Chef Lagenda is a somewhat new restaurant that has popped up in Flemington, right next to the well known Laksa King. They predominantly serve Malaysian cuisine, just like Laksa King.
Inside the restaurant it has mainly low lighting, with minimal natural lighting. With a nice decor, rustic wooden tables and walls, combined with brick walls and rendered walls. An old building made modern but it hasn’t thrown away all it’s old charm. It’s definitely one of the better looking Malaysian restaurants I’ve been to. It’s slightly small on the ground level, but it seems like there was another floor when it gets busy.
Their selection of food is quite expansive, having the quite well known famous Malaysian dishes in Australia such as Nasi Lemak, Nasi Goreng, Mee Goreng, Laksa and Char Kway Teow from the less well known ones like Fish Head Curry and desserts you can only find in Malaysia eateries such as Ice Kacang and Ice Cendol.
They have a big selection of each big category of rice, noodle soups and fried noodles, also having main dishes (larger servings) and appetizers.
I ordered the Char Kway Teow (extra spicy) as I wanted to compare it to the other Malaysian restaurants I’e been to. Service was quite good, orders taken promptly and our meals arrived quickly too.
It looked quite appetising, and the serving portion was excellent too. It had a nice taste to it, and had all the requirements for a good Char Kway Teow, it wasn’t dry, not overly oily and had a good mix of bean sprouts, kueh teow, egg and Chinese sausage. However, it wasn’t spicy at all. Luckily they had fresh chopped chillies to spice it up a bit.
I think if it was spicy before having to add the chillies, it would have been the perfect dish as one of my favourite Char Kway Teow’s is from ABC Cafe in Glen Waverley usually is really tasty, maybe just a tad oily on occasion.
I don’t know if I’d drive all the way to Flemington, when Glen Waverley is much closer to me for this dish but for those up north it will satisfy your Malaysian cravings.
I also tasted their Curry Laksa. It was actually quite nice, different to what I was used to but still tasty. It was creamier than other ones I’ve tasted, I presume they used coconut milk but it wasn’t overly creamy to put you off eating. It had a slight spicy tinge to it, which helped balance the dish. It would probably be one of the better Laksa’s I’ve eaten.
I tried the Nasi Lemak, a very Malaysian dish. It usually contains anchovies, peanuts, cucumber, coconut rice and either a Beef Rendang or Curry Chicken. Then one I tasted was a Beef Rendang.
It was actually a decent dish, for those that prefer a sweeter curry sauce. It reminded me of a satay sauce but curry. Not necessarily bad, but having vacationed in Malaysia a couple months ago, it didn’t really feel authentic. The rice was also a bit too wet, but it’s a more what you prefer thing here. Overall, it was okay. I didn’t mind it and I wouldn’t mind trying their Curry Chicken option out too to see the difference.
We ordered the Ice Cendol and Ice Kacang to try.
Firstly, the Ice Cendol. For those that don’t know, it is a mix of coconut milk, palm sugar syrup, cendol (the green pandan jellies) and usually shaved ice.
The serving size was smaller than I’m used to and for the price you would expect more. I guess taste is what matters, however, to my disappointment it didn’t taste that great either. It lacked the sweetness of the palm sugar syrup, and the coconut milk they used had a sharpness to it that made it a slightly odd experience. The cendol itself was great, it was smooth, a bit soft, a bit chewy and wasn’t sweet like some cendols’ are. However, the shaved ice was quite coarse and it shouldn’t be if you’re using shaved ice instead of ice cubes.
It was a decent attempt, but lacks the flavour to make it an authentic Malaysian Ice Cendol and for the price, it really isn’t worth it.
Now onto the Ice Kacang. Before we go any further, I didn’t eat all this alone. I had help!
For those that might not know, Ice Kacang can be quite a creative dessert, with many fruits, sweet syrups, nuts, jellies and usually condensed milk (sweet and evaporated) all mixed together to make a very appetising and well just a fun dessert to eat.
Chef Lagenda’s Ice Kacang consisted of chopped roasted peanuts on top, with longan, a bit of sweet corn, red beans, cendol, black jelly and a yellow and white jelly too if I can recall, longan, and palm seed. With a red syrup and I think the condensed milk.
The serving size was decent, usually they are priced around $4.50 to $5 but this was $5.50, and might be a tad small when compared to those at the lower end of the scale.
Onto the taste. The shaved ice, again, was coarser then I’m used to but not too coarse to make it doesn’t detract from the taste. With all of the ingredients mixed together, it was quite nice, a bit less sweet to those other Ice Kacang’s I’ve eaten. For those looking to have a dessert that isn’t too sweet but still sweet enough to satisfy your sugar cravings. Here it is. Nonetheless, a good offering by Chef Lagenda.
I would still probably put The Grand Tofu (Glen Waverley) and ABC Cafe (Glen Waverley) as the better ones, because they are cheaper, have larger portions and are just well, tastier.
I had a decent experience dining at Chef Lagenda, it had a pleasant atmosphere, with nicely cooked meals that I didn’t have any major problems with. I would definitely go there again to taste their other dishes on offer but it isn’t a ‘have to go there again really soon’ kinda thing.
16 Pin Oak Cres
(03) 9376 2668
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