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Category / PJ area

Steamboat places are aplenty all over Klang Valley, so when it comes to picking one out for dinner during rainy days, it can be a little challenging. The rule of thumb for most people is that the place must be busy, for me, I usually rely on recommendations from friends instead, which was how I got to Dian Huo Xin Wo Steamboat at Kelana Jaya a couple weeks ago.

dian huo xin wo steamboat, Kelana Jaya
dian huo xin wo steamboat, Kelana Jaya

This steamboat restaurant is a little bit different from others when it comes to the interior decoration. At first glance, the place looks like a hipster cafe with old typewriter, TV, charcoal iron, and all those sort of memorabilias from yesteryears. Look closer, and you’ll find the built in stove in every table.

decent selection with good choice of soup base
decent selection with good choice of soup base

Instead of electric stove or steamboat pot utilized at some places such as Bone & Pot, Dian Huo Xin Wo opts for the traditional gas stove, which I prefer as it is a lot more responsive. Their solution is by placing a gas tank right under each table, I’m not entirely sure if this is the safest manner, but it works pretty well.

For a smallish shop, the menu is pretty comprehensive. There’s more than enough different fish balls (even one with quail eggs inside), meatballs, sliced meat, innards, vegetables, and starters (try the salmon skin) to go around. The “balls” are self-made and pretty good in size, which we enjoyed.

there's even black chicken in the soup
there’s even black chicken in the soup

You’re allowed to choose up to two different soup base for a single pot. We tried the herbal black chicken soup and their signature soup, both broth were plenty flavorful in itself, and of course, refillable whenever running low. There’s also tomyam soup if you fancy something spicy, though I usually prefer sticking with traditional soup base for steamboat.

Condiments in this place doesn’t impress much, there’s 3 different types of chili paste, and you can ask for chili padi, but that’s about it, no fancy fermented beancurd or fried shallot oil, but they are, I guess, sufficient.

The meal came to be about RM 40+ per person, which is in line with most quality air conditioned steamboat meals.

map to dian huo xin wo steamboat, kelana jaya

 

Address:
Dian Huo Xin Wo Steamboat
19, Jalan SS4D/2,
47301 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
GPS3.113118, 101.599657
Tel: 03-7887 4557 / 012-296 3886
Hours: 5pm to 11pm daily

Last night we found ourselves at Subang Empire Mall looking for a place for dinner, partly thanks to the rain. We walked around abit on the lower ground floor and came across Ole Ole Bali. Well, the interior looked  nice, and there’s quite a healthy crowd, on top of that, a 10% discount for Public Bank credit/debit card, so we stepped in.

Ole Ole Bali at Subang Empire
Ole Ole Bali at Subang Empire

Now I’ve walked past Ole Ole Bali plenty of times, and for some reasons, the (wrong) preconception that “Balinese food with no babi guling can’t be any good” always prevented me to give it a try. Well, I’m glad we finally did.

As it turned out, this is the same chain that ran Bumbu Bali, a restaurant in Puchong that was featured in this blog 10 years ago. I remembered that they offered pretty good food, but haven’t been back many times since thanks to Puchong being one of the least accessible places on the planet if you aren’t a fan of getting stuck in traffic.

nasi campur, with beef, prawns, squid, fish, and more
nasi campur, with beef, prawns, squid, fish, and more

Well, anyway, the restaurant is certainly better than the one I went to 10 years ago. Decoration, comfort, and choices in menu are all superior.

I ordered the nasi campur while Haze had sup buntut.

The nasi campur (RM37) came with grilled lemongrass prawns, squid, fish, beef (you can also have chicken), and sate lilit. Then there’s lawar kacang (beans salad), rempeyek (anchovy crackers), sambel terasi & sambel matah (from raw lemongrass & shallots). It was certainly a huge offering and amazingly everything tasted rather awesome. The seafood grilled to perfection, and they also manage to have the beef soft & succulent. I really liked it. Sambel matah is a revelation and I think we’re going to try to make some at home.

avocado juice & sup buntut
avocado juice & sup buntut

The sop buntut (RM 17) is the authentic Indonesian style oxtail soup that comes with rice cakes (similar to ketupat) and vegetables, It was very flavorful too.

I had the avocado juice to complete my meal and was thoroughly satisfied.

Ole Ole Bali also serves steak, lamb chop, pasta, sandwich and burger in addition to traditional Balinese fair, will surely check them out more in the future.

