Thornleigh boasts the national headquarters of McDonald's. Beyond the golden arches there's very little on offer here on the restaurant front, but the northwest Sydney suburb does have a superb Malaysian restaurant – better, even, than popular inner-city offerings such as Mamak.
Alice and Paul Tan's establishment is off the Cumberland Highway near Bunnings and Pizza Hut. It goes to show how many people are prepared to do battle with potting mix and deep-dish pizza to get to feather-light roti that comes apart in your fingers like pieces of tissue paper accompanied by a bowl of rich chicken curry, or char kway teow with wide, silky noodle tongues, stir-fried with bits of fish cake, sausage and chicken, resplendent with chives and green onion.
The fried radish (chai tow kuih) is another highlight – radish cake mixed with an omelette, pickled radish and lots of chives. We're totally going back for the Marmite chicken - deep-fried chicken with thick Marmite sauce all over it - but for now we'll content ourselves with the likes of sago pudding covered in coconut cream and palm sugar (heart-attack-alicious) and black sticky rice with coconut cream. Or take home some of the sweet, colourful glutinous rice, topped with salty fried shallot. We particularly like the daily specials including dishes that are only available on the last Sunday of every month (for instance, assam laksa - rice noodles in spiced fish soup).
Thornleigh can be a pain in the arse to get to if you're coming from south of the bridge, but you'll be rewarded with some of the best Malaysian food in Sydney.
Essential eats! Char kway teow + roti canai + fried radish. Myffy Rigby
|Venue name:||Makan at Alice's|
262-264 Pennant Hills Rd