Friday, April 27, 2007

Oh my Oreo... where art thou?

I guess many are fans of anything chococlate.. or should i say it's hard to find someone who dislikes choc. Oreo biscuits formed a major part of my night munching snacks and even till now, it remains in my all time favourite list of snacks, bar the double coated Tim Tams from Arnott's and the ultimate, "koko black" bars that really melt in your mouth.... Gosh, i'm salivating already.

So here i was wandering at the Bukit Bintang area not knowing what to do with my extra long lunch time on this super hot Friday (but it's pouring as i'm typing this now) and after a not so filling lunch, i decided to head into Secret Recipe for a slice of cake or some smoothies. The Oreo milkshake caught my attention as it's been quite a while since i last had one. McD's Oreo McFlurry has turned into a really really sweet affair while others have left you wondering if it was Oreo that they put in or some Cap Ayam Oreo wannabe.

Needless to say, i placed my order for an Oreo milkshake while my good old friend settled for a can of 7-up. Here's a picture of my Oreo milkshake.

This one was nice, pretty much balanced, i'd say it had not just the right ingredients, but also the right balance. It wasn't too sweet, had adequate Oreo pieces and the texture was easy on the straw. Try a straw with the Oreo McFlurry and you'll understand why.
True, the McFlurry's not a milkshake unlike what i had here but i'm just doing a comparo with anything Oreo. So, my Oreo crave was satisfied here in Secret Recipe, Bukit Bintang and let's just hope it will not develop into an addiction... Oh and erm... i was once addicted to Coffee Bean's Malibu Dream... took me 2 years to kick it away....
My tummy rating... 8.1/10.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Mama Mia!

Sorry for the misleading title, but this is indeed the name of the outlet. I'm not as big a fan of ABBA as my mom but we have to admit, their songs were cool and evergreen.

It was indeed an honour for me, being invited to this restaurant by its owners to sample their food and the dining experience in this new "char-chan-thang" in PJ new town. Mama Mia is located along the same row of Poh Kong, facing the big roundabout. Since it was after working hours, my tummy was crying out for a refill, but it can wait, for upon arrival the interior deco took me by suprise. This place is just different from the others i've been to. Thankfully, the boss allowed me to snap pictures of the place and here's how my dining & gossiping experience went.

This is how the bar, where your drinks and concoctions are made. Unlike other outlets, this one actually has less IKEA items on count and you can certainly view how your drinks are made.

See that area which is covered by curtains in a glass partition? That's the V.I.P room.... what the...? Well, it's good to know that it's free of charge but the room is on a first-come-first-get basis. Hence, you might wanna consult your respective feng shui or fortune teller to get the ideal date, day and time to get this room.

Alrightee, time to move on to the menu. Typical of these outlets, noodles, rice, toasts and drinks are the standard order you'll find in these places but i was determined to try the uncoventional.
Sang Har Mien has always been one of my favourite dishes, but seldom have i come accross a "char-chan-thang" that does it. Here, the portion is adequate even for me and the noodles were done crispy just as how i like it. Too soft and it spoils the experience for me. Spring onion, chinese cabbage, carrot slices, ginger slices and medium sized prawns complete the dish.
Aside from the prawn noodles, i had the soft shell crab, my favourite. Unlike Sushi King where they stuff a bit more egg to make the crab look appetising, the softie crab here are deep fried with batter only, served with cucumber slices and thai chilli sauce.
My colleague had the Mama Mia Special Fried Rice, served with jelly fish, anchovy "sambal" and pickled vege. You'll find that the sides are kinda weird but it somehow made the fried rice special indeed, a taste you won't find anywhere else.
This was the highlight of the evening. Fried chicken cutlets premarinated with "Nam Yu"... I like it very much... Perhaps i might just drive there to take away a few servings of that for snacks at home. Definitely worth a try.... hope they will make the pork version in the near future...

An ex-colleague of mine, a hard core fan of Hello Kitty, Mashimaro and anything cute from Japan settled for a plate of Mama Mia special fried noodles (Mee Sua) stir fried with cabbage, bean sprouts, prawns. A rather common dish served in many outlets but Mama Mia's version better than the average, and you get a generous portion of vege and prawns.
The Chicken Chop was served with crinkle cut fries and salad, and was steaming hot when served. The gravy looked tomatooish but it wasn't really that bland, still enjoyable with the chic... but i've always preferred grilled chic chop rather than these fried ones.
This one's the preserved egg and chicken porridge, something i always avoid in "char-chan-thangs" because it's always FULL of suprises. Still, it wasn't that bad as initially feared and i actually end up finishing half a bowl of it. Some outlets, you get porridge that's either too watery or too starchy hard. The porridge was also pretty aromatic although no match for those porridge specialty shops in town.
Pretty nice place to dine in, great decos, reasonable prices and the boss is always humble and friendly. The total bill was RM 96.57, inclusive of a couple of drinks and "tong sui". To me, this place would be ideal on a Sunday when Friday and Saturday were spent gobbling up too much good food around ... My tummy rating - 6.78/10

Monday, April 23, 2007

Bee Cheng Hiang

What a tagline, but not really for everyone since it is very Non-Halal.A familiar brand here that came from across the causeway.Phitoy went down to Singapore recently and bought this back. I know I know there is a branch here along Jalan Sultan, Petaling Street but doesn't things always seems better when it comes direct from the mothership itself?

