I am doing a bit of a head to head comparison at the end of this post. Except for Mark's and Simply Penang, I have passed through these eateries at least 5 times. And I have patronize these at least once. May not be accurate but food for thoughts! Head right to the bottom for my personal views!
Back to Simply Penang. The star of our order was Nasi Lemak Rempah Fish. The fried Cincaru was fresh and crispy. The stuffed curry and spices were aromatic and flavourful. Next on my praise was the Nasi Lemak. It was so rich in taste and fragrance as it was deeply infused by santan and pandan. This should be Simply Penang's crown jewel. As for the normal Nasi Lemak (chicken - fried or curry) I will vote for Nyonya Colors. Total costs: RM61.60.The Ji Hu Char is a bit of a disappointment as I have eaten the best from my Penang Hokkien MIL's kitchen. This one was soft, damp and limp. I can't even smell the cuttlefish. In this department Little Penang's JHC is much better.
Nasi Lemak Rempah Fish - RM12.90. Simply Penang's Crown Jewel.
Ji Hu Char - RM9.90. The best is from Little Penang.
Char Koay Teow - RM9.50. Simply not worth it no matter how good it is! Small serving and mostly carbohydrates. None has measured up to give me value for money. Possible the best CKT may be from Little Penang.
Assam Laksa - RM8.90. The base taste artificial and was too thick. Was not sure what was used. It should be thinner and the suspensions must be as much as possible be fish, spices and herbs. Mark's Assam Laksa is the best of the lot.Head to Head Comparison
Menu Variety and Food Quality - Nyonya Colors seems to impressed esp. the kuih-muih and generous usage of ingredients to bring out the best in the food.
Service - Nyonya and Mark's are self-service. Kluang is full-service but as for payment subtly forces the customers to go to the cashier. As for Simply Penang I was not impressed with their service. I was in a hurry to leave and went to pay at the cashier. He was on the phone throughout and fumbled along as he produced the bill and processed my payment. Little Penang seems more attuned to good service as the boss seems to force the service standards to acceptable levels. Seri Penang seems to have best customer service.
Business - So far Nyonya Colors seems to be the best patronized.
Which one do I Crave to Return? - Nyonya Colors
Value for Money - Drinks were overpriced. CKT mostly over-rated therefore over-priced. Generally Assam and Curry Laksa may be value for money! Seri Penang Salted Fish Vege Curry is the best value and healthy too!
Ambiance - Seri Penang by a mile.