This branch of the much-loved Passage Thru India is located in Pearl International Hotel in a rather fine interior with dim lighting. Unlike its spacious head quarter that can seats over hundreds of patrons, this branch is a smaller version but is delightfully warm and inviting. It is carefully decorated with tasteful furnishings and antique ethnic accoutrement that the owner has collected from all over the world.
Hearty, solid fare goes with the excellent ambiance as well. Passage thru
Pappadums – Complementary
Green Salad – Complementary
Mango Lassi and Masala Chai
We started off with the complementary pappadams with yoghurt mint and green salad. The delicious crunch of these spiced lentils crisps paired with cooling yoghurt mint dipping have brightened up our meal. The green salad too, is refreshing alone or when served with a curry and rice. Not to forget our thirst quenchers, freshly blended mango lassi and masala chai, a brewed tea with aromatic spices.
Tandoori Chicken – RM 16
I can swear that this is the best tandoori chicken that I’ve ever tasted – incredibly tender, juicy and well flavoured. It might be my jakun-ness, as I’ve only tried dried, charred tandoori chicken in some rip off mamaks. We found out from the manager that tandoori chicken is actually marinated with yoghurt and tandoori masala where the reddish color is coming from.
Tikka and Kebab Platter
Lamb Kebab – RM 16 (Serves Two)
Fish Kebab – RM 17 (Serves Two)
Prawn Kebab – RM 16 (Serves Two)
Chicken Tikka – RM 19 (Serves Two)
The choices of kebabs and tikkas are exceptional, from tender lamb, hefty prawns, boneless chicken to juicy fish slices.
Greediness strikes in a sudden, wanting to try a little bit of everything, we requested for a tikka and kebab platter. My ultimate favorite is the lamb kebabs in a rather cute cigar shaped roll, it is incredibly juicy and spicy as warned by the spike red color while KampungBoy loves his succulent prawn kebab to every bit. Looking at the stunning grill marks of these tikkas and kebabs, it’s not hard to guess that they were being grilled in the tandoor as well. I just have the sudden urge to run into the kitchen and give the tandoor chef a big fat hug. Of course, I refrained myself from doing so.
Bendhi Masala – RM 9
The ladies fingers are cooked to perfection in an exotic blend of onion, green chilies and tomato masala. The nuanced taste has us beckoning for more and it even inspire me to do something with that bag of lovely tender ladies fingers sitting in one corner of refrigerator for the past few weeks. Wish me luck!
Plain Naan – RM4
Garlic Naan – RM6
Butter Naan – RM6
Masala Kulcha – RM7
The tasty pillow of flat bread is warm and scorched perfectly to make it soft and crispy at the same thing. The naans are all freshly made and cooked upon your order in the clay oven (tandoor). The variation of masala kulcha has won our heart over, with its stuffed mashed potatoes and vegetables which are really yummy.
Our eyes widen in shock when the fish head curry arrived in our table. For RM35, the portion is enough to feed 6! We double confirmed with the serving staff before we actually tuck in lustily as we think that they must have mixed up our orders. Yes, for RM 35, it is well worth every penny! The humungous red snapper head is drenched in thick masala gravy with assorted vegetables such as okras, tomatoes and brinjals. Very often I was labeled as a weirdo because I think that the fish cheeks, fish eyes and fish lips are actually the best part of a fish head.
However, it’s neither a south Indian cuisine nor a north Indian influence dish, as curry fish head is uniquely Malaysian dish as it is not a norm for Indians to have fish head as a meal. It was intriguing to find out that this Malaysian dish is actually the best selling item in Passage thru
Rice goes well with fish head curry or fish head curry curry goes well with rice? Who cares anyway as we had a whole lotsa plate licking going on.
To end our meal, we were served with Gulab Jamun, some little fried milk (khoya) dough balls drenched in rose scented sugar syrup.
It tastes more like a frozen dessert with bits of shaved ice here and there. Rather being soft like the usual tube ice cream, the kulfi is quite firm and popsicle-like. Yet it has its own charms, including a slightly chewy texture with crushed pistachio and a saffron scent.
As a long standing establishment in
Pearl International Hotel, Lobby Level 1.
No. 235, Jalan Tun Razak, 55100
No.9, Gr Floor, Jln Setiapuspa,
An Invitation From FoodStreet