Yummm.. for us this is the ultimate BBQ bacon strips..Resistance is f-u-t-i-l-e. Let's diet another day.

The brand:-Bee Cheng Hiang

Friday, April 20, 2007

Parameswara Grill Fish, Umbai Jetty Malacca

Finally, the last instalment of my short downsouth trip on a Saturday afternoon.

As mentioned in my previous post, we went to Umbai Jetty, a place known for seafood. Since we were unfamiliar with the way, a local told us to just follow the road sign to Muar. We heed his advice until we saw a signboard indicating a right turn to reach the jetty. Though the roads were quite dark with badly lit roadsigns, it took only about 15 minutes drive from Malacca town.

Wow. I did not expect the number of stalls manned by solely Malay proprietors and the crowd there. Or the parking fee of RM3.00 per car. We walked the length of the stalls and decided to dine at the last one since it was the biggest and attracted the most patrons. Most appeared to be tucking into the food hungrily. On every table, there was a basketful of prepacked nasi lemak. Since we saw each and everyone at other tables had at least one, we followed suite. Phitoy even speculated that it could be complimentary. Huh? Those small plates in the picture contained 2 types of chilli mixture to go with the seafood. Now those are complimentary. =P At first I was disappointed. It held no ingredient other than a big patch of sambal. Then realised it was to be eaten with the seafood. The coconut milk infused rice was in a generous portion and the sambal spicy, though I found it a tad too sweet. Like all stalls there, the fresh seafood was laid upfront to be chosen and weighed. Then, it will be cooked according to one's order. Look at all these. Drools.
This is the whiteboard listing the prices of the seafood on display and methods of cooking available. Our order of seafood took quite sometime to arrive but I did not complain. On the contrary, it allowed me the excuse to order these. Yay! Then, our main orders arrived:-

Boiled cockles. We intended to get these grilled but the staff said these were too big so only to be done this way. Those grilled-size ones 'sudah habis' (finished). Actually these were good too. Sweet & juicy. Given a choice I would have preferred it more raw with blood spattering my plate when attempting to open the shells. Too gory for you?
Grilled fish (Ikan Jenak). Seems like it was just cut, gutted and grilled on its skin with a hint of salt and pepper. Good to go with the chili mixtures given (shown in earlier picture).
Sweet Sour Fish (Ikan Kerapu). This we felt was a mistake. The sauce was more peppery than sweet sour and the fish overfried making the texture a bit on the 'hardy' side.
We were quite glad that we did not order a wide variety of seafood as the size of both fish was more than a foot each and at least 3 inches thick.

Our bill:-

The prices are not cheap (Err.. we did expect dirt cheap since it's away from the city) but still worth a visit. It's quite a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the Nyonya Restaurants in Malacca. Though situated right next to the mouth of the river flowing to the Straits, there was no unpleasant fishy smells.

The address:-

This is a picture of the fishing boats parked there (it was very dark with minimal lighting). Colours are product of my itchy fingers having a go at the microsoft office picture editor.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Jonkers' Desserts, Malacca

We have a bad habit. After hunger satiated, we tend to continue sitting and chatting until the shopkeepers have to practically shoo us away. At Chinese eating places, this art is never discreet. The Lukut place's style was by stacking (more like banging) and dragging (screeching like banshees) the empty plastic chairs and foldable tables to a corner. Of course all these were done with smiles. Lucky we took the cue in time as next they were splashing water to mop the floor. We were cool with it. Afterall it was almost 4pm. =P

Next stop, Malacca. 1 hour drive from Lukut. Not much traffic until we hit Ayer Keroh turn off. 5pm. Tea-time!

