There’s no hiding that I love char kuay teow. I must have inherited this love from my dad coz he too, loves char kuay teow. But he likes the Singapore version, sweet with black sweet sauce and cockles, whereas I particularly enjoy the Penang version, after having indulged in it many afternoons while studying in Perth.
My boss introduced me to Gurney Drive for its Penang food, and I finally got down to trying it earlier this week. *Despite the haze* Way before I reached there, I’ve already decided on what to have for dinner. Obvious right?
The combination of fragrant pork lard (wah, super yums) and savoury fish sauce used in the cooking of the dish is why I like this dish so much. Gurney Drive does a pretty decent job. The kuay teow was also quite smooth, but not as oily as my favourite version from Perth. The amount of ingredients was quite generous – prawns, eggs, crunchy beansprouts, chinese sausage, cockles (I omitted it) and chives. But I did get a little jerlat towards the end of my meal, like my tastebuds were numb and no longer enjoying the meal.
The secret to a good prawn noodle lies in the broth, and Gurney Drive’s rendition of Hokkien Prawn Noodle definitely had us going “woah” on first sip. The broth was sweet from all that prawn shells and heads going into it, but I think it needs a lift somehow, probably with some chilli and fried shallots.
I was craving for some grilled seafood and was torn between lala and sotong. The boy looked at the menu and decided we should go for lala since it had the chef’s recommendation. The portion was reasonable for the price we paid. Initially we thought that there were a lot of empty shells, then we realised that the flesh had all dropped and settled at the bottom. The chilli was sweet and with tons of onions, almost like a nasi lemak sambal.
There were some huge shellfish in the lot. The boy knows I enjoy shellfish a lot, and thus gave me most of the dish. Look at the size of the giant lala! It was almost like a mussel (like the mussels from Grub). YUM.
I’m not sure if I’ll revisit Gurney Drive again since their locations are all quite far from where I work or stay, but I now know where to go when the Penang food craving comes again!