Known as the Pearl of the Orient, both local and foreign travellers flock to the North of the Malaysian Peninsular to feast on what is arguably the best state in Malaysia for food. A melting pot of culture, Penang is where you can find various local cuisines, from Malay to Chinese to Indian and more.
Full of mackerel and tamarind goodness, Asam Laksa is a fish noodle soup dish that originates from Penang. Dubbed #7 of the World’s 50 Best Foods by CNN Go in 2011, no trip to the Northern state is complete without savouring a bowl of Asam Laksa.
Visit: Pasar Air Itam Asam Laksa, Jalan Pasar, Paya Terubong, 11500 George Town, Pulau Pinang.
Chee Cheong Fun
Different from the Hong Kong version of Chee Cheong Fun, the Penang Chee Cheong Fun is essentially are silky smooth rice noodle rolls served with a black sweet sauce, sesame seeds, fried shallots, sesame oil and chilli sauce. A light meal, this would be ideally eaten for breakfast or as a snack.
Visit: Seow Fong Lye Cafe, 94C, Macalister Lane, 10400, George Town, Penang
Hokkien Prawn Mee
A local favourite in Penang, Hokkien Prawn Mee is a dish that consists of the richly flavoured stock that is made from the shells and heads of prawns. Served with noodles and a myriad of condiments like pork belly, prawns and bean sprouts, it is safe to say that one bowl is never enough.
Visit: Old Green House Prawn Mee, 223, Jalan Burma, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Of Penang Indian-Muslim or ‘Mamak’ origin, Nasi Kandar is a meal of rice and a mixture of curries and side dishes. Before Nasi Kandar restaurants became popular, a Nasi Kandar vendor would balance a pole or ‘kandar’ on their shoulders containing pots that held these dishes, hence its name.
Visit: Hameediyah Restaurant, 164, Lebuh Campbell, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Char Kway Teow
Char Kway Teow or Fried Kway Teow is one of the top dishes that one cannot miss when in Penang. A fried noodle dish with seafood, chilli, eggs, bean sprouts and flat rice noodles, Char Kway Teow started off as a poor man’s dish served by fishermen and cockle-gatherers but eventually became one of the most sought after dishes in Penang.
Visit: Sister’s Char Kway Teow, 185, Jalan Macalister, George Town, 10400 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Directly translated as ‘boiled noodles’, Mee Rebus is an Indian-Muslim dish of noodles served with a thick and slightly spicy curry-like broth and condiments such as fried tofu, bean sprouts, eggs, lime and fried flour fritters.
Visit: Hameed Pata Special Mee, 6, Kota Selera Padang Kota Lama, Jalan Tun Syed Sheh Barakbah, 10450 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Beef and mutton soup
If you are aching for a hearty bowl of soup, this would be your best bet! A little on the spicy side, these Indian-Muslim soups come with a variety of meats. Paired with soft slices of local Roti Benggali, or Benggali Bread this is perhaps the best kind of comfort food on the island.
Visit: Sup Hameed, 48, Jalan Penang, George Town, 10450 George Town, Pulau Pinang
If you want someone else to do the leading when it comes to food, you could always go on a food tour around Georgetown.
Curate your holiday, stress-free: