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Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Tag / chocolate

Thanks to the good people at ROYCE, I got my hands on a few limited edition chocolates slated for their upcoming ROYCE Maccha Fair (available from 1st August, 2013 for limited time) a short while ago. Since Lance invited us for his almost-birthday BBQ party at Genting last week, I took the opportunity to bring those chocolates some 1000 meters above sea level for sharing.

ROYCE Maccha Fair chocolates and the bunch at Genting
ROYCE Maccha Fair chocolates and the bunch at Genting

I’ve previously wrote an entry on ROYCE chocolate and was impressed with the quality of this chocolate maker from Hokkaido, therefore I was quite keen to sample this latest offering.

While many choose to buy chocolates in duty free shops, ROYCE is one of the very few brands that have their outlets in various malls around Klang Valley (check location here), offering a wide range of chocolate products.

To me, the only downside is that they don’t serve coffee on location since these two goes so well together.

ROYCE Maccha Almond chocolate, Kerol as the model
ROYCE Maccha Almond chocolate, Kerol as the model

Anyway, lets talk about these Maccha Fair chocolates.

The Maccha Almond chocolate is pretty self explanatory. Roasted almond coated with green tea flavoured chocolate on the outside. There is something about nuts that always goes well with chocolates, and I think this goes extremely well with beer too.

Lance & Haze with ROYCE's Prafeuille Chocolat
Lance & Haze with ROYCE’s Prafeuille Chocolat

ROYCE’s Prafeuille Chocolat made by having fragrant green tea sauce sandwiched between light-textured chocolate and mixed with powdered green tea leaves. A box of this contains 30 pieces of chocolates, all individually wrapped.

The taste of green tea is very strong and suppresses the aroma of chocolate somewhat. Whisky did not go well with this, but I believe coffee would be lovely. Kinda reminds me of those minty chocolates you get for Christmas, except this one tastes a whole lot better. Perfect for those who loves green tea, but if you just want the taste of chocolates, this might not suit.

Michael enjoying some ROYCE Nama chocolate - Machha
Michael enjoying some ROYCE Nama chocolate – Machha

Then there’s the Nama chocolate, ROYCE’s most famed product. This is one of the smoothest and tastiest chocolate you can get. Laced with a hint of liquor with perfect balance between the aroma of green tea and fragrances of chocolate, this was pretty much everyone’s favorite of the night, including myself.

If calorie intake and money isn’t a problem, I want ROYCE Nama chocolate to be in my fridge at all time. So good!

You can find locations of Royce’ stores in Malaysia from http://www.e-royce.com/english/shop/shopintheworld/malaysia.html and their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ROYCEMalaysia

it was Lance's birthday BBQ celebration, did it like a rock star
it was Lance’s birthday BBQ celebration, did it like a rock star

Well, the chocolate was just desserts for this awesome BBQ party that we had. Lance made us plenty of awesome BBQ goodness, which includes lamb rack, steak, bacon, mushroom with cheese, chicken, salad, clam chowder, and more.

The birthday cake for the boy was a pavlova cake from Alexis at Bangsar, which is of course, one of the best pavlova cakes you can get (Serai serves pretty good pavlova too).

plenty of drinks, meat, and good times with friends
plenty of drinks, meat, and good times with friends

Mike’s job for the night was handling all the alcohol related drinks since Ahfa was unable to join us on to night. We had great fun as always, and as always, looking forward to the next session!

While coffee culture is slowly gaining grounds in Malaysia, tea seems to be a bit lagging behind. Many of us usually only drink tea (proper tea in which you don’t need to add sugar) while having bak kut teh and dimsum, I’m certainly guilty of this behavior.

A couple weeks ago we were invited to a Dilmah tea event at Le Meridien to learn a little more about the art of tea drinking.

Dilmah tea event at Le Meridien KL
Dilmah tea event at Le Meridien KL

As a tea company, Dilmah is relatively young, the Sri Lakan Ceylon tea company was founded in 1974 and has seen pretty rapid expansion lately to the local market, especially in premium outlets such as high end hotels and restaurants. One of which is Le Meridien KL, our host for the day.

I'd love to have me a fancy tea pot too
I’d love to have me a fancy tea pot too

The tea experts from Dilmah showed us how to brew a proper cup of tea. Never reboil the water, and only soaking the tea bags 2-3 minutes before tossing it off and start enjoying your tea. The habit of squeezing the tea bag with a spoon is also something you shouldn’t do. This is to ensure there isn’t any unwanted bitter taste to the beverage.

While temperature of 95-98 Celsius is good for most tea, green tea works best with water around 70 Celsius to allow the release of its delicate flavors. Needless to say, adding extra hot water to a tea bag that’s already used once is not something recommended here.

tea mixologist showing us how it's done
tea mixologist showing us how it’s done

For those who likes to be more funky with tea, the tea mixologist from Dilmah also showed us a few recipes in which tea is mixed with syrups to create stronger tasting (usually) cold beverages with tea flavor. To honest this would not ever be my way of enjoying premium tea, when I want syrup laden peach tea or something, I’ll have me a can of chilled St. Martin’s.

