Sometimes you just need to keep things simple, like when you’re giving a best man speech or naming your new dog. Yes, Meatball is a better idea than Sir Oliver Woofington IV. Sate Kampar in East Passyunk is somewhere that believes this, too. It’s a Malaysian restaurant and coffee shop that serves skewers of grilled, well-seasoned meat, a few rice dishes, and not much else.
Everything you eat here is uncomplicated and straightforward - it’s literally meat on a stick - but it’s all so well-seasoned that it doesn’t need any kind of flare or trick to make it interesting. There are two styles you can pick from, Kajang and Melaka. Both are grilled over coconut-shell charcoal and taste pretty similar, but the main difference between the them is the kind of sauce you get. We prefer the one that comes with the Melaka, which is a pineapple-peanut mix that we’d like to keep with us in a tiny bottle wherever we go. They have a few other things on the menu too, and you should make room for the spicy and sweet beef rendang with coconut rice or at least take an order of it home and heat it up for lunch the next day.
The space itself looks like your average neighborhood coffee shop - likely because it is one during the day. There are about 15 or so tables scattered around, and an open kitchen in the back that makes the whole place smell like spices and coconut rice. It’s the kind of scent you’ll wish they made in a Glade Plug-In cartridge.
Sometimes you want a dinner with all the frills: four-tiered seafood towers, flaming skillets, the works. But other times, you just want to sit down and eat some meat on a stick that tastes really good. For those occasions, Sate Kampar is where you want to be.
Simply grilled meat marinated in spices and served with a side of peanut sauce. You can pick between a few different types of meat (or tofu) and they’re all great.
This is a Hainanese-style sate, and it only comes in pork or chicken. We prefer this one out of the two, mostly because the pineapple-peanut sauce it comes with is incredible. You should probably ask for extra to take home because you’ll want to put it on everything.
Spicy rendang beef served with a side of coconut rice. It’s sweet and tender and a good option when you want something other than sate.