Monday, April 14, 2014

VEENA: Langkawi's MUST-STOP Thai Seafood Restaurant. Trust me.

Please excuse me for the disappearing act. The week before I was away on a trip celebrating our anniversary and my birthday in Langkawi. Thank you to my husband for the most elaborate anniversary/birthday present ever. May Allah bless you and our marriage.

This was dinner on the second night we were there. We were cruising by the Kuah district, after an entire morning in the sea and hubs had come up with a temperature. The weird thing about Langkawi is, all tourist spots and clinics even--close at 6pm--way way to early even for sub-urban girl me. It wasn't until 8 pm did we finally managed to find one open clinic, run by a kindly elderly doctor who looked like he was ready to retire. He jabbed hubs one time in the butt with a lethal anti-virus and sent us on our way.

From the outside, the restaurant did not look appealing at all. Birthday girl thought sick husband should choose desired menu that night and he wanted Thai Green Curry. So in part we ended up in Veena mainly because of the Thai Seafood part of the extraordinarily mediocre signboard. It was right next to a Chinese restaurant that had little beer flyers hung all over from the canopy to the floor. I hesitated but then noticed Veena's cooks and waiters kindly faces and muslimah dressing and were assured the place were halal.

The signboard seen from the road. The river runs on the other side.

We sat down at the table near the river except the river was pitch black and the air was full of buzzing mosquitoes so we moved to the center. We noticed quite a number of tables were reserved. I thought nothing of it until the food arrived.

Let me just say the place must be--I have no doubt---a local favourite. By 9 pm the place was bustling crazy and ALL the tables were full, including the mosquitoe-invested ones by the river. And the seafood---masha'Allah. OUT OF THIS WORLD. Here's what we had ordered:

1. Ikan siakap stim: with perfection approaching infinity, I have never experienced such a dish. It is now, in my book, the ideal siakap stim in Malaysia. It was served on a container of hot-coals. All my boys were slurping on the sauce and tambahing nasi 2-3 times at a rate of 3 suaps per second. My rating: A+++!

Ikan Siakap Stim. Perfection approaching infinity...

2. Tom Yam seafood. Awesome. This was my step-daughters favourite, she didn't look at anything else. It had all the usual: shrimp, squid, chicken etc etc. I would say the tom-yam here though is comparable to the Tom Yam we have in Bangi. Thank goodness, at least I don't have to travel all the way to Langkawi for Tom Yam. A+!

Tom Yam Seafood. One of the best..
3. Siakap 3-rasa. I would say siapkap kicap cili was more appropriate a name. Not that it tasted normal. It was superb. I just think that the 3-rasa theme we have in Selangor/KL has a very different meaning to it and the Langkawians didn't catch on. Nevertheless A+!

Siakap 3-rasa. Wonderfully flavourful.
4. Sotong goreng tepung: A+. Delicious. And the Thai cili sauce that came with it was original and good too. 

Few notes on Veena though because I know you're just about to jump on the next plane to Langkawi. They take a while to prepare your food and we realised along the way why so many tables were reserved. The locals: they know it so they order in advance. Was the long wait worth it? A big resounding YES. One mouthful of the siakap stim and Veena just got a huge I-dont-care-how-long-it-took-you-to-cook-my-food-but-you're-forgiven ticket. Few places do that to me. Its like forgiving your husband for forgetting your birthday because he bought you a BMW with his bonus pay. Wouldn't that be wonderful. 

Our bill.

I am putting Veena up there for the best MUST STOP Thai Seafood restaurant in Langkawi. We went to 5-6 restaurants while we were there, and although they were all good and satisfactory, Veena shines through like a diamond among cubic zirconias. We went home happy and full, and to my pleasant surprise the bill only came to RM100+ which also includes telur dadar, sambal belacan, two big bowls of jasmine rice, kangkung cili and drinks--although I am clueless to what they charged us on the bill and do hope they've covered everything. After all that food, hubs fever broke alhamdulillah and he was right as rain for another rendezvous of the island the next day. Alhamdulillah and thank you Veena. What a wonderful Thai Seafood experience you left us with. Please don't ever change. I love you just the way you are.

With the little waitress --who didnt speak a word of malay.
Veena Thai Seafood,
Persiaran Mutiara 1, Langkawi
Waze it!!!!

HIGHLY recommended.

Cleanliness: B
Food: A++++
Price: A (reasonable)
Satisfaction Level: A
Service: Could be faster.
Atmosphere: A

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