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Category / Foreign Food

When it comes to places to wind down and have a glass of alcoholic beverages or two, we are certainly spoiled for choices in Klang Valley. However, if you are looking for a comfortable spot with a good selection of wine and proper food, suddenly there aren’t many choices anymore. For those around Kuchai Lama area, however, there’s C Chateau Cafe and Wine Bar.

C Chateau wine bar at Kuchai Lama
C Chateau wine bar at Kuchai Lama

C Chateau Wine Bar is situated at the row of shops facing Dynasty Garden Condominium at Kuchai Entrepreneurs Park, with usually a better parking situation compared to the rest of the commercial area.

selection of wine at C Chateau wine bar
selection of wine at C Chateau wine bar

Inside, the restaurant is tastefully decorated and carries a good selection of wine both from old and new worlds at a reasonable price point. Additionally, there is also an in-house bartender who shakes up your favorite cocktails for those who prefer your drink to be a little fancier. This is however, not a yumseng beer place.

On Saturdays, there will also be a live band singing at a small stage set up by the side of the restaurant, giving the place that extra soothing ambiance.

v
white, red wine, butterfly cocktail, gin & tonic

For our visit, we tried a glass of their red & white wine as well as a butterfly cocktail and a classic gin & tonic, both concocted up by the friendly bartender, a friend whom I’ve known since before the turn of the millennium via this little old computer program called IRC that some of you old farts might remember.

Interestingly though we only manage to meet up in real life earlier this year, and yes I can vouch for her cocktail making skills.

iberico short ribs, baked protobello mushroom
iberico short ribs, baked portobello mushroom

While drinks and mood are pretty good at C Chateau, what about food?

Well, for that they have a relatively small but sufficient menu created by a young chef who has a pretty creative touch in his dishes.

We sampled four different dishes for the two of us, starting with the Fantastic Iberian, slow Iberico short ribs with special spices rub, and burnt lime. The dish was well cooked with meat easily peeled off the bone, while just  a tad salty and strongly seasoned if you eat it as it, it was perfect to go with wine for sure.

New Zealand lamb rack, Vietnamese spring roll tempura
New Zealand lamb rack, Vietnamese spring roll tempura

Another meat dish we had was Rack and Ruin – or pan seared New Zealand lamb rack served with infused Chinese wine risotto. I thought the risotto was rather interesting, utilizing Chinese wine to add a different dimension to the rice that was prepared al-dente style. It was quite a unique taste that I find myself gravitates towards.

Our favorite though was the Vietnamese Spring Roll Tempura, a mix of sweet corn with spring roll ingredients and a prawn tempura wrapped in Vietnamese spring roll sheet resulted in an explosion of freshness and crunchy delight. You should absolutely try this.

our dinner with dessert of homemade cheese cake
wine, dinner, and dessert of homemade cheese cake

Last but not least, Bello Mello, or baked portobello with tomato salsa and pickled onion, should satisfy anyone who loves mushroom.

While they don’t exactly have a proper dessert menu, the homemade cheesecake we had at C Chateau was quite delightful.

Overall this is certainly a competent restaurant and a wine bar with pretty good ambiance worthy of checking out, especially for those who wants to have a relaxing evening enjoying some tasteful alcohol without hearing the constant “YUM SENG” from your neighboring tables.

map to C Chateau cafe and wine bar

Address:
C Chateau Wine Bar
No 14, Jalan Kuchai Maju 9,
Kuchai Lama, 
Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.089199, 101.686731
Tel: 012-929 0108
Hours: 11am to 2am

RA number of weeks ago I asked a friend who stayed at Taman Desa what is her favorite restaurants at the area, and Apple Samgyupsal was what she told me. I had meant to give it a visit but for one reason or the other did not manage to make it.

Fast forward a few weeks later, I got an invitation to do a review on their latest branch – Apple Samgyupsal at Jaya One, perfect.

Apple Samgyupsal Korean Restaurant at Jaya One
Apple Samgyupsal Korean Restaurant at Jaya One

Located between Jaya One opposite the main entrance of The School, this is actually the biggest outlet of Apple Samgyupsal. Seating arrangement is semi-alfresco and in my opinion, perfectly suited for Korean BBQ restaurant.

The formula at Apple Samgyupsal is quite simple – you choose a set from the menu (available below), and it’ll come with unlimited side dishes and ramyeon (Korean instant noodle, for Apple Sharing Set & Apple King Set).

first, some side dishes
first, some side dishes and kimchi

The set starts with Apple Platter (RM 88) that comes with 120g Apple Samgyupsal (pork belly), 120g Apple Moksal (pork neck), Apple Hanjungsal (pork jowl). The meat is accompanied by apple wraps, tteok (rice cake), home made sauce, and apple salad.

