Champ’s.. where everybody knows your name.
Sometimes you do wanna go where everybody knows your name. Or if not everyone, at least the bartender. And if not your name, at least your drink. Well at Champ’s, I’ve known the owner and chef, Richard Nah for so long, that he definitely knows my name, and my drink.. and the sort of dishes I like.
And since Richard already knew I was coming to pay him a visit, he knew that I wanted to try his new dishes as well. To tell you the truth, since this spanking new Champ’s at Bangsar Shopping Center outlet was only a week old, I was worried the food might not be up to par.
I was wrong.
Pucuk paku – RM25
Some of the new items on Champ’s menu, apart from the good old favourites that we have come to know and love, includes this fantastic pucuk paku dish. Wild paku fern shoots, blanched with spicy coconut milk gravy, aromatic with thick fresh santan, bunga kantan, shallots, sambal belacan and kerisik, make this fresh and crunchy dish hard to forget. A must order!
I’m pretty glad to see that they are incorporating more greens into the menu I must say.. not just the decadent siew-yoke (roast pork) and massive pork ribs and prawns in the har-mee (prawn noodles), though that is good as well.
Asahi on tap.. hard to stop at one ! And some terrific German beer as well.. If you see Richard behind the bar, get him to make his version of the Long Island for you – guaranteed that after two, you will not still be standing!
My new addiction.. pretty isn’t it?
Mixed platter – RM33
No meal at Champ’s is complete without the mixed platter of roasted pork and BBQ pork. Pun-fei-sau is how I like it – half fatty half lean!
Nyonya kerabu bihoon – Rm26
I’m addicted to this Nyonya style cold noodles salad, with tons of bunga kantan, limau purut, mint leaves, shallots, peanuts, taugeh, massive prawns , ground up habi (dried baby shrimp). This is another great dish on Champ’s new menu at BSC. The owner and Chef, Richard Nah, grew up on this .. his mum’s cooking, and yes, obviously his mother is nyonya.
Now you see what I mean, when I say that the menu is really sporting a rather healthy glow now.
Assam Laksa – RM23
This is the way I like my assam laksa sauce – thick, pungent with fishiness, full of ikan parang and intoxicatingly sour, sweet and spicy, all in one. The generous quantity of tamarind (assam), gives it that sour kick that I love. Here at Champ’s, huge and plump mint leaves, chinese lettuce, shredded cucumbers, onions, chopped pineapples and finely chopped ginger buds give the dish a distinct aromatic and pungent flavour. Finally the thick, black shrimp paste, also known as har ko enhances the dish with even more of a fishy pong. Oo.. don’t kiss me now, or you might faint from the effort.. but that’s what we like most in an assam laksa isn’t it? If it doesn’t reek of fishy goodness, it ain’t assam laksa!
The new Champ’s at BSC is rather swanky looking and far more spacious than the old Champs. It has a live band that plays tasteful music, in the evenings, in al fresco section, and the overall vibe of the restaurant is cosy, laid back.. really a place to kick back and chill.. and where everybody knows your name.