I spent over 4 years in the States for college and work, and was fortunate enough to have spent a year each living with an American family and in the dorm. This was the time I learnt to be appreciate American sports.
The four big professional leagues in the States are then NBA, NFL, MLB, and NHL. There are also a very lively scene in college sports too. However, with the exception of some games on Astro every now and again, they are not very popular here in Malaysia.
in Manila for 24 hr, and on the way back with KL Dragons
Attending games and being able to catch these games live on TV on almost daily basis were pretty much the things I miss most about the States since coming back to Malaysia.
Enter Asean Basketball League, South East Asia’s very own professional basketball league that is currently made up of 6 teams from the region. The teams are:
hard fought game between KL Dragons and Philippines Patriots at Manila
I was rather excited that we now have a professional basketball team in KL, and even more stoked when I found out I had a chance to travel to Manila to attend an away game of KL Dragons versus the Philippine Patriots. I jumped to the opportunity even though I know it’ll be a very short and hasty travel.
So the weekend before Christmas I went to Manila for a trip that lasted almost exactly 24 hours to catch the game.
KL Dragons head coach Mr. Goh Cheng Huat
Due to the insane traffic situation in the most congested city I’ve ever visited, I arrived at Ynares Arena right at about half time (the journey started from 5am in Malaysia, but that’s another post in another time).
KL Dragons was trailing by 1 point against the favorites at home, the score was 38-37 to start the second half. Although the stadium wasn’t exactly filled (most likely due to the traffic), I could sense the excitement and energy both in the crowd and the players.
the game was broadcast on ESPN with live commentary on radio too
The familiar feeling of adrenaline rush immediately over powered my fatigue from being on the road in the past 12 hours.
Third quarter was a back and forth affair, with each team answering each other basically basket to basket. The Patriots had home field advantage, the crowd was with them, and loud speakers booming “DEFENSE DEFENSE” whenever the Dragons had possession. It was a tough, but we kept with it.
The quarter ended 55-54 favoring the Patriots.
KL Dragons – close relationship and good team work chemistry
In the early going on forth quarter, we managed to kept pace. It wasn’t until about 2 minutes left in the game that the Patriots somehow managed pull away due to a couple critical baskets and tough defensive stance (some might argue that it was slightly aided by the lack of calls). We lost the game at 76-70, but we did put up a very good fight.
Everyone was feeling a bit down after the game in the locker room. Coach Goh and Team Manager Mr. Wee gave their talks and what the team faces the rest of the season. The goal is to get to the playoffs, and we have a legitimate shot at it.
I joined the team for dinner and next day’s flight back to KL, and they were some of the funniest and down to earth bunch of guys you can find. I ended up talking to Jamal Brown for quite a bit since he is an American and we have a common topic in American sports.
I have my calendar circled for their next home game at MABA on the 5th Jan 2010, facing Satria Muda at home. Support our local team, be there! KL Dragons have 3 more home games, their full schedule can be found here.
For the longest time, I had always thought that we imported every single type of roti from India. Roti telur, roti bawang, roti pisang, roti tissue, and of course, roti cheese.
It wasn’t until friends who visited South India told me that all these different roti were actually as much a Malaysian invention as with bak kut teh and yu sang.
Kalau keju, mesti Kraft!
The problem with most mamak food though, is that the ingredients used often is sourced at the lowest possible price, consequently the quality suffers.
When it comes to roti, none can be more apparently than the cheese used in roti cheese. Which brings us to the purpose of this advertorial – restaurants are starting to realize that better quality ingredients can be really important in certain cases, and hence you can now find burger and roti with Kraft cheese in certain outlets.
The slogan goes: KALAU KEJU MESTI KRAFT, KASI SATU ROTI KRAFT
the roti cheese competition: female, first round
Last weekend I went to Hassan Cafe at SS15 (just opposite the good old KFC) to check out an event held by Kraft at the mamak restaurant.
As it turned out, it was an eating competition where 2 Samsung L100 Digital Cameras was at stake. The competition was simple, whoever can eat the most Roti Kraft in 5 minutes win. One for male, the other for the ladies.
I arrived in time to catch the competition for female category, there were 10 contestants altogether vying for the prize. The pressure must be quite intense, there were dozens of cameras snapping videos and photos while the ladies try to chew down their roti cheese as fast as possible.
After 5 minutes, there was a tie for first place with both girls managed to finish two roti cheese, so we went to sudden death overtime. Check out the video below:
The two lucky big eaters walked away with the Samsung Digital Camera, so jealous!
Check out kalaukejumestikraft.com for more information and to find out where you could get Roti Kraft or Burger Kraft. There is also a Kraft cheese fan page where you can find more info and activities (already over 6000 fans as of writing).