Empire Mall map

Address:
Ole Ole Bali
LG  27, Empire Shopping Gallery
47500 Subang Jaya
GPS: 3.082109, 101.582716
URL: balibistro.com
Tel: 03-5022 2629

We don’t always go to Kota Damansara thanks mostly to the fact that traffic is quite horrendous due to the on-going MRT construction, but when WeiZhi & Lex asked that we join them for a steamboat lunch review at Gourmet Definition Steamboat, we immediately agreed.

Gourmet Definition Steamboat at Sunway Giza, Kota Damansara
Gourmet Definition Steamboat at Sunway Giza, Kota Damansara

The reason is two fold – the two fellas behind KBCG are good friends, and secondly, the photos from what I can find about Gourmet Definition Steamboat looked mighty promising.

we tried both the spicy and signature golden soup
we tried both the spicy and signature golden soup

Located at the main strip of Sunway Giza, Gourmet Definition has quite a “fresh” and new look to it that’s unlike any other steamboat places in town. The restaurant manager and part owner explained to us that great expense and thought was put into the planning and renovation stage of the restaurant, to ensure a comfortable dining experience, and most of all, top notch cleanliness standard.

I felt that they definitely achieved these goals with white marble tables, good air conditioning, and above all, prompt service (they even change your plates from time to time).

the deluxe set menu A for 4 pax at Gourmet Definition
the deluxe set menu A for 4 pax at Gourmet Definition

We were served the Deluxe Set Menu A for the four of us (RM 238 promo, usual RM 328), and it came with the following items:

  • signature golden soup or heat reducing preserved egg & parsley soup
  • King’s water prawn (4 pcs)
  • sliced pork
  • handmade three treasure meatballs (fish, pork, octopus, 4 pcs each)
  • tiger prawns (4 pcs)
  • sliced grouper (8 pcs)
  • Hokkaido scallop (4 pcs)
  • green mussels (4 pcs)
  • deep fried fish maw
  • golden crispy beancurd skin
  • stuffed beancurd puff & brinjal
  • signature chicken wings (4 pcs)
  • high-fiber organic green platter
  • Japanese udon, vermicelli, fresh eggs
  • free signature Ling-zhi premium drinks (1 jug)

plum juice, iberico pork slices, signature chicken wings, beancurd, brinjal, fishball
plum juice, iberico pork slices, signature chicken wings, beancurd, brinjal, fishball

There are only two items we tried here that’s not in the set menu – the HUGE imported fresh oyster, and the extra flavor of soup (the spicy one). Everything else is as listed above.

the fresh oyster was absolutely delicious, and huge!
the fresh oyster was absolutely delicious, and huge!

But enough with the listing of ingredients, the important question is, are they any good?

The answer is a resounding yes. Fresh ingredients with pork bone infused herbal soup base, it is actually not easy to go wrong here.

My favorites were the iberico pork slices, those red roe in the river prawn’s head, the homemade fish balls, and also most definitely those huge oysters. Those chicken wings too were pretty spot on as well.

Haze, Weizhi, Lex, & KY
Haze, Weizhi, Lex, & KY

Prices at Gourmet Definition is on the higher side, but the ingredients, service, and dining experience more than equal what you’ll see on the bill. If you’re up for some top notch steamboat, this place should be on your radar screen.

map to Sunway Giza, Kota Damansara

Address:
Gourmet Definition Steamboat
Unit A-13A & 15, Sunway Giza,
No. 2, Jalan PJU 5/14, PJU 5,
Kota Damansara, 47810 Selangor
GPS: 3.150799, 101.581231
Tel03-6151 8638
Hours: Lunch & Dinner daily

Not too many days ago I found myself at Seapark looking to go for some chicken rice at Hoe Fong, and sure enough it wasn’t open, so we headed for 2nd option – Tong Fong kopitiam at around the corner just behind KFC.

