It is rare to come across a restaurant proudly accentuating its home cooked philosophies from behind the kitchen doors as proudly acclaimed at TTL. Judging by the food, one would discover that they pour their heart and soul into dishing out some flavorful delights which duly earn their customers’ smile. I’ve been a regular patron for a while but due my reluctance in coming to this area (parking headache), I’ve not visited this place ever since they moved from a dingy looking, non air-conditioned coffee shop to a well lit, clean and fully air-conditioned restaurant, but the urge for their delicious food drove me back here today.
TTL does not occupy the most strategic of location, and could easily be written off as another generic coffee shop, but yet the steady stream of customers come lunch and dinner hours renders the significance amongst the rapid development of the area.
Boiled dry bok choy soup with chicken feet (菜干鸡爪汤) ~ Dried bok choy is sweet in taste, it helps relieve heatiness, moistens the intestines as well as aid with bowel movement. Dried bok choy usually contains quite a bit of sand but is carefully rinsed here so that one wouldn’t detect any trace of it. Even though the soup was not rich in flavor, it certainly has this pleasant sweetness which makes a perfect starter. This is on the house!
Signature stir-fry prawn in mini wok (锅子虾) @ RM 16.00 ~ Their prawns here is fantastic. You can see a plate of this on almost every table. The prawns are super fresh, crunchy, decently sized and with a slight tinge of spiciness in its gravy. This one you got to try! An 8/10!
Stewed chicken with bitter gourd in black bean sauce (苦瓜焖鸡) @ RM 16.00 ~ Bittergourd is not well-liked by many but I would say it’s an acquired taste. I used to dislike the raw & bitter taste until recently. Unusual but-not-unpleasant bitter gourd with succulent chicken meat stir fried with douchi (豆豉) is simply great! This I must absolutely recommend.
Four Heavenly Kings (四大天王) @ RM 12.00 ~ The rendition of the Four Heavenly Kings here at TTL are the brinjals, long beans, okra and four-angled beans stir-fried in sambal sauce with crispy dried shrimps. This was strongly flavored while retaining the crunchiness of the vegetables. Tastes amazing. An 8/10!
Teochew style steamed grouper (潮州蒸石斑) @ RM 50.00 ~ Though this fish was not swimming around when we ordered it, but it was real fresh. The fish was expertly done in Teochew style and surprisingly good. Needless to say, the steaming technique here is excellent. The grouper is flaky, moist and the delicate flavours of the fish preserved by the light and slightly sourish broth is absolutely heavenly!
Braised pork belly rack (红烧骨牌) @ RM 30.00 ~ Aside from the steamed fish, the other item which serves as a benchmark for the Chef’s skills has got to be this braised pork belly rack which is only served occasionally. (depending on the availability of fresh belly rack and a little luck) The tender juicy flesh of the pork simply falls off the bone and complementing it is one of the best braising sauces I have ever come across. There ain’t nothing more comforting than seeing the steam wafting from a cauldron of braising sauce. The fats are sinful but just close your eyes, don’t think about the cholesterol and sink your teeth into it and then let the tasty, creamy lipoid bolus melt inside your mouth bursting with flavour and slowly slide down your throat. The feeling is absolutely divine!
Steamed three yolk egg custard (蒸三黄蛋) @ RM 16.00 ~ A velvety smooth combination of egg, salted egg and century egg. Wobbly egg custard with a dash of soy sauce, sesame seed oil and pepper was fragrant, smooth, and rich. Glides down your throat just like that! Delightful!
Stir-fry Nai Bak (清炒奶白) @ RM 12.00 ~ I don’t fancy a plate of vegetables soaking in grease as I feel all that’s needed is just a light touch of oil to cook the vegetables. Thankfully, the stir fried veggie here is just that – light and not overly greasy. I still can’t figure out how they make the sauce so flavorsome, knowing they don’t use any lard in the cooking. Its got that nice wok hei, tasty, savoury, “can’t get enough of me”, flavour that would tempt any staunch carnivores into having a bite! The greens are fresh and crunchy accompanied by some unusual crispy anchovies as toppings. Worth a try!
This all hits, no misses lunch at less than RM 160.00 (after a “regular customer” discount) including rice and drinks at TTL sure satiated hunger pangs, and brought me relief in knowing that these establishment still exist in the heart of the city that already has been choked with development. Maybe, just maybe, we all should let our hair down someday, walk away from the chic eateries/cafes/bistros we have all been pampered with, and seek solace in dining in such timeless restaurants. Forget the décor (what décor?), forget the unflattering lighting (there are no mirrors, so what the eye doesn’t see, the heart won’t grieve over anyway), you’re at TTL for two reasons, and two reasons only: the rocking good Chinese home-cooked food that is consistently brilliant and prices that remind you once again that out in the city, things can still be cheap and good. Parking can be a bit of a pain, but stick it out and you’ll be rewarded with a great meal.
- Tien Tien Lai Restaurant (天天来饭店)
- 490, Jalan Pudu (behind POS Malaysia Pudu)
- 55100 Kuala Lumpur.
- Mobile – 012-915 8082 (Ah Mun/亚文) 019-273 9029 (Ah Nam/亚南)
- Business hours – 1130-1400/1700-2130
- Closed – Tuesdays
- GPS Coordinates
- N03°08.060 E101°42.860
- Location map