Sumptuous Asian specialities delight by the sea
|A true taste of Asia: Cafe Sambal Restaurant serves authentic and delicious Malaysian and Chinese specialties.- Photos Courtesy of Petro House Hotel
Mouthwatering Malaysian and Chinese dishes, and a halal-compliant kitchen, are the jewels in the crown of Petro House Hotel's sensational Cafe Sambal. Vo Le Hong makes the scenic trip to Vung Tau to find out more. more.
After travelling an hour and a half by hydrofoil from bustling HCM City, it was a welcome change to reach Vung Tau, with its sea breezes, fresh air and spectacular attractions. This "Bay of Boats" is worth considering as a weekend getaway destination.
At my friend's invitation, I visited Petro House, a boutique business hotel located right in the heart of Vung Tau.
|Irresistible: The restaurant's take on Nasi Lemak comes complete with flavours and spices straight from Malaysia.
Renovated last year, the hotel still retains the charm of the original colonial architecture, with columns and arch windows, offering spacious and modern guest rooms that deliver comfort, safety and internet connectivity.
Petro House is not only an ideal place to stay but also a perfect venue for business or social gatherings in a casual setting.
At the hotel, my friend introduced me to the restaurant's manager who offered us specialties prepared by a team of chefs from Malaysia.
|Not to be missed: The beautiful Sambal roast duck is a particular highlight.
The hotel's Cafe Sambal restaurant serves authentic Malaysian and Chinese specialties. Catering to diners of different palates, the restaurant can satisfy varying dietary requirements, and the menu has something for everyone, including a halal-compliant kitchen.
Popular with diners are Malaysia's unique curries and China's noodles, barbeque and wok dishes.
It was interesting for us to compare a Nasi Goreng with Chinese wok-fried rice and Char Koay Teow with stir-fried seafood in egg broth with hor fun (soft noodles).
My favourite dish, however, was Sambal roast duck, which had beautifully glossy, crackling and crispy skin and a stunning mahogany colour. The meat was succulent and the smell unforgettable.
To serve, the chef brings the duck to the table and carves off the skin first. The thin and crisp skin is served on a thin pancake with cucumber and spring onion pieces, and topped with a special sauce.
The Sambal roast duck sounds similar to Peking duck but the taste is different with special flavours and spices from Malaysia.
|Grilled greatness: A selection of fresh seafood, beef, sausages and satay offers a gloriously extravagant option.
Diners can ask the chef to cook the meat to their specifications in such dishes as wok-fried noodles, wok-fried rice and steamed roast-duck soup.
Another special experience was the Teh Tarik, a presentation of the art of tea pulling by the bartender. The longer the pulling, the more bubbly and flavoursome is the Teh Tarik.
At the hotel restaurant, you can start your day with a bowl of Sambal roast duck noodles at VND47,000++ (US$2,35++), and at lunch, diners can order a combo menu for VND178,000++ ($8,9) per set of five dishes, including Malaysian, Chinese, Western or Vietnamese combinations.
For those who prefer a more robust dinner, an extravagant BBQ buffet is an excellent option, featuring a mouthwatering selection of fresh seafood, beef, sausages, satay and mixed skewers on the grill.
At the carving station, there will be roast duck, roast chicken and char sieu chicken thighs.
In addition to these dishes, I sampled Petro House Hotel's other specialities, including Nasi Lenmak and Nasi Goreng Kampung, all of which made my stay unforgettable. - VNS
Petro House Hotel restaurant
Add: 63 Tran Hung Dao Str., Ward 1, Vung Tau City.
Tel: +84 64 3852 014
Comment: Authentic Malaysian & Chinese cuisine at reasonable prices.