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Many eons ago (actually just a few decades), Hong Kong wasn’t exactly as developed as it is now. Among the settlers, traders, and foreign administrations, there were a group of people whom took home on boats. They were the boat people, and whenever the weather does not agree, they would seek shelter at Causeway Bay.

The boat people had a subculture all to themselves, living by the sea, when it comes to food, their speciality were undoubtedly seafood.

Causeway Bay Spicy Crab at Hartamas
Causeway Bay Spicy Crab, now at Hartamas

Fast forward to 21st century, Causeway Bay is now a heavily developed area, but the subculture continues. A local businessman went over to Hong Kong, partnering with the original boat people and started the Causeway Bay Spicy Crab restaurant at Jaffe Road in Causeway Bay.

Building on the success of the restaurant in HK, the local owner now brought the restaurant back home. So now we have our very own Causeway Bay Spicy Crab right here at Hartamas, KL.

Causeway Bay Spicy Crab at Hartamas
signature dish – Garlic and Chili Crab

A couple weeks ago I was invited by one of the partners to have dinner at this very restaurant. Together with Haze, Gareth, Kim, Suanie, and Horng, we headed over to Hartamas with, I must say, quite a high expectation.

We left the task of ordering to the restaurant manager, and some 20 minutes later, our first dish came – Garlic and Chili Crab (RM 68/80), their signature dish. The gigantic crab’s covered with almost one whole pound of garlic with a bit of chili for that spicy kick. The crab was delicious, and the fried garlic positively addictive!

crab porridge, chicken gristle, garlic and chili crab
crab porridge, chicken gristle, garlic and chili crab

The rest of the dish came within a couple minutes of the first one, I’ve always hate it when restaurants take their sweet time serving between dishes, no such problem here.

The crab porridge (RM 68/80) was another winner. The huge crab and porridge were cooked to order so you really get the sweetness of the seafood well seeped into the congee. I think it’s big enough to feed at least 2-3 people.

Then there’s the chicken gristle, a definite must-order non-seafood item here. The texture of the chicken cartilage and the little chunk of meat/skin was perfect, this dish reminds me of the chicken gristle I had at Sumi-ka in the form of yakitori.

duck tongue, steamed tofu, squid with salted egg, frogs in XO sauce
duck tongue, steamed tofu, squid with salted egg, frogs in XO sauce

The “exotic” dish we had came in the form of a plate of duck tongue. The dish must have caused a whole classroom of dumb ducks. Tho I’m usually a huge fan of the strange and exotic dishes, this one did not impress me. It was my first time having duck tongue too, and while I didn’t find it gross or anything like that, it was just a little too soft and blunt in taste.

I did like the steamed tofu, stuffed with chunks of scallops, prawns, and other seafood, it provided balance to the other stronger tasting dishes.

condiments, Horng & Suanie, Kimberly and Gareth, KY and Haze
condiments, Horng & Suanie, Kimberly and Gareth, KY and Haze

Just like the garlic in their signature dish, Causeway Bay Crab does not spare the usage of salted egg in their salted egg squid. The excess salted egg covered every square inch of the squid and then some. It was another dish that we love.

Then there’s the frogs in XO sauce, Kim’s favorite. Really fresh tasting frog with generous amount of garlic, XO sauce, and peas to give it a bit of a crunchy texture, it was easily one of the better frog dishes I’ve had. I prefer it over the usual kam heong method of preparation.

Causeway Bay Spicy Crab
Causeway Bay Spicy Crab

Towards the end of the night, we were mixing garlic, salted egg, and the condiments from XO frogs and consuming them as is. These wasn’t exactly the healthiest way of eating but we just couldn’t help it.

While Causeway Bay Spicy Crab isn’t the cheapest places to dine at, but if you are looking for quality seafood and some huge Sabah crabs, you can’t go wrong at this place. The dishes were mostly excellent (with the questionable duck tongue, but it might be just me), a great ambiance, and on top of that, a slightly overly cold air conditioning too.

map to Causeway Bay Spicy Crab at Hartamas

Address:
Causeway Bay Spicy Crab
銅鑼灣辣蟹莊
26 & 26-1 Jalan 30/70A
Desa Sri Hartamas
50480 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.16347, 101.64898
Tel: 03-6205 2280

Causeway Bay Spicy Crab

After having some porky goodness at Jarrod & Rowlins Hartamas, we decided browse the neighboring DVD store. I was happily browsing, and suddenly my friend stopped me from walking so that I don’t step onto iSulk on the floor there..

