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Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Monthly Archives / December 2013

There are few things I like more than having a good time, and my version of having a good time usually involves being among friends, over food, good drinks, and if you would, is to be out in the open sea under an infinite ceiling made up of billions and billions of stars.

party with Guinness

Over the years, I’ve attended quite a fair share of Guinness events and have always had a great time enjoying my favorite black beer with great friends and acquaintances.

Such events are usually held in pubs, bars, and sometimes even on the streets (Oktoberfest anyone?), and while they were awesome, it got me thinking about taking it to the next level with another one of my favourite activities – to be on a private cruise!

fun on live-aboard cruises

Now personally I’ve never been on a big cruise before, however, I’ve spent some awesome diving trips on live-a-board cruises to the Similan Islands in Thailand and to Maldives. Be out in the open with a couple dozen friends and crews were some of my most memorable trips.

So what if I could put two and two together and throw a cruise party? Now that would really be a party like no other!

If it were me, I’ll make it a themed cruise with black and gold, plenty of drinks, and epic music. There will be little sleep, and whole load of fun.

Everyone will dressed up in the glorious colours of black and gold, and we will create a playlist with awesome hip hop tunes, and of course there’s the dance floor, and Guinness for everyone till the morning comes.

Then there’s decoration that is in tune with the theme color, black and gold drapes, with gold x’mas trees, balloons, and masquerade masks in matching colours for everyone.

Of course, no Guinness party is complete without some awesome food. For this we shall go all out with wholesome dishes such as roast lamb, bratwurst, meat pie, and more. It’ll be epic!

The good news is, Guinness is actually giving us the chance to win a PRIVATE cruise party for you and 29 friends! It will be a super awesome way to end the year now wouldn’t it?

Guinness Cruise Party

Contest starts on the 19th December (10am) and ends 21st December (6pm).

All you have to do is to complete this slogan on this Guinness Facebook post (here) – ‘I deserve to win a #CELEBRATIONOFMORE because…’ The most creative answer wins! (T&C applies)

What are you waiting for? And don’t forget to invite me if you win the private cruise party!

Good news for those who studies at Sunway University, stay at around the area, or generally likes hanging about at this car tuners’ paradise – there’s yet another new coffee place!

I really like how new coffee places are now mushrooming all over the city, with many of them offering really quality coffee with some rather nice concepts. Gone were the days where espresso based coffee is only found at Starbucks and Coffeebeans.

Garage 51, opposite Sunway University side entrance
Garage 51, opposite Sunway University side entrance

Garage 51 is owned by the same people who run CoffeeSociete, so in terms of drinks, there’s already a pretty good reputation going on.

As for the cafe, like the name suggests, it is based on a garage theme. A volkswagen Beatle convertible by the side that is now an alfresco dining table, and seatings atop a container which is now a kitchen gives this place a pretty unique ambiance. I also really like the expansive high ceiling within the main area.

cafe latte & chai latte
cafe latte & chai latte

We tried their cafe latte and chai latte, and while the tea kinda turned out slightly sweeter than we would have liked it, the latte was excellent. Aroma of coffee well balanced with the silky smooth milk, just what a caffeine addict needed.

grilled chicken & grilled lamb shoulder
grilled chicken & grilled lamb shoulder

Other than caffeinated drinks and slices of cakes, Garage 51 also offers a small menu of dishes served after 6pm. There are only 5 items on it, and we tried two of them.

The grilled chicken (RM 19) I had was pretty decent. It came with homemade croquette potato and cauliflower as sides, the quarter chicken well marinated and the sauce compliments the meat pretty well.

Lamb shoulder (RM 22) with mashed potato and salad wasn’t executed nearly as well, but generally an okay dish.

Other entrees include olive aglio olio and a couple baked eggs dishes.

KY & Haze catching a late dinner and some coffee at Garage 51
KY & Haze catching a late dinner and some coffee at Garage 51

Garage 51 also serves brunch and carries speciality single origin coffee that changes from time to time. I didn’t try their Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Gelena Abaya coffee on my first visit, but I’m quite sure it is a place I’ll head to again in the near future.

map to Garage 51, Sunway

Address:
Garage 51
51, Jalan PJS 11/9,
Bandar Sunway
46150 Selangor
GPS3.067876, 101.603086
Hours: 11 am to 11 pm

Every once in a while, I get carried away ends up somewhere just a little bit too for lunch during work week. This was one such occasion that happened several weeks ago when my badminton buddies called up for a quick lunch.

