Satay Satay

Façade of Satay Satay at 1Utama, Bandar Utama, KL
Satay – grilled meat on skewers – is one of my all-time favourite foods.  If satay is offered in a buffet spread, I will make a beeline for the satay and all other food comes next.  If you are a satay fan like me, you will agree that there’s something special about chewing into freshly grilled smoky sweet-and-savoury marinated meat, dripping with spicy rich peanut sauce.

Usually satay-makers will fit three pieces of meat into a skewer with just a wee bit of fat to bring out the juicy flavour of the grilled meat.  [I have also heard a theory on why each skewer is fitted with the standard three pieces of meat.] Needless to say, my constant quest for good satay is a fun pursuit as I’m always on the lookout for tasty satay matched with peanut sauce in the right consistency and flavour.

Waving a satay fan, she is keeping
the flame glowing to grill satay!
Last November, I was in Kuala Lumpur a day ahead of my travel assignment that departed with a midnight flight from KLIA so I took the opportunity to visit the malls for some city shopping with my sister.  Part of the fun in shopping is stopping for refreshment breaks and as we were not familiar with the restaurants and cafes in the widespread wings of 1Utama, we checked the choices in the store directory.  When I spotted a café named, Satay Satay, my decision was quickly made and we found our way there just as the lunch crowd was thinning out. 

One of the first things that caught my eye was the little cubicle sectioned off by glass walls in the front of the café where a staff is engaged in grilling the satay over glowing flames.  I’m impressed that she is constantly serving up freshly made satay as the smoke billowed around her but the exhaust fan must be working well because the air remained fresh in air-conditioned café. 

I must say that our meal was so satisfying that in less than three months when we were in KL again with my middle sister and her daughter visiting from the UK, I suggested going to Satay Satay – again!  They happily agreed and we followed the signs to find our way back to that café.  The staff fanning the grilling satay in the front of the café is the landmark I was seeking and she was easy to spot.

My second visit with family members in tow!
Their menu of local food truly reflected the café’s tag line “Keeping traditions alive” and we easily made our choices of must-have satay along with familiar favourites like assam laksa, fried kway teow, pai tee – crispy top hats filled with shredded turnip and carrot, eaten with a dollop of minced chilli sauce – and a variety of desserts to cool off.   

The desserts alone made it worthwhile to enjoy a meal at Satay Satay because the ingredients in the various concoctions are in the right proportions for a satisfying taste.  Very seldom can we find Sago Gula Melaka that is so happening because it is the taste of real Gula Melaka or palm sugar that brings out the flavour of this humble traditional dessert.  The only weakness I noted is the shaved ice for the ice-kacang and chendol desserts which I think is a bit too coarse because I prefer it to melt more smoothly in my mouth!  
Skewers of chicken satay with a side of ketupat, rice cubes, raw onions and cucumber
Assam Laksa with a side of prawn paste to add if you prefer
Pai Tee topped with a dollop of minced chilli sauce
Variety of desserts [Clockwise] ice-kacang, bubo chacha, chendol and [stirred up] Sago Gula Melaka
A serving of Sago Gula Melaka - Notice the shaved ice is rather coarse - more like ice chips - but they don't melt too fast!
On top of the satisfying meal, their staff are friendly, attentive and helpful.  So if I was in 1Utama again, can you guess where I will go to eat?  No prizes for the right guess.
Satay Satay is at Unit S-143, 2nd Floor of 1Utama shopping centre in Bandar Utama, KL.  Tel: 603 – 7728 4828.  Email:


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