Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Mulgogi Dessert @ Sunway Carnival Mall, Seberang Jaya, Penang.

Whether Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream, artisan Ice Cream, Fried Ice Cream or Waffles; this past year has offered many ways for us to satisfy our sweet tooth and just before we wrap up the year... there is a new Japanese-Korean dessert that hits the state. Be prepared for a spike in insulin as the new kid in town- Mulgogi offers Taiyaki-inspired sweet treat, with a refreshing-chilly touch. Taiyaki is a traditional Japanese sweet snack, often stuffed with sweetened Red Beans; but now... a replacement for the sweetened Red Beans would be various smooth, lip-smacking Soft Serve... with condiments of course. Mulgogi occupies a small kiosk at the lower ground floor of Sunway Carnival Mall so it's more like a take-to-go food. Shoppers may opt to try out some of their freshly baked sweet Cakes either, if Soft Serve is not your type of food. 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Bari Uma Japanese Restaurant @ Mitsui Outlet Park KLIA Sepang, Selangor.

End of the year has always been the best time for fellow Malaysians to shop- major fashion brands would lure customers with huge and attractive discounts. On my recent trip down to KL (read my review for Delicious here), I've managed to stop by Mitsui Outlet Park Sepang... for some quick shopping. The place is quite deserted and the best way to deal with hunger while you are there would be to dine in at one of the restaurants in the mall. Mitsui Outlet Park Sepang opens as early as 10 am in the morning and most restaurants would be ready by 11 am. It was our first visit and we tried our luck at Bari-Uma, a Japanese Ramen specialist....

Monday, December 28, 2015

Lollipop Ropitiam @ Campbell Street, Georgetown, Penang.

Kaya Butter Toast... a staple for the working class in the past and less appreciated by the younger ones right now... probably eating Kaya Butter Toast with Half Boiled Egg is not as glamorous as having Egg Benedict for brunch. Also, the ambiance is often being compared. Lollipop Ropitiam is a young invention that ventures into local food culture; originated from Kedah, it seeks to offer something different- to provide a comfortable space to enjoy their variety of artisan Kaya Butter Toast (acclaimed). The menu is an anthropological record of the Hainanese-styled breakfast, featuring the Hainanese Brew as well as various condiments that go with the Toast. The space, however, can be quite warm and stuffy in the afternoon so the best time to visit is probably morning. The Penang branch of Lollipop Ropitiam is situated at Campbell Street, a few doors away from Campbell House on the same street (near the junction to Cintra Street).

Saturday, December 26, 2015

D Colorful Chinese Restaurant (家乐福) @ Elit Avenue, Bayan Baru, Penang.

A restaurant dedicated to serve family-friendly Chinese menu, D Colorful Chinese Restaurant is another new member that joins the clamoring crowd at Elit Avenue. The restaurant has got no outstanding decor nor eye-catchy signage but like a simple, intimate Chinese restaurant in the neighborhood. They have a long list to offer, covering many Chinese stir-fry dishes. Prices are standard-average but the seating is comfortable and spacious, there is even a partitioned room for those that come in a big group. 

Kaze Japanese Restaurant @ Icon City, Bukit Mertajam, Penang.

Icon City's latest hip Japanese restaurant has just swung opened its doors; Kaze Japanese Restaurant occupies one whole building at Icon City instead of having it shared with someone else. Inside the restaurant is slick with a mixture of pale and bold timber walls, illuminated by warm yellow lighting with touches of Japanese knick-knacks. Seating space could be more spacious, we felt a little cramped and the distance between tables was too near (we could hear the conversation happened next table). Though slightly more expensive than average, the service provided to us was expert and the quality was a class above the rest. The bible-thick menu includes a series of classic Japanese dishes such as Sushi Rolls, Ramen, Barbecue Skewers and Teishoku. Their secret weapon is probably the air-flown Sashimi but this would only be beneficial to those with a deep pocket. Price tags may seem hefty but they commensurate with quality and generous serving size. 

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Jinggo Dak Galbi @ Elit Avenue, Bayan Baru, Penang.

A new place for Korean Food fanatics to congregate, the burgeoning Elit Avenue just saw another opening of a small but simple Korean Restaurant- Jinggo Dak Galbi. They focus on their namesake Korean dish... Dak Galbi, Korean stir-fried Chicken in sweet and hot sauce. The interior decor is unique, unlike the traditional-conventional setting of a Korean restaurant; Jinggo Dak Galbi had the stoves set up in an industrial setting but they could do better with the air ventilation. Service was quick and attentive, cooking the Chicken was a hassle-free experience as everything was well-taken care of. The budget-watchers would be glad to know that their set menu is competitively priced and not meant to put a dent on your wallet. However, Dak Galbi is the only option here so if you are sensitive to spicy food or not too keen on exploring the stir-fry dish; give this place a skip. 

