Sangkaya. Where the coconut ice cream is so good, you have no choice but to turn a blind eye to how the service is so very
Sangkaya caught my eye on my first day in Malaysia, at Sunway Pyramid Mall, but since I was always so stuffed (because I basically never stop eating), it wasn’t until my second last and last day there that I made a conscious effort to save room to try it out.
Pure, coconutty bliss
On said second last day, I approached the Mean Man behind the evil glass screen separating me from the ice-cream, and pleaded with him to let me buy a single scoop of coconut ice-cream in the coconut shell itself. The coconut shell is reserved for no less than 4 scoops of ice-cream and the mean man did not give in. I even explained how I need this because it will make a better picture for my blog but the Mean Man did not care.
I caved and grumpily agreed to buy a single scoop in a cup, but then the Mean Man said it has to be had in a cone. By now my patience was dwindling because I didn’t want to waste my limited stomach capacity on a waffle cone, nor did I want to waste it, but you’ll be surprised at the lengths I’ll go and the degree of pride I’ll swallow for anything coconut.
Processed with Snapseed.
When I got the cone, I realized the Mean Man was on to something. These scoops were TINY and a lone scoop in a hollowed out coconut shell would have been a sad sight. The ice-cream itself was without a doubt, the BEST coconut ice-cream I’ve ever licked my tongue on. It was made with actual coconut milk and not just deceptive flavoring. It wasn’t overly sweet, it wasn’t watered down, it was perfect. Snow, sand, floor, carpet and air angels were all in order. This was the stuff of heavens. It was closing time already, so I vowed to myself to return the next day (the last day of my KL 2k16 trip).
The next day I (with my entourage in tow) confidently approached the Mean Man at Sangkaya Sunway Pyramid Mall and requested the 4-scoop-in-coconut-shell go-big-or-go-home option. I went with 3 scoops of the coconut flavor and one scoop of the matcha flavor. Then (thankfully), I read the big menu above the Mean Man’s head and realized my coconut-shell-of-awesome-coconut-icecream came with 4 free toppings– a piece of information the Mean Man didn’t deem important enough to share. When I asked him about the toppings, he nonchalantly pointed towards the toppings’ counter, where I then helped myself to toppings of toasted coconut flakes and roasted peanuts. Yum.
The “Can I have some more, Sir?” angle at Sangkaya
I then spent the next 15 minutes making my darling cousin hold the shell while I took pictures from every possible angle. Now I love my baby cousin to bits, but I kept wishing the shell could somehow have been placed on the table in isolation, against a beautifully contrasting solid background. After lot’s of struggling and only mediocre pictures and the Mean Man watching us the whole time, I started digging into my 4 scoops of ice-cream, scraping bits of young coconut jelly/flesh off the shell with every spoonful. No, I did not share, and you can’t shame me because I feel no shame.
The Cousin, who has no time for paparazzi.
As I was halfway into my Bowl of Love, my cousin suddenly pointed out that these guys give tiny silver pedestals (that look like the relish containers they have at the likes of Fuddruckers) to balance the coconut shells on while you eat. My jaw dropped, and I went up to the Mean Man and calmly asked him if they give those silver pedestal bowls with the coconut shells. Without so much as a word or even the need to move more than a limb, he took one out from the shelf right under him and slapped it on the counter in front of me. That, my friends, is when I lost it.
The Struggle for the perfect shot of Sangkaya continues
But I still pretended that I hadn’t lost it. I’d still got it. Patience is virtue. Through clenched teeth, I asked the Mean Man why he hadn’t given this bowl to be earlier, especially since he saw us struggling for 15 mins. His response: “you didn’t ask”. Wow. Wow, wow, WOW. And that, my friends, is when I really lost it. While I ranted on and on to the Mean Man about how I didn’t realize I was supposed to be clairvoyant enough to know what he’s hiding in his shelves, nor did I realize I should take out my list of preferred props and check if he has any or all of them, and that he saw me struggling no further than 2 feet away from him, and how there were zero other customers, the Mean Man simply rolled his eyes, and continued texting/playing games on his phone; and my cousin, husband, sister, and her friend (who were all silent spectators accompanying me on this blog related mission from arms length distance) all decided to scram and not be seen within a mile of me.
P.S. In case you’re wondering, I picked up my coconut-shell-with-now-only-3-scoops of ice-cream before I huffed and puffed off of the Sangkaya Kiosk premises. I then sat myself down on a bench and savored the rest of that blissful goodness before calling the Brutuses in my life to ask them where they were.
On a very serious note, I hope the management takes note of this and retrains their staff to be more polite, and less grouchy. The staff was extremely uninterested and fearless of the potential consequences of an unhappy customer. It’s not so much what he said or did, but the way he said it. On both days, he was making no eye contact, playing either on his phone or leaning on the counter and looking in the distance and really uninterested in serving me. I’ve observed a large room for improvement in customer service in Malaysia on the general, but this was a whole new level of bad.
The price for the single scoop was around RM 3.50, and the 4-scoop package was RM. 10.50, and the good thing is these guys have 11 different locations, so maybe service is better at the other 10.
The End. For real this time.
P.P.S: I can’t wait till the next time I visit and Sangkaya will likely be the first thing I have.