Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Monthly Archives / June 2006

My colleague invited me to this talk thingy at Hotel Equatorial a while back, lunch included. Who would want to miss a free lunch at one of the nicest hotels, right? However, I didn’t expect the host to offer such a lavish lunch at Nippah CoffeeShop. According to my colleague, most of the time similar functions usually only offer fried mee hun and the like. Lucky me. 🙂

Nippah CoffeeShop at Hotel Equatorial Kuala Lumpur
very nice ambience

Nippah Coffeehouse is located at the basement of Equatorial Hotel, a giant staircase from the lobby will lead you directly to the restaurant, as you can see from the right bottom corner picture above. The ambience is really nice, the quiet and calm environment provides a striking contrast to the busy afternoon. The round tables at the center are fitted with steamboat pots, while the surrounding tables are rectangular and do not come with such fixture. There are probably around 30 tables in total.

Nippah CoffeeShop at Hotel Equatorial Kuala Lumpur
some of the buffet lines

While not as big and lavish as Jogoya at Starhill, Nippah CoffeeHouse does pack an impressive array of buffet lines. There is a raw and salad bar, with oysters, clams, and other cold dishes. A grill bar with grilled fish, oyster mornay, satey, steak, and seafood thermidor. Then there’s the local dish area with various types of curry and other local cuisine such as beef rendang and crab with curry sauce (highly recommended). There are also a line offering raw food for steamboat, and also a dessert bar.

Nippah CoffeeShop at Hotel Equatorial Kuala Lumpur
fresh seafood steamboat, raw oysters too

The food itself was excellent. I particularly can’t get enough of the Oyster Mornay, freshly prepared by the chef. If you are sitting on a table with no steamboat pot, you can still pick the food from steambaot line and get a chef to cook it fresh, with a choice of tomyam or clear broth.

The curry crab is another must-try item, alongside with the mutton rendang and the grilled salmon, done in a perfect way with the inner part of the fillet still soft and not over cooked. You can even find air mata kucing as dessert. A slight let down though, was the lack of fresh juices or any variety of drinks with the buffet package.

Nippah CoffeeShop at Hotel Equatorial Kuala Lumpur
just look at these oyster mornay!

The lunch was worth RM 75++ per person. According to the Equatorial’s website, the establishment won the Malaysian Tourist Development Board Award for Best Malay Restaurant (Cuisine). It certainly taste like it.

I think this is an excellent place to bring foreigners for a good buffet dinner that offers expansive local delights while providing a very nice dining experience with excellent ambience and interior decoration. You will probably like it too for a change from the usual Western (esp. Italian) and Japanese style buffets.

Map of Hotel Equatorial Kuala Lumpur

Hours (the restaurant, not the buffet lunch):
Sun – Thur 6.00 am – 2.00 am
Fri, Sat and public holidays 6.00 am – 3.00 am

GPS: 3.153575, 101.709216
Tel: +60 3 2031 3030

We have been wanting to try out this place for a while now, but due to the lack of clear direction as to whereabout of this restaurant, we have been putting it off until the sense of adventure creeped up again on one fine afternoon. Kin Kin Chili Pan Mee (建記辣椒板麵) at Jalan Dewan Sultan Sulaiman was worth every bit the trouble it took us to locate the restaurant.

Kin Kin Chili Pan Mee at Jalan Dewan Sultan Sulaiman
old school place with freshly made noodle

I am usually not a big fan of Pan Mee, having only had this hawker offering not more than half a dozen times in my life. The Pan Mee from Kin Kin, however, is different from usual. The noodle is dry and the soup comes seperatedly, as opposed to the usual noodle soup set up. The noodle too, is the thin type. Other than the familiar anchovies, a boiled egg with half cooked yolk tops up the offering.. *drools*

Kin Kin Chili Pan Mee at Jalan Dewan Sultan Sulaiman
comes with freshly boiled egg with runny yolk, yum!

The claim of fame for Kin Kin Pan Mee though, is the chili paste. You are free to add as much as you can endure with the noodle. The chili paste has been fried before and has a distinct slight burnt taste to it, which mixes pretty well with the noodle. However, you should not be over confident on your chili tolerant and put too much at once lest end up having your lips look like Macy Gray’s.

Kin Kin Chili Pan Mee at Jalan Dewan Sultan Sulaiman
look at horng’s burning lips!

Overall the pan mee was very delicious, the egg gives it an overall smooth and pleasant texture, too. You will find yourself trying to lick the bowl. At less than RM5 per bowl, I’d say the price is quite fair too. Give it a try if you are in town!

Kin Kin Chili Pan Mee at Jalan Dewan Sultan Sulaiman
awesome high resolution map to kin kin pan mee

40 Ground Floor, Jalan Dewan Sultan Sulaiman 1,
off Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman, Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.161031, 101.698272
Phone: 016-3728069

weekdays 7:30am – 9:00 pm
weekends 7:30am – 4:30pm
closed on the last Sunday of the month

A Painted House by John Grisham

A Painted House is a vastly different work from the usual John Grisham courtroom dramas. This is a story about a 7 year old farm boy, Luke growing up in rural Arkansas, detailing everything that happened in a few short months.