There’s also BBQ Sharing Set (RM 168) for 3-4 pax and Apple Jumbo Set (RM 378) that’s good for 8 pax.

the various type of meat served, including my favorites - pork ribs
the various type of meat served, including my favorites – pork ribs

For the visit, we got to sample the Apple King Set which includes the best of everything, as our host explained. Other than the three cuts of meat mentioned above (Samgyupsal, Moksal, and Hanjungsal), there’s also the homemade sausage as well as Wang Galbi (King Ribs).

As the name suggests, the meat is marinated with apple sauce, then smoked and pre-baked before going on to the grill on the table at the restaurant. I was explained that this helps seal in the flavor and juice to ensure that the meat does not get too dry from the BBQ process.

apple marinated pork served with apple slices or vege
apple marinated pork served with apple slices or vege

The BBQ is tended by the server who carefully ensure that they’re cooked perfectly and cut into serving size where you can then eat it with traditional lettuce or more interestingly, apple wraps.

The taste is rather unique and I thought sweetness from fresh apple does add an extra dimension to the experience.

Of all the cuts, my favorite has got to be their signature Apple Samgyupsal and Wang Galbi. Gotta love those fat layer and ribs.

joomuk bap and ramyeon
joomuk bap and ramyeon

For carbs, we also tried their joomuk bap (RM 25), a rice ball dish that is loaded with plenty of seaweed. Something that I thought would make for very good on-the-go breakfast.

The unlimited ramyeon is also cooked on the spot with a little pot and stove so you can have it just the way you like them to be. They’re also not overly spicy, fortunately.

makgeolli with apple juice
makgeolli with apple juice

As for drink, other than tea, we also had a go at the makgeolli (RM 28) that’s blended with extra fresh apple juice. It was quite sweet with the infusion of apple juice, and I thought tasted a little bit like a good cocktail that’s not overly alcoholic. It was just perfect for the afternoon.

Overall it was a great experience and definitely a restaurant that I would visit again.

Apple Samgyupsal Menu 1 Apple Samgyupsal Menu 2 Apple Samgyupsal Menu 3

Apple Samgyupsal Menu 4 Apple Samgyupsal Menu 5 Apple Samgyupsal Menu 6

map to Jaya One

Address:
Apple Samgyupsal
G08, 09 & 10
Jaya One,
No. 72A, Jalan Universiti,
Petaling Jaya
GPS3.117537, 101.635680
Tel: 03-7931 3233

Other Outlets:

Taman Desa
Address: 22, Jalan 1/109e, Taman Desa Business Park, 58100 Kuala Lumpur
Tel 03-7972 8911

Puchong
Address: 2, Jalan Puteri 2/6, Bandar Puteri, 47100 Puchong, Selangor
Tel: 03-8052 6768

On the 15th of December, I was invited to a tea appreciation day hosted by Dilmah Tea at Sheraton PJ, and little did I know that the date coincide with International Tea Day, a day that has been celebrated since 2005 in tea producing countries.

Dilmah Tea Appreciation at Sheraton PJ
Dilmah Tea Appreciation at Sheraton PJ

For the Tea Appreciation session, Dilmah brought in Sensory Evaluation consultant and Oenologist Edwin Soon to share with us the origin of tea and the science of flavors behind it.

Oenologist Edwin Soon explaining the history of tea
Oenologist Edwin Soon explaining the history of tea

To be perfectly honest, I did not know that the different types of tea – Black, Green, Oolong, and White tea were all made from the same Camellia sinensis plant. The difference is in how the tea leaves are cured.

Basically they are as follow:

  • White: wilted and unoxidized;
  • Green: unwilted and unoxidized;
  • Oolong: wilted, bruised, and partially oxidized;
  • Black: wilted, sometimes crushed, and fully oxidized

Dilmah Tea and food pairing
Dilmah Tea and food pairing

Well, there are indeed other plants that we make tea from, but those will be in the category of herbal tea or flower tea, proper tea all from the same species of plant.

Additionally, tea plants at different elevation and climate will also produce leave that different flavors, with many high quality tea plants being cultivated up to 1,500 m above sea level.

who doesn't love a proper Hi Tea?
who doesn’t love a proper Hi Tea?

For the afternoon tea pairing session, we started off with lamb curry puffs paired with Dilmah The Original Earl Grey, most quintessential British tea in contrast to the local, slightly spicy flavor.

Then it was salmon maki roll with Green Tea Jasmine Flower, a fitting companion many of us are familiar with. We then also had a Hi-tea set with Ratatouille turnovers, spinach and cheese quiche, and smoked salmon canapes.

