Sunday, August 28, 2011

Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen @ Chow Thye Road, Penang.

Miss the taste of your mom's cooking ? Finding authentic Nyonya Cuisine ? Seeking for a cheap and good meal ? Well, you find all of them in Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen situated at Chow Thye road. The restaurant's main focus is to offer home-cook dishes to their customers and at the same time, serving authentic Nyonya Cuisine that rarely be found in Penang. Set lunch and set meals that include drinks and dessert are also available in this restaurant, apart from that, they are having this 5-course set lunch promotion, its basically a serving for 2-3 pax with an incredible price of Rm65 !!! 

Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen was also being visited by the famous chef Chen Hong from Taiwan and has been awarded by him as one of the best food outlet in Penang (year 2011). From this award, it proves that this 
restaurant has reached to a certain standard and serves quality food.

Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen does not serve pork. So its definitely safe for our Muslim friends. Their combo meals ranging from Rm10 to Rm12 and the best part is all the prices stated are in net price ! All of their combo meals come with a dessert (jelly) and fruit juice. Its definitely something worth of trying considering the price, the cozy environment, and most importantly, quality food.

Back to the 5-course set lunch, since I've tried it out myself, I would say its suitable for 3 person. Its definitely too much for 2 person unless you are a big eater. Well, for this set lunch, you will be getting Jiu Hu Char and some lettuce for the wrapping of the Jiu Hu Char (fried jicama with shredded cuttlefish), Assam Prawns (4 pieces), Curry Kapitan Chicken (3 pieces), Fish in Gulai Tumis Assam (2 pieces), 2 bowls of white rice and 2 bowls of dessert. 

Curry Kapitan Chicken, it comes with 3 pieces in the set lunch. Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen only serves chicken thigh for this dish, so you do not have to worry about chewing those parts like chicken breast with rough texture. A lot of shallots were added (they are the soul to Curry Kapitan), so the flavor was quite strong, it goes perfectly with a bowl of white rice.

Jiu Hu Char (Fried Jicama with shredded cuttlefish) A very traditional and common dish and I am pretty sure every Penangite has at least tried this dish for once. A more appropriate way of enjoying this delicious dish is to wrap the Jiu Hu Char with a piece of lettuce and pop the whole thing into your mouth. It is also a traditional way of eating, surprisingly this combination works pretty well. Although Jiu Hu Char is commonly seen out there in those economical rice stalls, finding a delicious and authentic ones is never an easy job. Do try Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen's, you will notice the differences.

Ngo Wa (Fish In Assam Pedas) There will be 2 pieces given in the set lunch. I have never been a big fan of Assam fish due to the fishy odor but I was perfectly okay with this dish. Well cooked with Assam, the gravy itself was a bit sour, however, it somehow brought out the flavor and the aroma of one of the soul ingredients in this dish - torch ginger flower. The taste, other wise, similar to Assam Laksa, which can be very appetizing. 

Assam Prawns. One of the best Assam Prawns I have ever had. Highly recommended. The Assam Prawns that we can find out there are normally with gravy or at least moist. The Assam Prawns here are totally different, those we had were totally dry. Nicely coated with the Assam flavor, the prawns were also very fresh and springy. The size was not shabby at all too, although I would not say that the prawns are gigantic nor huge in size, but they were decent. At least I would not describe them as small.

Sambal Belacan will be provided too and I must praise their boss for not being greedy in the sense of offering the sambal to his customers as we all knew, the cost of doing this sambal belacan is fairly high. The sambal belacan here was very spicy to me, but the belacan flavor was also quite strong, I can simply eat a bowl of rice with this sauce. 

Red bean soup as the dessert. The red bean soup was not too sweet and just perfect to my liking and I find it unique and special for the chef to use the dried tangerine peel as an ingredient of the red bean soup. I totally agreed with this idea. As a Cantonese, I just love to add some of these into my dessert to enhance the zesty flavor and blend the flavor into the dessert. Suits me perfectly.

Drinks are not included in the set lunch. Therefore, we had to order our drinks separately. The prices for the drinks are reasonable. We had soya bean milk (Rm 3) that day. 

This dish was not included in the set lunch. It was our side orders instead. Dried Prawn Sambal (Sambal Hae Bi, Rm15) A dried and crunchy version of sambal hae bi. I find this dish was decent only but according to Criz, a better way of enjoying these will be spreading these on a buttered bread. I have no idea how it tastes like but certainly its creative and fun to try.

Perut Ikan (Nyonya Stewed Fish Stomach With Vegetables, Rm 15 for small, Rm30 for medium and Rm50 for large). Again, I am not a big fan of this, I totally do not know how to appreciate this dish but I heard that the preparation for this dish could be troublesome especially for the chopping and cutting of those vegetables. It tasted like Assam Laksa to me.

Another must try in Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen !! Otak-otak (Rm 8 per plate) is a dish that uses banana-leaf parcels that consists of spicy fish mousse and being gently steamed to perfection. It was one of the best Otak-otak that I have ever tried. The mouth watering Otak-otak was served piping hot. The fragrance of the coconut milk can instantly be smelled. Big chunks of fish can also be see inside the Otak-otak. The key to success in making this dish, which I believed, is the using of fresh coconut milk and they did it. Highly recommended this dish to my readers.

Taste: 8/10
Price: 7/10
Service: 8.5/10
Parking: 7.5/10
Government Tax: NO
Service Charge: NO

Additional Information:
Address: 58, Jalan Chow Thye, 10250 Penang. (Few lots away from Jemputree and next to Isaribi Tei Japanese Restaurant)
Business Hours: 9.30am- 5pm, 6pm - 9.30pm, SAT 12pm -  5pm, 6pm - 9.30pm (Closed on 1st and 3rd Monday of the month)
Phone Number: 013- 433 7878 (Mr. Tan)/ 016- 433 7130 (Ivy)
Ivy's Nyonya Kitchen Facebook Page


  1. I like the assam prawns too~
    Btw, is this the standard dishes for the lunch? Can we choose inchi kabin chicken instead of curry kapitan chicken?

  2. hi sunflower, yea, i think the set is fixed.

  3. We have been to this restaurant - prices are over-the-hill according to Penangnites & had my first 'bite' with them during CNY. You are one of the lucky few. I would STRONGLY advised customers to check their bill thoroughly before paying.