Lan Je Steamed Tilapia (兰姐清蒸非洲鱼) @ Raja Uda, Butterworth, Penang.
How about One Fish per person for your meal? That may sound lavish but that's the norm for diners dining at Lan Je's place. The long-established (since 1978) name- Lan Je Steamed Tilapia (兰姐清蒸非洲鱼) from Rawang has finally opened its first branch in Penang (more than 13 branches across the nation)... at the bustling Jalan Raja Uda, Butterworth. It needs no elaborated menu, just a simple one that offers uncomplicated home-cooked dishes with their signature dish- Steamed Tilapia. Freshness is what they believe in and fortunately, the branch in Penang is able to live up that reputation, for serving some of the freshest catch in town. Ironically, the prices are well-maintained at unbeatable-low rate. The name has traveled far and attracted the attention of many gourmands; the past weekend at Lan Je's (Raja Uda branch) was extremely hectic. The restaurant opened at 5:30 pm (for dinner) but the place was already packed to the brim at 5:40 pm. If you intend to make a trip there in the near future, be sure to grab your seat as early as possible.
Steamed Tilapia (Rm 18/ by weight)
Stir Fried Greens (Rm 8/ small)
Tofu Shrimp (Rm 9/ small)
The cooking method for their Tilapia is fixed and diners can only choose between not spicy, normal and extra hot. We had both normal and extra hot versions. The Tilapia was in a favorable size (just good enough for one diner) served with a sweet-savory Soy sauce, topped with a generous helping of minced Garlic and chopped Bird's Eye Chilies. The "wow" factor was there, the pristine white flesh possessed not even a hint of the unpleasant fishiness and it was expertly cooked to the right doneness (unbelievably smooth with melt-in-the-mouth texture). It may be on the salty side on its own but it worked perfectly over a spoon of rice.
Other dishes were meh; though we could not exactly find fault with them. The Stir Fried Greens were disappointingly average and we thought the dish was a little overly greasy. Tofu Shrimp was equally disappointing, the Tofu was overly drowning in a gooey-starchy sauce while the Shrimps were in depressing sizes... but justifiable with the price tags though. All in all, we thought their Steamed Tilapia was the only dish that stood out; we'll definitely come back for more.
Taste: 7.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good) *Only for the Fish*
Service: 6.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Price: 7/10 (1-3 expensive, 4-7 average, 8-10 cheap)
Ambiance: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Parking: 6.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: No. 186, Block I, Jalan Raja Uda, Pusat Perniagaan Raja Uda, 12300, Butterworth, Penang.
Business Hours: 11:30 pm to 3 pm, 5:30 pm to 10 pm. Closed on Tuesdays.
Contact Number: 6012- 231 9391