Jalan Alor is famous for its seafood stalls and bustling night-time crowds. But come here early in the morning and a gem of a nasi lemak awaits you… and it’s been around for three decades. The Friedchillies crew paid a visit to Nasi Lemak Alor Corner…
” Mountains of lauk and delicious nasi lemak. ”
Jalan Alor. Two words that mean only one thing to most if not all Malaysians (and tourists too!): FOOD. So well known it is for food that a move by DBKL to change the name was met with vehement protests from tenants and visitors alike. It’s a street that is renowned internationally as being a haven for street food of all kinds. Seafood, mamak food, tomyum shops, even ice cream and drinks. And while most of these are Chinese makan places, in the mornings you’ll find this gem of a nasi lemak place: Nasi Lemak Alor Corner…
Situated near the ‘top’ of Jalan Alor, this nasi lemak stall has been around for 32 years. In their current spot they’ve sold nasi lemak since 1998. It was started by En. Aznal bin Zainal when he emigrated from Indonesia. “In the beginning it was very hard. I opened the stall at 9am but still haven’t managed to sell any by 11am!” says En. Aznal. “But slowly people began to buy my nasi lemak. Soon enough, there was a line. The rest as they say, is history.”
“We incorporate our Indonesian heritage as lauk for the nasi lemak,” says Ayu, En. Aznal’s daughter, referring to the loads of lauk on offer. “But the nasi lemak is classic Malaysian style.” She used to work somewhere else before deciding to help her parents run the nasi lemak business.
They open the stall by 7am and people are already waiting. The nasi lemak is definitely the star. People from all walks of life line up to buy packets of the stuff: we saw office workers, road workers, retail assistants and some, ahem, ‘creatures of the night’ buying the nasi lemak. And of course: crumbly rice (they go through 40kg of it a day) is wrapped in classic yesterday’s newspaper and banana leaf. It has a subtle coconut flavour and they’re generous with condiments as well. The sambal is deep red and richly spicy with a great balancing sweetness.
Then there’s the lauk: mountains of it. We recommend the Ayam Rendang Padang: chicken is braised in their Indonesian style rendang paste for 6 hours not just for tenderness and flavour, but “it also helps keep the rendang longer. You can keep our rendang up to a month, frozen,” said Ayu who admits she’s still getting the hang of the traditional recipes. Also delicious are their chicken and potato begedil, the sambal ayam and gulai ayam padang. “Sambal sotong is also a best seller here,” added En. Aznal.
They’re bungkus only, and each generously portioned bungkus of nasi lemak starts at RM2. A bargain, considering how prices are pretty harsh at Jalan Alor nowadays. They run out by 10am though you might still find lauks available. Alternatively, have a gander at the various home-made kuihs they sell too and lontong. The karipap pusing and lepat pisang are tasty and make good light breakfasts.
En. Aznal used to cook everything himself with his wife. Nowadays, his wife still cooks but is assisted by their children and employed cooks. Incidentally, the operation itself is owned and run by Ayu’s brother, En. Azmi. “Nowadays I’m getting older, so I’m passing it on to my heirs,” En. Aznal says while daughter Ayu smiles sheepishly.
Well, here’s to another 32 years, Nasi Lemak Alor Corner. It’s definitely one of the best nasi lemaks in Kuala Lumpur.
Nasi Lemak Alor Corner is a Finalist for FriedChillies BEST MAKAN AWARDS 2018 in the category of Best Nasi Lemak. Vote for them HERE. Voting will run from the 16th April to 6th May 2018. Undilah for your favourite makan spots and online food media in our PilihanMakan Umum. #makanbestawards #practiceround #pilihanmakanumum
Nasi Lemak Alor Corner
|Address||Top of Jalan Alor Jalan Alor, Bukit Bintang, 50200 KL|
Tel: En. Azmi – 017 311 7449 Cik Ayu – 011 2704 7880
|Open||7am – 1030am|
|Pro||Great nasi lemak, nice lauks|
|Price Range||RM2 – RM6|