Eating Village Park Famous Nasi Lemak at Damansara Uptown
The reward for waking up early on a Saturday morning is the simple joy of eating Nasi Lemak. When Fish Frens Steph and Jeannie suggested, the smile that broke on SmartDory’s face was brighter than the yellow of a sunny side egg. We all have our ideal weekend mornings. Mine just happens to be eating!
What Actually Happened On My Nasi Lemak Morning
What actually happened is this. I slept really late and got up past 9 am. By the time we reached Damansara Uptown the place was a messy choc a bloc full of vehicles. Going in a tag team of three seems to work out best. Our driver dropped us off. One went into the restaurant proper, the third stood on the pavement eyeballing other customers.
There was a mental mantra that went. “Finish and leave.” Which of course by now, I should have known, it DOESN’T work?
Steph rang from inside the restaurant. “Quickly, I hoarded a table!”
It is with such glee that we regrouped and ordered.
I felt dizzy. The entire restaurant was full and there were new customers standing around doing the mental mantra.
Village Park Restaurant with its tables spilling out the door beyond the five-foot way onto parking spaces and up and down the steps is perceptually packed. I have never seen the restaurant empty.
Tips on Getting a Table During Peak Hours
Getting to Village Park Famous Nasi Lemak is a planned operative. Of course, I had to go during peak hours on a Saturday morning to learn this so you can go at odd hours!
Here are the Tips (I learned the hard way…)
#1 Wake up early (this mean no rolling around and snuggling in the comforter with air-cond. humming merrily)
#2 Leave the house at the appointed time. (no Stations of the Cross at various parts of the house before getting into the car together)
#3 Get into the car and drive
#4 Find a car park (this one needs oodles of luck, prayers, and steely determination!) Good parking skill helps enormously as Damanasara Uptown is as always. Congested.
#5 Don’t let the crowds deter you. You will EAT NASI LEMAK today!
#6 A good plan is by going in a group of 3 minimum. One parks the car. One stake out on the pavement. The last one stakes out in the restaurant. The restaurant is in 2 shop lots, you need to walk through a human wall to get to the huge seating area.
Sweet Sambal Success
Going local is the best way to eat. We got all the plans in place. Shared a long canteen style table at the back and Steph ordered. When Jeannie arrived the food was at our table in 10 minutes. No matter how packed, Village Park Restaurant gets the order out speedily and keeps to the same consistent good taste.
Why Nasi Lemak?
The fresh hot from the fryer crispy fried chicken. The Malay fragrant rice dish, nasi lemak kukus (steamed rice) cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaf is considered a national dish. This is what Malaysian can and will eat Nasi Lemak for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and supper!
This delicious mound of white rice is served with condiments of a halved hardboiled egg fried Ikan bilis, peanuts, and cucumber slivers. But it is that blood-red sambal that gives you a kick. The sambal should tease with sweetness, a hint of sour from Assam (tamarind) and the slow tingling burn of your lips and tongue from the spiciness of the chili. The sambal is hot, but it does not overwhelm the flavor of the fragrant rice.
We stick to basics. Almost every table has the same order or variants to it. Nasi Lemak with the Best Ayam Goreng. By best, I meant the chicken is juicy and delicious and you get to taste just enough crispy fried batter with the chicken. Alternatively, order the equally popular Nasi Lemak with Cuttle Fish. The cuttlefish is chewy and soft without being rubbery.
We got one each and a Soto Ayam with Bee Hoon.
The Nasi Lemak goes really well on its own. I think it suffices. But if you’re one who need side dishes you can order from the tantalizing full spread of gulai, vegetable dishes, ikan Goreng (fried fish), sambal udang (prawns), mutton and even a fish head curry. For me, a good side dish would be extra Ayam Goreng (fried chicken).
Of course, all Malay restaurants have delicious kuihs. You need to get in really early to get your hands on those deep-fried bits of dough that I so love. The hard to find cucur badak are a prize I savor. Fat balls of, crispy deep-fried dough pucks stuffed with a spicy chili-coconut stuffing. The mark of a perfect cucur badak is its badge of honor of a single prawn.
Of course, all were sold out by the time someone crawled out of bed with one eye opened slowly. We got our hands on two banana leaf wrapped coconut gluttonous rice cake topped with a plump ball of Gula Melaka infused sweet coconut stuffing.
What else to order?
Jeannie’s friend recommended the Roti Bakar with the homemade kaya. The toast was crisp and sliced so thinly that I thought it wasn’t buttered but merely stacked up! The coffee was strong but not at all bitter and not too sweet.
Over the years the restaurant is consistently good with many recorded positive feedback from its customers for its delicious quality of food and speedy service.
I heard food descriptions of the Lontong and Assam Laksa purportedly swimming with deliciousness with a prattle of kuih names that makes me want to set the alarm clock back by at least an hour on a weekend. I just want to eat at this place again! Can’t wait to get up early on a weekend than eating Village Park Famous Nasi Lemak at Damansara Uptown for a true Malaysian breakfast!
Village Park Restaurant | Halal Malay Restaurant
Address: 5, Jalan SS21/37, Damansara Utama
Opening Hours: 07:00AM – 08:00PM Monday – Saturday; 07:00AM – 06:00PM Sunday