Nanyang Malaya is the second collaboration between founders of the Nanyang concept Billy Chong from Ipoh Town and Kaisern Ching from Chefs Gallery who have been longtime friends and restaurateurs. Ipoh town and Chefs Gallery have been household names in Sydney, synonymous with the finest Malaysian and Modern Chinese cuisine.
Nanyang Malaya is like the little sister to their first restaurant Nanyang Tea Club (Market City 1909 Dining Precinct, Haymarket) where they wanted to create a place where you will be carried away to tropical Singapore the moment you step through their doors. Billy and Kaisern have missed travelling to their respective homelands during the past fifteen months. When the opportunity came up to be part of the new Smidmore Precinct, they were elated to create the Nanyang Malaya concept.
The idea was conceived to reimagine the time of early British Colonial days of Singapore back when it was known as British Malaya. It was the birthplace of the Kopitiam Café, a time of culinary fusion from Hainanese migrants and Malaya people who adopted their British employers’ cooking style. Billy and Kaisen have fond memories of eating with their parents as a child at these cafés. They were greeted with the smell of freshly brewed coffee while devouring their favourite breakfast of Kaya Toast, a cultural dish made from coconut jam, thin slices of salted butter, served with ultra-soft eggs.