Category / Buffet
Well, it’s that time again. The holy month of Ramadan starts on the 18th June, 2015, our Muslim friends fast during the daylight as one of the Five Pillars of Islam.
As a nation of people who loves our food, many restaurants and hotels also offer Ramadan buffet in this period to allow Muslims and also non-Muslims to enjoy a meal together.
Ramadhan at GTower, Anura certainly enjoye
This year, G Tower started early and invited the media to have a sample of their buffet spread more than a month prior. I was happy to be part of the group.
First, the most important bit: the buffet will be held at GTower from 20th June till 14th July 2015 and priced at RM 95 NETT for adults.
traditional kuih muih on the spread
Like many such buffet offerings, GTower will be serving traditional Malaysian cuisine with quite a few live cooking stations under the direction of Chef Sherry, who has more than 20 years of experience in the kitchen.
ulam, salted egg, and salted fish
Starting appetizer, there’s assortment of salad, kerabu pucuk paku, sambal, keropok, papadum, telur masin, ikan masin, jeruk, and a pretty good selection of ulam-ulam as well. I was slightly disappointed by the lack of tempoyak, but I’m hopeful they will have it on the actual spread.
traditional dishes that goes well with steamed or briyani rice
Many main dishes are served in clay-pot to keep retain the freshness, and they comprise of rice selections such as nasi briyani, fragrant rice, nasi ulam, and so forth. Ayam panggang berempah, daging masak hitam, and dagang salai masak lemak cili api, sambal udang petai (i love this!), ikan pari, tenggiri masak asam, and more can be found.
The best dish of the night for me was their ayam percik istimewa, and for the fans of roast lamb, kambing bakar enak is available (seemingly every Ramadan buffet places now has roast lamb).
pastry, roast lamb, popiah, and other goodies
Not all the live cooking stations were available for this tasting session, but there will be mee rebus, mihun sup, rojak singapura, and popiah basah upon request. The rojak wasn’t something I enjoyed though, as I prefer the Penang version.
Overall, the spread should satisfy anyone who loves Malaysian cuisine, and the pricing seems to be in-line with the location and dishes offered. So if you’re planning a buka puasa event, GTower should be in your consideration.
199 Jalan Tun Razak,
50400 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.1590, 101.7200
Tel: 03-2168 1919
As someone who was born on an island, I just can’t say no to good seafood. This is the reason why I went back to InterContinental Hotel’s Serena Brasserie for their seafood buffet review this year as I remember how good was last year’s spread.
Fresh Seafood Promotion at InterContinental Hotel, KL
Before we get started on the food, lets look at the important bits of this buffet:
- available every Friday and Saturday nights
- RM 120++ for adults
- upgrade to W.O.W (Wine of the Week) package for RM 180++ which includes a bottle of red or white wine
Additionally, Halloween ‘Scream for Seafood” promotion is priced the same on 31st Oct 2014 with best dressed male and female for the night taking away vouchers of award-winning restaurant, Tao Chinese cuisine and Tatsu Japanese cuisine.
tuna, crabs, octopus, oyster, mussel, slipper lobster, crayfish, and more
The most important line of this buffet spread is the chilled seafood bar, it is the most impressive I’ve seen yet on any buffet.
On the bed of ice you can find premium cuts of tuna, butterfish, Pacific prawn, New Zealand green lip mussels, crayfish, slipper lobster, octopus, Fine de Claire oysters, Australian yabbies, spanner crab, mud crab, and Harvey Bar half shell scallops.
These are either raw or boiled, the minimal preparation method retains the original sweetness of the seafood to be enjoyed as is or with the variety of condiments available.
live Australian yabbies stir fried, grilled, or eaten sashimi style
A unique selling point at this buffet spread is the availability of live Australian yabbies, a type of freshwater crayfish. These yabbies are fished out of the pond in the restaurant and prepared fresh in several ways of your choosing – stir fried, grilled, or even eaten raw sashimi style.
