Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Tomyam (东炎) Town @ Icon City, Bukit Mertajam, Penang.

The name "Tomyam Town" paints a picture, the place should not be new to Tom Yum devotees, the brand is well-established in the township of Bukit Mertajam. One of Tomyam Town's branches is located at Icon City, where clamoring crowd can be easily noticed during evenings on weekends. The restaurant adopts "help yourself" style- all possible ingredients are displayed right in front of the counter and diners are to pick their preferred ingredients to be added into the noodle-dish (though variety is limited to processed food mostly, with some frozen Seafood). Impossible to tell the prices but from our experience, it seems like the prices are reasonable and may not cause a dent on the wallet. 

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

118 Bean Sprout Chicken Rice @ Farlim, Penang.

Lured by the promising images shared online, we paid a visit to 118 Bean Sprout Chicken Rice at Farlim.... housed in one of the shop houses a stone's throw distance away from the Farlim Night Market. Opened for less than a year, the place has proven to be one of the favorite Chicken Rice places for regular residents. It opens as early as 10:30 am and a steady inflow of customers were seen at 10:40 am (we were there early at 10:30 am). If not for takeaways, there are comfortable chairs and seats available for in-house dining; the menu is pretty standard with smooth blanched Chicken as the main highlight while tummy fillers include Wan Ton Mee, Ipoh Hor Fun; as well as sides like blanched Bean Sprouts, braised Tofu and Egg. Budget-friendly prices but none of the dishes we had impressed us....

Monday, August 29, 2016

L Kitchen (李月香- 粥。面。饭) @ Campbell Street, Georgetown, Penang.

Right smack in the middle of Chinatown, L Kitchen is a newly opened Chinese restaurant right next to the entrance to Chowrasta Market. The facade does not seem to give any hint on what could be offered and the fact that the place is named "L Kitchen" gives more suspense. The dirty minded would think of something else but we reckon L may refer to the surname "Lee". In L Kitchen, there is a wide variety of Chinese-offering, ranging from Noodle-dishes to Rice-dishes or even porridge/ congee; at unbeatable prices. The menu seems to carry traces of Cantonese-influences but with a blend of local elements too (such as Tom Yum). 

Friday, August 26, 2016

Marios Italian Cuisine @ Bukit Jambul, Penang.

Marios Italian Cuisine touts to package one of the most magnificent table-side views of Bukit Jambul together with their Italian-offering. The newly opened Italian restaurant sits on top the Bukit Jambul hill and offers a breath-taking panoramic view of the bustling Bayan Lepas/ Bayan Baru town. This hidden gem is tucked away from the main road of Jalan Bukit Jambul (not the slope heading to Equatorial Hotel Penang) and housed in one of the mammoth-sized bungalows (a stone's throw distance away from the Bukit Jambul recreation hill). Step in the bungalow and you will be welcomed by the intimate setting with huge see-through glasses offering spectacular greenery and hill-view; the homey ambiance suggests it could be an ideal place for evening chill. On the menu, Marios boasts over a huge selection of Italian eats- from Appetizers, Salad to Pasta, Pizza, Grills to Desserts.... at unexpected wallet-friendly price tags. Making advance reservation is recommended to secure the extra romantic-value spot. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

[The Original] Boat Noodles @ Sunway Carnival Mall, Seberang Jaya, Penang.

The very-hyped Thai Boat Noodle trend in Penang seen a few new opening of Thai Boat Noodle outlets but the market leader- Boat Noodles did not respond to the trend. We believe the trend has subsided for now but recently, The Original Boat Noodles has decided to expand their business operations to Penang. The first branch by the brand is now open at Sunway Carnival Mall and relentless queues were spotted during our trips there. It was not easy for us either, we gladly joined the queue and it took us approximately 15 minutes to clear it. The Thai menu is Boat Noodles-centric with a few sides while the interior decor is minimal and a lot of tables (distance between tables is small). If I were to nitpick, there are rooms for improvements- the floor was not properly cleaned, utensils were greasy; the only thing praise-worthy was the crowd-management. Find Boat Noodles on the Second Floor of Sunway Carnival Mall, a stone's throw distance away from Hanamaru and Yoshinoya

Monday, August 22, 2016

Art Sim Cafe @ Tanjung Bungah, Penang.

It took us a few turnings before we could locate Art Sim Cafe, a cafe that serves homey dishes housed in a snug annex of a Semi-Detached House at Jalan Gajah. If there's only one word to describe the interior... it would be "retro". The place is dedicated to all things from the 60's or 70's, you will find many hidden treasures or antiques surrounding you; even the ceiling is packed with retro curios and bric-a-brac. The heat-intolerant would be glad to know that there are plenty of fans erected so the ventilation should be fine. Art Sim serves a very small Nyonya-influenced menu and some of the highlights include Nasi Lemak, Kerabu Bee Hoon, Guang Jiang and Sambal Hae Bee Toast. 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Tim Ho Wan Dim Sum Malaysia (添好運) @ Mid Valley City, Kuala Lumpur.

One of the much lauded Michelin Starred Dim Sum brands- Tim Ho Wan, has certainly stirred up the interest of many Dim Sum aficionados since its opening in 2014. Relentless queues can still be spotted at all branches across the nation. The highly boasted One-Starred Michelin branch has a standardized interior decor across all branches; the vibe is a reminiscent of those busy and fast-moving Hong Kong Cha Chaan Teng- noisy, narrowly spaced seating and simple furniture. It was more of a fast-food joint in lieu of a upscale Dim Sum restaurant. Food was alright for novelty experience but given the hefty price tags and unpleasant dining experience, we have no reasons to call for a second visit. 

