Un Poco Loco Penang

Un Poco Loco Penang – Modern Tapas Bar

Un Poco Loco Penang

Words: Monica Tindall
Photos: Han Sen Hau

Un Poco Loco (a little crazy), yes, we are, especially for Spanish flavours. While the local food scene in Penang is undeniably hot, we think variety is the spice of life and are overjoyed to see a kitchen serving comida Española on the island.

Chef Su Kim Hock Su, famed for his Michelin-starred Au Jardin, creates his third restaurant on the island with the introduction of Un Poco Loco in City Junction Mall. Inspired by his travels through Spain, Kim Hok and his team use their strong foundation in European cooking techniques to bring Penangites the essence of Spain. 

I must admit, I’d never have imagined the restaurant in this mall. It’s on the quiet third floor at the back of Atrium B. However, once inside, the mall vibe disappears, and a happy Latino mood pervades. Latin pop and reggaeton tunes are just loud enough to add energy but still allow comfortable conversation. There are essentially two sections. The front is a little darker and more intimate, lit with neon signs and warm claret-red walls. The back features an arched window framing tree tops and a Chinese temple. It merges with the open kitchen – from here, you hear the chop and sizzle of your food being prepared.

Spanish Tapas Restaurant City Junction Tanjung Tokong
Un Poco Loco Penang
Un Poco Loco Penang
Spanish Tapas Restaurant City Junction Tanjung Tokong
Spanish Tapas Restaurant City Junction Tanjung Tokong
Casual Seating
Un Poco Loco Penang
Nice Natural Light During the Day

Un Poco Loco Penang Menu

To get a taste of Un Poco Loco’s menu, the Tapas Set (RM 85 for three) is a great way to start. You can choose from the Hot Tapas, Cold Tapas, Canned Food and Sweets sections of the menu. 

Cold Tapas

The Serrano Ham and Melon Sorbet Salad comes highly recommended, so that’s where we begin. It’s a spin on the classic with rocket adding some greenery, fig balsamic contributing a delicious sweetness with a touch of acidity, and a drizzle of basil oil bringing it all together.

Un Poco Loco Penang
Serrano Ham and Melon Sorbet Salad

The Wild Grouper Ceviche is another excellent choice, with soft pieces of fish marinated in traditional leche de tigre. It’s given Un Poco Loco flair with a cool lime sorbet, jalapeños and dots of sour cream. Repeat orders of this are forecast.

Spanish Tapas Restaurant City Junction Tanjung Tokong
Wild Grouper Ceviche

Hot Tapas

Jamon Bikini is ubiquitous in Barcelona, sure to remind many travellers of good times and tapas bars in the Catalan city. The Serrano ham and cheese toastie sits between white, airy slices of bread, and a snow of light cheese covers the top. A few drops of truffled honey weaves sweetness and earthiness in the mix.

Spanish Tapas Restaurant City Junction Tanjung Tokong
Jamon Bikini

Another Spanish classic, Gambas Al Ajillo, comes in a small ceramic pot. The prawns are plump, and the garlic plentiful. My only remaining desire is to have a few baguette slices to soak up the oily remains from the bottom.

Un Poco Loco Penang
Gambas Al Ajillo

Our final item from the hot tapas section is small but packs a punch – the Roasted Tomato Cappuccino. This petite glass cup holds the most deliciously thick and rich tomato soup with an equally decadent Parmigiano espuma with anchovy oil serving as the frothy top. It may look small, but the portion is just perfect, given the soup’s richness.

Un Poco Loco Penang
Roasted Tomato Cappuccino

Canned Foods

In Spain, canning of seafood is more than just a practical means of preservation; it’s a cultural cornerstone, deeply woven into the fabric of Spanish life. This tradition stretches back centuries, its roots entangled with the country’s maritime history and culinary ingenuity. A far cry from your supermarket-tinned tuna, canned seafood is celebrated in the best tapas bars, restaurants and homes across the country. 

The team at Un Poco Loco bring the canning tradition to Penang with their own unique recipes. Of a handful of cans, we try the Cuttlefish & Chorizo with Squid Ink. It features braised homemade cocktail chorizo (super cute), garlic and pimenton sauce. The sausage is obviously homemade and we appreciate the natural sheep casing, which is thin and light.

Spanish Tapas Restaurant City Junction Tanjung Tokong
Cuttlefish & Chorizo with Squid Ink

Grills & Mains

Grilled Whole Norwegian Mackerel (RM 55) with a squeeze of lime and a sprinkle of salt … is AMAZING! The flesh is soft and juicy with just the right amount of oil covered with a paper-thin crisp skin. It’s so simple and so good. You must eat it while hot, so don’t delay – eat it as soon as it’s delivered. 

Un Poco Loco Penang
Un Poco Loco Penang – Grilled Whole Norwegian Mackerel


Un Poco Loco has three paellas on the menu. We opt for the classic Paella Roja (RM 55) with seafood. Cooked in a traditional paella pan, the edges (the best bits, in my opinion) are temptingly caramelised. The top is loaded with creamy mussels, fat shrimp, deep-fried baby octopus and chorizo slices. I think it best finished off with a squeeze of lime, and the kitchen is happy to oblige. 

Un Poco Loco Penang
Paella Roja


We’ve left the ordering so far to the kitchen, and when they tell us we’ll be having Bacon & Egg for dessert, we’re not so sure we’ve heard correctly. Our server, Maria, smiles, “You’ll find it unique.” It’s based on the French sweet, pain perdu (lost bread – stale bread saved by soaking it in egg and repurposing it as dessert), and comes with candied bacon and smoky bacon ice cream. The base of egg-soaked bread is layered with a sprinkling of sultanas and is gently sweet. The creamy ice cream quickly melts over the top, and the thin toffee crunch of the bacon is an attractive contrast. Sweet and savoury, warm and cold, soft and crunchy – it’s a winner. 

Un Poco Loco Penang
Bacon & Egg

Drinks List

Un Poco Loco has a Spanish-dominant wine list supported by a page of cocktails, kombucha, juice, coffee and tea. Tinto Sangria (RM 75) comes as a pitcher with enough for two. It’s bright, fresh and a perfect match for tapas. We also try two Kombuchas (RM 18) – Tamarind and Over-ripe Pineapple & Toasted Cardamom from the Au Jardin fermentation project. The first has a mild fruity sweetness balanced with a hint of tart. The latter boasts a slight viscosity, and the tropical fruit flavours are warmed with the spice. 

Un Poco Loco Penang
Tinto Sangria
Un Poco Loco Penang

Un Poco Loco Penang Review

We’re delighted with the unexpected find of a corner of Spain in Penang. Un Poco Loco offers exceptional cuisine in a cheerful, upbeat setting. If you’re a fan of Spanish food or looking for a change after your George Town street food adventures, Un Poco Loco is worth seeking out.

Reasons to visit Un Poco Loco Penang: excellent contemporary Spanish tapas, upbeat vibe, must-try the mackerel and the ceviche.

book now

Un Poco Loco Penang – Modern Tapas Bar
2-3-6 (Lot A) @ City Junction (Level 3 Atrium B)
Persiaran Lengkuas 2, 10470 Tanjung Tokong, Pulau Pinang
Penang, Malaysia
+6016-214 7591
*Serves pork

Un Poco Loco Penang Opening Hours
Open Every Friday to Tuesday
11.30 am – 2.30 pm / 5.30 pm – 8.30 pm
+6016 214 7591

Find more recommendations for travel to Penang here and stay up to date with the latest gourmet happenings around Malaysia here and here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.