Our rumbling tummies were screaming for food again while driving from Port Dickson to Malacca and since nyonya food was synonymous with this historical town, we agreed on Donald and Lily’s, an outlet many claimed to serve the best nyonya food in Malacca.
Arriving at a little past 2pm, we were lucky to find a parking spot right in front of the shop. (Btw, D&L moved to their new shop at Kota Laksama from that little old shack – GPS Coordinates as follows :- N02′ 11.614 E102′ 14.538 ) The place was packed and most of the tables were obviously waiting for their food. We didn’t wanna starve further and changed our plan from nyonya to chicken rice, another specialty in Malacca.
As Hoe Kee’s queue was super long and Chung Wah closed for the day, we had no choice but to settle for Famosa, a place which have attracted more bad reviews than good ones. Ignoring them and giving them a benefit of a doubt, we joined the queue which was a relatively short one. The imposing facade of the shop was eye-catching, the numbers inside made up by mostly tourist.
While waiting, orders were taken at the entrance and this was where the disappointment starts. The waitress shoved a menu to me and starred at me while waiting for my order. She was lifeless and impassive. Yawn…
When it was finally our turn, the fat guy in the pic came and “ordered” us in, also without any smile, in a less appreciative manner and this is no exaggeration ok! I received the same treatment from the lady in the pic when paying. No smiles and not even a word of thanks! Service? Duh!
I honestly felt that this eatery did well in terms of attracting diners with the decoration, publicity and advertising. With an air-conditioned setting and celebrities to publicize, including Hong Kong’s famous gourmet, Choi Lam, it certainly bode well for their business.
Fragrant Rice @ RM 1.50 ~ We opted for this version instead of the rice ball (0.30/ball) which I’ve tried and found nothing special to it. The rice is a little dry but the fragrance made up to it.
Steamed Chicken (½ bird) @ RM 18.00 ~ Chicken meat was way too soft and tasteless as I could discern the stale taste. It just did not make the cut!
Roasted Pork @ RM 9.00 (s) ~ The meat underneath the layer of crispy skin and fats was no where near tender and lacked succulence. The cut was rather thin too.
Accompanying chili sauce was very much watered down and definitely tourist friendly in terms of the level of hotness. It was a complete letdown and parred miserably in terms of local standard. I always believe a good plate of chili sauce is an essential complement to a perfect meal of poached chicken rice.
The only saving grace for this place was the deco. It evoked a traditional Chinese restaurant atmosphere. Everything was decked out in bright Chinese red and gold, with old-style wooden chairs and tables. A case of over-commercialization maybe?
In fact, I think the entire restaurant was overrated. The chicken wasn’t even good and neither was the siew yuk.
Service??? Non-existent! I would have been happier serving myself!
Only tourists are keeping this place alive for the locals will never go near this chicken rice ball restaurant. Like the idiom goes, “Do not judge a book by its cover” is all so true.
We made a big mistake coming here. (Of course, the “laziness” from not wanting to join the extended queue at the famed eatery meant we were “rewarded” with less satisfaction). After coming here, you can understand why people were queuing at the other two more reputable chicken rice ball restaurants on the same street, and this one wasn’t full.
I don’t think I’ll come back again for this kinda food and service even none of the other eateries in Malacca wants to sell me food!
- Famosa Chicken Rice Ball
- 21, Jalan Hang Jebat
- 75200 Melaka.
- Tel – 06-286 0120
- Business hours – 0800-2100 (Mon-Thurs)/0800-2200 Fri-Sun)
- GPS Coordinates
- N02°11.780 E102°14.932