The story goes that Mamak was created by a bunch of uni students who were craving food from home and ended up making a business out of it. Regardless if this is accurate, whatever they were inspired by, the Mamak team has created great success! With huge queues snaking around corners, Mamak has expanded beyond Sydney and has set up shop in Melbourne as well. There's no doubt we'll be seeing Mamak invading the other states soon!
Like all South-East Asian cuisines Mamak is no exception to having spicy food. The spicier it is, the more addictive the food becomes! Every time I leave Mamak after a very satisfying dinner, I am so bloated because every spicy bite is followed by a giant mouthful of water to numb it all. "If it's that spicy, why do you eat it?" Because no one can say 'no' to Mamak.
Since it's only just after 5.30pm (their dinner opening time), I figure there's bound to be no queue and I can take my sweet time getting there. And voila! This may be the only time where I can take a picture with no queues outside the door! But when I'm inside I see 90% of the tables are occupied with diners and the waiter shows me to a table in the corner of the restaurant which I happily accept.
I am incredibly impressed (but also slightly scared) of the couple next to us because every 5 minutes a dish is brought to them and they always to manage to successfully gobble it down. I'm pretty sure they got 3 times more things than us (a table of three)! I think they ordered plain roti, curry, rice, fried rice, roti stuffed with meat, a dozen satay sticks and two desserts. The tables at Mamak are quite snug so I wasn't deliberately looking at their feast. It was hard not to notice!
|Rice, $2.50 per person|
|Kari kambing, $16.00|
|Mee goreng, $11.50|
|A dozen of chicken satay sticks, $16.00|
There are plenty more things at Mamak that I love dearly but unfortunately with just three people, we don't have enough stomach space to consume it all. I LOVE their fried chicken! The batter is light and thin which gives the pieces of chicken just a layer of crisp while the meat is very juicy and tender. Their rotis are amazing, sweet or savoury. And last but not least their ice milo is great. It's very simple but chilled condensed milk and milo make the perfect couple. Don't be discouraged by the queues, it's usually a quick turnover so be patient and stare at the roti chefs throwing the pastry around through the glass windows.