Using premium tea such as Dilmah for this purpose is a bit of a waste, it’s like wearing a tuxedo to fengtau disco outlets. I’m not saying the resulting drinks don’t taste good, I just think it is not appropriate.

tea paring with some sweet desserts, perfect combination
tea paring with some sweet desserts, perfect combination

We then moved on to have a few types of Dilmah tea paired with sweet delicious pastries and chocolates from Le Meridien. If you’re looking for a hi-tea session with fantastic cakes, macaroons, and a good cup of tea, this is a perfect place to be.

Different tea goes well with different foods though, the smoky Lapsang Souchong would go well with savory food such as bak kut teh, while lighter tea such as Earl Grey is fantastic with pastries. Just like wine/food pairing, this is an art in itself.

Haze enjoying a cup of premium tea
Haze enjoying a cup of premium tea

We tried a few types of tea over the session and I find myself really liking these tea. We have a couple tins of Dilmah tea at home from the event and I think we’d have to get some when they run out (probably in a few weeks time).

Address:
Le Meridien KL
2 Jalan Stesen Sentral,
Kuala Lumpur 50470

GPS: 3.135631,101.686476
Tel: 03-2263 7753

It’s the season to be jolly! Xmas is just right around the corner and if you have a last minute need to get a sweet gift for someone, reading this post might actually help you out.

Yep, as the title suggest, this is about Royce’s chocolate, and the fine folks at Royce’ gave me 3 boxes of chocolates to sample their goods, just perfect timing for the holidays.

Royce' can be found at TCM, Isetan KLCC, BV, Empire, Gardens, and BIG
Royce’ can be found at TCM, Isetan KLCC, BV, Empire, Gardens, and BIG

Royce’s is a Japanese chocolate maker and confectioner based in Hokkaido, the Northern island that’s most famous for super quality sashimi, crab, and other seafood. The island is also home to very good agricultural and dairy products, thus making it a perfect location for making awesome chocolates.

Coffee Beans Chocolate, Macadamia Chocoate, and Nama Chocolate
Coffee Beans Chocolate, Macadamia Chocoate, and Nama Chocolate

Their creme ala creme – Nama Chocolate, comes in a square little box that is carefully cut into 20 rectangular pieces. It’s made from Ecuadorian cacao bean and carries a prominent characteristics of daintiness and fragrance that’s akin to flowers. That’s how they described it anyway, what I thought instead was that it’s actually one of the best chocolates I’ve tried. It’s subtle, not overly sweet, not overly bitter, but done just right.

You’ll have to taste it to appreciate the craftsmanship that goes into making this fine food.

Haze and Yuki, my impromptu chocolate models
Haze and Yuki, my impromptu chocolate models

For those who likes a bit of flair, the Coffee Beans chocolate and Macadamia chocolate, among two of their pretty wide selections of product, will more than fit the bill.

The Coffee Beans chocolate started with high quality Arabica beans from Dominican Republic, and coated them with a thick layer of milk chocolate. It’s carries the aroma of coffee, and sweetness of milk chocolate, a perfect blend since I love to have chocolate with coffee anyway. This is a 2-1 combo that works well.

Macadamia is pretty much the best nut you can have, so it isn’t surprising that if you coat them with a generous layer of milk chocolate and then sprinkle with cocoa powder, you’ll end up with something super delicious – Royce’ Macadamia chocolate. The nuts carry a very subtle bitter tang to it, which works very well with the sweetness of chocolate. I like this one a lot too.

You can find locations of Royce’ stores in Malaysia from http://www.e-royce.com/english/shop/shopintheworld/malaysia.html and their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ROYCEMalaysia

Royce'

It is no doubt that many of you have heard about Godiva, the premium Belgium chocolatier, but I supposed some of you would be like me, who didn’t know about Lady Godiva at all.

The legend goes like this – Lady Godiva is a really hot Anglo-Sexon woman who rode naked through the streets of Coventry in order to change her husband’s mind of the oppressive taxation imposed by her husband on his tenants.

Hence the logo of Godiva Chocolates is an outline of the naked Lady Godiva on her horse, covered only with her lush long hair.

the very first Godiva cafe, at Pavilion KL
the very first Godiva cafe, at Pavilion KL

Incidentally, the term Peeping Tom also came about from the same story. Everyone in the streets of Conventry had closed their doors and not look at Lady Godiva out of respect, but this perverted Tom dude did not. Hence peeping Tom.

Learn something new everyday huh?

super yummy Godiva chocolate cake
super yummy Godiva chocolate cake – Sight, Smell, Taste

A couple weeks ago I had the luxury of a food tasting session at the world’s very first Godiva cafe at Pavilion KL thanks to Winnie.