In the facebook page you can find multiple photo albums of previous events and more videos too. Wall discussions are quite lively as well, for example, a particular message stated: “TRY NEW RCPY FISH BALL WITH KRAFT N PRAWN“. Interesting, interesting!
In a totally unrelated random trivia: Robert Kraft, the CEO of Kraft Group owns the New England Patriots, one of the most successful NFL teams in this decade that won 3 Super Bowls. The quarterback of the Patriots is Tom Brady, who married Gisele Bundchen, I suppose some of you might know Gisele more than the Patriots, but everything in this world is related in a weird way.
Whenever we are at an event that dragged into late night with #porkgang, Kim would always get hungry and suggests “I’m feeling like Teow Chew porridge, lets go to pudu now!”
That was precisely what we did after attending the hugely entertaining Nokia’s Year End Party, primarily due to the availability of helium filled balloons and awesome company.
old school Teow Chew porridge at Pudu, KL
Kedai Makanan Teochew at Pudu is located just behind Berjaya Times Square, parking at late night is usually not a problem, and during day time there there’s the open air paid car park just opposite the shop.
At night, we usually choose a table outside where it’s usually quite a bit cooling.
3 in 8 dishes you see here are made of pork
The selection of dishes at this place is as wide as anywhere. You can find anything from the standard luncheon meat, Chinese lap cheong, assortment of vegetables, fried fish, salted egg, to even pork intestine cooked in soya sauce.
In this instance, we left the ordering job to Kim, and you can see just how much she ordered for the five of us. We had 9 dishes altogether, pork’s ear, daze with black bean, lady fingers, two types of salted vegetable, fermented tofu, pork, and double order of intestine.
Like many late night eateries around Pudu area that is popular with the after clubbing crowd, the way your bill is calculated is often sort of a mystery. I believe ours came to over RM 10 per person that night, while not exactly cheap for porridge, the convenience and taste was more than worth it (especially since it was Nigel who paid for this meal, Thanks!)
Address: Restaurant Teochew Porridge
270&272 Jalan Changkat Thambi Dollah
Off Jalan Pudu, Kuala Lumpur, 55100, Malaysia GPS:3.140701, 101.71005 Tel:03-2148 3452
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A big merry xmas to everyone, and thank you for coming to the party and made this 6th installment of the annual xmas eve party at my humble little place as happening as successful as ever!
Thanks to the power of Robb & Nuffnang, this year we had Heineken sponsoring the house party with plenty of beer, a canopy, and even food (including freshly grilled satey!). Suanie also got her friends from thebaloonimages.com to decorate up the place with plenty of balloons too!
Hence, this year we had the whole works, nice decorations, food, drinks, and even party kits! My house almost looked like a wedding kenduri from far. But it was awesome.
did you notice the satey man?
From the facebook photo album tags, there were over 45 or so people in attendance. There were lot of old faces from previous parties turned up, and quite a few new comers too.
The previous attendees were: Suanie, Kerol, Gareth, Kim, Ee Laine, Horng, Yee Hou, Terence, Huey Fang, Hwa Chai, Wei Yi, Michael, Elfie, Rachel, Selina, Tock, Rebecca, Jaime, Janice, Shiang, Wai Meng, Reta, Mohan, Eiling, and Zoe.
New comers include: Haze, Robb, Tim, Audrey, Su Ann, Suet Li, Eric, Jaclyn, Ruby, Nazrul, Richard, San San, Nigel, Li Ling, Thomas, Arthur, Ginny, Desmond, and Vanessa.
Brief encounter: Reta’s bf, Eric, showed up for a bit to pick her up, as with another Wai Meng who had to send Elfie back earlier cos she wasn’t feeling well.
Oh.. and the petrol car came by with a cop, followed by 2 petrol cars some 15 minutes later with 3 friendly police officers asking us to .. tone it down at about 2 something in the morning.
turkey and roast pork for xmas eve dinner
Just before the party got started, the #porkgang actually prepared a nice dinner with a big turkey, a couple kilograms of roast pork, vegetable, bacon pasta, and even butter bread puddings for ourselves. Jaclyn and Kim did most of the cooking while Terence handled the roast pork business, and boy, everything was so delicious!
That got us all ready to roll for the party.
don’t you want to look like a green superhero too?
As usual, most guests came later than the official 8:30pm start time with the exception of a few. Traffic on the day was pretty horrendous too, so I guess that could be served as an excuse of sort.
There were plenty of cold Heinekens to go around, and inside the party pack were some pretty cool costumes too. We had quite a bit of fun with those, until it started to feel a bit too warm to be wearing capes and hats… oh well.
the bong made quite a few ppl sprayed back out its content
Ever the inventer, Terence brought a home-made bong to the party and was trying to convince people to try his concoction via the funnel. I don’t think anyone actually managed to swallow the drinks without at least spilling half of it on the floor.
