Online reviews are generally a good indication of one’s would be dining experience at an F&B establishment, if you take the time to read them and manage your expectation accordingly. As the writer behind Bangsarbabe.com, my reviews are meant to help my readers make more informed decisions.
Which is why I wasn’t quite sure if my food radar was off or the staff at Grub by Ahong didn’t quite hack it during my visits. Based on feedback from my friends who’ve been to Grub, they had good things to say about the food, backed by the many positive reviews I’ve read online. I was also told to make a reservation as they are always “booked out” come weekends so I did so accordingly.
The RSVP process isn’t pleasant I must say – it took me two attempts before getting a table and the booking confirmation came the evening before I was supposed to visit, at noon. You basically place your order through a chit, and head downstairs to pass the staff your order and wait for them to confirm the dishes to avoid mistakes. Plates, cutlery and drinks are self-service to manage cost so do take note that you’re supposed to do it yourself.
Roasted beetroot, fresh fruits and feta salad (RM13.50) makes a refreshing and palatable start. You get plenty of zing from the greens, and I like the combination of honey, jackfruit and beetroot. Feta cheese gives the salad a light yet crumbly texture; not bad for a start.
Steaks are reasonably priced at Grub – you’re looking at RM35 per ribeye (150gm) and RM25 for either a New York Strip or Flank Steak (150gm each). The ribeye was commendable during our first visit, as was the flank steak which was adequately tender with a good flavour from the meat and char. The steaks come with a side of jambu ulam for a local twist.
We weren’t as lucky during our second visit as the flank steak was very tough to a point it was almost impossible to chew. It reminded me of my dog’s chew toy, not that I’ve tried it. Grilled lamb (RM30) seems to be one of their popular picks where the lamb chops are supposedly slow roasted with percik sauce and served alongside mesclun salad, potato salad and lemon rice.
I had this during my first visit and thought it was pretty good so Jien decided to order it for himself during our second visit. It tasted the same as what I had the first time (albeit an inferior cut) but when our friend ordered hers 10 minutes later, the lamb she got was so tough, none of us could chew without straining our jaw. Think chew toy. It’s a pity really, for the flavours were quite good.
The Roasted Chicken (RM16.50) features 2/3 of a chicken leg – that means you get a whole drumstick and half a thigh – on a bed of mash potato with roasted vegetables on the side. I didn’t think much about this as the chicken was a tad tough. I also got (what I think) is Yorkshire pudding, which was chewy and not quite like Yorkshire pudding if you asked me. I liken it to the texture of “ham chim peng”, without the filling insde.
Jien’s El Grande (RM26) from our first visit was much better. You get a boneless chicken chop, flattened and deep fried, then topped with cheese with chicken ham on a base of marinara sauce for a tangy yet rich finish. I liked this a lot better as the meat is more tender and each bite gives you plenty of flavour.
You get to add on sides to your meal if you need something more substantial. The ramen tastes like maggi noodles so unless you’re too damn lazy to cook it yourself, I suggest you go for their chips. They go well with the cili padi sauce available at the self-service section.
Desserts choices are interesting – we tried the apam balik cheesecake, which tasted similar to apam balik. I have to say, Grub offers some decent wine options if you’re planning to drink. Don’t go there expecting Bordeaux please, but prices are reasonable if you don’t want to bring your own. Corkage charge is RM7 per pax by the way.
Because you compromise on ambiance and service, prices are reasonable at Grub. Unlike the many reviews and praises I’ve heard about the place, I’m not as impressed given the food quality during my second visit. If I were to average out the score from my first visit which was more positive, then Grub is still worth checking out if you’re into hearty dishes and fuss-free dining. :)
Food: 6/10 (pork-free)
Verdict: Go with an open mind and dress comfortably. I recommend the ribeye steak and el grande.
Grub by Ahong
608, Jalan 17/10,
46400 Petaling Jaya.
Tel: 016-923 2983 (WhatsApp only. They won’t pick up your calls)
Tuesday – Thursday: 6pm till 10.45pm
Friday: 12noon till 3pm, 6pm till 10.45pm
Saturday & Sunday: 11am till 2pm, 6pm till 10.45pm