Penang food at Singapore's Gurney Drive

Gurney Drive is a popular seafront promenade which is also one of Penang's most popular tourist destination. It was also the place for yummy Penang hawker food, before the hawker stalls were being relocated to a nearby location. Guess what.... It seems that Gurney Drive has arrived in Singapore!

Located in Ang Mo Kio Central, on the first level of the Jubilee Entertainment Complex, I spotted this new food establishment - Gurney Drive. And you guessed it right, its name was inspired by Penang's Gurney Drive. As I have never been to Penang, nor tasted Penang food, I decided to have my dinner at this place with Bbb.

For drinks, I ordered the Ampla drink, as the menu stated that this drink contains antioxidants. This is due to the freshly squeezed juice from the "buay long long" fruit. The drink was served with crushed ice, with a sour plum fruit added on top of it. Although the server mentioned that the drink is quite sour, I didn't know it was THAT sour! Ok, it was not that sour for the first few sips. But the more I drank it, I couldn't take the sourness... Too sour that I had to exchange my drink with bbb's.

Well, actually I got him to order the bandung with chin chow drink. It was meant to be my 'backup' drink, should the Ampla drink was too sour for me (and indeed it was). Despite drinking bundang drinks for umpteen times in my life, I have not tried bandung with chin chow. It was not diluted and I liked the unique mix of bandung and chin chow. 'Chin Chow' is grass jelly, by the way.

Gurney drive_drinks

For our side dish, we ordered the Penang Lor Bak. The pork meat is wrapped with super thin beancurd skin. It reminded me of ngoh hiang. There were also the tofu servings, along with cucumbers. This dish came along with 2 sauces - Chopped chillies with black sauce and some sweet sour spicy sauce (something like the Thai chilli sauce, or maybe it was that). This is one of the restaurant's signature dishes. I like the tenderness of the meat and its unique taste... Anyone who dines here should try this dish out. :)

Bbb had the Mee Goreng, which I really had no idea why he would order that. How special could it be anyway? (-_-) Indeed, it was nothing fantastic. It was simply a plate of stir-fried yellow noodles, with prawns, squids, fish cake, bean sprouts and tomatoes added in it, which was simply a plate of overpriced mee goreng.

I ordered the Gurney Thai Apple Chicken Rice for myself. It is supposedly a recipe by the Gurney Drive's chef. This dish contains of thai-style infusing apple shreds and crispy fried chicken slices which were served along the oily rice, with a special homemade sauce to complete it.

Apparently, my rice was too hard to be consumed, and I requested for a change. I was then asked if it is ok to have the coconut rice as they were afraid that the oily rice in the rice pot might still be too hard for me. I'm not wearing dentures... so if the rice was hard, it was INDEED hard. I had no choice but to have coconut rice. Since I felt that it was really unhealthy to be consuming one whole chunk of the coconut rice, I did not finish it.

Other than the rice, I would say that the chicken slices were tasty and I liked the homemade sauce. The sauce blended well with the apple shreds and chicken slices, which also brought out the chicken flavor. Perhaps I would like this dish a little bit more, if only I had the oily rice to go along with it.

Gurney drive_dinner

The staff had good product knowledge of the food they offered and was able to provide recommendations for us aka first-time diners at Gurney Drive. However, the food took quite awhile to arrive.

If I was eating at the hawker stalls in Penang's Gurney Drive, I wouldn't mind if there were houseflies around me... But to encounter a constant housefly problem throughout my meal in this air-conditioned restaurant was certainly very unpleasant. :(

Honestly, I would say you can give this restaurant a try if you had not tasted Penang food before. But I believe there are other places in Singapore that offer Penang cuisines too. Now, I just wanna head to the Gurney Drive hawker stalls in Penang. :p

12 Response to Penang food at Singapore's Gurney Drive

21 July 2010 at 11:26

Interesting. I was looking at last week, cos they offered $10 vouchers for $20 worth of food at this Gurney Drive restaurant (didn't buy it in the end, I forgot about it hahaha).

I'm looking forward to trying it out, but I have lowered my expectations a lot! HAHA! I'm from Penang originally, so I think this is gonna disappoint me! I've tried other restaurants in Singapore that claim to offer Penang cuisine, but all I can say is... THEY BLUFF ME!!!1 HAHA

I think I'll just have to make a trip home to Penang to get my fix. :P

21 July 2010 at 16:07

My dear girl. You ate the wrong things there. You should have asked me. Hahah! I know the menu like the back of my hand.

22 July 2010 at 09:46

You not only beauty but also very clever. D3lone

22 July 2010 at 20:21

@Daphne Lucky that you never buy the vouchers then! Nothing's better than eating whatever food from where it originates from! :p

@Wei Xin Isit? I will ask you more when we chat online.

@D3 Clever? Huh? LOL!

23 July 2010 at 08:00

Plan for the backup drink. D3lonely

24 July 2010 at 00:07

@D3 I do this quite often and Im glad that bbb doesnt mind that at all. :)

24 July 2010 at 00:22

I didn't know Singapore had Gurney Drive?

24 July 2010 at 00:26

@Samuel Well, now you know~ But I'd recommend the real Penang Gurney Drive hawker stalls :p

13 October 2010 at 13:24

dont anyhow claim authentic penang cuisine...for those from penang and singaporean tat has taste penang cuisine will tell...

17 October 2010 at 04:06

@Anonymous This was the first time I tasted penang cuisine. And I had no idea whether it was authentic or not. Im not sure if the restaurant had claimed themselves to be serving authentic penang food cuisine, but I know I didn't claim that in any part of my blog post too. :)

6 November 2010 at 00:32

From other reviews it seems opinions are distinctly mixed ! The REAL ampla you find in the real Penang is NEVER too sour, if you have tried Pokka's UME Green Tea, it is NEVER more sour than that, which means very mildly sour. I am a true Penangite, and actually many of the best examples of Penang hawker fare are NOT in Gurney Drive but elsewhere in the many coffeeshops that permeate the isle. Prices are also cheaper (in Ringgit somemore) I never pay more than RM4 for a plate of char koay teow, and even the superstar "sisters CKT" is maybe RM6. With rare exceptions in Sing I stick to Sing food. loolz...
Lawrence Low

6 November 2010 at 02:09

Hi Lawrence,

Thanks for the explanation. At least I will not be deterred from trying out Ampla when I visit Penang next time! :)

I have to say the price at this Gurney Drive outlet is not worth it for its food quality. Boo...

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