"James Bond" char kuih teow at Restaurant Tong Fong, Seapark
“James Bond” char kuih teow at Restaurant Tong Fong, Seapark

The kopitiam serves pretty good curry mee and beef noodle, but the bright yellow banner that says “James Bond Fried Kuey Teow” caught my attention. Another peek revealed that this self-proclaimed James Bond is at about Sean Connery’s age, so I ordered a plate for myself using my trusted Penang Hokkien, which he understood – litmus test passed!

decent prawn, big cockles, good "wok hei", not a bad plate of char kuih teow
decent prawn, big cockles, good “wok hei”, not a bad plate of char kuih teow

The ensuing plate of char kuih teow turned out to be more than decent. Good size prawn, juicy cockles, and kuih teow fried with some decent fire, it was pretty good. I only wished there’s a duck egg option and that maybe I should have ordered it a bit more spicy. But it did satisfy my cravings and more than made my stomach happy.

map to restaurant Tong Fong, Seapark

Address:
Tong Fong restaurant
Jalan 21/17,
Seapark,
46300 Petaling Jaya, Selangor

GPS3.110142, 101.621673
Hoursbreakfast and lunch

A couple weeks ago we were invited to sample Chef Sam Lu’s menu at Saujana Hotel’s Ti Chen Chinese restaurant. Chef Sam Lu is the new man in charge of the kitchen at Ti Chen, and one with multiple awards under his belt.

Saujana's Ti Chen Chinese Restaurant with Chef Sam Lu (right)
Saujana’s Ti Chen Chinese Restaurant with Chef Sam Lu (right)

Chef Sam learnt the fundamentals of Chinese cuisine by attending the Chinese Cooking Course under China Hakka Famous Chefs and was also trained at the China Development Center of Molecular Gastronomy. In this menu, the play between molecular gastronomy and traditional Chinese cuisine is very apparent, and we were lucky enough to be one of the few who got to try his creation at Saujana.

For this media review, we were served the following 7 course menu.

deep fried scallops with banana & taro paste
deep fried scallops with banana & taro paste
roasted chicken roll with Korean BBQ sauce

The dinner got underway with a pair of appetizers.

Deep fried scallop with banana and taro paste was a bit like an East-meet-West dimsim & dessert marriage. Banana gave the dish a soft and sweet texture, while the scallop contributed to the taste of seafood, pretty interesting.

Roasted chicken roll with Korean BBQ sauce had a bit more of a traditional palate with a hint of Korean flavor, I find myself enjoying it quite a bit. The carefully roasted garlic was just an icing on the cake.

double boiled village chicken with fish maw soup
double boiled village chicken with fish maw soup

The double boiled village chicken with fish maw soup was the one dish that actually enticed Haze and I to go to this review session. We were spending a lot of time with house renovation and thought a bowl of good soup would do us well, we were not wrong.

According to the good chef, the soup took no shorter than 6 hours to prepare. The fish maw was soft and tender, and the soup positively rejuvenating.

steamed cod fish with chinese herbs
steamed cod fish with Chinese herbs

My favorite dish came next – the steamed cod fish with Chinese herbs. The filet was absolutely fantastic, it was tender, juicy, and just lightly seasoned. I like the presence of wolf berry in the broth, and that foam from the influence of molecular gastronomy.

butter garlic fried-rice with crab meat, roast duck
butter garlic fried-rice with crab meat, roast duck

As with any proper Chinese course dinner, there’s always a dish with carbo, and our version came in the form of butter garlic fried-rice with crab meat. Instead of the traditional dryer and more fluffy type of fried rice, this version takes the cue from Italian risotto and prepared a little wetter. To be honest, I prefer the Chinese fried rice of old, not that this one is bad, it was just.. unfamiliar.

We were also given a plate of roast duck, which was prepared differently from the traditional method. It was tender, juicy, and goes very well with any sort of rice, or just on its own.

Sam's coffee pudding, bake homemade almond cream bun, KY & Haze
Sam’s coffee pudding, bake homemade almond cream bun, KY & Haze

Desserts came in the form of Sam’s coffee pudding and bake homemade almond cream bun. I personally liked the almond cream bun, but almond is a bit of an acquired taste so I think it didn’t find too many fans among the reviewers around the table. The coffee pudding had a better reception for sure, with it’s cute presentation and subtle coffee taste to a sweet ending.

Ti Chen is open from Tuesday to Fridays for lunch (12-2:30pm), dinner (6-10pm) and on Saturdays & Sundays for lunch (9-2:30pm) and dinner (6-10pm).

map to Saujana Kuala Lumpur

Address:
Ti Chen
Saujana Golf & Country Club,
Jalan Lapangan Terbang SAAS,

40150 Selangor
GPS3.106865, 101.575285
Tel03-7846 1466
emailinfo@thesaujana.com