Chocha.foodstore@ Petaling Street, KL
Petaling Street, Chinatown of Kuala Lumpur where you can find a collection of stalls and shops selling everything from clothing, household items to delicious local food and drinks. Despite the massive urban development at Petaling street and its surrounding area, one still be able to savour a slice of the old and new coexisting with interesting cafes and eateries that popping up which occupied some prewar buildings at this area.
Chocha.foodstore is one of the hipster cafes that should have a spot on your list.
Housed in the abandoned Mah Lian Hotel, the catchy name of Chocha means ‘sit and drink’ in Hakka dialect. It’s not hard to guess what’s their specialties, wide variety of tea ranging from Black Tea (Lapsang Souchong 正山小种, Darjeeling Autumnal Red Thunder, Yunan Black Tea 古数红茶), Green Tea (Tsukigaze Zairai Sencha, Shizuoka Sencha 静岗煎茶, Long Jing 高山龙井), Raw Pu-Er (Zhou Xin Qiang Raw Pu-Er 周新强生普洱， Lao Hei Zhai Raw Pu-Er 老黑寨古树生普洱)， White Tea (Bai Yin Shan White Tea 白莺山白茶)，Dark (Mini Tuo Cha普洱沱茶， Aged Liu Bao Tea六堡茶) and Oolong Tea (Ali Shan Cha 阿里山茶， Aged Fujian Shui Hsien陈年水仙, Da Hong Pa 大红袍武夷岩茶, Hei Guan Yin 黑观音). Experience the Chinese tea culture here with some good food such as Shao Xing Mussels and Cincalok Fried Chicken.
Upon entering the cafe, visitors are greeted with peeling torn walls, old wooden tables, and exposed light bulbs. The old shop lot with long narrow layout, an almost unvarnished interior with classic patterned floor tiles and grills from the former Mah Lian Hotel, clusters of vintage glass lamps dangling from the ceiling as well as a sun-drenched central courtyard.
We were seated at the long tables in the courtyard with ample of sunlight and lined with potted herbs and plants. This section definitely provides visitors a pleasant site to hang out and I love this spot because it’s ideal for food photography. ^__^
The artsy spiral staircase donned with old bicycle, dried flowers, earthenware pots and a few stools plays as a perfect OOTD background. For sure I won’t miss the chance and check out my “perfect” OOTD photo. *thick face mode ON LOL
The setting and the atmosphere here are bound to lure faithful followers and their effort to preserve historical building and stop unnecessary demolition is highly commendable.
Pot tea for one or two, sorry I can’t remember what tea we had. 🙁
Other than teas, Chocha.foodstore also offers coffee, natural cultured soda crafted juice, craft beer and wine in their beverage menu.
Sencha 煎茶 (RM16.00)
We can get cold brewed tea here as well where the is tea leaves are steeped in cold or room temperature water for an extended period of time. The process brews the tea leaves slowly and the flavors is extracted gently, allowing for a truer tasting tea.
Other options of cold brewed tea includes Dong Ding Oolong (冻顶乌龙)and Darjeeling Blend.
The food menu focuses on Asian-Chinese delights with a fun twists, think Cincalok Fried Chicken with Summer Salsa to the Ulam Raja Crème Brûlée.
Kerabu Mango Rojak (RM20.00)
An appetizer of local favourites with a creative twist. Comprised of young mango, pineapple, guava, tomato, chopped long bean, crispy Yao Tiao, crushed peanut and sesame seeds. The fruits was fresh and crunchy but it was too salty even before the black vinegar reduction was added.
Cured Fish Rice (RM30.00)
The rice bowl was tasted as good as it looked. The rice was topped with pan seared salty chunks of cured mackerel, perfect Ajitama egg with runny egg yolk, chopped coriander, scallion ginger sauce and a disc of herbs butter. Mixed all ingredients and dug into this fluffy buttery rice bowl that showcased satisfying dimensions of flavors and textures.
Aglio Olio Duck (RM24.00)
Featured housemade noodles studded with spiced duck confit, garlic confit, cherry tomatoes, chilies and furthered perfumed with Thai basil and lemongrass. The flavors was not too shabby but mere generic.
Chinese Pesto Flat Noodles (RM22.00)
The housemade flat noodles had the al-dente texture that I fond of, sufficiently blanketed with rich ulam pesto with a flavour profile that’s similar to Hakka Lui Cha. Charred capsicums, semi-dried tomatoes, crushed peanuts and sesame seeds supplying an invigorating flavors to the dish. Definitely not a bad vegetarian option.
Everyone love fried chicken! Chocha’s fried chicken is one of the popular choices in their menu. The Cincalok marinated chicken pieces were nicely fried to a golden crunchy perfection but the Cincalok (fermented small shrimps) flavor was rather subtle though. Served with tomato chutney and pineapple salsa to balance out the meatiness as well as for provide a refreshing element to the dish. It was good but lack of that “wow” factor.
Verdict: The setting and ambience are really captivating, making it one of the best historic jewels in Petaling Street. For Instagram enthusiast, I’m sure your followers will certainly drool over your double-tap worthy food photos of this cafe. Food taste wise, overall was a satisfying meal but some of the dishes were a bit over-seasoned with salt.
Chocha.foodstore (No signboard but the cafe is in this Mah Lian Hotel)
56, Jalan Petaling, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: +603-2022 1100
Operating Hours: 11.00am to 11.00pm (Tuesday to Sunday)