Our first option was closed, and so somehow we ended up traveling from Bukit Bintang all the way to Cheras for a promise of good roast duck and yong tau foo at Restaurant Sun Ming.

restaurant Sun Ming at Taman Connaught, Cheras
restaurant Sun Ming at Taman Connaught, Cheras

Located at Taman Connaught, Sun Ming was super busy when we arrived at around one pm in the afternoon. Parking was a bit of an interesting affair but with patience one usually prevails.

There’s usually a line at the restaurant, don’t follow the line unless you are going to tapao. We worked our way inside the restaurant and stood beside some patrons who were finishing up their food, like vultures to dying animals, but our aim was an empty table.

roast duck, roast pork, chasiu, yong tau foo
roast duck, roast pork, chasiu, yong tau foo

It took another 25 minutes or so to have our food served after we were seated and made our orders. This is definitely not a place to visit if you’re in a hurry.

Fortunately, the quality of food makes up for what’s lacking in speed of service.

we also ordered bean sprouts in addition to all those meat
we also ordered bean sprouts in addition to all those meat

The roast duck had crispy skin and juicy meat, the roast pork savory, and the bbq pork too is on par with some of the bests I’ve tried from anywhere. As far as roast meat is concerned, they got it right.

As for the yong tau foo, the version at Sun Ming is deep fried version that is increasingly harder to find. If you haven’t tried deep fried yong tau foo, you should. They tastes pretty different from your usual soup based version, and I think works well with the other dishes.

my makan kaki chewing away
my makan kaki chewing away

Sure, the roast duck at Loong Foong is slightly better, roast pork at Wong Kee is a bit more superior, and Ming Brother at Shamelin might serve a plate of bbq pork that is rated a tad higher. At Sun Ming though, they are almost as good, and you get all of them at the same location. Furthermore, which other roast meat shop serves yong tau foo?

Our lunch came to around RM 15 per pax, and yes, I would go back again.

map to Restaurant Sun Ming roast duck

Address:
Restauran Sun Ming
No. 137, Jalan Sarjana,
Taman Connaught,
56000 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.08218, 101.73747
Tel: 03-9133 2151
Operation: Open for lunch, Closed on Tuesdays

My latest adventure into instant noodle brought me to the new offerings from Mamee Chef, with three flavors of instant noodle that promises higher quality noodle that’s dried and compressed from higher quality ingredients.

There are three different flavors to choose from – Thai Tom Yam, Spicy Chicken Shiitake, and Curry Laksa.

For brunch over the weekends, I tried the Thai Tom Yam flavor.

Mamee Chef comes in 3 different flavors
Mamee Chef comes in 3 different flavors

Instant noodle is often synonymous with quick eating with very little flair, but that doesn’t mean it must necessarily be the case. When having a few extra minutes, I like to spice it up and upgrade my instant noodle.

First, lets look at the Mamee Chef Thai Tom Yam instant noodle, it comes with three small packets of seasonings – tomyam paste, the seasoning powder, and dehydrated shrimps + vegetable. The noodle itself is packed in a round shape, which is super convenient when it comes to fitting inside the pot (who started making them in squares anyway?)

now lets upgrade this Mamee Chef perisa Thai tomyam
now lets upgrade this Mamee Chef perisa Thai tomyam

I like the fact that there’s already seafood that comes in the packet, but since I had some time on hand, I decided to upgrade my Mamee Chef Tom Yam to give it an even bigger kick.

Ingredients:

  • Mamee Chef Thai Tom Yam
  • lime
  • laksa leave
  • shrimps
  • lala
  • kantan flower

the result looks pretty good kan?
the result looks pretty good kan?

Cooking Instructions:

  • boil 400 ml water
  • add noodle
  • add seafood (peel prawns but leave the head and tail)
  • add seasoning
  • let boil for 3 minutes
  • add laksa leave
  • sprinkle the chopped kantan flower
  • optionally, squeeze half a lime

super upgraded instant noodle, om nom nom
super upgraded instant noodle, om nom nom

The result is a brunch fitting for the weekends. I find that the noodle really does rather good, with a good “springy” feel to it. Seasoning wise it isn’t overly strong, but has the essential tomyam flavor to it. Will try the other two Mamee Chef flavors soon!

AFC’s latest foray in their long line of food & restaurant themed series comes in the form of  “Reality Bites: Rise Above with Style”, featuring two celebrity chefs – Johnny Fua & Sherson Lian of Elegantology.