It was the cotton harvest season of 1952, Luke stayed with his grandpa, grandma, mom, and dad on the farm. For the harvest, they acquired help from a hill family and a bunch of Mexicans. Other characters include the poor Latcher family, Luke’s friend Dewayne, and the grocery store owners Pop and Pearl.

The story never strayed from Luke, it was told as a commentary of his life. Luke had to endure a lot of secrets, two killings, a forbidden love affair between the Mexican and the hill girl Tally, the secrets between Luke and Tally, and the fatherless baby from the Latcher family.

You will undoubtedly start rooting for Luke as the pages go by. The book speaks of both the good and the evil, and gives a very vivid and beliveable life of rural Arkansas in the 50s.

This is one of the better books I’ve read, certainly the best from John Grisham. Pick it up if you have the chance, or you can go to the link above and read through the computer screen, PDA, cellphone, whatever..

Have fun! The other book review by yours truely – Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson

This place is introduced by the mat salleh that is ST, you can read his take here. We spent about 20 minutes looking for the place after having parked the car in some alleys. I had to call ST a couple times and even use a hardcore MMS pic to verify that we got to the correct place. By the time it’s all said and done, we were starving..

Ong Lai Steamed Fish at Jalan Raja Laut
old school back alley kinda place in the middle of KL

Ong Lai is situated at the underground of Bee Seng Hotel, from Jalan Raja Laut, you have to walk downhill via a small road by the hotel and turn left into the alley. It’s pretty easy to spot the “restaurant” once you are there, it is basically just a lot of tables under some tents, a very old school set up. I didn’t see any running rats around, which was a good thing.

Ong Lai Steamed Fish at Jalan Raja Laut
the fish head, fried noodles, and vege

We ordered the famous steamed fish head, fried hor fun, fried mee hun, a plate of vege, and the awesome oyster omlete (was too hungry I forgot to snap a pic of this dish). Both the fried noodles were very good and stuffed with lotsa ingridients such as squid, shrimps, sliced fish cakes, vege, and best of all, cubes of deep fried pork fat.

The fish head was more like 1/3 of a fish instead of just the head. It was very well garnished with parsley, red chili, and a lot of ginger and garlic. The fish meat was very tender and sultry. If you know how to enjoy a good fish head, you will savor the lips of the fish.. yumm.

Ong Lai Steamed Fish at Jalan Raja Laut
the fish meat and the big oyster, yummm

The oyster omelete came late due to some kitchen mismanagement I think. We were almost going to cancel the order but glad that we didn’t. The oysters in the omlete were the biggest I’ve seen in this type of dish. Fried till when the eggs are fully cooked but the oysters still half rare, served on a sheet of banana leaf, the dish was really awesome no just in terms of flavor, but texture as well. This is a must-try item if you are there.

Ong Lai Steamed Fish at Jalan Raja Laut
here, map to Ong Lai at Jalan Raja Laut

Do make sure that you ask them to break down the bill. Due to some confusion at the kitchen, we were charged twice on the oyster dish. We only found that out after having our bills break down. Six of us spent a total of around RM 100 for the meal, a pretty fair price. Will go there again.

The address:
60A, Jalan Raja Laut
50500 Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.163029, 101.695794

The place closes on Monday

One of our favorite weekend brunch meal is the Bak Kut Teh (肉骨茶), being a fan of the malaysian invented dish, we constantly try out new places in an effort to find the best there is. Other places reviewed including the one at Jalan Ipoh Ban Lee, Sungei Way Ah Sang, and Klang Lai Choon. This weekend, we decided to visit another place, the Teluk Pulai (直落玻璃) Bak Kut Teh at the famous Klang “Maybank area”.

Klang Teluk Pulai Bak Kut Teh
among the noobs that went

On the late saturday morning, the place was packed and we had to wait a couple minutes for a vacant table. We ordered a claypot bak kut teh with mixed ingridients (pork, fatty pork, knuckles, innerds) plus enoki (string mushroom), and a plate of boiled vegetable (油菜). If your wallet is up for it, you can also add sea cucumber (海參) in the bak kut teh. As usual, yau char kwai (Chinese Crullers – 油炸鬼) and oily rice is served with the order.

Klang Teluk Pulai Bak Kut Teh
the hallmark of klang bak kut teh – huge pieces of meat

The bak kut teh did not dissapoint, the soup was of typical klang style, rich in flavor and slightly thicker in viscosity compared to most you find from other areas. True to klang’s signature dish, the meat comes in huge chunks, and lots of them. However, they were cooked to the degree of tenderness that is easy to work on. Overall I would rate this place up there with the other good bak kut teh places in terms of flavor.

The meal costs some RM 60 for 5 of us, that was around 12 bucks per person for some pretty good bak kut teh. However, a minus point is that they seemed to be quite stingy in refilling soup, using only a small mug to do the job.

map to Klang Teluk Pulai Bak Kut Teh
here is how you go there, the sweet map

The restaurant is located at the famous Klang “Maybank area” just right after the Federal Highway Klang toll plaza. Pretty easy to find.

27H, Jalan Teluk Pulai,
41100 Klang, Selangor

GPS: 3.056111, 101.474167
Tel: 03 – 3373 3239