Miss World Malaysia Thanuja Ananthan was sharing the same table
Miss World Malaysia Thanuja Ananthan was sharing the same table

For sweets, we had pandan sweet pancakes with corn custard, together with Pure Chamomile Flowers, a tea that does not have any caffeine and perfect for late night. We then finished off with chocolate brownie paired with Moroccan Mint Green Tea.

Overall, it was a lovely afternoon well spent, and we (with Sharon & Wilson) got to share the same table as former Miss World Malaysia Thanuja Ananthan (did not find out who she was until more than half way through), lovely person with energetic personality!

This was also the second time I attended a Dilmah event, first being way back in 2013!

I think it’s safe to say that Japanese food is one of my favorite cuisine when it comes to heading out to a proper restaurant. In fact, this is the 100th entry on Japanese cuisine on this space – and for this occasion we head to Bangsar and look at Hana Tei Japanese Restaurant.

Hana Tei, Lucky Garden Bangsar
Hana Tei, Lucky Garden Bangsar

If you’re from Kajang and Cheras area, you may have heard of Hana Tei before. This Bangsar branch is their latest venture into KL city.

Personally, I thought Lucky Garden (the same row with 3 famous kopitiam) is a pretty good location to be at. It is in Bangsar, and parking situation at the area is usually pretty good during dinner time, though lunch can be a bit challenging.

The menu for Hana Tei is actually quite extensive, covering the usual suspects such as sushi, sashimi, to teppanyaki, teriyaki, nabemoto, tempura, as well as rice and noodle dishes. Well, on our review session, we got to sample quite a few of these dishes.

shake sashimi (thick cut salmon)
shake sashimi (thick cut salmon)

We started the night with shake sashimi (RM 35), or thick cut salmon. You get 5 pieces of fresh raw salmon at I think at least 1 cm thick. It was glorious. I also do like the fact that they use proper grated wasabi to go with the salmon here. It was definitely a treat.

tori camembert, gindara foilyaki
camembert cheese yaki, gindara foilyaki

Next up was something rather unique – Camembert Cheese Yaki (RM 15). Grilled Camembert cheese with baguette with a side of jam. I thought it was rather interesting and most likely will go very well with some sake.

Then there’s Gindara Foilyaki (RM 48), cod fish with mushroom wrapped in aluminium foil and cooked with a miso soup base. It’s not entirely unlike Chinese style steamed cod except with a Japanese touch & flavor. I thought it was executed quite well.

hana tei beef sushi
hana tei beef sushi

If you’re a sushi person, well, here’s some treats for you, starting with Hana Tei Beef Sushi (RM 25). Instead of raw fish like usual, you get Australian striploin with salmon roe and ebiko, all wrapping those sushi rice.

The combination works surprisingly well to be honest, I love the contrasting taste between the savory beef and the freshness and slightly salty nature of ikura.

foie gras sushi, hotate maki spicy sauce
foie gras sushi, hotate maki spicy sauce

Then there’s also the one of a kind Foie Gras sushi (RM 28). This is probably one of the cheaper ways to experience foie gras, and foie gras never disappoint. I can have 5 of these for breakfast if I get my way! I shouldn’t, but I want to!

If you’re a fan of scallop and spicy food, you can find that strange combination in Hotate Maki Spicy Sauce (RM 35). The roll comes with quite a big chunk of scallop in each of them and covered with this hot sauce that really gives the dish a kick. You definitely don’t need any wasabi for this.

wagyu teriyaki, hamaguri kimchi, seafood teppanyaki
wagyu teriyaki, hamaguri kimchi, seafood teppanyaki

Additionally, we also tried the Wagyu Teriyaki (RM 72), and while these are not the highest grade Wagyu beef, they do offer a pretty good value and tastes plenty good to me.

I would only recommend Hamaguri Kimchi (RM 22), or clam with kimchi sauce only if you need something spicy, I thought the kimchi base was OK but doesn’t really carry the aroma that I look for.

Seafood Teppanyaki (RM 38) though, is a dish that was well executed, give me a bowl of Japanese rice with this and I’m all good for dinner.

Overall I thought Hana Tei fills the gap at Bangsar area offering family friendly Japanese fair.

map to Hana Tei Japanese Restaurant, Bangsar

Address:
Hana Tei Japanese Restaurant
No.8, Lorong Ara Kiri 2,
Bangsar, 59100 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.127546, 101.669614
Tel03-2202 1608
Web: hanatei.com.my

Isetan the Japan Store @ Lot 10 is turning 2.

How time has passed, it didn’t seem that long ago that the iconic departmental store reopened in the heart of Bukit Bintang with a focus on premium Japanese products.

