If you ask me where to get the best satay in KL (note: Selangor excluded, especially Kajang), my answer would be Pak Din satay in Gombak. It took me almost a year to come up with this conclusion, one that I could only make after tasting all the well-known satay restaurants and stalls around the city.
The list includes Satay Station, Zaini Satay, Nur Satay, Hj Senen of O Mulia, Klasik Satay, Satay Sri Melaka of Datuk Keramat, Zainah Ismail, Kasim Satay, Sen Kee, Sate Atok and many more. So you know I am pretty darn serious about this.
Pak Din’s satay stall is a small road side eatery that serves only satay and maybe a couple of drinks. It feels more like a warung than a full fledged restaurant.
Price-wise, they are in line with most and cheaper than some, definitely worth paying for the quality of food you’re receiving. Choices are rather limited though since they only offer chicken, beef and lamb satay. Their prices are RM0.80, RM0.90 and RM1.40 each respectively.
Although they are officially open from 6pm onwards, it’s recommended to come after 6.30pm when their stoves are fully ready and fired up. Also, it might be a good idea to call up and check if they are open especially if it’s a Sunday because that’s their off-day; taken on alternate weeks.
Pak Din doesn’t take the easy way out and employs a mix of strong and low flame to grill the satays. This ensures a juicy finish every time and more importantly, only the fat and skin parts are caramelized without charring the rest of the satay.
As usual the beef satay is a notch better than the rest. It’s in fact the best beef satay I have tasted thus far – succulent, aromatic, extremely flavorful and burst with juice when you bite into it. Terrific stuff.
Both the chicken and lamb satay are also delicious, but just not as great as the beef version. You’d be pleased with the generous amount of meat on each skewer too, so you don’t have to order a lot for a satiated meal.
Pak Din also makes a mean satay sauce that pairs perfectly with his satays. The thick spicy and sweet peanut sauce is filled with coarsely crushed peanuts and coats the satay effortless for not being oily.
Nasi impit was noticeably softer and tastes better too, and we gladly mopped up every bit of the sauce with it – nothing on the platter was wasted.
Lastly, while you are here, it’s important to note that you are forbidden to park in front of the tomyam restaurant next to Pak Din. If you do, you will be asked to remove your car by Pak Din’s staff anyway. So why bother?
You can however, choose to park right in front of Pak Din’s stall, which is actually on a rather busy road (risky), or turn into a smaller car park just slightly further down the road. For catering, pick up or large orders, you can contact the number below.
Pak Din Satay Gombak
121, Jalan Gombak
Gombak Setia, 53000 KL
Tel: 012-978 4252 / 016-692 8744
Business hours: 6pm to 11.30pm, closed on alternate Sundays