Monday, May 28, 2007

Wen Chang Hainan Chicken Rice

Today, I bring you to Kedai Makan Dan Minum Wen Chang (Wen Chang's Eat and Drink Shop, lame translation, summarized is Wen Chang's Restaurant) at Lebuh Cintra (Cintra St.) to eat nice Hainan Chicken Rice by Wen Chang.

This restaurant is situated heart of Georgetown and very near the tallest building in Penang, the KOMTAR. The restaurant is not AC-ed, but it's clean and during lunch time, it is packed with a lot of people.

I believe it is truly Hainan Chicken Rice because the chef and his workers there all communicate with Hainan language. No worry, they are Malaysians, they can speaks a few languages, English to Mandarin, to Malay to some Chinese dialects =D.

Loh Bak

There is specialize in Chicken, so no Duck or Char Seow (Roasted Pork, taste sweet), Seow Bak (Roasted Pork, I don't know how to explain, but you can try it out when you come to Penang), but they have Loh Bak, a very nice dish, you deep the meat into Chili sauce and you eat it, it taste sweet also, Nice! I recommend Loh Bak.

The vegetable soup for you to drink before the Chicken Rice is served.

How you order Chicken Rice is, you tell the chef which part of Chicken you want. Like I, myself loves the Chicken Wing, I tell him "Uncle, give me black/white chicken wing", black means roasted chicken and white means steamed chicken. If you order drumstick part, you should see how he remove the bone, their skill very good at removing the bone at drumstick.

Here have black and white chicken wing.

I forgot to tell you what is Chicken Rice, Chicken rice is rice that taste like chicken. HOCHIAK(Delicious in local Hokkien dialect)!

How to get there?
  • Taxi, tell taxi driver you want go Lebuh Cintra and then you look for the Wen Chang Restaurant.
  • Ask your local friends to drive you there.
  • Or if you are at Campbell Street walking down to Buckingham Street, notice road sign Lebuh Cintra on your right or opposite from Buckingham to Campbell Street, notice your left hand side for the road sign.


Sharon said...

I've never been there before. Have to give it a try sometime :) When it comes to chicken rice, I always make my way to the one at Chulia St (Goh Thow Chik). The place used to be unbearably noisy because the taukeh shouts a lot!

cHrIstInA_YY said...

Hey, I've tried those chicken rice b4... not bad =D I miss loh bak n also d ice-cream bread @ Botanical Garden =(

Posted by A Research Scientist BSc PG Dip Nutr MSc MD PhD FRSH FRSM said...

Many thanks for your interesting article on Wen Chang chicken rice. Do you know that in December, near Christmas 2005 I went back to my father’s native village in Wen Chang, Hainan Island to visit and see my root.

After a very fast visit to the village, and spoke to the village folks there, my Malaysian friends and the local taxi driver who accompanied me went to a small restaurant in Wen Chang to look for chicken rice for dinner. But unfortunate we could only get the chicken, but not the rice. We came unexpectedly, and the shop was not prepared that there will be some Hainanese from Malaysia coming. So I really do not know how the chicken rice in Hainan itself taste like. I deviated from the main group of other Malaysian tourists to Hainan just to see my native home village in Wen Chang as my first priority, and not go all the way there to eat the original Wen Chang Chicken Rice on the last evening before our tour group flew back to Kuala Lumpur at 1:30 a.m the next day. I have just 2 ½ to do this – to search for my father’s village about 90 km southeast from Haikou before the winter sun sets in fast I would not have time to taste chicken rice in Wen Chang City.

Unfortunately those from the main group who did not go to my village, managed to get a taste of Wen Chang chicken rice as it is known in Hainan. They also have crabs and other seafood in another place in Haikou (capital of Hainan), and they were all Malaysian & Singapore Chinese from other dialects enjoying Wen Chang chicken rice there, whereas myself, a pure Wen Chang Hainanese eating in another restaurant in Wen Chang village itself did not get to taste one grain of real Wen Chang chicken rice. What a disappointment.

In Hainan, they don’t call it ‘Hainanese chicken rice’ as we do here in Malaysia, but they specifically call it ‘Wen Chang Chicken Rice’ because that preparation is only famous from Wen Chang Province. The chicken from Wen Chan is very fatty, and they use the real chicken fat to cook the chicken there, not like here in Malaysia they use margarine.

So I am quite surprise that the stall in your blog specially call it ‘Wen Chang Chicken Rice’ and not merely “Hainanese Chicken Rice’ as in the rest of Malaysia and Singapore. I suppose when you are near the place, you must be very specific, and not just use a general word or address, like locating a house with more specific address, and not just say ‘Penang’ or ‘Kuala Lumpur’

I may be going to Penang next month, and I may try the Wen Chang chicken rice there you suggested. It is very ironical that I have been to Wen Chang, and even gone to a small restaurant in that village, but could not get the famous chicken rice there. I was in a terrible hurry with just another 4 hours left to fly back to KL. So I won’t have time to look for Wen Chang chicken rice there. Imagine coming back to Malaysia to try out the “Wen Chang” chicken rice in a stall in Penang. What an irony, but I hope it is good.

Actually there are quite a number of good Hainanese chicken rice here in Kuala Lumpur (KL) also. Have you tried them here. I can of course try the Penang one also.

Dr Lim Ju Boo (JB Lim)
Kuala Lumpur

Henning said...

Thanks for the info re Wenchang Chicken Rice, JBL.
I've been to Mun Sio twice, on the way to the ancestral village. Sadly a long time ago. Would love to go again.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dr Lim,

Taman Connaught Hainan Chicken Rice was picked as top 10 in Malaysia by Jati sponsored TV 8 food program.

I tried it once, but not my taste.

I really like the Hainan Chicken rice in Singapore Whampoa West Hainan. Chicken meat is soft and melting in the mouth.

nkkhoo blog.

日月神教-任我行 said...


Lim Ju Boo BSc PG Dip Nutr MSc MD PhD FRSH FRSM said...

Although I love Hainanese chicken rice, my other interest is writing all sorts of health, medical, nutrition and science articles. Visit my blog at

lim ju boo science medical nutrition articles

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