Macha & Co Banana Leaf Restaurant

Macha & Co Banana Leaf Restaurant

Macha & Co is the new place that just opened up in Kota Damansara a few weeks ago. I live across the street watched the renovations with interest. I was just talking about it with my better half last weekend. The restaurant serves banana leaf rice, which adds another halal option in addition to Sari Ratu Prima. I decided to pop in and see what they’re all about.

Macha and Co

I actually spilled all the fork, spoons and serviettes when I was eating here. The tables were a little close to each other and I was slightly clumsy and bumped into the next one, bringing the utensils crashing to the floor. The waiter had to clean everything and replace the tissues but he did it with good humor.

Banana Leaf Rice

This is the Banana Leaf Set Meal (RM 9.50). It’s the main dining option here and includes white or brown rice with 3 vegetables, 2 papadams, fried salted dried chilli, acar, rasam and curry/dhal. Banana leaf rice is usually a completely vegetarian meal by default. I like the peratal pumpkin and the deep fried bitter gourd.

Varuval Chicken

You can also order from a wide menu of tavams. I assume tavam means sides. They are various vegetable tavams, dry spiced tavams, curry tavams, seafood tavams. I went with the Varuval Chicken (RM 6.50) coz I like eating my rice with meat. It’s quite good. They also have more premium sides like Fresh Red Snapper Head (RM 68) and Black Pepper Peratal Crab (RM 22.50).


The wait staff here is very friendly. I ordered a Diet Coke and they added a line which said “Terbaik bro” (The best, bro) to the bill. I thought it was funny but a little dangerous to have this system. I read about servers calling customers fat, racist names or other misc slurs in the United States appearing on the news. I used to work as a waiter in Melbourne so I know the kind of humor the restaurant industry has and I don’t think it’s a good idea to make custom order lines (that’s what its actually for) visible on the receipt.


Macha & Co Banana Leaf Restaurant also serves other items like roti canai goreng but their signature menu is banana leaf rice. The lunch cost RM 20.90 inclusive of drinks. There’s not a lot of people here yet, probably due to a combination of factors – parking is a problem and this area is predominantly Chinese. It’s located in Dataran Sunway so there’s a lot of competition and the F&B turnover is quite insane…for instance, both Flaming Melt and Sabah Kampung Beef Noodles has closed since we went. It’s pretty good though, I’ll be back to try the other items!

Jothy's Fish Head Curry Banana Leaf Restaurant

a.k.a. The Worst Fish Head Curry and Banana Leaf Restaurant in the Known Universe

jothys fish head curry banana leaf rice

Jothy’s Fish Head Curry Banana Leaf Restaurant is located in Api Api Center in KK, Sabah and has a lot of impressive stickers on its front window facade, including one that says “as seen in Lonely Planet”, which was the reason we headed there to eat in the first place. I place a certain amount of trust in the Lonely Planet brand.

jothys interior

The first clue that it might not exactly be the best place to eat when we walked in is the underwhelming crowd in the restaurant. We were the only ones there. I swear I could hear crickets chirping.

jothys banana leaf

Their banana leaf rice seems authentic enough…

jothys banana leaf rice

…but the taste did not live up to expectations. I tried every single one of the side serves and found them severely wanting.

jothys curry fish head

Their flagship signature dish – the curry fish head – was tough, overcooked and dry. It’s certainly not “the freshest fish head from the market”.

jothys curry fish head meat

I don’t know what kind of fish this head came from but finding meat is like looking for a needle in a haystack (or insert other cliched analogy here since there are a lot of fish bones in there).

jothys prawn

The fried prawns were not “succulent” as the menu claimed, but tough. I’m also highly doubtful about the “choice fish eggs fried to perfection” description as our fish roe had the same taste and texture of cardboard (not that I’ve ever eaten cardboard – it’s what I imagine cardboard would taste like).

jothys lonely planet

I find this unforgivable in a place known for it’s abundance of seafood. The bill was exorbitant too – the fish head curry alone was RM 50.

jothys herpes

It’s a tourist trap. Avoid it like a bad case of herpes.

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