Shaboo World @ 1st Avenue Mall, Penang.
** This restaurant has since closed down.**
If you have ever passed by the Lower Ground floor of 1st Avenue, particularly the area around Kim Gary, you might have noticed this humble little steamboat restaurant. Shaboo World is a restaurant selling steamboat cuisine, be it fixed set or buffet style. It can be a bit pricey if you are ordering by sets, but its absolutely worth the value if you are purchasing their buffet package. With Rm18.90 (excluding drinks), you get to choose up to two choices of soup bases and those steamboat ingredients displayed at the small little kiosk. Ingredients like home made pork balls, squids, fresh prawns, quail eggs and fish balls are up to you to take. The best part is, it has no other additional charges but everything good comes in cons, which you are advised to make a 1-day in advance reservation, you may try walk-in, but its not advisable. Service was perfectly okay during my visit. Additionally, they do not provide any grilling/barbecue services, just plain soup-based steamboat and no desserts will be provided. The ambiance of this restaurant is obviously better than those non-air conditioned restaurants but the seats were not too comfy to me.
The choices were pretty limited, but since it was priced at a very economical and reasonable price, I have no complaints on that. Do take note that they serve pork here, pork meat balls, pork kidney and pork stomach. Some of the notable ones are Enoki mushrooms, Oyster mushrooms, prawns, quail eggs, squids, deep fried fish cutlets, dumplings, chicken meat, various kinds of fish balls and vegetables. Prawns were not that fresh but it was still acceptable so does the squid. As for those who wish to savor some noodles/rice, they do offer Vermicelli (Bee Hoon), Glass noodles (Tang Hoon), white rice and instant noodles. They were not displayed but you may request for them.
There will be three kinds of soup bases available for you to choose, namely Clear soup, Tom Yam soup and Porridge soup base. We opted for the Tom Yam and Clear soup instead. The soup itself was flavorful but we got pretty thirsty after the meal, probably over-used of MSG (monosodium glutamate) ? I would also prefer the Tom Yam to be slightly spicier and sour. They are using induction cooker to boil the soup so its very safe for children and it also speeds up the cooking process.
Unfortunately, there were only three types of sauces provided, the usual chopped chilies with soy sauce, Thai chili sauce and some sweet chili sauce. It will be better if they could provide some sauce with sourish nature and some chopped garlic/coriander/spring onions, just to enhance the flavor of the soup bases.
We do received complementary Organic Red Bean Drink as well, the red beans were blended with some milk and topped with some evaporated milk. It was very good and flavorful in my opinion and the best part was, it was not sweet at all. Other than that, I had a cup of icy cold Chinese Tea for Rm1.20 as well.
Taste: 6.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Price: 8/10 (1-3 expensive, 4-7 average, 8-10 cheap) *judging based on the buffet promotion*
Service: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Parking: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: Lot LG-03, 1st Avenue Mall, 182, Jalan Magazine, 10350, Georgetown, Penang.
Business Hour: 11am to 10pm. Daily.
Contact Number: 013- 444 7777 or 013- 913 3333