Ratu Sari, Kingsford, Sydney

Ayam goreng pemudi, $15.90

Ayam goreng pemudi, $15.90

UPDATE: 10 February 2012 – Sadly, this restaurant has permanently closed for business. We had some great meals and memories there.

Hopefully the owners Michael and Rohana Halim will start again somewhere to offer Sydney diners their wonderful food. We wish them well.

There are so many restaurants along Anzac Parade’s eat street in Kingsford and Kensington. Students from the University of New South Wales are often seen frequenting these eateries offering Asian mainstays of Chinese, Indonesian, Malaysian and Taiwanese. Student budgets mean restaurants along this dining strip of Sydney need to be a little more creative where tasty food is on offer at very reasonable prices.

There are classic dishes such as laksa, nasi lemak, steam dumplings, noodles, roast duck, Hainanese chicken rice and ayam goreng with prices bordering those of a busy non-descript food court. A little more upmarket and you may find mud crabs an other popular seafood dishes at prices which are still very competitive.

We are at Ratu Sari, an Indonesian restaurant which is slightly more upmarket than its neighbours, but we are here for a reason. There are a least half a dozen dishes on the menu that rank among the best in Sydney. Prices here are slightly more expensive but is still relatively cheap for the quality of food and service.

Ayam goreng pemudi, $15.90

Ayam goreng pemudi, $15.90

One of Ratu Sari’s standout dish is the ayam goreng pemudi. Crispy golden brown pieces of breast, drumstick, wing and thigh arrives with its fragrant marinate of tumeric and spices and a serve of sambal belachan. To really get into this dish, use your hands and fingers and the connoisseur would get to the flavours around the bones too. The chicken skin is crispy and flavour packed with the marinate while the meat is tender, juicy and succulent. Best of all, it is not overly greasy and oily.

Sambal belachan

Sambal belachan

I commend the chef because this version of sambal belachan is a marriage in heaven with the fried chicken. Not overly spicy but still a good pungent kick to accompany the succulent chicken meat.

Terung hebi, $13.90

Terung hebi, $13.90

I don’t eat rice but when at this restaurant, I surely make an exception. This is because the terung hebi comes in the form of chunky eggplant that is sitr-fried with sambal belachan and dried shrimp.

Terung hebi, $13.90

Terung hebi, $13.90

The gravy is a pungent and spicy while the eggplant is like a sponge soaking up all the flavours.

Bihun goreng $8.00

Bihun goreng $8.00

The bihun goreng or fried vermicelli comes with its a smoky wok aromas which sets this dish apart from those I’ve had elsewhere. Slices of fishcake, prawns and meat balls are mixed with egg and fresh beansprouts and some greens providing textural contrast. Personally, this dish is the best interpretation of so many fried vermicelli variations in chinese and asian restaurants and  includes the Singapore noodles that has been bastardised to death in Sydney. This dish is only available for lunch though. But if you go there frequent enough for dinner and twist the owner Michael’s arm, he might just relent.

We have been coming to this restaurant for years now and are never disappointed despite ordering predominantly the same dishes. It’s nice when the wait staff reels off our orders because they remember the dishes we like.

So dear readers, where can we find good fried chicken (non fast food kind :) ) in Sydney?


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Ratu Sari
470 Anzac Parade,
Kingsford
New South Wales 2032
+612 9662 8788

Ratu Sari on Urbanspoon

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16 Responses to Ratu Sari, Kingsford, Sydney

  1. I love the chunkiness of the eggplant in the terung hebi.

  2. Everything just looks so good that I am sorry to that it so so far away!

  3. Dolly says:

    i dont eat rice too *hi5*

    butttt ever since going out with my bf ive been eating more than usual. He thinks rice is a commodity :( .

    The eggplants loook awesome.. yum.. definitely need rice with that!!!

  4. purabi naha says:

    My mouth has started watering on such breathtaking pics on your blog!! You are a a talented shutterbug. I loved reading your posts. Do visit mine when you have time.

  5. mashi says:

    Love the look of the food, I’m salivating just looking at those pics. Think it’s lunchtime =)

  6. I haven’t had bihun for A LONG LONG TIME! The fish cake and eggs with noodles…looks so delicious. I forgot it’s dangerous time to visit your blog. It’s 1am and I’m not supposed to eat anything. Delicious meal…

  7. That definitely looks like a very good fried chicken, served with sambal belacan? I should try that next time.

  8. Melissa Loh says:

    Is the balchan the hot and spicy, sour or sweet type?

    • Chopinand says:

      Hi Melissa, I think I know what you mean. It’s the hot and spicy type and it goes really well with the chicken.

  9. Hannah says:

    Oooh, I kinda just want a big bowl of perfectly-cooked rice topped with a huge amount of the sambal belachan :D

  10. Su-Lin says:

    I need to try more Indonesian dishes! Sadly I’m on the other side of the world so will have to look for a restaurant over here!

  11. jacquie riddell says:

    We were regulars at Ratu Sari and were so sad to see it shut seemingly suddenly. Does anyone know how to get hold of Michael as we want to thank him and say goodbye.

    Jacquie

    • Chopinand says:

      Dear Jacquie,

      We were regulars too, so regular that we didn’t need the menu and one of the waitresses would even call out the dishes above that we always order every time we visit :)

      I do not know Michael’s contact details but we do hope he will re-open Ratu Sari again somewhere soon. We sure miss these dishes, especially the ayam pemudi and meehoon goreng.

      • Les Rankin says:

        Hi Chopinand (IF that is your real name..hmm..) Any news on the mysterious disappearance of our friends? I’ve tried Serendipity Ice Cream from whence Michael and Rohanna sourced their durian ice cream, but they’re in the same boat…no recent orders, no contact details, not even a surname, just “Michael”. Man, I need an eggplant fix..

        • Les Rankin says:

          Halim. Some sleuthing (i.e. paying attention to the main story, above) has revealed them as the Halims. I’ll do some more crap sleuthing and get back to you. Stay tuned..

        • Chopinand says:

          Hi Les,

          I don’t know where they are now so let us know if you do. I miss the ayam goreng pemudi and the mee hoon goreng the most.

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