The decor of the restaurant was pretty nice. The main wall had a huge panoramic display with view of the hawker stalls in Jalan Alor in KL. I 'think' it's Jalan Alor...correct me if I am wrong. Jaya is medium sized restaurant with lots of wood and bamboo decor. Nice.
The menu is pretty much the same as all other Malaysian restaurants. Roti Canai, Char Koay Teow, Curry Laksa....the usual. They also have a selection of Malaysian Chinese dishes to order with rice (works well if you are in a big group). We ordered a small portion Yong Tow Foo ($5.50) to share as our appetizer. The large portion is $7.50. We had a choice to have it with curry or clear broth. We chose the clear broth. I must say that I enjoyed the yong tow foo very much. The soup was very flavorful and the fish paste was really good.
Kevin ordered the Penang Char Koay Teow....of course ($6.50). Firstly, I must say that it's not the Penang style of Char Koay Teow..so maybe the management should drop the word Penang from the menu. It's more the KL style. The taste was alright, not bad but definitely not the best either. The good thing about it was that it came with a few pieces of lap cheong (very nice) but it also had fishballs in it!?!? Very very weird.
I ordered the Mee Rebus ($6.50). Bad mistake. It tasted terrible! Doesn't taste like mee rebus at all! There wasn't enough gravy, but then again, if there was, it wouldn't have made a difference because the gravy was tasteless. I didn't even finish half of the dish. It was just bad, very bad.
We didn't order any desserts because we were heading to Max Brenner (will blog about that another time) after that and we wanted to save our tummys for that! :D Overall, the food in Jaya was just alright. Penang Restaurant and Nyonya is still the best Malaysian restaurants around. Would I return to Jaya? Probably not. If I was living in a small town with only ONE Malaysian restaurant, then yeah, I'll probably return. However, when we have so many other Malaysian restaurants to choose from, I feel that Jaya just didn't make the cut. I'm sorry, but I don't think I'll go back again....the food was a little bit of a disappointment. Oh and even though it says on their take out menu that they accept credit cards (with a minimum purchase of $15), there is a handwritten note on their door that says "cash only". So remember to bring cash, they do not accept credit cards!
Jaya - Malaysian Restaurant
90 Baxter Street,
New York, NY 10013
Tel: (212) 219-3331