Maria’s Cafe Ipoh was featured in The Star Metro. Guess who was the gracious hostess? And so knowledgeable about the culinary business too!
Read Mary’s brief words about the article at Mary Ann’s blog.
Great treat for beef lovers
Tucked among the many food outlets within the Greentown Business Centre in Ipoh, Maria’s Cafe distinguishes itself with its offerings of the best beef steaks, among other dishes, lovingly cooked by the owner herself. Opening its doors some three years ago, Maria’s is a family-owned and managed restaurant named after Maria Tan, who set up the restaurant with her late husband Philip.
“Maria’s was born out of my parent’s passion for good food,” said Mary Ann, who now manages the restaurant while Maria lends her expertise as the master chef in the kitchen.
Armed with their love and passion for food and their self-taught expertise, with lots of trial and error thrown in for good measure, Maria and Philip were one of the pioneers in the western restaurant business in Ipoh.
Setting itself apart from other western food outlets, Maria’s pride lies in the excellent cuts of beef, lamb and chicken which they cook to perfection.
“We do not merely cook and serve western dishes, but we cook the best cuts of meat we can find and order,” Mary Ann said. She went on to explain that the meat arrived ‘chilled’ and not frozen, and as such retained much of its freshness.
Among their best meats are the well-known Japanese Kobe and the Australian Wagyu which is sought after because of its ‘marbled’ texture.
Making a trip there one afternoon, our meal began with a mixed grill comprising a fat sausage, a cut each of grilled beef and lamb, as well as a sizeable prawn and a slice of turkey ham, and of course, garnished with delicately roasted potato wedges and fresh vegetables.
The sausage was flavoured with delicate bits of pepper and the meat was grilled just right. As for the prawn, it was sliced open and seasoned lightly – just enough to give it a unique aroma while still retaining the original taste of fresh prawn.
Maria also sliced off a generous portion of the fresh meat she had shown us earlier and grilled it just enough so that the outside was seared with a delicious taste while the inside was delicately cooked with the meat, tender and juicy.
As we tucked in, we learned that this was the Australian Wagyu and we were feasting on a RM150 a plate steak! After the first bite, I knew why you pay that amount. It was simply melt-in-the-mouth beef steak.
Mary Ann explained that the best way to eat grilled meat was having it just lightly seasoned.
“Sauces often disguise the real taste of the meat,” she said, adding that various sauces are offered to diners who prefer their meat with sauce.
For something different, we had a taste of the spicy chicken salad which graced our palette with a tangy, sweet and sour taste.
And then there was dessert – a light and fluffy, but deliciously rich Tiramisu which slid down the throat like butter cut with a hot knife.
Maria’s is known, among others, for its blueberry cheesecake, moist chocolate cake and coffee marble cake. For reservation, call 05-2424133.