To make this occasion more special, the exclusive Japan Local Speciality Fair is held in conjunction of the 2nd anniversary celebration from Oct 26 to Nov 4, 2018 from 11 am-9 pm.

There’s also the Lucky Dip activity happening this period, with 1000 Fabulous Prizes to be won with minimum spend of RM 100 at Japan Local Speciality Fair.

Japan Local Speciality Fair - Oct 26 to Nov 4, 2018
Japan Local Speciality Fair – Oct 26 to Nov 4, 2018

Over this period, The Market, Lower Ground Floor, Isetan the Japan Store @ Lot 10 is transformed to a bustling market with 20 of the best Japanese food products and 7 sake brewers from 16 prefectures and a city directly from Japan to KL.

organic miso paste, dried pickled radish, hariharizuke (pickleed daikon)
organic miso paste, dried pickled radish, pickled daikon, konnyaku jelly

Head down to the lower ground floor and start with some eat-in menu and you’ll find the Aichi Speciality with Seafood Kishimen Noodle, served with shrimp, squid, and sugiyo (imitation crab meat made from cod fish), or try the Royal Caribbean with Crabmeat at RM 3 a piece. I did sample both as my “appetizer” for the night.

Aomori apple, with apple soup, apple jelly, ringo otome
Aomori apple, with apple soup, apple jelly, ringo otome

As the saying goes, an apple a day keeps the doctor away, and what’s better than fulfilling that quote with some Aomori apple flown directly from the prefecture that is famous for this particular fruit?

You’ll find different types of Aomori apple such as Hirosaki Toki & Horisaki Fuji at RM 17 a piece, or try the rather unique apple soup or apple jelee. There’s also ringo otome, or thin-baked cookie made with apples mixed in with flour and eggs, sort of an exquisite “kuih kapit” type of product. I love it.

black garlic from Aomori, Shizuouka Hon Wasabi, ramen
black garlic from Aomori, Shizuouka Hon Wasabi, ramen

One of the other product that piqued my interest was the black garlic. Via the chemical reaction called “Maillard chemistry” between sugar and amino acid from the white garlic during the maturing process, the garlic became black and obtain its special unique taste. It is believed to have good antioxidant properties.

Jabara water, yuzu, ramen, grilled/smoked oyster
Jabara water, yuzu, ramen, grilled/smoked oyster

Then there’s also yuzu and jabara water for those who love the taste of these Japanese citrus, and if you like ready-to-eat oysters, they have these rather yummy grilled and smoked oysters in packets too, perfect with some sake or beer if you ask me.

green tea - matcha latte, houjicha latte, matcha kyo mukashi, iced macha
green tea – matcha latte, houjicha latte, matcha kyo mukashi, iced macha

No Japanese food fair is complete without proper green tea. Here the master serves up authentic version of matcha latte, houjicha latte, matcha kyo mukashi, iced macha using quality tea powder at RM 14 per glass. You can also purchase the green tea powder that won the 2015 Nihon Cha Award.

organic mirin, and a big selection of sake
organic mirin, and a big selection of sake

Then of course, there’s sake.

There are a total of 7 sake brands represented at the Japan local Speciality Fair

  • Gassan Sake Brewery, Yamagata Prefecture
  • Shibata Brewery, Aichi Prefecture
  • Matunami Shuzo, Ishikawa Prefecture
  • Umetsu Shuzo, Tottori Prefecture
  • Nikki, Fukushima Prefecture
  • Chigonoiwa Sake Brewery, Gifu Prefecture
  • Sumiya Bunjiro Brewery, Aichii Prefecture

more selection of sake, cold or hot sake for you?
more selection of sake, cold or hot sake for you?

Whatever your preference, be it sparkling sake, sake that’s specifically brewed to be drank warm, or cold, or even mirin,  you’ll find one that suits your taste here. The representatives from the brands are here to explain to you what their sake is all about as well.

various food at 4F Tthe Table with Japan Local Speciality
various food at 4F The Table with Japan Local Speciality

Instead of buying the products to be enjoyed at home, you can also head up to 4th Floor The Table Restaurants to enjoy some of these products during this period.

We sampled the pork fillet with plum at Tonkatsu Anzu, avocado wasabi with Camembert cheese, sweet potato fries, grilled tai fish and octopus, and my favorite of the night – tai fish ochazuke. These are as fine quality as they come and priced pretty pretty reasonably as well. Of course, fittingly I washed it down with a glass of yuzu cocktail.

If you’re a fan of Japanese goodness, don’t miss out the Japan Local Speciality Fair at Isetan The Japan Store, KL

For more info head their FB page.

#isetanthejapanstore #japanlocalspecialityfair