To be honest, I haven’t had Godiva more than a few times, and my very first experience was actually from the xmas eve party 2009 exchange gift from Su Ann, a bottle of Godiva hazelnut chocolate spread.

Godiva chocolates, drinks, coffee, cakes
chocolate drinks, and chocolate cakes that goes well with hot black coffee

The cafe offers the usual stuff you’d find at any Godiva outlets – chocolate truffles, chocolate bars, the aforementioned chocolate hazelnut spread, and other Godiva chocolate products/gifts. However, the cafe also offers really awesome chocolate cakes (at RM 15 a slice, really good value if you ask me), coffee, brownies, mocha frappuccino, chocolate drinks and more.

Of course, there’s also the tastefully romantic dining area at one end of level 2 in Pavilion that doesn’t carry too much foot traffic.

Winnie and KY at Godiva cafe
Winnie the reluctant make-shift Godiva model, KY

Over the lunch session, I tried a slice of chocolate cake that’s topped with a chocolate truffle that turned out to be easily the best chocolate cake I’ve had. There’s also the chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream that went well black coffee, 6 pieces of those famous Godiva chocolate truffles, and also a few slices of 80% chocolate squares.

Oh, I also had the chocolate drinks warmed by a candle under the pot too, rich and flavorful.

chocolate goodies for you to take home, or as gifts
chocolate goodies for you to take home, or as gifts

To be honest, everything tasted wonderful on it’s own, but on a food tasting session, there’s only that much rich tasting chocolate one can take before feeling “muak”. Fortunately the black coffee somewhat refreshes the tongue a little bit.

Ultimately, I think Godiva Cafe is definitely a place worth visit, especially if you bring a date over tea time. The cake at RM 15 a slice offers great value too.

map to Pavilion KL

Address:
Godiva Chocolatier Cafe
Level 2, Pavilion
Jln Bukit Bintang
Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.148872, 101.713368
Tel: 03-2142 5252

Last week Haze and I went to meet Ciki for some catching up and plenty of red meat. The location was Prime, one of the five star restaurants that isn’t exactly known to be budget friendly.

We went there anyway only because Ciki promised a 50% discount she was getting from the friendly Director of Communications, Cheryl, whom I also met over the fabulous review session at Favola, the Italian restaurant at Le Meridien.

wagyu prime ribs
the irresistible  wagyu prime rib

Torn between a lavish self indulgence and not bursting budget, we ordered a bottle of wine and the wagyu prime ribs (per kg RM 478) to share among the three of us.

Prime ribs and filet mignon are my two favorite cuts when it comes to red meat. While I had filet mignon a few times since coming back from the States, this was the first time I had my beloved prime ribs since 6-7 years ago.

wagyu prime ribs
served with wedges, and just look at the pink center of the beef

The prime rib is the cut of meat between the 6th and 12th ribs of a cow, and in this case, Wagyu beef. This cut usually has quite a lot of fat marbled muscle that makes it very tender and juicy.

Needless to say, the Wagyu prime rib was excellent. We had it prepared medium rare, Idaho steak fried potato , wild forest mushroom friscassee and light black summer truffle jus are accompanied the dish, we didn’t really need them to enjoy the beef though. It was already so good as is.

The portion was huge too, the three of us actually had trouble finishing it.

wine, salad, lobster bisque
red wine, spinach and mozzarella salad, lobster bisque

As we were about to finish, Cheryl joined us “for a drink”. The one drink turned out to be two extra bottles of red wine, and she ordered the spinach and mozzarella salad (RM50) and lobster bisque (RM 45) for us to try too.

The salad came with Master Kobe that were grilled perfectly, figs, aged balsamic vinegar dressing and of course, very delightful mozzarella cheese. The lobster bisque did not disappoint either, I especially like the combination of golden pastry and the bisque, sophisticated.

tiramisu, crème brûlée, chocolate pecan mud pie
tiramisu, crème brûlée, chocolate pecan mud pie

After all the meat, salad, and soup, we activated the second stomach for desserts. The Illy Coffee tiramisu (RM 30) was perfect for someone who loves their dessert with plenty of alcohol (Sambucca liquor), texture wise it was a lot softer than normal tiramisu. Of course, the alcohol is added only to request, I recommend it.

Crème brûlée (RM 25) was made with Tahitian vanilla beans and served with fresh berries, we finished it.

My favorite dessert of the day, however, was the pecan mud pie with chocolate sauce (RM 30). It was very rich, flavorful, and absolutely sinful.

KY, Haze, Ciki
KY, Haze, Ciki

The girls spent the next couple hours talking about anything and everything while I made my limited verbal contribution from time to time. It was an awesome dinner and great hang out session that only made better by ….. the fact that Cheryl signed off the bill!

So thank you Cheryl, and when I’m loaded, I’m gonna go to Prime more often. 😀

map to Le Meridien

Address:
Prime
2 Jalan Stesen Sentral,
Kuala Lumpur 50470

GPS: 3.135631,101.686476
Tel: 03-2263 7888