3 January 2014

Zaini Satay @ News Straits Times



Plenty of good food and greenery

THE first thing you will notice when you are in Ampang Jaya is the presence of not only a growing number of expatriates but also eateries.

 This township and suburb of Kuala Lumpur is in Selangor, with the oldest neighbourhoods  being Ampang New Village, Ampang Town, Ampang Malay Village, Bandar Baru Ampang, Taman Dagang and the Dato' Ahmad Razali Flats.
 Other major neighbourhoods include Ampang Indah, Ampang Mewah, Ampang Permai, Ampang Jaya, Lembah Jaya, Taman Dagang, Taman Ampang Indah, Kampung Ampang Indah, Taman Dagang Jaya, Taman Cahaya, Taman Cempaka, Taman Kosas, Taman Rasmi Jaya, Taman Bukit Indah, Taman Kesuma, Pandan Jaya and Pandan Indah.
  But Ampang Jaya is also famous for other attractions. Hidden in the affluent and elite residential area called Taman Tun Abdul Razak (or in short Taman TAR), are two popular attractions.
  One of them is a 2.5km jogging track which runs along the main road, providing a green lung for residents and a haven for nature lovers.

  The air is fresh and the lush greenery of this hilly enclave makes it a healthy and conducive place to live in.
  It was for this reason that I moved here eight years ago, and it is one of the best decisions I've ever made.
   It is a great spot for serious runners or for  those who just want to do some brisk walking.  More people can be seen in the evenings or on weekends.
  It is also a great place for celebrity spotting. Many of them live in Ampang Jaya and use the jogging tracks here. So, you might want to get your camera and autograph book ready.
This area which is home to many foreign diplomats and expatriates is an affluent housing estate evident by the number of Bentleys, Ferraris, Hummers and Porsche parked in their porches.

  Another attraction here is the macaques.
Taman TAR has a "wildlife sanctuary" which is on a hilly spot off the main road.
  There is a large group of playful and friendly macaques.
Even then, visitors are cautioned to  be careful and not  provoke them.
There are two species here -- the pig-tailed macaque and the long-tailed macaque.
  They are quite a joy to watch as these creatures are not shy and are fond of showing off their acrobatic skills when they have an audience.
  I was told by a resident that previously the macaques foraged the neighbourhood, stealing food from people's dining tables and even opening refrigerators.
To solve the problem, the locals decided to contain the macaques in the sanctuary by feeding them on a daily basis.
 Since then, this sanctuary has had many visitors.
Some come to feed them, while others choose to sit inside the comfort of their vehicles and watch the  monkeys "in the wild".
The monkeys in Taman TAR are a lucky lot as they get lots of good food.
  Ampang Jaya is also famous as a food haven.
The yong tau foo, a Chinese stuffed vegetable soup dish with Hakka origins, is famous here and one of the most popular restaurants here is a  restaurant  near the Ampang Point shopping complex.
  This stall can be quite busy during dinner so you might want to make reservations.
  Equally popular is Zaini's Satay stall near the famous Naan Corner in Jalan Kerja Ayer Lama.
  Pakcik Zaini happens to be the grandson of the famous "king of satay" who began Majid Satay years ago.
  He has been grilling satay for loyal customers for the last 25 years. It is the best satay in town, hands down.
  Whether it is chicken, beef, lamb or intestine satay sticks, they are all perfectly cooked, with a nice crispness on the outside and juicy as well as tender inside.
  The stall is open from 6pm and remains open until the satay sticks are sold out. Again it is best to order early.  At the other end of the row of stalls is Mak Jah Cafe.
  Popular for its traditional Malay kuih, nasi lemak and roti canai, this is one place where you can see the well-to-do as well as the average Joe in the mornings.
  Even hip hop singer Mizz Nina and her husband Hujan frontman Noh, as well as singer/rapper Arabyrd frequent the stall quite often.
  The prices for the dishes and kuih can be a little pricey for many but, Mak Jah, 71, does not compromise when it comes to taste.
That is why the stall, which  has been in operation for the last nine years, is always full.
  When it comes to shopping, head for the Ampang Point shopping complex.
  Built in 1993, the six-storey building houses many retail outlets including Giant Supermarket and Popular bookstore.
There are also some novelty shops.
  The locals love to shop here although parking can be a problem.


Read more: Plenty of good food and greenery - Northern - New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/streets/northern/plenty-of-good-food-and-greenery-1.449928#ixzz2pGT4KXxW

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