|Penang's iconic Char Koay Teow, dished up in an authentic and flavourful manner by Lazy Suzie.|
One specific dish remains totally sacrosanct - the Char Koay Teow. Yes, there are a thousand variations of this, as it must be stir fried fresh just before consumption, it varies according to the mood of the cook and the texture of the narrow flat rice noodles is significant. Whilst the wok is heating up and the oil brewing, how you toss in the prawns, bean sprouts and veg is an acquired art itself.
I love the version form Lazy Suzie as it has the non-negotiable wok heat in the noodles, although the pork lard can be evident on my nose. More than this, it is the resulting whole works staring at the three of us when the plate came - appetising, laden with ingredients, the right touch of sauce cooked with and so inviting just by itself.
Pie Tee, which was a historical test for daughters-in-laws in the past, has delicate and miniature pastry cups filled with a savoury salad comprising picked Mud crab meat, Julienned carrots, shaved yam bean and braised Shitake mushrooms. Best as cocktail food, Lazy Suzie's offering is more wholesome than just a bite, with us being able to appreciate each morsel of ingredient, satisfying and elegantly prepared.
The ice shaver mechanical machine, imported from Penang, had a red colour band and stood out easily noticed,even if placed at the far end of the long counter. The outcome of the ABC ice dessert can depend on the granularity of the resulting shaves, the experience of the person preparing them, the mixture of crunchiness and soothingness of the various accompanying ingredients plus the syrup flavours.
Instead of the usual red rose syrup you find in George Town's streets, the Lazy Suzie offers a more delicate and yet more satisfying flavour - that of the blue pea flower. This flavour is also utilised in the Rama Rama Spritz cocktail made with Dandelion and Burdock bitters, giving an indigo hued presentation.
Several diners did opine that the cheese was over the top with the Lobster Thermidor spring rolls, with yellow coloured wraps and a side serve of cream. Alan begged to differ and in the end I took it that could be a personal preference matter with the amount of cheesy taste. Most of us could not find taste of the lost Gruyere and lobster in this situation.
The Teh Tarik at the Lazy Suzie is not what you find at Hawker, Albee's or Mamak's, but what Marco does is add Johnnie Walker Black and Gunpowder green tea to Nashi pear, teapot bitters and rosemary. Kopi Tiam has cardamom coffee cream, a dash of Pierre Ferrand cognac and add-ons of espresso, cold drip coffee liqueur and beans.
The Prosperity Bao, a snack of a slow cooked Wagyu brisket tucked inside a pillow dough and accompanied with a black pepper sauce;
Hainan style pork belly satay, served with a sauce based on sweet potatoes;
The Campo de Encanto, or the "Field of Enchantment", with Pisco Brandy from Peru and Chile, Goji berries, egg white, chocolate bitters and Kalamansi lime in carbonated water;
Green fish salad ( Jneh Hoo literally in Penang Hokkien) which is an uplifting salad combination of cucumber and yam bean shavings, small school prawns and jelly fish in a sweet potato based spicy dressing. This is indeed an echo of what Penang street food is about - it is light on the palate, crunchy on the bite and yummy on the taste.
Aunty Yulia's beef short ribs braised with a sweet soy sauce stand out as a starter.
Banana fritter with roasted coconut ice cream and salted caramel sauce
Tebu Jelup cocktail, very south-east Asian, using Bulleit Bourbon, sugar cane cuts and Angostura and orange bitters, garnished with Thai basil, Vietnam mint and finger lime squeeze. (Jelup in Malay means a sweetened drink with alcohol or medication and Tebu refers to sugar cane.)
Lazy Suzie is located at 78 Stanley Street, Darlinghurst, at the corner with Crown Street in the Sydney eastern suburb of Darlinghurst, a few blocks from Hyde Park and
Opening hours are from noon to midnight every week day (except closed on Mondays); Saturdays 10am to midnight; and on Sundays from 10am to 3pm.
Contact +61 2 7901 0396