If you often feel frustrated while waiting for your turn to use the communal ladle during every hot pot session, lok lok steamboat seem like a pretty good answer to solve your first world problem.
Just a stone’s throw away from the famous Punggol Nasi Lemak in Tanjong Katong, Malaysia Local Delights serves rustic Malacca-style lok lok steamboat buffet and many other familiar Malaysian dishes.
The interior of the restaurant has simple decorations with photographs of Malaysia’s skyline.
We opted for the weekday buffet ($24.80/pax) with satay sauce ($6 add-on per table), without GST and service charges.
Apart from the wide selection of skewers, the buffet includes free-flow sauces, drinks, deep fried snacks, carbohydrates, and of course, unlimited scoops of ice cream!
Unlike many places that expose food on trays that often attract flies, this place uses glass fridges to showcase the wide variety of skewered vegetables, assorted meats and sliced abalone.
Yes, I am not kidding about the abalone skewers (just don’t expect it to be anything near Green Lip abalone lah). Also, the prawns were shelled; perfect for a lazy eater like myself.
We tried many different skewers and some of our favorites were scallop, beef and cheesy sotong balls. The spicy Thai fishcake skewer was decent with a good texture as well.
For those who enjoys offal, you will be able to find many different kinds here, such as cow tripe and pig’s intestines.
Apart from the usual steamboat food, I found that the Doraemon and Angry Bird fish cake skewers were pretty cute, and will definitely appeal to kids and the young at heart.
While these skewers are great for photos, taste wise, they’re just bland pieces of fish cakes waiting to be dipped in sauces.
Some popular soup options include Penang Prawn, Curry Laksa and Nourish Herbal Soup.
Opting for the latter, the Nourish Herbal soup base certainly did not disappoint. It is garnished with goji berries and dates, making the soup light and sweet.
The taste of the herbal soup did not overpower the skewers and I would say that it was a pretty good choice to pair it with the fragrant satay dipping sauce.
My favourite way of eating this would be dousing the beef and pork lok lok into the thick and nutty sauce. The satay sauce adheres to meat really well and best complements the meaty taste, as compared to seafood.
If barbecued satay skewers are too greasy for your liking, this might be a healthier alternative for you.
Satay dipping sauce aside, the amazing condiment section included plenty types of sauces and you can blend any of your favourites together.
While the classic holy trinity of chilli with minced garlic and spring onions always did the trick for me, I was delighted that sweet shrimp sauce and deep fried pork lard bits were available. The first I’ve seen at a steamboat place.
At the end of the day, we were quite bloated and couldn’t do more than one scoop of ice cream. We were happy to see that the selections available were better than other steamboat buffets I’ve been to.
However, we were not very impressed with the greasy deep fried snacks as my colleague found a strand of hair in her chicken wing. I believe that there is definitely room for improvement with handling the cooked food.
As someone who lives near this neighbourhood, I feel like this is a reasonably priced place that I will be likely to return again with my friends.
This place is pretty much for you if you hate using utensils and enjoy being messy with your food.
Expected damage: $24.80 – $32.80/pax