Tucked away in the heart of Kelana Jaya is this sprawling laidback place called Sanook Bistro & Sportz Bar overlooking the lake. When you are in Sanook, you totally leave behind the hustle bustle and horrific traffic fumes of the LDP and you can almost feel the stress eroding from your soul as you relax and gaze at the splendid lake view and the twinkling shimmers dancing on the water. I was told “sanook” means “fun” in Thai and I guess that is exactly what the owners intended this place to be! Fun in languishing in the spacious restaurant (both air-conditioned and al-fresco) and of course, indulging in its very extensive range of dishes offered. Although the name “Sanook” is Thai, the food offered in Sanook is not entirely Thai; in fact the menu ranges from dishes with European, American and Asian influences. Talk about diversity!
It’s a good thing we didn’t have to pick and choose our dishes from the extensive menu which has items like American juicy chops, traditional Italian pasta and woodfire pizzas, aromatic Asian curries and noodles to a delectable pick of tapas, canapés and desserts. This time we were there to check out some new items, created by Executive Head Chef Asrif, who has more than 10 years’ experience in developing fine cuisines and is a master in combining tastes, textures and flavors, using the best of spices to create unique tantalizing sauces.
We love the Spicy Mermaid Salad (RM22) and Moogus Salad (RM23). The former has saute’ed tiger prawns and calamari rings tossed with roasted capsicums, asparagus, cubed Japanese cucumber and crisp Romaine lettuce, drizzled with Sanook’s special piquant chilli dressing. Strips of grilled sirloin beef are mixed with asparagus, roasted red capsicum and wild rocket leaves in the Moogus Salad giving it a bit more bite. The special house dressing and parmesan cheese completes the salad.
Gyro Lamb Pita
The 2 freshly made fluffy pita bread pockets of the Gyro Lamb Pita (RM18) are stuffed with slices of boneless marinated lamb leg together with lettuces, parmesan cheese and black olives. A light refreshing minty yoghurt dip gives this a nice healthy touch.
Spicy Mermaid Salad
The Sotong Otak-otak (RM30) is a great dish to introduce to your foreign friends as the dish encompasses the rich and spicy blends of our favourite local ingredients. Two plump squids are stuffed with a rich creamy prawn otak-otak paste and served with fluffy pilaf rice, garden greens, fried crackers and for good measure, a generous portion of sambal tumis as well. It’s a complete meal by itself and sure to please many!
The new meaty items on Sanook’s menu clearly showcase the ingenuity of Chef Asrif who is a master in creating exciting sauces and marinades that titillate the palate. Take the Kim Yang Lamb Cutlets (RM52) for example. Two juicy succulent lamb cutlets had been marinated and coated with Korean spices, broiled to perfection and then garnished with a piquant Korean sauce and kimchi. The tangy sauce and tart kimchi balanced out the rich gamey flavour of the lamb and hence, every succulent bite of that lamb was really scrumptious.
Likewise, the Ayam Percik Viet Cong, Teriyaki Char Siew (chicken) and the Massala Ribeye are testaments of the chef’s skills in blending Asian herbs and spices and coming up with unique combinations. And those combinations work wonderfully well. These are all served with aromatic pilaf rice and garden greens.
Kim Yang Lamb Cutlets
Ayam Percik Viet Cong
The Tom Yum Goong Pisek (RM29) and Spicy Thai Mango Tuna Pizza (RM33) were the 2 new Thai-influenced dishes we had that evening. Tomyum lovers will not be disappointed with Sanook’s version – it’s thick and suitably spicy, completely aromatic with the essential kaffir lime leaves, onions, chilli padi, lemongrass and galangal. The pizza is also very flavoursome, thanks to the Thai spices and mango slices – pretty ingenious, we reckon!
Tom Yum Goong Pisek
Spicy Thai Mango Tuna Pizza
Sanook’s pizzas are legendary as they are all hand-tossed and baked in their woodfire oven. The crust is thin and crispy and overladen with generous portions of toppings. Their new creation – Sesame Honey Lamb Pizza (RM35) is a must try as the base sauce is made with peanut butter instead of the traditional tomatoes and the sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds on top gives it a funky nutty dash. Try it – a quirky but delicious combo of sweetish-savoury-nutty flavours and textures in a smokey cheesy thin-crust pizza!
Sesame Honey Lamb Pizza
The two desserts we had were Marie’s Crepe Suzette (RM17) and Henry’s Chocolate Mud Cake (RM11) – both pretty old-world yet are charming evergreen favourites. Thin crepes drenched in a sauce redolent with fresh orange juice, zest and given a lift with some liquer as well. For the chocolate mud cake, it’s a delightful combo of hot and cold sensations… cold vanilla ice-cream topping a rich chocolatey mud cake that has a warm centre where thick chocolate oozed out like sinful satiny lava.
Marie’s Crepe Suzette
Henry’s Chocolate Mud Cake
And so there you have it… some of the exciting dishes from Sanook’s brand new menu focusing on Fusion food, combining the complex and delicate tastes of Asia with the wholesome robust flavors of the West. Prices are very decent and are quoted as net prices on the menu.
We will certainly be back to check out some of the other dishes – it’s a great place to chill-out with buddies in that lakeside bistro!
Sanook Bistro & Sportz Bar
C-06 Plaza Kelana Jaya SS7/13A PJ
Tel: 03 7877 3636
GPS 3.09463N 101.59795E