Sulking baby
i wanna go home!

According to the mother, this kid was just too tired to walk and hence decided to just lay down on the carpet sulking. Interestingly, other member of their family didn’t quite give a crap about this big baby.

Sulking baby
a close up on the sulking baby

What do you think would have happened if you pull such a stunt when you were young?

Every once in a blue moon, I get to be invited to sample a restaurant, this is one such occasions. Brian (Thanks!) from All dat Jazz contacted me via email and told me about Groove Junction, I immediately agreed to the free food. I had initially thought that there would just be myself and a couple of other friends I bring a long, but it turned out to be a bigger occasion with Riz, masak-masak, and Lemongrass there as well. This is also the first time I met the friendly bunch.

note: the restaurant is no longer here 17/3/2011.

Groove Junction Bistro & Cafe at Sri Hartamas
nice place, good food, bloggers at work

Groove Junction is actually a rather new place that has been in operation for only a couple of months. The Bistro and Cafe sat right on top of Karma in Sri Hartamas, just a stone’s throw away from the ProJet petrol station. The ambiance of the place is very nice, slightly darker compared to normal restaurants, but fits perfectly with the stage up front where live bands play Jazz nightly. A very relaxing and rather classy setting, perfect for bringing your special ones there.

Groove Junction Bistro & Cafe at Sri Hartamas
Ellena’s Lamb Steak, Sonny Rollins (chicken), Billie Holiday (fish), Dexter Cordon (chicken corddn blue)

But when it comes down to it, the most important thing for a restaurant is still the food, so how does Groove Junction fair?

Since this was a food tasting session, we actually got to try quite a number of dishes from their extensive menu. Starting off with Yam Nam glass noodle and a piece of mushroom bruschetta as appetizer. These two items actually made me even hungrier than I had started out, they were actually very good, the glass noodle was spicy and has a tangy taste, while the creamy mushroom bruschetta offers contrasting texture and taste that fits perfectly.

Groove Junction Bistro & Cafe at Sri Hartamas
lamb curry with toasted bread, and some desserts

For the main dishes, we sampled a total of six dishes. A (Ellena’s) lamb steak that is one of their best sellers, the really excellent chicken with orange seasoning wrapping some asparagus that they call Sonny Rollins, Dexter Cordon (Chicken Cordon Blue), pan fried sole fish named Billie Holiday, and Beef Panne – the grilled beef prepared with herb sauce. Of these 5 dishes, I like Sonny Rollins and the beef the most, but the other three were very good too, it’s just a tragedy not having a big enough stomach to eat more than a few bites from each dish.

Being a Bistro, Groove Junction offers some finger food as well. We had the Chickalina’s, marinated chicken in black sauce, and the lamb curry with toasted bread. These stuff will go down very well with some beer.

And as if there was any space in my stomach, we had desserts. The Roll Morton (hot banana “pohpiah” with ice cream) was actually very addictive with its contrasting temperature and texture, Riz ended up having like 3 or 4 of those. The cheese cake and tiramisu were reported to be very good by the ladies, but I just couldn’t fit another bite by then.

Map to Groove Junction Bistro & Cafe at Sri Hartamas

The price of food at Groove Junction is pretty much in line with any restaurant of its class. Finger foods at around RM 15 and main dishes from RM 20+ to RM 30+. Considering the great atmosphere and the accompanying fabulous live Jazz, this place offers pretty good value for some really good food. I’ll return as a paying customer for sure.

address:
Groove Junction
1-1, Jalan 22A/70A
Desa Sri Hartamas
Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.162777, 101.652557
tel: 03-6201 8990

Of all the different types of meat available for consumption, my favorite has got to be pork. The versatility is second to none, from dried pork and bak kut teh, to siu yok or even using the fats to accentuate and compliment the taste of steamed fish, I can’t think of any other meat that tasted so good in so many ways.

After trying Jarrod & Rawlin’s pork sausage as dessert the same day I went to Bonjuk , I just had to go there for more. In my book, they serve the best western style pork sausages thus far.

