PETALING JAYA, May 7 — With dishes like mani cai bee hoon and Sarawak-style oh chien, Ruai.082 is serving a slice of Sarawak in Damansara Jaya.
The name “ruai” comes from the word for balcony or veranda of a longhouse, which is traditionally used as a communal space.
It operates out of Restaurant Lin Li Xiang, which serves another Sarawakian classic during the day: kolo mee.
Both concepts are operated by a pair of siblings, and from 6pm onwards, the menu changes: the signature is kuey chap, a Teochew staple, and the rest of the menu changes from noodle focused dishes to braised, stir-fried dishes to go with rice. Tuak is also served.
The Kuey Chap Special (RM15.90) comes loaded with all the fixings: half a boiled egg, beancurd puffs and various parts of the pig, including lean meat, intestine, stomach, ear, skin and the rather ominous sounding “scalp.”
The only sign for Ruai is on the inside; those business hours have since changed.
The broth is packed with flavour from Chinese herbs and spices, and tastes almost medicinal.
In addition, five spice, anise and dark soy sauce feature prominently, adding a distinctive savoury aspect to the dish.
Flat, broad and silky smooth sheets of rice noodles are a delightful slurp and complement the already texturally diverse bowl of chewy, crunchy and tender pieces of pork.
Also known as sayur manis, mani cai is often found stir fried with bee hoon or just with eggs, and usually imparts a sweet flavour when done right.
Most versions I’ve tried here carry a slight bitter taste, but I’m happy to say that’s not the case here.
The Kuey Chap Special is filled to the brim with all kinds of parts from the pig.
Mani Cai Fried Bee Hoon here is super light and crispy dried shrimp is found in abundance.
The Sarawak Style Oh Chien, which resembles a crispy pancake.
The Goreng Mani Cai Telur (RM12) is a heaping mountain of saucy leaves with bits of scrambled egg here and there, which makes for a perfect dish to dip your chopsticks into in between everything else.
The other mani cai heavy dish was the Mani Cai Fried Bee Hoon (RM12), laden with crispy bits of dried shrimp that lend some intense umami to the whole dish.
The bee hoon is light and “dry” in a sense without being hard, and the mani cai is dotted in and around the dish without ever making it soggy. Paired with their chilli sauce, this dish was a winner.
Don’t miss out on the Sarawak Style Oh Chien (RM18), which comes pre-sliced, almost resembling a pizza.
Juicy, briny morsels of oyster are scattered across the crispy dough base that I believe uses more flour than egg, creating something closer to a pancake than an omelette.
A small bowl of fish sauce and a sprinkling of white pepper is included, of which a few drops go a long way in intensifying the savoury flavours in the dish.
Look for the Lin Li Xiang sign to find Ruai.
93G, Jalan SS 22/11, Damansara Jaya, Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Open Tuesday to Sunday, 6pm-12am.
Tel: +6012-343 3082 (Whatsapp only)
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