Penang is in a strip mall about a half block south of Chamblee Tucker Road on Buford and far enough into a corner to be impossible to see from the road. I wasn’t even looking for it, I was trying to find Lee’s Bakery, but Amy on Food reviewed this restaurant recently, it was late and I was hungry.
This has been an award winning Malaysian-Thai restaurant since 2000. The Zagat rating of “Excellent” in 2007 is on the wall as you enter. In my case, it brought back memories of a Malaysian coworker, who would occasionally would share food with me. I couldn’t eat what she ate. It was simply too hot. She’d make a milder version that was more edible for an American.
Inside Penang is quite pretty. There is a lot of wood in the restaurant, murals on two walls, good looking tables, and a real attempt to evoke a Southeast Asian feel. Penang is roomy inside, with plenty of elbow room between tables. Service was, in my estimation, very good.
After a brief look at the menu (which is large, over 100 items), I ordered the beef Penang Satay and Kari Ayam, a curry with chicken and potatoes. The Keri Ayam arrived first; the satay took a while to cook. And while the Kari Ayam was good, the satay was beautiful and delicious, grilled meat flavors mixing with the beef marinade in ways that accented both.
Though both dishes were marked with a pepper on the menu, and they had flavor, I didn’t find either especially hot. The curry had a hint of it. I don’t recall any heat in the satay at all. I’m sure you can ask for more spice if necessary.
Verdict: Recommended. Good to excellent food, beautifully presented. Fine service. Heat may disappoint if you’re a spice lover.
4897 Buford Hwy # 113
Chamblee, GA 30341