Monday, February 23, 2009

Satay - Malaysian Cuisine

We were in Hoboken, New Jersey on Sunday, looking for this particular Malaysian restaurant that I have heard a lot about. Hoboken is a great neighborhood, just about 20 minutes away from our apartment in Forest Hill, Newark. It's just across the Hudson from Manhattan and you can get one of the best views of the Manhattan skyline from Hoboken. It is also easily accessible by the NJ Transit, PATH, Hudson-Bergen Light Rail, NY Waterway ferries as will as all the major highways and bridges. Some of the notable residents of Hoboken is the late Frank Sinatra, Michael Chang, Eli Manning, Alex Rodriguez and the boys from My Chemical Romance.

The Malaysian restaurant we were looking for was Satay. It's located on Washington Street. Washington Street is equivalent to Bangsar back in Malaysia. Only bigger. It's lined with bars, upscale restaurants, trendy cafes and ethnic food joints. One little piece of trivia. Hoboken (thanks to Washignton St) is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as a city with "most bars in a square mile". You can just imagine the choices we have if we are looking for a restaurant or drinking place in Hoboken.

Satay is a small cosy restaurant at the corner of 1st and Washington St. It has this rustic feel to it, with exposed brick walls and dimly lit lights. Traditional Malay fishing baskets and wau's (Malaysian kites) can be found hanging on the walls. The tables were draped with tablecloths in colorful Batik motives. Very nice :)

The selection of Malaysian food in the menu was limited. There were more Americanized Chinese food than Malaysian food in the menu. The prices were also a little bit higher compared to the other Malaysian restaurants in this region. Kevin ordered his usual Char Koay Teow ($8.95) and I ordered Fried Indian Mee ($8.95). We then shared an order of Peanut Pancake ($5.95) for dessert.

The Char Koay Teow was really bad. It doesn't taste like Char Koay Teow at all. It tasted like it was just fried with soy sauce and loads and loads of pepper. The Indian Mee was a little bit better than the Char Koay Teow. It wasn't that bad but really, there is nothing to shout about. We kinda liked the Peanut Pancake though. It's Roti Canai with Ban Chang Koay filling. It's pretty good, tasted like the one in Penang Restaurant. For $5.95, its not too bad at all (it's $7.95 in Penang Restaurant).

To sum it all up, would I return to Satay? Well, I think Satay is a good place for non Malaysians to go for an evening of exploring and trying out 'Malaysian food'. I think their Satay, Roti Canai and other typical Malaysian food shouldn't be too bad and would be suitable for American tastebuds. The atmosphere is nice and I'm sure they will enjoy themselves. However, if you are Malaysian and looking for something authentic, then this is not the place for you.

Satay - Malaysian Cuisine
99 Washington Street,
Hoboken, NJ 07030
Tel: (201) 386-8688
Fax: (201) 386-1880


Twilight Zone said...

That was funny description you gave...poor thing! LOL The food looked nice from photos and the price woke up my sleepy eyes! I often lived in a cousin's condo in Hoboken too but not realizing it had a history of celebrities there. It was indeed a lovely place in 1992!
I have just replied your expired email, soli harr!

Charlene n Kevin said...

Hoboken is still a lovely your cousin still in Hoboken?

Twilight Zone said...

My cousin and hubby left US even after getting PR. Last I heard they were based in HKG before hopping elsewhere. They are both in banking & I can see why they fled.