SPG by Bijan
Modern Malaysian Tapas and Grill
Word By Hiranmayii Awli Mohanan
Photo By Pie Pix Photography
The term SPG, an acronym for Sarong arty Girls dates back to the late 1940’s, referring to Asian women who sively date and prefer whitemen. SPG by Bijan, the modern Malaysian tapas and grill bar pays homage to the Sarong Party Girls by embodying a playful and carefree spirit. While located in the heart of the city, Bijan’s new sister restaurant detaches itself from the hubbub, offering locals and tourists gastronomic solitude.
Walking in, a vibrant al-fresco lounge greets guests, featuring vivacious personality, rattan and vintage lounge chairs, and blue honeycomb tiles, encircled by foliage. The bar, on the other hand, is simply beautiful – boasting Peranakan tiles and deep-hued velvet upholstered bar stools. As you make your way indoors, yet again, the velvet theme is seen throughout, complemented by tasteful accents in the batik napkins, rattan dividers and brilliant colour palette, breathing fun to the dining area.
Tipsy with Tipples
The libations at SPG are not only pretty; it pushes creative boundaries by dolling out cocktails such as the Stinkini. This is a gin-basedtipple, supplemented by vermouth and the star of the show – pickled petai. Be adventurous and immerse yourself in a play of head-scratching, interesting flavours – a perfect accompaniment to the bold flavours from the food.
Rose Chan, another brilliant concoction is the perfect Instagram picture – dispensed in different test tubes of triple sec, tequila, pink guava, honey and lime, which are to be poured into a glass containing a pink ball of ice in the centre. Its taste is good as it looks and dangerously easy to drink looks and dangerously easy to drink.
SPG’s Malay Tapas
Nothing pairs better with cocktails than light bites, right? SPG’s tapas are locallyslanted, purveying wonderful, reimagined local delights. We take our hats off to Ah Ran Sini, a deep-fried deliciousness of stuffed nasi lemak served with anchovy mayo – a spin on the iconic Malaysian staple. Then came the Pais Barramundi – three cute parcels of barramundi mixed with turmeric, spices, coconut and finally wrapped with banana ‘leather’. Such scrumptious, robust Malaysian flavours with necessary spiciness are introduced here.
It wouldn’t be a Malaysian menu without bakar-bakar (grill). We indulged in the sinful Angus Oyster Blade – boasting tender meat and subtle flavours accentuated by the sambal hitam, hijau and merah. Each sambal had distinct effects and flavours on the meat. Thereafter, the grilled calamari called for some attention, also offering tender consistency and power-packed piquancy when paired with sambal belacan.
In a true SPG manner, guests are offered a modern interpretation of the local experience through its mains. Cik Siti Wan Kembang, a newly-introduced set lunch menu is presented on a bamboo sieve, shedding light on its glorious offerings – mix of Jasmine and black rice, Cucur Jagung, Gulai Lemak Daging Salai with Sago Gula Melaka for dessert. From its historic-riddled name to exquisite lusciousness, we were engrossed in the experience.
Tun Teja, an equally formidable main also served on a bamboo sieve, comprises a mix of Jasmine and black rice with Otak- Otak Udang Harimau and Ayam Kampung Limau Purut. This dish portrayed sinful and delectable qualities that we didn’t want to end. We completed this decadent meal with a local dessert of pandan cream pudding with gula Melaka syrup.
Address: SPG By Bijan 3A, Jalan Ceylon, (*Modern Malaysian *pork-free)
Bukit Ceylon, 50200 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-2022 3575