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“M ild, medium or
hot?” It’s a question
slurpers love hearing when placing an order. Then
again, plenty about this food court’s star tenant
inspires confidence, from the steady queue of diners
to weekend-only specials like nasi lemak (coconut milk
rice) and a properly pungent Penang-style assam laksa.
Malaysian Hawker’s Kim Ang has a reputation for some
of the state’s truest tastes of Malaysia, including Perth’s
finest char kway teow. Whereas so many collapse into
soggy, unidentifiable heaps, this benchmark version
shines with definition: the crunch of the bean sprouts;
the lushness of thin, glossy, locally made rice noodles;
the way experienced hands impart just enough smoky
wok hei – ‘the breath of the wok’ – to the finished dish.
Studded with seafoods and sweet nubbins of lap che
ong sausage, it’s a picture of Malay comfort, more
so if you pay an extra $1.50 for the secret cockle
supplement. Cambridge Forum International Food
Court, 350 Cambridge Street, Wembley.
Eaters out west are well served for Asian flavours, in
particular those with a hankering for noodles. Tireless
food detective Max Veenhuyzen offers this field guide
on where to find Perth’s best bowls.
Good things come to those who wait. It’s a mantra
worth keeping in mind when visiting this
cosy bento box of a Japanese restaurant.
While ramen might be food-kind’s flavour
of the month, Nao has been championing
the wonders of the dish for more
than a decade: long enough to develop
a rock-solid reputation for some of the
realest Japanese noodles around, long
enough to ensure lunchtime queues
are pretty much a given. But those who
persist won’t go home unrewarded,
starting with a taste of some of the city’s
best noodles. Made in-store each day,
Nao’s wheat noodles thrill with a pleasingly
bitey mouthfeel that makes them perfect
flavour vessels for the restaurant’s deep,
complex broths (in addition to a standard-
issue noodle, diners can also opt for spinach-and
chilli-infused varieties). Then there’s the heady array
of menu power-ups and condiments that allows diners to
customise their order to the nth degree. Feel like building your
own Sapporo-style ramen? Start with a miso base then add some
sweet corn and butter to your bowl. Feeling particularly hungry? More meltingly
tender chashu (Japanese-style roast pork) it is, then. 117 Murray Street, Perth.
Char Kway Teow
The Umami Monster from Lucky
Chan’s Laundry + Noodlebar.
words Max Veenhuyzen photography Ross Wallace and Hannah Lawrance
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