Sunday night we hit The Banana Leaf, a Malaysian restaurant recommended by our cabbie. I was so relieved to be traveling with people who were willing to try Malaysian instead of forcing us to eat at Applebee’s. A mix of Indian, Thai, and southeastern flavors, Malaysian food is fast becoming a favorite.
I started out with a mango “slushie” full of vodka that had this baby mesmerized.
The restaurant had rad psychedelic décor and cute, friendly servers. We started off with a sampler appetizer platter with roti (with dipping sauce), so-so egg rolls, perfectly fried calamari, and probably the best chicken satay I have ever had. They definitely weren’t shy with the seasoning here.
I over-ordered, as usual but we managed to finish just about everything between the four of us. The chicken curry was rich with coconut milk but not as fiery as a Thai curry.
They had to save that fire up for the incendiary beef rending, which hurts so much you can’t stop eating it. The coconut rice cooled the heat down nicely.
We also had sambal green bean with long beans and shrimp, and a second sambal shrimp dish that was pushing it. The second dish was far too sweet.
No one else was game to try the lamb shank, so I had to suffer, eating it myself. Poor, poor me. The star anise and cumin-scented broth along with fresh coriander made it comfort food with an exotic twist.
There was no way we were making it to Death by Chocolate for dessert.
There are 3 locations for Banana Leaf in Vancouver. They are not affiliated with the Banana Leaf in LA. They offer a 7-course tasting menu if you would like to have it all.