Jarrod & Rawlins, awesome pork sausage and burger at Sri Hartamas
burger, pork sausages, and choices of cheese

The second trip to Jarrod & Rawlins was for supper as well, just a couple hours or so after having dinner in KL. I ordered 2 sausages while Kelvin, who has a bottomless stomach, ordered a gourmet beef burger with bacon, blue cheese and mushroom. Obviously, with these kinda “yum char” session, teh-o-ais doesn’t suffice, I actually ordered a beer (beat it, suanie & FA!).

Jarrod & Rawlins, awesome pork sausage and burger at Sri Hartamas
if you’re not drooling over these stuff, find a doctor

Though this place has less than a dozen tables, they really take their time to prepare the food. Everything is cooked meticulously without any rush. This is not to say that the wait was boring, but it’s probably not an ideal place to go if you’re starving to death.

When the sausages came, they were simple and no frill. Just 2 sausages on an empty plate, I ordered a pepper and a dynamite chili variety. They were seriously good stuff, the fillings were from good quality pork, with some chili padi in the dynamite chili version and some white pepper in the other. The taste was just glorious, with the chili version particularly addictive, especially if you are a person who loves hot food.

Jarrod & Rawlins, awesome pork sausage and burger at Sri Hartamas
comfortable ambiance, and wide selection of wine and other drinks

As for the burger, it was ridiculously thick, with the beef patty at least 5 times thicker than Ramli’s version, a portobello mushroom as big as the bread under the beef, and a generous slice of blue cheese on top, with bacon and pickle in it as well, you can’t really ask for more. Of course, it’s nearly impossible to just pick the burger up and start biting unless you have a mouth as big as Steven Tyler’s. The beef was very juicy, and the mushroom, bacon, and cheese combined to be a really great gastronomical satisfaction.

Jarrod & Rawlins, awesome pork sausage and burger, map at Sri Hartamas
Jarrod & Rawlins is located at the heart of Desa Sri Hartamas

The sausages came to only around RM 7, and the burger was RM 18, drinks are priced competitively with other restaurants of this sort. For the quality of food (all the sausages and meat patties are made there) and the taste, I’d say this place provides good value. Will definitely go there many more times.

address:
No. 36 (ground floor)
Jalan 27/70A
Desa Sri Hartamas,
50480 Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.162777, 101.649638
tel: 03-2300 0708

In an attempt to eat healthy for once, we decided to head to this Korean Porridge place, Bonjuk at Desa Sri Hartamas. I had thought that the parking situation would be pretty shitty on a weekend, it was. After a round of unfruitful hunt, I decided to just pay for it at the commercial car park just a block away for RM 3.00 that was totally worth it.

Koraen Porridge, Bonjuk at Desa Sri Hartamas
some seriously healthy food

Like most franchise, Bonjuk does not offer a very wide variety of dishes in their menu. There are, however, over a dozen types of porridge, and an equal amount of Bibimbobs (mixed meal), as well as some Korean pancakes to choose from. The pancakes aside, all the dishes were not fried nor BBQ, so far so healthy.

After scanning the offerings, I decided to go for the mid size seafood combination porridge. Since the porridge is cook to order, it did take a while before I get to start satisfying the stomach, luckily, the wait was worth it.

Koraen Porridge, Bonjuk at Desa Sri Hartamas
now you see it, now you don’t

The porridge was cooked with squid, shrimp, mussels, dried oyster, and octopus. It was actually very good, the taste of the seafood mixture blends into the porridge very well, if only some dried scallop were used as well, it would have been perfect. Then again, that ingredient would drive the price up by quite a bit.

Free flow kimchi and a plate of marinated beef came with the dish, a salty and slightly spicy chili paste accompanied the porridge too. The kimchi and beef were pretty good, I had like 4 plates of kimchi as it was just at the right level of rottenness for me. However, I gave a pass to the cold soup, that thing tasted like a mixture of vitagen and vegetable soup served cold, not exactly to my taste.

map to Bonjuk at Desa Sri Hartamas
Bonjuk is just opposite Breakers and Soda

The porridge was an economical RM 14.95, and if I remember correctly, no government nor service charge added. I’ll definitely go there again, and I think you should give it a try too. The young and friendly Korean guy who run the place scored an A+ for customer PR skills as well.

Address:
No. 18, Ground Floor, Jalan 25/70A
Desa Sri Hartamas 50480 Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.162584, 101.650164
Tel: 03-2300 2302