Bowls of broth-brimmed noodles and sauce-slicked rice: Fifty Tales tells the story of the food that its chef was raised on and hopes will bring people together.
Piled with pork, succulent with shrimp, these recipes are rooted in Malaysian Chinese traditions but branch out with inspirations most notably from Japan. If you like soulful fare that’s cooked with care and love, the kitchen here is up your alley.
Noodles start from RM16, but if you want to indulge, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon (RM25) comes alive in skilled hands, showcasing the chef’s chops by straddling Japanese ramen and Chinese mee soup. House-made noodles, delicately and naturally flavoursome with a supple chew, prove slurp-worthy to the final strand, immersed in a light pork-based broth with a lick of liquor for a smooth little fragrance of rice wine, heaped with market-fresh, sweetly tender prawns and chunky-fatty braised pork belly that channels tau yew bak, with a whole egg that conceals the custardy yolk of the ideal ajitsuke tamago.
Rice Please (RM16) promises great grains, layered with lots more of that pork and egg, plus crispy pork lard and crunchy-fried garlic to make it even more irresistible, buoyed by lacto-fermented radish for a gentle tang to slice through each addictive bite. An honest serving of spirit-satisfying sustenance that some customers might return for over and over for home-style comfort.
Beer-laced beverages keep things engaging, infusing a spiked twist to kitchen-blended luo han guo syrup or mango syrup with basil (RM18 each), their reviving uplift offering the perfect counterpoint to the hearty bowls.
Fun fact: Chef-owner Aaron Phua and his family run not only Fifty Tales but the enduring cafe Thirty Seconds two doors down.
5, Jalan Margosa SD 10/4a, Bandar Sri Damansara, 52200 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
Open Thursday-Tuesday, 10am-3pm, 6pm-10pm. Tel: 012-399-2697