A word of caution – the raw yabby may twitch when you pour some tabasco sauce on it!
seafood and other dishes on the buffet spread, with cute Halloween deco
There’s also an outdoor portion of the restaurant that prepares freshly grilled seafood of your choosing, this includes crabs, slipper lobster, prawn, cuttlefish, yabbies, fish filet, and more. Additionally, they also serve beef and chicken satey.
a good selection of traditional dishes on the buffet spread too
Of course, in addition to fresh and grilled seafood, there’s plenty of traditional dishes to choose from on the buffet spread. Beef rendang, bok choy, briyani rice, crab curry, roast meat, and more are among the many ready-to-eat cooked dishes to choose from.
Halloween themed desserts fancy you?
For the dessert lovers, a pretty decent selection of mostly Western style desserts is available for your picking. Cakes, bread and butter puddings, and many more are available. The chef also showcase his talent in some pretty interesting looking Halloween themed desserts too.
fresh and grilled seafood were my choice, Li Vian joined me at Serena Brasserie
We thoroughly enjoyed the buffet spread at Serena Brasserie. Executive chef Sam Kung certainly know what he’s doing, upgrading the already very good spread from last year to the excellent selection this year. If you’re looking for a good seafood buffet, this is one that you shouldn’t miss.
165 Jalan Ampang,
50450 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.159767, 101.718045
Tel: 03-2161 1111
This is the 6th review on this buka puasa buffet 2014 series, and this time we check out the Balik Kampung Buffet at Grand Hyatt KL’s JP Teres restaurant right here in the heart of the city.
at JP Teres, Grand Hyatt KL with Rizal & Shabana
Grand Hyatt is located right between Mandarin Oriental and the KLCC Convention Centre right on Jalan Pinang. In fact, you can walk from KLCC to the hotel within a few minutes.
While the lobby and flagship restaurant is located on the top floors of the hotel, JP Teres, the restaurant that specialize in local cuisine is on the ground floor to the right as you walk into Grand Hyatt KL.
a variety of kurma, ulam, acar, and salad
Like the whole of Grand Hyatt, JP Teres is a pretty classy and beautifully decorated restaurant. There’s both indoor and outdoor seating areas, with several open concept show kitchens not unlike the arrangement at Thirty8.
The Balik Kampung buffet, priced at RM 148++ for adults and RM 74++ for children, is available from 30th June to 25th July 2014.
Malay kuih, ice cream roti, kek lapis Sarawak, and the all important tapai
While many hotels try to have a mix of Western and even Japanese cuisine in their buffet spread, JP Teres concentrate solely only local delights.
I personally love this idea and believe that this is the direction that will help keep our traditional food culture in Malaysia alive. If you have friends from outside Malaysia and wish to bring them for some local cuisine in a classy place, JP Teres should be pretty high on the list.
dhal tadka, nasi, lamb curry, chicken tikka masala,
paneer makhani, bhindi, do pyaza, sambal, chicken curry
For the Balik Kampung buffet, there are hundreds of dishes to choose from.
Starting from the cold selection you’ll find rojak buah, ulam-ulam, acar, kerabu daging, kerabu udang, kachumbar salad, tofu salad, and more.
To go with the ulam, there’s sambal balacan, cincacluk, air asam, cili kicap, budu, sambal kelapa, and chutney. The only thing missing is tempoyak.
ikan bakar, roast lamb, otak otak, and freshly made pohpiah
Like most every respectable buffet for this holiday season, there’s roast lamb. In addition to that, JP Teres also serve very delicious chicken rice (strongly recommend), freshly made pohpiah, ikan bakar, nasi briyani, satey ayam & daging, and even otak otak (which I don’t quite recommend).
daging masak cili padi, labu masak lemak, ikan tenggiri masak tau choo,
meehun goreng, kepah berlada, sambal telur itik, sup ekor, bubur lambok
The main dishes here are separated into three sections – with Malay, Indian, and Chinese hot sections.
Here you find dishes such as ayam goreng berempah, ikan merah greng berlada, kepah masak lada hitam, sayur lodeh kering, ayam masak ros in Malay hot section.
