The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Monday, 14 May 2012

Malaysian @ Old Cathay, Victoria Park (WA, Australia)

During our Easter trip to Perth, two of my sisters also flew in from Sydney, and we had a mini-reunion dinner with my siblings (minus one). One of my sisters is gluten intolerant, so between her and my allergic son, we had quite a bit of a challenge in finding a suitable restaurant. There were a few phone calls and sms-es flying back and forth between the four siblings that Saturday, but we did find a suitable spot. Old Cathay was on my list of places to eat during our Perth trip (thanks to this blogger), but Chinese food can be tricky when it comes to gluten (as well as soy, nuts and sesame that my boy is allergic to). I decided to suggest Old Cathay to my siblings anyway, and it just so happened that my brother knows the chef. After a quick phone call, my brother verified that the kitchen is able to prepare gluten-free dishes, and a table was reserved for us. Hooray for flexible restaurants! My younger sister and brother had eaten at Old Cathay before and enjoyed the food, so we knew good food awaited us.

The front of Old Cathay:

Old Cathay was quite easy to locate as it is visible from Albany Highway, but getting to it (by car) was a bit more tricky. Entrance is via Oswald St, which means if you can see the restaurant from Albany Highway (as we found out), you've gone too far and will have to make many turns and navigate a few one-way streets to get where you want. Old Cathay is located away from the main Vic Park dining strip so parking was plentiful on that Saturday night. The restaurant itself was quite lovely, with pretty paintings, warm lighting and modern Asian decorations. Service was professional and helpful, and our many requests were gladly received.

Old Cathay also has comfortable sofa seating:

The Chinese Malaysian dinner menu was quite extensive with many choices for seafood and meat as well as an impressive list of vegetarian dishes. All sauces and dishes are prepared daily from scratch by the chefs, all of whom came from Malaysia. The dishes were all reasonably priced for the level of service and environment that Old Cathay offers.

The Yong Chow Fried Rice was tasty and enjoyed by all:

Old Cathay Gui Fei Tofu - home-made tofu with shredded chicken, mushroom and carrots. The tofu was soft and silky, and the sauce was delicious. I really enjoyed this dish:

Scallops with Asparagus & Macadamia Nuts. This was a great combination of flavours and textures, and the scallops were beautifully juicy:

Duck with Plum Sauce. Yummy crispy skin and moist tender flesh. This was pretty good for a roast duck:

The obligatory vegetable dish was Spinach with Century Eggs & Salted Eggs. I enjoyed the taste of the century eggs:

The Malaysian Beef Rendang Curry was another winner. The beef were incredibly tender and the curry was delicious (the photo doesn't show much because several dishes were arriving and I was in a hurry to snap the pictures):

Crispy Malat Chicken - half a chicken in dark vinegar sauce with crunchy fried shallots, garlic and sesame topping. I thought this was the most ordinary and unremarkable one out of all the dishes we ordered. It was tasty, with crispy skin and crunchy topping, but not much different to the standard roast chicken dish:

I quite enjoyed the food at Old Cathay. This would be the sort of place that I would bring non-Asians to if they have never tried Chinese Malaysian food before.

Old Cathay
G7/59 Albany Hwy
Victoria Park, WA 6100
Tel. +61 8 9361 1881

Old Cathay on Urbanspoon

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