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

[Year 2015] My Itinerary for One Day Trip to Ipoh, Perak.

Ipoh, the capital of Perak makes an awesome one-day trip from Penang; the reason is simple... the town is overwhelmed with delicious delicacies with wallet-friendly price tags, the only possible hindrance is the limited tummy space. Approximately 1.5 hrs drive away from Penang, Ipoh is of a complete different vibe than Penang- an old town with a relaxed pace, travelling from one location to another is easy and hassle-free. Better if you have Cantonese-root, the entire town feels more intimate with the Cantonese-flare; traditional Cantonese delicacies can also be easily found in any corner of the town. 

We've made a short visit there earlier ago and below were the places we visited:

1) Yoke Fook Moon (玉福满酒楼) Restaurant
Prices shown are exclusive of GST
Address: 67-69, Jalan Leong Sin Nam, 30300, Ipoh, Perak.
Business Hours: 6 am to 1:30 pm; 6:30 pm to 10 pm. Opens Daily.
Contact Number: 605- 241 6589

Cheong Fun Dumplings

Monday, December 21, 2015

Wah Chai Chicken Rice @ Golden Triangle, Relau, Penang.

Potentially a decent spot for carnivores to appease their meat-craving, Wah Chai Chicken Rice at Golden Triangle Relau does offer a full range of Roasted Meat, served with Wanton Mee. All the meat hanging right in front of the stall will make carnivores drool in anticipation. The place is clean and brightly lit, seemingly inviting for a casual lunch. It has the usual hawker setting without air-conditioners but the place is spacious and ample space located for seating. The Roasted Meat-spread was alright, though not spectacular; for those who prefer noodles over rice to go with their meat, Wah Chai Chicken Rice may be the right place for you to check out. Wah Chai Chicken Rice is a stone's throw distance away from I Mum Mum Noodle House nestled in the same building. 

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Love A Loaf Bakery & Cafe Launches New Lava Croissant Series

The Lava Croissant heat continues and flows from Kuala Lumpur to Penang. One of the most creative bakeries in town recently launched its Lava Croissant Series; the aforesaid series consists of 3 different flavors- Salted Egg, Matcha Green Tea and Chocolate. Inspired by a famous bakery at Hong Kong, the management team behind Love A Loaf is committed to introduce the brand's very own Lava Croissant; and so they did. The series was first made available few days before my visit and I was informed that the Lava Croissants were well-received by regular patrons. Limited quantities available daily, if you intend to grab those fresh-out-of-oven Croissants, be sure to grab them at 12 pm to 1 pm. All 3 types of Lava Croissants are available at all Love A Loaf Bakery and Cafe across the island. 

About Love A Loaf:
My first visit to the bakery was June 2014, shortly after they grand opening. The Bakery has since become one of my favorite bakeries in town due to their distinctive European-inspired loaves and pastries. They have been very innovative and constantly coming out with new products to impress their customers. Love A Loaf offers made-in-house sweet and savory pastries, rustic loaves, cakes, viennoiserie, seasonal offerings (Christmas-related Cakes and Pastries for instance), all of which can be enjoyed "to go" or in the small but pleasant cafe. 

Many Thanks to Love A Loaf for having us there.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

The Alley Raja Uda @ Raja Uda, Butterworth, Penang.

When we heard that The Alley at Steward Lane was opening a new sister cafe at Raja Uda... that serves Sushi with Coffee... we were intrigued. Why Vinegared Rice with Coffee? It took us a while before we could make our way to The Alley Raja Uda, the location is not that obvious; it can be a daunting task for those who are not in the know. The place is decorated based on the industrial theme with heavy emphasis on timber... there's even a large container outside (the kitchen); it is spacious ample spaces between tables but the wooden chairs are not that comfortable as they may seem... the hipsters or hard-core cafe hoppers would like the whimsical interior decor- many creative angles can be found for Instagram-perfect photos. No, they have more than Sushi and Coffee to offer; they have a small Japanese menu that offers Japanese Curry Rice dishes along with The Alley's specialties (Churros and Cronuts). The Alley is located at one of the streets in front of Econsave at Raja Uda. 

Friday, December 18, 2015

煲粥婆养生砂煲粥 Claypot Porridge @ Kampung Malabar, Georgetown, Penang.

For a seafoodlicious bowl of piping hot porridge, you can visit Claypot Porridge at Kampung Malabar, Georgetown. Do not be put off by the seemingly ordinary facade with Chinese characters; surely the place does not possess sophisticated setting but the fully air-conditioned restaurant with ample of seating space is more than suffice to be a casual family dining venue. The Porridge specialist has something up the sleeve. Their strength is to include fresh swimming Seafood into their silky smooth Porridge as well as an array of Chinese dishes with some recipes brought from China. A place where seafood devotees and porridge lovers could meet. 煲粥婆 Claypot Porridge is right next to the famous Hon Kei Porridge and a few shops away from Gou Lou Coffee House on the same street.

