Langkawi seafood might have gotten a bad rep since the infamous Siakap (seabass) incident. In case you missed it, a family paid a whopping RM1,196.80 for a plate of Siakap at one of the popular seafood restaurants. The restaurant even imposed an additional 5% charge for payment via credit card - in case it wasn't enough damage to the poor guy's wallet already.
Anyway, if you are looking for some tasty seafood in Langkawi and don't have RM1,200 to splurge, you should definitely check out Makan Mana Ikan Bakar. The shop is located a short 15-minutes drive from Pantai Cenang.
Thankfully, it doesn't take long for the crowd to clear. When it was our turn, the boss informed us that it was simple to order our food: just pick out the seafood of our choice and decide on the preferred cooking style. We were spoilt for choice as everything looked so fresh!
And yes, they have a clear price list to avoid unwanted surprises when paying the bill. They also weigh the seafood in front of you and offer suggestions on the quantity to order depending on the number of pax and the number of dishes ordered.
I like how clear their menu is as well. They offer a decent variety of cooking styles for each type of seafood and even have English translations available for those who do not understand Bahasa.
Despite the dinner crowd, food only took around 15-minutes to arrive. Let's makan!
Ikan Gerut Bakar (4.5/5)
We went with the recommendation to try the Ikan Gerut (Longhead Grunter) since it's not a day to fall back on the usual choices of stingray or seabass. Of course, we also opted for the fish to be grilled since it's their signature cooking style.
The fish was "butterflied" and grilled with a generous amount of house sauce. It might sound odd but when the dish arrived, the smell reminded me of ayam percik (roasted spiced chicken). After a quick taste, the sauce definitely leans on the sweeter and creamier side compared to conventional ikan bakar sauces which tend to be more spicy and sour.
The fish was perfectly cooked, with its light and delicate flesh pairing well with the sauce. The dipping sauce served on the side is not for the faint-hearted - it's extremely spicy but provides a nice acidic balance to the creamier ikan bakar sauce.
Sotong Goreng Tepung (5/5)
THIS WAS THE BOMB. The squid was cooked just right and the batter was delightfully light and crispy. Even though the squid was weighed in front of me, I was amazed by the portion size and even more so when I saw the price. We wiped the entire plate clean in a matter of minutes.
Siput Buloh Masak Lemak (4/5)
It's been awhile since I last had razor clams. Their version was cooked in a flavourful sweet and spicy sauce (read: good with rice). While I enjoyed this dish, I felt that the freshness of the clams was overpowered by the sauce. Personally, I'd prefer a lighter cooking style to fully savour the natural sweetness of the razor clams.
Sayur Campur (4/5)
We also ordered a side of mixed vegetables to keep the meal balanced. The carrots were a tad raw for my taste but otherwise, it was a simple but tasty medley of broccoli, cauliflower and tomatoes.
Overall, we were so lucky to have stumbled upon this gem. Aside from the fresh seafood, I love how customer-friendly the entire dining experience was - the servers were warm, the menu was clear and of course, the prices were beyond reasonable for a restaurant on a holiday island. The Ikan Bakar and Sotong Goreng Tepung were really scrumptious enough to warrant a return visit to Langkawi - make sure to add this place to your list!
Sabbylicious Makan Rating
Food : 4/5
Price : 4.5/5
Environment : 4/5
Service : 4/5
Must order : Ikan Bakar, Fried Squid
Operating Hours Tuesday - Sunday (5:00pm–12:00am) Closed on Monday
Lot 2764 pantai cenang, Jalan Kuala Muda, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah