Kyspeaks.com

Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Tag / FA

While I love to eat, I”ve also at the same time, known to be a relatively cheap drunk – ie: it doesn’t cost much to get me drunk. My usual tolerance is about 3-4 glasses of alcohol on a good night.

Then again, those who are regarded as connoisseur does not necessarily eat a lot, audiophiles aren’t someone who must have their music super loud, so why must a “good drinker” be one that drinks a lot? To me, it should just be one who knows how to enjoy their alcohol, be it beer, spirit, whisky, or tapai (ok maybe not the last one :D)

FA, Michael, KY & Haze at Craft Brews
FA, Michael, KY & Haze at Craft Brews

Having said that, I don’t consider myself at all skilled in alcohol tasting, I can’t describe the subtle hint of chocolate aroma or certain type of truffle smell in some aged whisky, but I do know what I like and what I don’t like. In another word, like most everyone else, I assume.

A week or so ago I was invited to  Craft Brews at Kota Damansara for their Rogue beer launch – there were altogether 8 types of beers, with four available on tap and the other four in bottles.

my favorite fried roast pork is awesome as always
my favorite fried roast pork is awesome as always

The Rouge beers come with weird names - Brutal IPA, Mom Hefeweizen, Chocolate Stout, Dead Guy Ale, Juniper Pale Ale, Mocha Porter, OREgasmic Ale and Hazelnut Brown Nectar.

I can’t pretend to remember the tastes of all the 8 beers I’ve tried (of course some only a sip or two), not taking notes did not help either, but I remember I don’t care much about Chocolate Stout (still love my Guinness).

The Hazelnut Brown Nectar really does carry a hint of hazelnut aroma in it, slightly sweetish at the end and quite drinkable, if not tasted a bit unconventional.

8 types of Rogue beer, plenty to go around
8 types of Rogue beer, plenty to go around

The memory on other beer were a bit of a blur, though I remember enjoying most of them, and especially like the Dead Guy Ale, creamy and richer in flavor.

Oh, and there were food too. Craft Brews still serve one of the best tasting fried roast pork out there, I took quite a few helpings. The teriyaki style sausage were yummy too.

Haze and I also won a couple t-shirts (XL in size, WHY!?) in beer pouring contest after being push up the “stage” by host of the night – Linora.

It was a fun night, good beer, good food, and great company in Michael, FA, Deep and the like.

Adress:
Craft Brews
Jalan PJU 7/2,
Mutiara Damansara,
47800 Petaling Jaya, Selangor

GPS: 3.161031, 101.613761
Tel: 03-7722 3000

This is the last food post from the Redang trip last month. After stopping by for keropok lekor, our last item on schedule before heading back to KL was naturally, lunch.

Ed again served as the guide and this time he brought us to Restaurant Golden Dragon in Chinatown

restaurant golden dragon at kuala terengganu
a very straight to the point “non halal” sign

I knew that it had to be at least a pretty decent place soon as we arrived. The restaurant was absolutely packed even on a Monday, and we had to wait for a table. There was a big group of middle aged ladies with “I love Redang” t-shirts, which doesn’t bear any significance to anything but I just felt like mentioning.

brinjal, long bean, salted fish, roast pork and bbq pork
long beans, eggplant, salted fish, roast pork and BBQ pork

Ed ordered a large portion of roast pork and BBQ pork, and I made orders of several other pre-prepared dishes to go with steamed rice. We had long beans, eggplant, omelet, bitter gourd, and some soup too.

Though the BBQ pork (char siu) was ordinary, the roast pork (siu yoke) was actually rather good. We actually ordered a second serving of roast pork to make up for going 3 days porkless on the island.

bitter gourd, omelet, soup, rice
bitter gourd, omelet, soup, rice

While the other dishes were commendable, my favorite had to go to the salted fish fillets. The aroma and taste was just so “right” I used it to replace soya sauce. Omelet  with salted fish, roast pork with salted fish, bitter gourd with salted fish, egg plant with salted fish, they were all awesome!

the group from Redang trip
Terence, Kim, FA, Ed, Horng, KY & Joe, Kerol & Haze

Including drinks, we only had to pay RM 8 per person for the meal. It was really cheap considering the amount of items we ordered. I’ve read that they serve pretty good “tai chau” during dinner time too.

map of Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

Address:
198 Jalan Kampung Cina
Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu

GPS: 5.333684, 103.132921
Tel: 09-622 3034

A trip to the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia is never complete without having keropok lekor, and when it comes to this particular wholesome snack, Terengganu is usually regarded as the best place to have them.

Keropok Lekor Zahela Embong
Keropok Lekor Zahela Embong, as recommended by Ed

Traditional keropok lekor is made of fish meat, sago, and a bit of salt, there are some that uses flour in addition or instead of sago too. The concoction is then made into unsightly phallic shape that is then boiled and optionally fried.

The keropok is usually served with chili sauce. Here in Klang Valley, you usually get some mass produced chili sauce like Kimball, but in Terengganu, it’s often some home made goodness instead.

keropok lekor with sauce
Keropok Lekor with chili sauce, yum max!

The keropok lekor stall of Zaleha Embong is conveniently located in between the town of Kuala Terengganu and Merang, the jetty for departing to Redang Island.

Our dive guide Ed, who’s been to Redang more often than just about anyone I know, swears on this stall, and I do agree that the keropok lekor here was really awesome. It was delicious, slightly salty and tasted like an offspring of fish cake and prawn fritters. Don’t miss this one if you find ourself heading to Merang Jetty.

Terence, FA, Horng, Kim, Kerol, Haze, KY
Terence, FA, Horng, Kim, Kerol, Haze, and KY

The same stall sells other local products like dried cuttle fish with sugar, salted fish (wet and dried version), and various other prepacked keropok too. I spent RM20 on those other nonsense in making my colleagues in KL happy, they loved it too!

Kerepok Lekor at Kuala  Terengganu map

Address:
Keropok Lekor Zaleha Embong
near Kg. Merabang Likar
21020 Kuala Terengganu

GPS: 5.457598,103.034248
Tel: 09-669 4762

Before earlier this year at Sipadan and Mabul islands, my previous diving trip was Redang, way back in 2005. After the very first dive at Mabul island, I realized how much I actually missed diving and promised that I would do it perhaps 4 times this year.

I guess I over achieved, it is June and I’ve went on 4 diving trips already. This time at Redang island, it was a trip organized by Terence to con our buddy Horng in getting his PADI Open Water certification.

turtle at Redang
Terence chasing the green turtle

Together with Haze, Kim, Kerol, FA, Joe (went to Tenggol with), and dive instructor Edvin from OceanXplorer, we started our journey just after midnight from KL to Kuala Terengganu on Friday.

The drive took a little less than 7 hours, which proved to be a bit of a mistake in scheduling. As our boat does not leave till past 9 am, we ended up having to spend over 2 hours at Kuala Terengganu for breakfast. Should have left at perhaps 1:30am instead to optimize the journey and catch more sleep prior.

haze, FA, kim, kerol at Merang Jetty
Haze, Kerol, FA, and Kim. bottom rigth: 2 vagabonds found on the boat

In contrast with the departure point to Tenggol at Dungun where there were perhaps half a dozen people heading to the island, Merang Jetty was absolutely packed. There were tourists representing all continents, a cacophony of foreign languages and various local accents served as white noise while we board our relatively comfortable boat.

A little less than an hour later, we arrived at Redang.

KY & Haze, Joe with his cam, Horng and Edvin
KY & Haze, Joe, Horng getting his PADI certification by Edvin

While Tenggol was a hidden paradise, Redang felt more like a well oiled machine all prep up for tourists.

Boat load of people being herded to the resort registration counter like sheep by hounds, tractors hauling your luggage, loud PA system announcing snorkeling time, and huge dining area not entirely unlike school canteen.

Eagle Ray at Redang island
freaking lucky Horng, Eagle Ray on his first ever dive

Having said that, while I don’t particularly like the commercialization of the island, it does have advantages some can’t live without.

There’s projector with Astro showing world cup, convenient store, pub by the beach with dance floor and all sorts of alcohol, and even eateries offering pretty awesome Cantonese noodle and lor mai kai (glutinous rice with chicken).

Terence, Horng, KY, Joe geared up for diving
Terence, Horng, KY, Joe,  diving at Redang on 2nd day

I did 5 dives at Redang, the first was the shore dive in conjunction with Horng’s very first compressed air breathing experience in the ocean. We saw a magnificent spotted eagle ray!

nemo, cleaner fish
puffer fish, nemo’s cousin, and cleaner fish on my fins

The second dive we did was with the resort’s dive operator at the site just a couple minutes from the beach. The dive turned out to be pretty forgettable, not a whole lot to see and a tad too many divers at the same time. I did manage to get some cleaner fish to service my fins though :D

Luckily quite a lot of people left the island on Sunday (our 2nd day). The lesser crowd was a blessing, and though not related, the diving was much better too.

blue fish, more nemo, moray eel
blue coral fish, moray eel, more nemo, blue spotted sting ray

Our second dive at Tanjung Tokong dive site had the best visibility I’ve ever experienced, we could see well over 30 meters. It was like diving in 1080p HD quality.

We ended up visiting a lot of nemo in our 5 dives. There were other usual suspects like moray eel, trigger fish, cleaner fish, shrimp, puffer, porcupine fish, green turtle, and blue spotted sting ray. There weren’t a lot of nudibranch though.

Unfortunately, there were also some signs of coral bleaching due to the warm ocean temperature, hopefully that will reverse itself in due time.

shrimp, ikan kembong, porcupine fish
another eel, ikan kembong?, cleaner shrimp, porcupine fish

While the diving weren’t superb, they were still pretty enjoyable. The excellent vis at Tg. Tokong was a savior, and of course the feeling of being in water with total freedom and almost total quietness was always something I love.

Kim and Kerol did a discovery dive with Ed and totally loved it, I think there’s probably more certified divers in #porkgang next year. As it stands, all the guys are certified divers, and none of the girls are. Lets change that soon guys!

The restaurant business is sometimes like real estate, the whole “location, location, location” mantra can be as important as food and services itself.

This couldn’t be more evident when it comes to Xhin Fhong bak kut teh at Sungei Way. Though located just a stone’s throw away from Ah Sang bak kut teh, this home converted BKT restaurant is little known. I didn’t know of its existence till I read it on Sue Lynn’s blog.

Xhin Fhong Bak Kut Teh, Sungei Way
Xhin Fhong bak kut teh at Sungei Way

The restaurant consists of some 10 tables arranged at the drive way of an old house, with the “kitchen” neatly tucked at a corner. While they serve all the typical bak kut teh ingredients, unlike a typical kopitiam, you can’t really expect a full fledge drinks menu.

One thing that I really like about Xhin Fhong is their service. The aunty is ever so friendly, additional soup is served without even asking. Same can’t be said about most other bkt places.

glorious bak kut teh, yau char kuai, and inoki mushroom
Yao Char Kuai, Enoki mushroom, clay pot Bak Kut Teh

We ordered a clay pot bak kut teh with everything in it, a bowl of yau char kuai, and a serving of enoki mushroom as side dish to go with oil rice (white rice available too)

The soup was fragrant and rather “kao”, and the meat and innards cooked to perfection. Our bowl of goodness includes ribs, pork belly, meat, pork tripes, intestine, tofu pok, vegetable, and a little bit of mushroom.

The yao char kuai was crispy and makes a good appetizer while waiting for BKT to be served. Enoki mushroom, well, tasted like enoki mushroom, but the serving size here was really impressive.

Kim, Haze, KY, FA, Horng
Kim, Haze, KY, FA, and Horng

We definitely had a good brunch, and the total bill came to around RM 10 per person, which was pretty reasonable considering we also ordered canned drinks (BKT best goes with tea, I know, I know, but the weather was way too hot)

Sungei Way Xhin Fhong Bak Kut Teh map

To get to Xhin Fhong, I recommend parking near the Indian Temple, walk up the inner road to the right side and take the first left turn, you should then be able to see Xhin Fhong just a few houses down from the intersection.

Give this place a try especially if you’ve been to Ah Sang, Xhin Fhong is definitely worth a visit.

Address:
Xhin Fhong Bak Kut Teh
557 Jalan SS9A/2
Sungai Way 47300
Petaling Jaya
GPS: 3.088408,101.615671
Tel: 03-78744154

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