I was invited to the premier of the show followed by a dinner at Elegantology, and since I’ve yet to have a taste at this rather unique restaurant that I’ve heard so much about recently, it was an opportunity I had to take.

Reality Bites premiere at Publika
Reality Bites premiere at Publika

Reality Bites is a six part series starting 10th December, at 9pm every Tuesday on AFC. The show takes part in Elegantology Gallery & Restaurant, featuring not only the glitz and glamour of running the kitchen of a higher end restaurant, but also the day-to-day challenge and many issues faced by the two chefs and their crews.

Chef Johnny Fua, Chef Sherson Lian, & the director of Reality Bites
Chef Johnny Fua, Chef Sherson Lian, & the director of Reality Bites

During the event, we were shown the first episode of Reality Bites in its entirety, alongside with an on-stage session with Chef Johnny Fua & Sherson Lian, the director of the series, as well as the creative director of Elegantology, Beatrice Looi.

So if you want to see a restaurant themed reality series that is closer to home, tune on your TV Tuesday 9pm on AFC!

some homemade bread to start, love the truffle butter
some homemade bread to start, love the truffle butter

After that of course, is what I was even more interested in, the degustation menu at Elegantology.

We started out with Elegantology Baker’s choice, served with truffle butter florets, paprika chickpeas hummus, and EVOO (olive oil & balsamic vinegar?). I think we must have asked for extra truffle butter at least twice, it was very good.

Ceviche scallop, foie gras cube with braised shimeiji mushroom
Ceviche scallop, foie gras cube with braised shimeiji mushroom

Next up was ceviche scallop, paw paw kerabu, nam pla influenced Ponzu sesame drizzle. A dish that has some similarity in Sarawak’s umai, both using acid to lightly cook the seafood. Scallop was huge, juicy, and delicious, I can hae this often. The kerabu was an interesting experiment, tho one that I wouldn’t care too much for.

Foie gras cube, olive lemon soil, soy bean milk braised shimeiji mushroom is similar to chicken liver pate, but undoubtedly a lot more luxurious and sophisticated. The mushroom adds a welcoming change of texture which I do appreciate.

oxtail broth, brandied sea cucumber
oxtail broth, brandied sea cucumber

Continuing our course was a much needed soup dish in the form of oxtail broth with brandied sea cucumber. The oxtail is de-boned while sea cucumber provided the texture that’s similar to beef tendon, but with a dash of seafood sweetness. The soup itself carried a nice herbal aroma.

tomato sake granita, sour plum shaved. Josen, Mei, Cheng Yi & KY
tomato sake granita, sour plum shaved. Josen, Mei, Cheng Yi & KY

Tomato sake granita, sour plum shaved was chosen as a sort of intermission to the degustation dinner course. It was cold, sour, and a tad sweet, perfect as a palate cleanser before we continue with perhaps the most important dish.

kobe beef skewer, miso pineapple bearnaise
kobe beef skewer, miso pineapple bearnaise

Which was the kobe beef skewer with miso pineapple bearnaise. This was the first time I tasted kobe beef (well at least that’s what they claimed), and yes, it was every bit as awesome as the sterling reputation it carries. The meat was super tender with superb marbling, a melt-in-your-mouth feeling that somehow does not compromise on texture.

It was so good we jokingly asked for second servings from the waiter, who actually complied! Sometimes you can achieve a lot more in life by just asking. 😀

barramundi, smoked muscovy duck glutinous rice; replated black forest gateau
barramundi, smoked muscovy duck glutinous rice; replated black forest gateau

The penultimate dish was barramundi, smoked muscovy duck glutinous rice. While the fish was fresh, it was perhaps just a tad too cooked for my liking, the glutinous rice was perfect though, goes especially well with the sambal-like sauce. Also, after the beef, nothing feels the same anymore.

The rather funky looking dessert was the replated black forest gateau, a bit of sponge, chocolate, ice cream, cherries, and cream all carefully arranged in a careless appearance. It was acceptable but perhaps did not live up to the capability of the restaurant. 

I really appreciate the idea behind Elegantology and their bravery in always experimenting with different dishes and menu. The overall dinner experience was very good, and while a couple dishes did not wow, they were mostly excellent, and most importantly, provide diners a different and unique gastronomic experience.

It was a wonderful night overall and I’m grateful for this opportunity.

map to Solaris Dutamas

Address:
Elegantology
35 Level G2, Publika, 

Solaris Dutamas, Kuala Lumpur
GPS3.170961, 101.665721
Tel: 03-6206 5577