73 Asam Laksa

Special thanks to 73 Asam Laksa for extending this food review invitation.

Pusat Penjaja Anjung Gurney (新关仔角小贩中心) is a large hawker center near Gurney Plaza. Taking advantage of the cool evening breeze, this eatery along Gurney Drive (Persiaran Gurney) is popular among locals and tourists alike.
73 Asam Laksa (73亚参叻沙) serves one of Penang's most iconic dishes: asam laksa (亚参叻沙). This family business has been operating for more than 30 years now. "73" is the stall's original lot number at the former Gurney Drive hawker center. However, the current stall has been arranged slightly out of sequence now.
The essence of asam laksa is the rich broth which contains flaked fish. Unlike most stalls in Penang, 73 Asam Laksa opts to use more tamarind (asam) so that the broth is sourer (as opposed to being sweeter) on the spectrum. The type of fish used is not fixed; it really depends on what the freshest catch is. Possible choices are tuna, sardine and bigeye kingfish (大目鱼).
As per tradition, asam laksa is served with thick rice vermicelli (粗米粉). Other ingredients used to prepare this street food are cucumber, pineapple, shallots, lettuce, ginger flower (姜花), bird's eye chili (小辣椒) and mint leaves.
Asam laksa comes in two sizes: small (RM4.50) and large (RM5.50). Since not every customer is in favor of adding belacan (fermented shrimp paste, 虾膏), this pungent condiment is provided separately on a spoon. I personally think that belacan is vital to accentuate the broth's overall taste.
The number of stalls at Anjung Gurney total to nearly a hundred. The hawker center as a whole covers virtually all street food that you can possibly find in Penang. In fact, there are often multiple stalls selling the same dish. Besides asam laksa, other delicacies here include char koay teow (炒粿条) and grilled cuttlefish (烧鱿鱼).

Name: 73 Asam Laksa (73亚参叻沙)
Address: Pusat Penjaja Anjung Gurney, Persiaran Gurney, 10250 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 012-550-1915
Business hours: 4:00pm-10:30pm, closed on Wednesdays and Thursdays
Website: N/A
Coordinates: 5.43999 N, 100.30893 E
Directions: Pusat Penjaja Anjung Gurney is located at the northern end of Gurney Drive (Persiaran Gurney). 73 Asam Laksa is at the middle of three sections of Anjung Gurney. Street parking is available along Gurney Drive and in nearby shopping malls like Gurney Plaza.


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