Barbecue Plaza (B.B.Q. Plaza) @ Gurney Plaza, Penang.
If you are a regular patron at Gurney Plaza, then you should not be too unfamiliar with this restaurant - Barbecue Plaza. There is a signature cartoon - a green color crocodile, standing right outside of the entrance of the restaurant. Its situated at Lower Ground floor of Gurney Plaza, and they specialized in serving steamboat. The ambiance was pretty good as the restaurant itself is air-conditioned and the temperature in the restaurant was well kept despite the heat generating from the sizzling hot pot. It was indeed, an enjoyable and memorable experience due to the chilly environment. Most of the steamboat ingredients come in sets. They do offer some side dishes like fried squid, pork belly skewers etc.....Drinks are pretty economical too. They have some special discounts for students too, simply present your student card and enjoy the 20% discount privilege on their special individual sets. One thing that caught my attention was the charging of wet towel(Rm0.80) added to my bill but there were no so called "wet towel" provided to us......
Since there were only two of us, we decided to try on their supreme beef set (Rm31.90) which consists of beef, chicken, squid, shrimp, udon (Japanese Noodles), and some cabbage/lettuce. You may opt for the pork set too (same price as beef). It comes together with two bowls of white rice too. Although the set looks quite big at first, but we found out that it was actually just nice for the two of us. I would not recommend this set if there are more than two person. The squid and shrimp were quite fresh but the beef was just okay in terms of the freshness. The beef was not marinated so one can actually taste the earthy natural sweetness in the beef.
Yes, you have probably guessed it right, there will be two pieces of pork lard given to you. Simply place them on top of the customized hot pot and wait for the lard to melt and blend with the soup. There will be some soup surrounding the hot pot too. However, the soup was rather tasteless to my liking. The soup will only be more flavorful when it comes to the end. The steamboat style was quite similar to Asian BBQ at Prangin Mall and Aroy Chang Moo Kata Thai Restaurant at Pulau Tikus. Personally, I would prefer Aroy Chang Moo Kata's due to the portion, taste and the sauce given.
Since the ingredients, particularly the beef, were not being marinated, so the key to success will be the sauce given to go with the meat. Sauce is always the soul of steamboat too. In Barbecue Plaza, you will be given a plate of home-made sauce which tasted salty and quite a heavy peanut-butter flavor chopped garlic, chopped chilies and a small piece of lime. I just mixed all of them up. No doubt, the sauce works perfectly with the beef, but it does not work as I thought it would be if using on some other ingredients like cabbage/lettuce.
As for the set, there will be two bowls of white rice given, one may "upgrade" the white rice to garlic fried rice by just topping Rm1.50 per bowl. As you can see, the fried rice was topped with some deep fried garlic and the rice has a very heavy buttery flavor. It might be not too suitable for those who does not really adore butter. The texture of the deep fried garlic was well maintained and was very crispy. The rice was a bit gluey too, but it was not cooked using the Japanese rice. Overall, it was very good.
Watermelon Squash (Rm4) for the red colored drink and Lime Squash (Rm3.50) for the white one. There were nothing much interesting about the drinks, they tasted like ice blended topped with sugar syrup.
Taste: 6.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Price: 5.5/10 (1-3 expensive, 4-7 average, 8-10 cheap)
Service: 8/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Parking: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service Charge: Yes 10%
Government Tax: Yes 6%
Address: B1-05 Basement, Old Wing, Gurney Plaza, Pesiaran Gurney, Penang.
Business Hour: 10:30am to 10pm; Daily.
Contact Number: 604- 228 1487