Many Thanks to 煲粥婆 for hosting us that evening. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Kim Haus @ Campbell Street, Georgetown, Penang.

Kim How, one of the earliest Gold Jewelers in Penang; has a 4-storey tall building at Campbell Street but the ground floor of the building has since turned into a cafe cum bar named Kim Haus. The cafe occupies two prime shops on the street and can be easily noticed from far. The place is split into two different concepts: cafe that serves simple Western menu and bar that sells a variety of alcohols. On the cafe, the setting is whimsical with some industrial influence and some mismatched elements from the past (some tools believe to be used  by Gold Smith).  On one corner of the cafe is a small bakery that sells their daily fresh bakes which span across some loaves (Low GI/ Multi-Grain/ Rye), Scottish Scones and Danish Pastries etc. They are freshly baked on a daily basis but the best time to visit would probably be some time before lunch (noon would be ideal), the time when the bread and pastries are fresh out of the oven. 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Evening Organic Farmers Market @ Straits Quay, Penang.

Sourcing organic produce is a daunting task, especially in Penang but with the aid of Evening Organic Farmers Market, it is so much easier. The aforesaid Evening Organic Farmers Market takes place at Straits Quay on every 3rd Sunday of the month. The Farmers Market has been running for many months and has since, drawn the attention of the health-concerned group. Many believe that not only organic produce tastes better but it carries many health benefits as well. They are free from pesticides, harmful chemicals and said to carry more nutrients than the usual commercial produce. There will be more than 8 organic farmers participating in the Farmers Market each round (subject to their own schedule); not only span across Penang Island (places like Batu Ferringhi, Balik Pulau, Relau etc) but mainland as well. This is a great opportunity to pick up fresh local organic produce and have a chat with the farmers themselves. The Evening Organic Farmers Market is set to happen on 20 December 2015, from 4 pm to 7pm,  right in front of Real Food at Straits Quay.

*Disclaimer: Below photos were taken on 15 November 2015; Actual event on 20 December 2015 may be different*

Monday, December 14, 2015

Din Tai Fung Restaurant (鼎泰豐) @ Gurney Plaza, Penang.

Big announcement was made a couple months back and it stirred up the excitement of Xiao Long Bao devotees. The newly opened branch on Lower Ground floor of Gurney Plaza (right next to the food court on the same floor) is the first outpost of the Taiwanese-based Dumpling expert. The name itself- Din Tai Fung needs no further introduction; the big draw of the brand is of course, Shanghainese Soup Dumplings or widely known as Xiao Long Bao but they are not a one-trick pony. The big menu features a vast selection of Chinese eats... from Chinese hand-pulled Noodles to the well-received Fried Rice or comfortable timeless Chinese sweet treats. We like the interior decor- well-partitioned with wooden elements exuding a calm and zen vibe. Adequate distance and space are allocated for each table and comfort is assured. Service is expert and attentive, not too bad for first operation day (though we were not wow-ed by the food).  

Saturday, December 12, 2015

The New Delicious Menu and "A Delicious Christmas" Specials by Delicious Group @ One Utama, Petaling Jaya.

With the holiday season fast approaching, you are probably looking for places for your annual meet ups and family gatherings. Delicious, one of the most renowned dessert-specialists in town celebrates Christmas in style by offering a few meticulously crafted timeless traditional Christmas dishes. In conjunction with the jolly season, Delicious is also launching a new A La Carte Menu... the list can be overwhelming, with 16 new and improved dishes that are true to the Delicious brand. Chef Steve, CEO of the Delicious Group, has recently returned from a research trip to Europe and found inspirations to enhance the group's existing menu. With a name like Delicious, the brand practically guarantees quality and tastiness; at Delicious, you will feel the young and vibrant vibe as well as a sense of neighborly from the expert service. Those with a sweet tooth would be glad to know there is a huge display counter featuring an array of their fresh bakes; some notable highlights are Chocolate, Coconut and Pecan Cake (Rm 14.50), Coconut Cake with Fresh Thai Coconut (Rm 13.50), Macadamia and Salted Caramel Cheesecake (Rm 15), Banoffee Pie (Rm 13.50), Lemon Meringue Pie (Rm 13.50) and Strawberry and Chocolate Pavlova (Rm 15).

