The Story of Seong Ying Chai
Long established as one of the leading artisanal bakeries in Kuala Lumpur, Seong Ying Chai continues to celebrate the roots of ‘Han’ culture through its traditional pastries. Since 1935, their baking has won them accolades from discerning patrons who appreciate the authentic and sophisticated taste of traditional Chinese pastries.
Following the age-old family recipes, Seong Ying Chai pastries are passionately handmade by their master pastry chefs using only the finest and freshest ingredients with baking methods passed down from generation to generation. Today, Seong Ying Chai is still operating at its original premises off Jalan Sultan, Kuala Lumpur — keeping the heritage of ‘Han’ pastries alive.
The History of Seong Ying Chai
Seong Ying Chai was established in 1935 by Lee Yat Chor as a restaurant which served Cantonese cuisine and it gained popularity with all who visited Chinatown, Kuala Lumpur. Influenced by Hong Kong relatives, it began to make and sell mooncakes about 60 years ago.
In 2016 the Lee family decided to stop operations as the elderly Lee Hup Ngoh had to go for an operation and there were no other family members to operate the business. However, two years later, Leonard Lee, the third generation Lee at Seong Ying Chai was inspired to revive the mooncake side of the brand as a tribute to Seong Ying Chai's founders.
Together with his wife, Jacklyn Yap and his parents as support, he also roped in a small group of experienced artisans to help him during the months leading up to the Mid Autumn Festival.
- Leonard Lee, chief artisan and baker is a third generation Lee at the helm of Seong Ying Chai. Eventhough he has his day job, Leonard's heart and soul is in making the best mooncakes in Kuala Lumpur with his family around him. He has been involved in the family's restaurant business he was 12.
- Jacklyn Yap, who is also Leonard's wife, takes care of the marketing, procurement and logistics. She also provides much morale support for Leonard.
- Lee Hup Ngoh, Leonard's father, second generation operator of Seong Ying Chai. An old hand at pastry making and making mooncakes, senior Lee provides much knowledge of the original techniques and quality control behind the brand's products.
- Tung Yoke Yin, Leonard's mother and artisan, is also an experienced maker of mooncakes and other tradtional Chinese pastries.
- Liew Kuah Chan is an artisan who has been working at Seong Ying Chai since she was 16 years old. She knows the methods and recipes for each Seong Ying Chai pastry by heart.