Road trips to Penang for the food is not an uncommon experience here in Malaysia. In fact, many of us can proudly say that we have ventured to this island purely for a gastronomical experience. From Asam Laksa to Char Kuey Teow to Nasi Kandar, there is a multitude of eateries to choose from. While there are certain places that are considered the best, you will still find a good meal. However, it’s not just Malaysians who think Penang is a hotspot for delicious food. CNN Travel has ranked Penang’s Asam Laksa as part of the top 10 in its ‘World’s 50 Best Foods’ list.
Penang’s Asam Laksa
CNN Travel has gone all over the world to taste test a variety of signature local dishes. From Thailand to Italy and even as far as Japan, they have compiled their list for ‘The World’s 50 Best Foods’.
It’s definitely no surprise that they had to try out our local Malaysian dishes and our Asam Laksa has proven its worth. Settling nicely in the top 10 best foods, the laksa dish is ranked in 7th place.
How can they not, with its complex mix of poached, flaked mackerel, tamarind, chili, mint, lemongrass, onion, and pineapple, it is one of Malaysia’s most popular dishes. Furthermore, they describe it as “an addictive spicy-sour fish broth with noodles that will have you nose running before the spoon even hits your lips.”
Meanwhile, sitting alongside the Asam Laksa in the top 10 are dishes from Thailand, Italy, Japan, and more.
Here are the top 10 best foods according to CNN Travel:
2. Neapolitan pizza, Italy
3. Chocolate, Mexico
4. Sushi, Japan
5. Peking duck, China
6. Hamburger, Germany
7. Penang asam laksa, Malaysia
8. Tom yum goong, Thailand
9. Ice cream, global
10. Chicken muamba, Gabon
Moving on, it’s no surprise that Malaysia is also full of talent when it comes to food and beverages. Firstly we have Malaysian chef Siti Safura Mohd Tawil who won won the Asia-India category of the 2020 Chef Ireland Culinary Competition in February 2020. Her winning dish was “Nasi Lemak Bunga Telang” which is a fusion of nasi lemak and nasi kerabu.
Meanwhile, Malaysian chef Zaleha Kadir Olpin made headlines as ‘that Rendang lady’ after being told on BBC’s Masterchef that her Rendang wasn’t crispy. Now, she is the proud winner of the World Gourmand Cookbook Award 2020.
Lastly, a local blended whiskey called Timah Double Peated Blended Whiskey, won the silver medal at the annual San Francisco World Spirits Competition in March 2020. Moreover, the win marks the first time a Malaysian-produced whiskey has won an award at the event.