Many Thanks to Delicious for hosting us that afternoon.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

3 Leg Cat Cafe (三脚猫) @ The Golden Triangle, Relau, Penang.

The name of this place sure suggests a hint of defect and impairment but stepping in the place gives you another impression. The place appears like an adult playground rather than a cafe- comfy swing, Japanese Anime figurines and anime theme songs playing as background; sure sounds like a haven for Otaku. The setting is quite standard-average with some industrial elements but the menu has got nothing related to Japanese anime at all (not even cats). They have a small menu that offers a simple but inexpensive standard cafe fare; though nothing is overly exciting here, it seems like the place has garnered a loyal following from the neighborhood.  

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Christmas & New Year Buffet 2015 @ Taste Cafe of G Hotel, Penang.

The jolly season is here, celebrate the most wonderful time of the year at G Hotel as the hotel rolls out a series of Christmas-themed buffet. If you are hankering after some classic and traditional Christmas dishes, look no further. These themed buffets are certainly not the cheapest option in town but the leading hotel offers a complimentary boozy treat to the delicious seasonal highlights.  

Christmas Eve Dinner
Price: Rm 148 nett for adult/ Rm 74 for child/ Rm 84 for senior citizen
Time: 6:30 pm to 10:30 pm
*A Free Glass of Gluehwein*

Christmas Day Sparkling Brunch
Price: Rm 138 nett for adult/ Rm 69 for child/ Rm 79 for senior citizen
Time: 12 pm to 3 pm
*A Free Glass of Sparking Wine*

Christmas Day Dinner
Price: Rm 148 nett for adult/ Rm 74 for child/ Rm 84 for senior citizen
Time: 6:30 pm to 10:30 pm

New Year's Eve Dinner
Price: Rm 168 nett for adult/ Rm 84 for child/ Rm 94 for senior citizen
Time: 7 pm to 11 pm
*A Free Glass of Sparkling Wine*

New Year's Day Brunch
Price: Rm 138 nett/ Rm 69 for child/ Rm 79 for senior citizen
Time: 12 pm to 3 pm
*A Free Glass of Sparkling Wine*

Many Thanks to G Hotel for hosting us that evening.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Eggette Lab (蛋仔工坊) @ Gurney Plaza, Penang.

A brand specializing in making Eggette, a classic Hong Kong street snack has started their business operation in the form of kiosk (more like take and go) on 7th floor of Gurney Plaza Penang (right next to Max Gourmet). The venture is not new in the industry, they have a few branches across the KL district and now, the first branch in Penang. Eggette Lab aims to sling a vast array of Eggettes/ Hong Kong Egg Waffles in a few playful and quirky flavors but the idea was well-sold to the young and curious; drawing a huge crowd on the evening we visited. The servers were fast... but not quite fast enough. No seats allocated for customers and it is more like a takeaway food kiosk and not meant for hipsters to chill out. The location may be a little odd but this could be the ideal snack that movie-watchers could snack on while waiting for the showtime.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Das Rad Cafe @ King Street, Georgetown, Penang.

**Das Rad has since ceased its business operations.**

Position within a heritage house along Lebuh King, Das Rad Cafe is a venture by passionate cyclists but it is not your average cafe. Not only does the cafe offers a variety of  fresh bakes but also as a laid-back, informal dining destination on weekends. Das Rad Cafe's menu is interesting... with a vast selection of German-inspired dishes such as Bratwurst, Beef Goulash, Schnitzel etc but prices are wallet-friendly. It's hard to imagine that they are serving European dishes (more towards German) here with the heritage interior decor- Chinese old-school folding screen, wooden pillars adorned with Chinese-influenced patterns and the classic tiles. The fact that the owners constantly approaching customers and making sure everything is served accordingly makes us feel the presence and their sheer passion as well as superior customer service. If you are looking for scrumptious cakes, sensational German meal in a homey venue... look no further. 

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Crab & Lobster @ Straits Quay, Penang.

The moment you walk in Crab & Lobster, you must be prepared that you are signing up for a messy-mayhem meal. There's no restaurant that serves Seafood in Penang like Crab & Lobster (yet) but the concept has been around for a while- cooked Seafood will be poured on the table and diners will savor the crustaceans using gloved hands so this might not be the ideal place for a romantic date. I have had similar experience once recently during my Medan trip. There are a few packages available but for a start, we'd suggest to go for their economical Shrimp or Crab Feast (with add-ons available). For those with deep pockets could order their imported alcohols on a huge display fridge (around the Rm 25 to Rm 30 mark if you must know) while the Oysters aficionados could go for their range of premium imported fresh Oysters beautifully displayed at the Oyster Bar at one corner of the restaurant. The service provided to us was expert (including recommendation for Oysters) and there is a sense of warm conviviality to the place (there's also an al-fresco dining area that offers Straits Quay's Sea View). If you decide to visit for dinner, advance reservation is recommended. Crab & Lobter is occupying the corner lot at Strais Quay... right next to Aster Spring and few shops away from Healy Macs and Uncle Albert's.