Belacan Grill is Orange County’s only Malaysian Bistro. Malaysian food is kinda of a cross between Indian and Chinese food. If you’re a fan of either, you will like Belacan.
The Tustin location is the second Belacan, the first being in Redondo Beach, that was started by Chef Ken Tan, a Malaysia native. Chef Tan brings over 25 years of culinary expertise to the Belacan menu.
Two notes about the restaurant’s name. First, the meaning â€” it refers to a shrimp paste that’s used abundantly in Malaysian cuisine. Second, the pronunciation â€” it’s not “bell-uh-can,” but rather “blah-chahn.” Remember the pronunciation or you might end up insulting the chef.
During lunch time, Belacan has some great $9 to $11 lunch specials. I went with the Hainan chicken while Oscar sampled the curry chicken. Both were great dishes, but the Hainan chicken was over-the-top great. By far my favorite dish on the menu. Other must try dishes include the Roti Canai (a tear away flat bread with a light crispy texture served with a curry dipping sauce) and the chicken/beef satay.
Great food, great service, and great prices. Not only is Belacan Grill the best Malaysian restaurant in the OC, it’s the only Malaysian restaurant in the OC. The reason might be other Malaysian restaurants won’t open in the OC because they don’t want to go up against Chef Tan.