Since I got back from holidays I have still been craving Singaporean food like crazy. I love the flavours and variety of the cuisine. Kway Teow, Laksa, Satay, Nasi Lemak, Roti, Kaya, Kopi…all so good. So when I discovered a new Malaysia restaurant serving all of my favourites I was over the moon. PappaRich recently opened a restaurant at Garden City Shopping Centre in Brisbane.
Pappa Rich is a Malaysian chain restaurant. They have locations in Wintergarden (Brisbane CBD) and Gold Coast. They have more locations across many cities in Australia, New Zealand, United States and Asia. Although PappaRich is a chain, it doesn’t serve mass produce food. From what I could gather, they are consistent with their quality and authenticity of Malaysian cuisine and the food is all cooked freshly on site.
The menu consists of multiethnic dishes from Malaysian, Chinese and Indian cuisine “with a twist of South East Asian flair”. So there are many of the classic dishes that I saw in Singapore, which also features all of these cuisines. The menu is broken into breads (eg. kaya toast), dim sum, noodles (eg. fried noodles, noodle soups), rice (eg. Hainanese Chicken Rice, Nasi Lemak), roti (pastry with curry), satay (sticks), sharing (meat and vegetable mains), vegetarian, signature dishes (best sellers), desserts (eg. puddings, iced kacang), and beverages (eg hot or cold teas and coffees).
Over the past week and a bit, I have visited PappaRich three times. Excessive and a little compulsive, perhaps. To be fair the first visit was just for Kopi. Marco and I had already eaten lunch and discovered this new restaurant serving our favourite Southeast Asian coffee. We weren’t sure at first if this was we had been drinking the week before in Singapore. However, once it came out and we took our first taste we were transported back to our holiday. Although their kopi is perhaps a little sweeter then what we were drinking in Singapore it’s still very nice (and we like our coffee sweet).
Our next visit was a few days later. I was looking for a reason to drive back across town to revisit PappaRich and try out some of the meals. Then the opportunity came up, with my mother-in-laws birthday lunch. I figured it was a good choice since it was close to the rest of the family and they still serve lunch after 2pm, since the Serbs like to eat so late. I also figured with such a varied menu, everyone would find something they would like and the prices are quite reasonable. So I booked the restaurant for the following day for the entire family.
The next day we turned up and there was a little bit of confusion since my booking recorded for the wrong day. However, the server was very nice and found us the next available table to fit us all. The restaurant was still quite busy at this time of the afternoon, so I guess my family aren’t the only ones that eat lunch this late. The family aren’t very familiar with Asian cuisine, but the menu had coloured pictures of most of the dishes on the menu. They were able to find something that looked familiar enough and they thought they would enjoy.
Marco and I ordered the Pappa Char Koay Teow and Roti Telur with Beef Rendang (included dhal and sambal). We also shared the Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce with the rest of the table. Some of the other dishes ordered included Pappa Special Nasi Lemak with Curry Chicken and Sambal Prawn, Curry Chicken with Dry Curry Egg Noodles, Vegetarian Char Teow with Egg and Chicken Nuggets with Chips (for kids).
One of my favourite dishes of all time is Char Koay Teow and I was very happy with PappaRich’s version. It wasn’t oily like other versions I have tried in Australia and it had plenty of flavours. It was a little spicy, but not too spicy for Octavia, who loves this dish too. The roti came out a little torn by the taste was perfect and probably the best I have tried back at home. The curry and condiments were nice but I wasn’t blown away. The Chinese broccoli was also a very nice dish to share and the sauce wasn’t too overpowering. As for everyone else, they all seemed very happy with their meals and they all looked pretty good. The only comment was that the Vegetarian noodle dish was a little spicy and the restaurant didn’t provide knives. The kids’ meals (which I didn’t take photos of) were average, but then I wasn’t expecting something amazing. All the serves were very generous and most of the dishes were around $15 each, so it was very reasonable per head. After the meal, we introduced the family to kopi, which they also did enjoy. Since it is such a sweet drink we were able to order my father-in-law a half sweetened version, which he was happy with.
My second visit to PappaRich was actually the day after. I wanted to take my mum somewhere to lunch and I knew she would love the food at PappaRich. She’s never tried Malaysian or Singaporean food, so I really wanted to show her what we were enjoying on our holiday.
So after going through the menu for a while, we decided to share a couple dishes. We went with the Dry Curry Egg Noodle with Steamed (Hainanese) Chicken (with choy sum and curry sauce) and Curry Laksa with Seafood. Everything was really delicious and fresh. We really enjoyed both dishes and again they weren’t too oily and the taste was spot on. My mum was really impressed with the quantity and quality of the dishes. Octavia was also very happy to share the noodles and chicken, which I did order less spicy for her. After lunch, we had some kopi, which was also a first time for my mum. She doesn’t usually have sugar in her coffee but she still enjoyed it.
So after visiting PappaRich three times now, I have had great experiences each time. The servers were always very nice and friendly and service was fast and efficient. We didn’t have any problems with any of our orders since you actually need to write your own order on the order form and press the call button on your table for the server to collect it. This system is quite efficient, especially since many of the servers first language wasn’t English.
The decor in the restaurant is quite modern and comfortable. It has an open kitchen overlooking the dining room, which features hanging plants, wood panelling and botanical wallpaper. Every time I have visited the restaurant was kept clean and tidy and the servers were attentive to clear messy tables.
I hope you enjoyed my review of PappaRich and have encouraged you to try their restaurant or try some Southeast Asian cuisine.