Satay Ria Malaysian Chinese Restaurant
165 Wickham St, Fortitude Valley
Located in an area full of Chinese restaurants, the Satay Ria offers a distinctive Malaysian twist. The deep bowls of satay with tofu come with with a fine mix of ingredients floating on noodles both thick and thin, with less of a luscious taste of coconut milk and more liberal use of spices than you sometimes encounter in satays, although what looks like a piece of mushroom turns out on closer inspection to be aubergine! More Chinese are the pieces of Salt and Pepper Tofu that teeter on the edge of being too large for one bite, and while there are pieces of chilli scattered around it the dish turns out to be not particularly hot. The Belacan Long Beans are superb, fresh, lightly spiced and cooked for just the right period. I had never realised that the green beans I struggled to eat as a child could be so good.
With food like this you don’t really need entrées, and while we enjoyed those we tried they were not quite as satisfying as the main dishes. There are spring rolls with the kind of chilli sauce that has been poured from a plastic bottle to the side, and the curry puffs, while tasty, were encased in an oily batter. The menu offers various fruit juices, although with food like this you’re better off with a pot of Chinese tea.