i ordered the nasi lemak here. as well as the tuak vongole - it's been a long time since i last had vongole, and this was quite satisfying :D

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  7. Peanut butter for pet looks really interesting to me although I didn't have any pet :P

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    1. Choi Yen: heheh, ya, now you made me curious to try that peanut butter for myself too :D

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    2. And you can definitely eat it too. Thanks for featuring our products in your article Sean! :)

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    3. Barkery Oven: thanks for the info ... i'm gonna get a jar of that next time :)

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