Jonkers Street night market. We were still early so most stalls were not opened yet. However, there was already a queue at this stall (it's self service ie order, collect, pay and bring to own table):-
We were quite lucky as we managed to grab one of the few small tables and had these:-
The center of attraction in the forefront is of course Chendol. Yummy. The generous amount of Gula Melaka (the brown syrup) topping the shaved ice was sweet and fragrant. Am so missing it now. What we ordered were just the plain ones. Do hop over to Kampung Boy City Gal for a peep of the varieties available. That's Phitoy's Nyonya Assam Laksa at the back which he enjoyed tremendously. I refrained from ordering any noodles as I was trying to save my tummy for dinner. We planned to do seafood at Umbai Jetty. That's another post, k. Oh, surprise surprise! There was a prawn and a quail egg in the laksa! Phitoy gave me those. Trying to manage his cholesterol, kononnya.

Prices:- Chendol (RM1.70) and Nyonya Assam Laksa (RM3.50)

Location: Jonkers Desserts, Jonkers' Street, Malacca. Not providing link to map. Afterall, who gets lost in Malacca? But just in case, just follow a car with Singaporean plate. Hehe. Coincidentally our unofficial guide that day is a Singaporean friend who's there almost every weekend!

There are so many food gems in this bustling city teeming with tourists (mostly Singaporeans, mind you). My post does not do it justice at all. Want more? Drop by Sweets For My Sweet and KL People KL Food. Oh, if you have such reviews too, please let me know. I hope to go again soon. Though it's only 2 hours drive it is always more fun to go in a group especially for a 'makan' trip. So, that will take time to arrange. *sigh*

No, we did not monopolise the table long after we finished. Those death stares .. brrrrr *shivers*.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Cheok Kee Restaurant, Lukut

Took up a friend's offer to drive Phitoy and I to Lukut for lunch last last Saturday. He recommended we visit a roadside stall selling Bak-kut-teh (Pork in Herbal Broth) which he 'discovered' a year ago. 45mins leisure drive down south on the North- South Highway brought us to an empty lot! That particular plot of land had been hoarded up. Yikes, either it had moved or just 'closed shop' for good.

Overwhelmed with 3 rumbling tummies, we just drove a little way back up the road and sat our ourselves down at this place. We took white rice with dishes they recommended:-

Bak-kut-teh. A tad too mild for us. In the background, that's the Siakap Fish steamed with Salted Soy Beans (Cheung-cheng-siakap). Gladly allowed the gravy to drown my bowl of rice. Yums.

Stir fried Potato Leaves with Garlic. Fresh. Again the gravylicious fish dish lurks at the back.We paid: RM49.00.

Location: Actually this is quite easy to find as it was along the main road. Nevertheless, I spied this across the road.For those interested, please click here and call the contact number to get better directions. I trust it's the old office as I was there before 10/04/2007, their moving date.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

St Patrick's Day at Souled Out, Hartamas

A late late post. Not exactly a food post since I've only got 1 not too appetising picture. Nah:-
More of a mini memoir of a fun night-out.

St Patrick's Day celebration at Souled Out. You know, the Irish holiday on March 17th where humans of any colour, language, culture and whereabouts proclaim to be somewhat Irish and chug down tremendous amount of alchoholic drinks produced by that country. What's exactly the holiday is about? Who cares! Gulp, gulp, gulp, burp! Repeat. Over here in Malaysia, Guinness Stout's the Irish converter of many.

We were not there to chug (at least not all of us). Ahem. We were there for the carnival atmosphere. Serious. See?

They had magicians, clowns, dancers, bagpipes bands and game booths set up. Took only limited pictures though as my camera cannot perform in bad lighting. :(

Coupons were bought and we played:-

Lateral Bungee (maybe it's called by another name?). This is where one is tied to a bungee cord at the back. The one who ran the fastest and able to stick a sponge furthest onto the the side to mark one's distance wins. Fun is that being tied to a bungee cord, one is practically bound onto a big rubberband - a lot of effort to stretch it far and once relaxed, one will shoot backwards in most undistinguished ways and land in more than often, an embarrassing heap. Whee...piak. Trust me, spectators do have as much fun as, if not more than, challengers.

There was this petite girl sitting on a platform. She's the 'victim' in the Dunking Game. Once thrown ball hits the bull's eye (the red blob in picture), she falls into a pool of water (the big box below her seat). It was one of the most popular game. With the males, of course. Girl, t-shirt, water. How to go wrong? ;)Now this is more violent. Cannot recall the name. Winner is the one who is able to whack one's opponent off the bouncy platform. Below picture is of 2 siblings. They were having 'lots of fun' until dear daddy intervened. Dear daddy did stumble off soon after, courtesy of both 'deranged' kids. Haha.Balloons and shamrock (3 leaves clover) stickers were distributed. There were booths doing free face painting and darts throwing. A picture pf Phitoy getting a shamrock painted on his nose leads pictures of my gang (taken with a few of the restaurant's staff in tall hats) that made it that night. Well, only put up small ones as I did not ask permission from them to showcase their gorgeous looks for all to admire. Fezzaboy, shhhh.
T-shirts and tall hats were sold. None of us bought the tall hats. Most adorable but hey, it's not exactly a daily wear item. We are responsible spenders (ahem). I bought this for RM25 (I think):-The last green available. Friends got black and were green with envy. *nyek-nyek-nyek.*

Cost: RM5 a voucher.

