Sisu Pantry, Klang

December 24, 2020

In recent years, Nordic concepts like Sweden's fika and Denmark's hygge have been embedded in Malaysia's cafe culture, becoming buzzy catchphrases for the positive-vibes-only psyche that pervades KL's IG-filtered communities. While Sisu Pantry seems to ride that wave, borrowing one of Finland's most famous words, it's not a marketing strategy here: Chew Lian, the founder of this noteworthy new venue in Klang, says sisu - defined as extraordinary determination amid extreme adversity - describes how she feels about much of her life so far.

Chew Lian's perseverance has birthed a beautifully thoughtful restaurant. You'll find a mini-library of books that helped change her life. You'll savour produce cultivated with a conscience and cooked with care. You'll linger in a soothingly spacious setting where every furnishing is purposefully picked, where tall and wide windows offer a calm perspective on a chaotic world outside.

Sisu Panty's menu is compact, striving to curb food waste while customers remain scarce. But there's a brigade's worth of effort poured into the kitchen - everything merits an order, bringing together honourable ingredients with honest preparations. 

The Mexican Chicken Bowl (RM18) is built with hormone-and-antibiotic-free fowl breast, tenderly marinated with fresh cilantro, smoked paprika, olive oil, sea salt, lime juice and ancho peppers, air-grilled and gracefully laid over zero-pesticides vegetables from sustainable farmers, tossed with kitchen-made cherry tomato salsa and lemon thyme vinaigrette. 

Warm and wholesome, it's no commercialised salad bowl but a meticulous, mindful bounty of vibrant flavours and textures.

A vegetarian pasta may sound unappealing to meat devotees, but Sisu's is sensational, served steaming-hot and soulful (RM16) - pappardelle coated in a rich sauce of real, not-from-the-can tomatoes, house-roasted with carrots and oregano for tang and aromatic sweetness, bolstered with brinjals, zucchini, mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes, scattered with grated grana padano.

Even a Big Breakfast takes on new dimensions, centred by Sisu's own chicken patty, a natural, full-fleshed alternative to supermarket sausages, encircled by soft scrambled eggs spiced up with a surprisingly fiery tomato chilli jam that's laced with organic apple cider, sautéed garlic butter mushrooms, quinoa and leaves dressed in carrot vinaigrette (RM18).

Desserts too are a joyous, gorgeous pleasure instead of a guilty indulgence, with flourless carrot cupcakes and rose sugar madeleines among the triumphantly baked temptations. Pair with a zesty citrus caffeine cooler that relies on Puchong-roasted coffee beans or kombucha brewed potently with Bentong ginger.

Supplier notes: The chicken is from Fresh Ayam King, the veggies from Cultiveat, coffee from The Crackpots Coffee Roastery and the kombucha by Boocha.

Sisu Pantry

First Floor, 2A, Jalan Astaka, 5, KU/2, Bandar Bukit Raja, 41050 Klang, Selangor.
Open Sun-Mon, Wed-Thurs, 9am-6pm; Fri-Sat, 11am-9pm. Tel: 012-384-3174

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