Suffolk House, Georgetown – Penang’s First Mansion Restaurant

Suffolk House is the only surviving Georgian mansion in Malaysia which was originally built in the 1800’s. It has a stunning Anglo-Indian garden house and was once the home of successive British governors.

I still remember my first write-up on Suffolk House which was back in January 2010. It was one of my earlier posts and I could feel a difference in terms of write-up and photography. The same goes to Suffolk House which the building still remains strong and majestic, but the dining experience and food have been refined.

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Suffolk House restaurant has its own culinary and service merits being consistently one of tattler’s best restaurants, but it is also an integral part of Suffolk house. Since the early 19th century, Suffolk house has been known for its entertaining and social gatherings, and today it is no different. It offers lunch and dinner in the grand ballroom and also their ever-popular high tea on the north terrace.

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Suffolk House’s food is taken care of by executive chef Mathijs Nanne. Originally from the Netherlands, Mathijs spent his formative years cooking in the Australian food capital, Sydney. He then came to Malaysia where he ran the kitchens of some of the most exciting restaurants in Langkawi and Penang. He was part of the opening teams of Straits Club Restaurant (Temple Tree Resort, Langkawi) and China House (Penang).

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A glass of house wine gives a great kick start to our dinner.

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DUCK AND SHIITAKE MUSHROOM CROQUETTE, pink radish & holy basil salad, 3 mustard relish. The tenderness of the duck was just nice while the juicy shiitake mushroom croquette had a great combination of crunchiness and juiciness in a single bite.

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CHICKEN AND ALMOND TERRINE AND SEARED SCALLOP, rocket emulsion, tempeh crumble, fragrant leaves and pickles. I love the their house made chicken and almond terrine. It felt like eating high-quality luncheon meat with foie-gras-like texture.

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PAN-SEARED TUNA, served together with local greens. The texture of the pan seared tuna is chewy and was covered with the fresh green sentiment.

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SHRIMP & FISH ‘COCKTAIL’ on crispy black rice, momotaro and coriander gel, tempeh crumble, melange of heirloom tomatoes, fragrant leaves, laksa kefir dressing. The crispy black rice was so crispy and packed with nice burning rice aroma. The shrimp and fish cocktail made a great complement starter to our course dinner.

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CREAMY SEAFOOD CHOWDER, the mixed seafood ingredients were cooked with milk, cream and garlic. This soup was very creamy and rich. For those that love white creamy white soup with seafood this would be the best selection.

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SHIITAKE AND ABALONE MUSHROOM SOUP, garam masala, chantilly, thyme. The texture of the shiitake mushroom and abalone really enhanced the fragrance of the soup. However, I personally do not prefer this soup due its slightly high level of saltiness.

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ROASTED PUMPKIN SOUP, serving together with some sourdough, granola and some parsley and finished off with some roasted cashew nuts and almond flakes. This is my favorite soup among all as it really had a good mixture of crunch and creamy texture.

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ROASTED TOMATO SOUP, instead of roasted pumpkin the base of this soup was cooked with roasted tomato. Serving together with almost similar ingredients as the roasted pumpkin soup, this soup is a popular choice as it is considered the safest choice in an unfamiliar restaurant.

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Main Dish:

PAN-SEARED TILAPIA, the fish was sourced from a local aqua-phonic farm in Pulau Tikus. Serving together with the fish were some yellow capsicum capacio, sheered and pickled cucumber and balsamic lemongrass reduction. The taste of the fish was fresh and tender while the sauce was packed with lemongrass flavour which was delightful.

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STEAK AND HAND CUT CHIPS  – slow-roasted beetroot, baby carrot and king oyster mushroom, red wine jus, tomato and local herb butter. I love the way chef Mathijs grilled the steak, the medium steak was just in the perfect tenderness. Nevertheless, the great complement of the red wine jus made the steak really outstanding.

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ROASTED LAMB RACK – slow-cooked lamb shoulder wrapped in lettuce, braised mixed grains, wilted rocket and curried roselle jus. For non-beef takers, this juicy and soft slow-cooked lamb rack is the perfect alternative to beef.

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WATERMELON AND LIME PAVE – feta mousseline, cashew crumble, compressed cucumber and its granita. The watermelon slice had been torched which made the inner watermelon even watery. The lime pave tasted very refreshing.

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MANGO CRÈME BRULEE – young mango, coconut, basil and baby coriander served white chocolate sorbet. The mango creme brulee is very unique as we usually only find green tea and normal creme brulee. But at Suffolk House we can find the mango version which is quite rare. The white chocolate sorbet also made an outstanding complement to the rich and creamy creme brulee.

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ORANGE AND WHITE CHOCOLATE GATEAUX – red curry of strawberry, coconut crumble and local fruits with toasted coconut ice cream. The white chocolate gateaux will not be outstanding if without the complement of orange essence. This combination with an additional touch of local fruits was simply astounding.

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BITTERSWEET FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE CAKE – nutmeg fruit textures, papaya, kefir and nutmeg sorbet. The bittersweet of the chocolate cake was great as the sweetness was minimal and and the serving of nutmeg fruit texture made this dessert even more appetizing.

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The serving of some sea salt and a slice of chocolate is to pair with the freshly-brewed coffee. It also surprisingly tasted good on its own.

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Overall, this place is an ideal place for celebrations and private functions. For those looking for a quiet and exquisite dining place, this is the place you should be looking for. The price for a 5 course dinner – RM140, while 6 course dinner – RM165. The price of fine dining in a mansion with great history and heritage is worth the spending.

Editor’s Review (5 Stars Rank):

Food Presentation

Quick Facts:

Family Friendly
Pork Free
Corkage Charge
Credit Card
Smoking (available outdoor)
Private Room

Operation hours: 11:00am – 10:00pm (Daily)
Contact: 04-228 3930
Address: 250, Jalan Air Itam, George Town, 10460 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
GPS: 5.410823,100.305783

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