Yours Lovingly, Beef Stroganoff @ Nagaria Steak HouseJuly 26, 2010 | 3,598 views
Beef Stroganoff (RM17/USD5.20) – A sumptuous dish of Russian origin, barely available anymore in the menus nowadays.
For all it’s worth, I could not help but write another silly post today. Blame it on the unwelcoming thoughts of starting a full 5 days working week. Or the shot of caffeine earlier this morning (Thank you old town for the perpetually interesting selections of coffee. You’re intoxicating me). But since the previous post was on coffee and toast from a random back alley stall in Penang, let’s move slightly southward to a classic coffee house/steak house in Taiping.
Backed by an astonishing experience of 20 years in business, Nagaria Steak House on Jalan Pasar serves Western cuisine like how the past generations loved them. Of course, Nagaria also serves the occasional Asian fares like fried rice, noodles, and such, much like how Scotch Pub includes their legendary fried beehoon, fried gizzards and inchi kabin chicken into their dominatingly Western menu. Read on to find out just how ‘cheap’ the food at Nagaria is ….
If the interior and ornaments ain’t old school for ya, that smile on LZP’s face while dipping that buttered toast into his bowl of chicken cream soup sure scores BIG time!
Anyway, that lunch in Taiping was not supposed to happen. Or at least, not in a coffee house, of all places. But I ran out of ideas, circling around Pokok Assam area to no avail. Hence we had to rely on our GPS and the name “Nagaria” popped up alongside Doli Char Kuey Teow (Malay style) and Yut Sun Hainanese Restaurant.
Why not? Since we could use some air-conditioning after a scorching hot outing around Pokok Assam prior to that. A steak house sounds fine enough.
Cream of Chicken Soup, and the Toasted Buttered Bun (included in the Set Lunch for RM9.00/USD2.70)
The place does not exactly stand out amongst the many row of old, albeit well-preserved shop houses on Jalan Pasar (Market Road), intermittently breaking into several junctions along the way. But to recognize Nagaria is quite easy, as the cafe has a DRAGON (of all mythical creatures!) emblazoned on the signboard of the restaurant. A little faded alright, but still memorable enough. By the way, ‘Naga’ = Dragon in Malay, and ‘Ria’ = Happy.
So we were having our lunch in the belly of a Happy Dragon‘s?
Black Pepper Chicken Chop – The set lunch of the day
Stepping in into the restaurant revealed almost the exact ambience one can expect from a timeless coffee house like this, along the line of Miner’s Arms, Scotch Pub and Rendezvous in Ipoh. Slightly neo-Tudor style, with a soft lighting.
The menu covers quite an admirable number of dishes; from steaks (RM29/USD8.80 onwards), to fish and chicken cooked in a variety of manners. And nothing that screamed generic or ambitiously chic-fusion-new age like the ones in those fusion cuisine nowadays. We had old-timers like Beef Stroganoff (YES!) and Chicken au Chambertin.
Chicken au Chambertin (RM8.90/USD2.70)- A deceptively delicious slab of grilled chicken with mushroom and red wine gravy
I initially eyed the steaks, for the Bombay steak (with a spicy Masala sauce) and Victoria steak (with minced beef and chicken toppings); both for RM29/USD8.80 each, sounds delicious enough. But then I saw Beef Stroganoff on the menu!
It’s been ages since I have tasted a good Beef Stroganoff, probably dating back to my childhood days when we used to have this at the Ipoh Golf Club (now Royal Perak Golf Club). And then this delicious combination of braised beef fillet in a tangy sour-cream based sauce served with butter rice seemed to have disappear from the menus of newer Western cuisine restaurants.
Beef Stroganoff with Butter Rice – Sweet, creamy, savoury, tangy and oh-so-rich …. the fillets of tenderloin deserve a mention for soaking up the gravy so perfectly. And the fluffy, aromatic butter rice played a role as well.
I could smell the whiff of butter rice from afar. For RM17/USD5.20, the portion may look small but definitely more than sufficient for lunch. A little decadent even, for scooping mouthfuls of butter rice drenched in the sweet and sour gravy with sliced onions and capsicum was certainly fulfilling; both in terms of hunger and cravings satiated.
I know, maybe to some, this is merely another rice and beef fillet dish. Like a Chinese style of ginger and spring onion beef with rice. Or my favourite sweet and sour pork with rice. But to be reliving those moments of endearment from my younger days …… it’s priceless.
A scoop of vanilla ice-cream and a cup of coffee complete the lunch set at Nagaria.
The other items were satisfactory, according to NK and LZP, my dining companions for the day. The portion of Black Pepper Chicken Chop looked a little smaller compared to the Au Chambertine. But understandable for the complete set for the former only cost RM9 each.
The other options for the set lunch were Fillet Of Fish or Braised Chicken with Kunyit (turmeric) and Rice for the same price.
Will I return again in the near future? You bet your bottom dollar! Okay, some might raise the issue of why not hawker food in Taiping instead of going Western?! But once in a while, having your lunch in the comfort of a coffee house/steak house sounds so much more inviting than sweating it by the roadside.
(ran off to hide from all the rotten tomatoes …..)
As if you’re entering from the side door, instead of from the front. But there is NO front entrance!
NAGARIA STEAK HOUSE
No 61, Jalan Pasar,
34000 Taiping, Perak, Malaysia.
Telephone : 605-806 9032, 6019-541 7948
Business hours : 12pm – 12am
Here’s a GOOGLE MAP to Nagaria Steak House
** Another review from From Taiping With Love