Hidden behind Istana Negara along Jalan Bellamy is an array of ikan bakar stalls next to each other forming a medan ikan bakar. Despite its secluded location it gets extremely crowded especially during lunch hour. Not knowing which stall to go for, we chose Gerai No.3 that was the busiest among all.
Three huge frying pans were used to pan fry (instead of grill/bakar like the name actually implies) a wide array of seafood like fish, prawns, squids and kerangs. The sight of the ikan bakar here is simply delightful. With so many choices, you are sure to have a difficult time to decide which items to take. Just for fish alone there are a few types like ikan keli (catfish), ikan pari (stringray), siakap and ikan terubok.
What attracted me immediately when I stepped into Gerai No.3 are the larger than life sotongs, which some even as big as six inches. Coated in an orangish-red colored marinating, they looked absolutely delicious and I just got to try them. So I got one sotong for each of us along with some prawns and the smallest slice of ikan pari I could find in the pile.
We were charged RM7 for the ikan pari, which I thought was pretty reasonable considering its freshness. With seafood so fresh, not much marinating is needed to compliment their natural taste. And from what I saw, the banana-leaf-wrapped-seafood was only dipped into the marinating briefly before being pan fried.
For the prawns, Udang Galah is used hence they are pricier – RM5 for 4. But they were mediocre tasting at best so I wouldn’t really recommend taking the prawns unless for the sake of trying only. The most expensive item on our platter was the sotong @ RM8 each. I am not sure if they charged it according to size or simply based on the amount taken, can anyone verify this? But if it was the latter then of course the wise thing to do is to pick the largest sotong lol. It’s a no-brainer, isn’t it?
Two typical condiments for ikan bakar here are the cicah kicap with chili onions and lime and the spicy sauce with lime juice. While the cicah kicap was normal, the spicy dipping sauce is worth a mention for the kick it packed even in minimal quantity. Just a little drizzle of the sauce was enough to send my tongue numb and made my eyes teary.
A plate of Kerang Bakar here is about RM4-5, very fresh and I enjoyed them with the chili sauce.
The number of squids being prepared at anytime to cater to the never-ending queue of customers. Impressive sight huh.
All the ikan bakar was managed by one person only and I believe he has the skill and experience to manage so many seafood at one time. He is always adding fresh seafood to the pan, flipping them and dishing them out to the hungry customers.
Overall I found the food to be good and very fresh albeit being a little pricey especially (RM32 in total inclusive of 2 rice and 2 drinks) for the non-fish seafoods. The catfish looked very tempting and I would definitely return again to try that.
If you are planning to come here for lunch it is advisable to reach before 12pm or you definitely have to wait for seats. Their business hours is from lunch onwards until 3pm then continued from 7pm till 11pm. During Ramadhan month they will be open daily from 3pm onwards.
Ikan Bakar Gerai No.3
Medan Ikan Bakar Jalan Bellamy, KL
GPS Coordinates: N3 07.835 E101 41.686