Absinthe + beer isn’t exactly a very desirable taste, especially when it’s channeling through the pipe directly to your throat, I supposed. Huey Fang and Hwa Chai probably sprayed 90% of it on the floor.
and the gift exchange got started!
We got the gift exchange started by 12 am, right when Super Late Su Ann arrived.
As with every year, everyone draws a number (40 gifts intotal this year), and then system works this way:
the person who drew #1 picks a gift from the pile (giver’s names are written on the gifts)
#2 onwards gets to hijack one of the opened gifts, or pick from the pile
if your gift got hijacked, you get to hijack another one, ad infinitum
we had bak kua, godiva chocolate, tumbler, and even cigarettes *gasp*
The person with the smallest number usually lose out, the one with the biggest number has highest advantage, theoretically speaking anyway.
With the rules in place, there were a lot of gifts exchanging hands (most of the time very reluctantly). It was to the point where we had to start limiting the exchange since some rounds had over 7-8 hijackings.
Haze wasn’t too happy with Penang Asam Laksa, but liked the War Craft
Among the most sought after gifts were a set of banana republic cocktail shaker, a really nice laptop bag, original war craft games, bak kua, Haze’s painting, Starbucks planner, and the geometrical rubik’s cube.
The more unfortunate gifts were adult diapers, giant rubber chicken, tiny toy guitar, and shaver.
The most unorthodox gift was from Yee Hou, a few packets of Asam Laksa he tapau all the way from Penang on the same day!
emotional roller coaster, you thought you get to keep those gifts? hijacked!
The gift exchange took over 1.5 hours to get done, but it was really the highlight of the night, I thought it was very fun!
We continued to party for a little while, and started winding it down after the cops came for the second time. For whatever reasons, these dudes actually cheered when the petrol car showed up for the first time. The party wouldn’t have been complete then I supposed.
Oh, by the way according to his tweet, Yee Hou puked when he got home after drinking only one beer at the party, hohohoho.
Thank you guys for coming and made this an awesome party, lets do it again next year!
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Spanish cuisine isn’t exactly very wide spread in this county. As far as I’m aware, there are only a handful of restaurants that go the whole deal instead of only having some tapas on the menu.
As the new kid on the block (just barely a month old when I visited), El Meson is true to its Spanish origin, from tapas to iberico pork. I was overjoyed when I saw El Meson on the list of restaurants that are running the Merry Guinness promotion, and chose to come here without thinking twice.
El Meson at Bangsar Telawi 3
Situated at Telawi 3 just right across Bangsar Village 2, El Meson is a pretty nicely decorated restaurant. There’s the bar with a proper Guinness tab and seating areas around it. Dining tables sprawled around the 2-shop lot restaurant with at least half a dozen tables set along the walkway ala alfresco.
It is a pretty chic yet comfortable set up along the busy street.
cold cuts as appetizer, Guinness the main meal, chocolate cake the dessert
To start off dinner, we ordered the cold cuts as appetizer. The menu stated – iberico, serrano, parma, salami, salchichon with melon & olive (RM68); which basically means a few different types of very delicious pork with some olives and rock melon. They were really, really delicious. It was no less than what I had at Bermuda and Onions over a year ago.
And of course, the pint of Guinness went very well with the meat, saltiness of the cured pork versus sweetness of the melon versus the slight bitterness of the black beer = perfection.
Chilean sea bass, Capellini aglio olio with prawns and scallops
For our mains, Karen and I ordered the Chilean sea bass spaghetti (RM 46, one of the two dishes that comes free with a perfect pint of Guinness during the promotion) while Elfie chose to have Capellini Aglio Olio with prawns and scallops (RM 39.)
Both dishes were quite excellent, the sea bass fresh and not over cooked, with the pasta and its sauce tasting just right too. Elfie too gave her thumbs up for the aglio olio, now if you know Elfie you’d know that this girl can be very critical, if it’s not good, she’ll just tell it to your face that it is horrible and then proceed to blog about how bad it is on her blog.. or something like that.
KY, Karen, and Elfie with some Guinness
We capped off the night with a couple more glasses of Guinness and a slice of chocolate cake to share. While the food was great, service at the restaurant proved to be slightly slow at first, probably due to the fact that they were just opened.
However, the manager Miguel (a guy with Spanish origin, no less!) was very friendly and did take care of us exceedingly well. I am sure this place warrants many returns.
This occasion also served as a testament that good food and drinks can bring people together, Elfie is the first fellow Kadazan girl that Karen met despite having stayed in this region for 4-5 years already. Here’s one to Guinness!
For more information on Guinness 250 anniversary promotion and the list of participating outlets, check out Guinness Malaysia facebook page. You can also find all my previous posts with Guinness (including last year’s promotion) here.
Address: El Meson espanol
No. 61-63, Jalan Telawi 3,
Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur GPS:3.130435,101.670978 Tel:03-2282 8290