Lamb curry, fish amritsary, chicken tikka masala, vindi do pyaza, dhal tadka, paneer makhani (this is a must try!), and nasi briyani can be expected from Indian hot section.
At the Chinese hot section, there’s ayam mayonnaise with Thai sauce, ikan tenggiri masak tau choo, sotong masak oat, kailan ikan masin, meehun goreng, and so forth.
In addition, there’s also a Tandoori station serving roti india, ayam tandoori, udang tandoori, shish kebabs, and talapia merah.
more dishes from Malay, Indian, and Chinese cuisine
Apart from the hot stations, there are a number of stalls located at both indoor and outdoor dining area at JP Teres that offers anything from lemang, ketupat, makanan laut, gulai kawah, asam laksa Johor, curry laksa, prawn mee, roti canai, yong tau foo, and even murtabak.
In fact, they cover most everything you can expect from local cuisine, with most of the dishes being of very high quality. I enjoyed them.
there are also various cooking stations, including rojak buah at JP Teres
The dessert area is perhaps the only place where a few Western pastries and a few selection of Japanese mochee creep into this otherwise 100% local spread. There’s Malay kuih, ais krim roti, fruits, Malay biscuits. roti jala, cendol pulut, sago gula Melaka, and more to be expected.
If you’re looking for local delights in a classy place in town, this is definitely a place to check out.
Grand Hyatt Kuala Lumpur
12 Jalan Pinang
50450 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.15381, 101.71234
Tel: 03-2182 1234 ext. 2333
Fifth review on this buka puasa buffet 2014 series is the Seenak Citarasa Malaysia buffet dinner at Empire Hotel’s Kitchen Art Brasserie.
Located at Subang Jaya right next to the iconic Subang Parade, the hotel can be access directly via Empire Mall with the two sharing the same parking arrangements. Not having to pay more just because you’re in a hotel instead of the mall is surely a minor bonus.
Seenak Citarasa Malaysia buffet at Empire Hotel
Kitchen Art Brasserie is located at hotel’s level 2, which somehow translate to just a floor above the top floor of Empire Mall.
I like the whole set up, with a glass walls by two sides overseeing the ever busy Federal Highway and tastefully done interior decoration.
ulam, cold seafood, fruits, salad, salted duck egg
The Seenak Citarasa Malaysia buffet dinner is priced at RM 108++ for adults, RM 88++ for children and senior citizens. The buffet is available from 28th June to 29th July, 2014.
Interestingly, diners will also standa a chance to win a Hermes watch worth about RM 12k by taking part in a contest during this ramadan period.
traditional main dishes from different states in Malaysia
The buffet spread at Empire Hotel celebrates each of the 13 states in Malaysia and features more than 60 different main dishes in addition to starters such as ulam, prawns, mussels, salted duck egg, clams, salads, and even cendol and rojak.
There’s also a Ghazal band performing nightly, in line with the whole local theme.
cucur udang, ikan bakar, nangka, and of course – roast lamb
To make things simple, here are the list of 13 traditional flavors from the different states:
- sup gear box (beef shank broth with spices) – Utara Kedah
- briyani ayam dengan kismis (braised chicken with golden raisin – Johor
- daging masak lemak dengan nangka muda (beef cooked in turmeric gravey with young jackfruit) – Negeri Sembilan
- terong goreng berlada dengan ikan bilis (fried eggplant with chilli and anchovies) – Selangor
- ikan masak asam pedas bunga kantan (braised fish in tamarind gravy with ginger flower) – Melaka
- gulai kawah Terengganu dengan kantang (beef curry with potato) – Terengganu
- ikan patin masak lemak tempoyak (fish cooked with spicy durian gravy) – Pahang
- ayam bakar berempah (roasted chicken with Malay spices) – Kelantan
- briyani kambing (mutton cooked in local spices) – Pulau Pinang
- hivana roe fish – Sabah
- braised chicken in bamboo – Sarawak
- bubur gandum – Perlis
- rendang tok – Perak
Pinky and I absolutely loved the sup gearbox, check out how huge it is
Of the various offerings, I particularly enjoy the sup gear box the most. The serving was huge, with the bone neatly saw off at one end and a straw provided so that you can suck out the marrow, absolutely fantastic!
