For the past little I’ve fallen into the vicious cycle of studying all day in the library and eating at home. One can only stand instant noodles and ham sandwiches for so long. So after finishing up my midterm last Friday, CL and I gathered a couple friends and visited a joint I’ve always wanted to try, Prata Man.
Prata Man is located on Garden City and Capstan Way in Richmond and focuses on Malaysian and Singaporean cuisine. The place doesn’t have the best decor but people go there for the food not the ambiance. They’ve been open for a very long time so they must be doing something right.
The menu was very typical for a Malaysian/Singaporean restaurant so we picked a couple classic dishes that would hopefully show us what Prata Man was all about. The first dish to arrive at the table was the beef rendang which is essentially curry beef brisket. This dish was a winner and it was my favorite of the night. The brisket was fork tender and nicely marbled. The curry flavor was rich but not overpowering. This dish begs for a bowl of rice to soak up all the sauce. We were off to a good start but too bad the rest of the dishes were not as impressive as the first.
Next to arrive was the satay platter which consisted of 12 skewers of chicken, beef and pork (4 each). The skewers were cooked very well, being nicely charred on the outside and still tender on the inside. The problem with this dish was the accompanying peanut sauce. The sauce here is made of crunchy bits of peanuts instead of the usual peanut butter. It was impossible for the sauce to stick to the skewers and the tasted stale and soggy. I applaud them for being different but that sauce didn’t work for me at all.
Another dish that sounded good on paper was the Hainainese chicken. The chicken was deboned and was served with chicken stock rice on the side. The deboned chicken was easy to eat but it was unfortunately overcooked. Hainainese chicken is suppose to be barely cooked to keep the skin chewy but this chicken almost dissolved in my mouth. The chicken rice was also very greasy and lacked chicken flavor.
As you can see, Prata Man didn’t really live up to my expectations. Sure the prices were reasonable and the portions were big, but the dishes lacked proper execution and flavor I don’t think I will be returning anytime soon since there are so many other restaurant I want to try.