Food Phitoy and I had was Guinness Fish & Chips with Wedges (4 vouchers), Beef Bangers & Mash (3 vouchers) & 2 Guinness Stout served in plastic cup (4 vouchers). See? Non-guzzlers.
Games were 1-2 coupons per person per game.

Location: Souled Out
, Hartamas

Monday, April 09, 2007

Aoyama - The Green Room

Weekend wasn't much of a joy for me despite being Easter; Man Utd lost to Pompey, arrived late at Sepang for the race (hence i missed the start and the first few laps) and Kimi didn't win....
Still, managed to fill my tummy up with some good and cheap Jap food at Hartamas as my girl wanted to get her eyes checked at her trusty optician before the race. Enter Aoyama - The Green Room, another Jap restaurant which has been in existence for quite some time now, but was always left out from my "places to eat" list as it has a sign near the entrance that says: "NO PORK SERVED" sigh....

However, as we've tried almost every Jap restaurant here in Hartamas, i guess it's time we give it a try. Besides, there were a few Japs dining in...

Nothing fancyful, the deco of the place was pretty Jap-like with individual "coach" tables and benches separated by a curtain. Ordered a Sashimi set and a Combination set along with 2 glasses of Jap tea.

The sashimi set was my girl's and boy oh boy, the serving was GREAT... quantity and quality wise. The salmon and tuna pieces were big, chunky and juicy... not forgetting the octopus, squid
and cod chunks...
And the other half of the box, blimey, the salad itself was comparable with bigger and more expensive Jap restaurants.

Next came my Combination set, essentially their very own salad, served with 2 pieces of grilled unagi on rice, 3 pieces of fried ebi and a cup of chawanmushi, which took nearly 20 minutes to arrive, i guess it's prepared on a per order basis.

Deep fried ebi... not my usual favourite coz i don't fancy the batter but at least the prawns were fresh here.....

My salad on the right and the grilled unagi on the left.

The chawanmushi came at long last..........

Service was acceptable though the songs could've been less Sushi-King-Genkilike. Imagine listening to Linkin Park in a Rolls Royce Phantom. Doesn't fit quite rightly.

The bill came up to RM 56.35 as follows:

2 Jap tea - RM 2

1 sashimi set - RM 22

1 combo set - RM 25

Govt tax - RM 2.45

Serv charge - RM 4.90

My tummy rating..... 8.2/10

Friday, April 06, 2007

Neroteca, Sommerset Building

A colleague had been raving on and on about how good the ribs being served here. Ribs? In an Italian restaurant? Sure or not. Blog hopping resulted in floggers raving about the pastas and salads. No mention of ribs.
After many rounds (I lost count) of confirmation of the availability of this supposedly finger licking dish, my dearest worn down colleague told me to just go eat there and if they fail to present ribs, he will reimburse me. Yay, the power of buggerroo-ing (Boys & girls, I seriously doubt there's such a word). =P

I gathered 3 friends and we went on a Friday evening. Parking was ecpc. However, the open space parking directly opposite the beigy orange Somerset service suites collected RM2 while the one further collected RM5. O.o"

Service, swift and courteous. Our waiter spoke in English with a very thick accent (can I say thick tongue instead as it did sound like his filled his mouth). Once plonked into my seat in the rather tight restaurant space, I scanned the menu. Yes, there is ribs. Friends ordered the rest for sharing. These dishes (served in big plates, naturally) were fighting for space on our rectangular shaped table:-

Various types of bread with a plate of olive oil for dipping.
See those white dots on the bread? Aha! That is salt. My first time. Always had sugar on bread. Never salt. Interesting stuff.

We ordered the 1st item of their Special of the Day:-The lobster was very fresh and succulent. Very good but we would prefer a bigger portion of pasta. From the picture it is obvious that the Royal Spaghettara was totally smothered by the mixed seafood. The spagetti looked more like garnishing than the main meal.Costina [grilled pork ribs served with mustard and onions]. We find it tough, definitely not the fall off bones texture. I love the caramelised onions (cannot see in the blur picture) though.Bucatini [amatriciana with onion and bacon]. Strictly for onion afficiendos.Our bill:-Contact number and address:- Neroteca, Somerset

MUST make reservation unless you are early. A friend arrived just before 7pm and was just a step ahead of a couple to grab the last available table. Phew. Just before 9pm after they have cleared our table, we were politely asked to vacate to accommodate the next reservation.

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