The roast lamb here, as with the other buffet spread I tried so far, did not disappoint. I also really enjoyed the fish gravey with bunga kantan and of course, ulam with intoxicating sambal.
selection of western desserts and traditional kuih, including tapai
As for desserts, there’s a rather wide selection of local kuih as well as a selection of Western desserts. I picked tapai ubi and was obviously not disappointed. For those who fancy the traditional sweet drinks popular during Ramadan, there’s more than half a dozen colorful cold drinks to choose from, as well as teh tarik, of course.
Kitchen Art Brasserie, Level 2,
Empire Hotel, Jalan SS16/1,
Subang Jaya, Selangor Darul Ehsan
GPS: 3.082109, 101.582716
Tel: 03-5565 1228
For the forth article of the buka puasa buffet 2014 series, lets go to Jalan Yap Kwan Seng for a positively meaty Ramadan buffet at Las Vacas meat shop.
For those who aren’t familiar with Las Vacas, they have several branches in Klang Valley, including one at Kelana Jaya and another at Mont Kiara that even serves breakfast.
Las Vacas Meat Shop at Jalan Yap Kwan Seng
The branch at Jalan Yap Kwan Seng is Las Vacas’ latest and biggest, so naturally it is most suited as a location to offer their buffet dinner for this fasting month. Parking is plenty and free, while the location is quite suitable for those who work in the city and decide to buka puasa before heading home.
The buffet is priced at RM100++ for adults and RM50++ for children aged 12 years and under, and served from 6.30pm – 10.00pm, 8th July 2014 to 27th July 2014.
canapes, salad, kuih, salad, and drinks
If you compared to the offerings from hotels, the buffet spread here isn’t particularly impressive in terms of size, tho there are certainly enough variety to provide a more than balanced meal. However, you don’t come to Las Vacas to have 300 different dishes, you come here because of the meat.
Anyway, starting with appetizers and desserts, there a selection of canapes and salads, including smoked beef with mustadard, tuna mayo egg, teriyaki, black olive tapenade, chicken with creamy pesto, smoked turkey salad with balsamic, salad with beef strips, girlled begetables and red cabbage slaws and so forth.
There are also some traditional kuih as well.
nasi hujan panas, ayam masak merah, spaghetti with mushroom,
tempura, sayur campur masak lemak putih
For main, you can find classics such as nasi hujan panas (the version here was very good!), nasi minyak, nasi tomato, beef rendang, ayam masak merah, ikan bakar, ayam pedas, and more.
Australian steaks, New Zealand lamb, burger patties, and sausages
Then, we get to the real reason why you would come to Las Vacas for buka puasa – the all-you-can-eat Australian steaks and New Zealand lamb! There’s also burger patties and sausages too if you prefer a little bit of variety.
be sure to ask for how well you want the meat to be done
For someone who likes my steak medium rare, I find the preparation served here slightly too cooked, perhaps it is to cater for the general public. Luckily, you can always tell the chefs to prepare the beef at your preferred “doneness” and they’ll be more than happy to comply.
Las Vacas also stock some pretty delicious French and whole grain mustard that goes very well with the meat.
Haze, Suan, Horng, & KY at Las Vacas Jalan Yap Kwan Seng
On Friday and Saturda, there will also be traditional Malay performances to compliment your meal. As with many other places, imported dates from Middle East is available to provide a “proper” way to break fast. The restaurant also have an in-house surau for your convenience.
All other ala-carte menu item will still be available for order as usual during this period.
Las Vacas Meat Shop
No. 33, Lot 5, Ground Floor,
Jalan Yap Kwan Seng,
50450 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.162898, 101.714842
Tel: 03-2181 5586