Friday, August 19, 2016

Wan Ton Mee House (云吞面之家) @ Pulau Tikus Market, Penang.

There are many Wan Ton Mee joints/ stalls around but not many are as crowded and packed as Wan Ton Mee House, at Pulau Tikus. Wan Ton Mee House started with a humble beginning- as one of the hawker stalls housed in one of the coffee shops in the vicinity. The business has grown and expanded over the years; today, they run a coffee shop solely offering Wan Ton Mee. The place is well-received by the regular patrons and is often seen especially packed in the mornings. Parking can be a hitch though.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Handy Spoon @ Weld Quay, Georgetown, Penang.

Breakfast is believed to be the most important meal of the day; a healthy yet hearty portion of breakfast would be great to fuel energy for the day. A sister restaurant of The Leaf Healthy House, Handy Spoon focuses on serving healthy breakfast items to promote healthy-balanced diet, based on the concept of "The Eat Well Guide" where all carbohydrates, protein, fiber and nutrients are carefully calculated. Handy Spoon uses take-away concept- foods are presented in take-away boxes but for those who prefer to dine in, there are a few tables and chairs too. The location's obscure and concealed for the uninitiated. At Victoria Street (where the main Post Office is located), turn into the small alley facing the Post Office and you will find Handy Spoon shortly on your left. 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Waka Waka African Grilled Chicken @ Sungai Ara, Bayan Lepas, Penang.

"Waka Waka, It's Time for Africa!" sounds exactly like the song title of a song by Shakira, while we are not sure if the food has any relationship with the continent but the interior decor does suggest so. Waka Waka is housed in one of the shop houses in the neighborhood of Sungai Ara and specializes in serving Grilled Chicken (African Grilled Chicken?). It does remind me of Nandos, the fast-food chain in some ways... Waka Waka has almost similar offering- Grilled Chicken with fiery hot home-made Chili sauce. The place is fully air-conditioned and has the standard restaurant setting suitable for all occasions.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Shan Dong Bei Chinese Cuisine (膳中国东北小食馆) @ Raja Uda, Butterworth, Penang.

From the rustic flavors from North-East China, Shan Dong Bei Chinese Cuisine has been receiving exceptional comments on the food quality but unsatisfactory for the unfriendly and inhospitable services by the cantankerous proprietor (or servers). While we do agree on the statement (service could be further improved), we thought the food was beyond average and despite the unwelcoming service, the place is still worth a second-visit. The Chinese restaurant operates at the new Butterworth Business Center along Jalan Raja Uda, ensconced on first floor of the building (above Yes Yogurt). The restaurant offers a large menu with many sweet and savory dishes ensures everyone will find something to tickle their taste buds; their home-made Dumplings are amongst the must-try items. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Let's Meat @ Lembah Permai, Tanjung Bungah, Penang.

Early risers would be glad to know that there's a new breakfast joint in the residential area of Lembah Permai but breakfast is not typical here. Let's Meat boasts over a range of daily specials that one can't get anywhere else- Biscuits and Gravy, Buttermilk Pancakes just to name two. The team behind Let's Meat was previously from Rejoyce Cafe; the place is new and the menu has expanded but the service is still as friendly as ever. The busy-buzzing cafe had a steady customer in-flow on our visit, the place was full to the brim; many of them were foreigners... as though we were dining in a cafe at foreign land but we were not surprised. Why not? Good food, attentive service, wallet-friendly price tags with generous portion.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Sin Kee Chili Pan Mee @ Summerton, Bayan Lepas, Penang.

Another new option for the folks working in Bayan Lepas area, Sin Kee Chili Pan took over the shop lot of Thai Hao Chi Boat Noodles at Summerton. The place is clean and brightly-lit, when the server handed the menu to me, it instantly reminded me of the now defunct Kong Bee Lee Pan Mee, (previously located at Taman Kheng Tian), which seems to offer the same products. Not only that the place offers similar products but the design of menu resembles shades of Kong Bee Lee. The offering is simple and direct. The service on the other hand, could be more meticulous. We only had 2 simple orders (with add-ons) and surprisingly, they still managed to mess up our orders. We tried explaining to the servers but none of them seem to understand English (the Cashier speaks Mandarin but she seems to be in her obsessive daydreaming). I threw the white flag and settled with what they served to us. 

Monday, August 8, 2016

Young Sheng Hot Pot (养生火锅) @ Icon City, Bukit Mertajam, Penang.

"Yang Sheng" is a healthy regime or a belief by Chinese where certain combination of food could complement each other and maximize the health benefits. Combining the right types of food could boost the body's absorption of nutritions. Young Sheng Hot Pot at Icon City, Bukit Mertajam applies the food synergy theory on their offering- dishes are meticulously paired with different ingredients to optimize health benefits. The restaurant presents their food in the the form of Hot Pot and boiled Soup. The offering is limited but more than good enough to satisfy all range of diners. Young Sheng Hot Pot can be found on the first floor, on top of Baby Sumo at Icon City.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Penang Coffee & Dessert Festival 2016 @ Gurney Paragon Mall, Penang.

A dream come true dessert fantasies as a Coffee & Dessert-centric festival is set to happen in Gurney Paragon Mall this coming weekend (12 to 14 August 2016). The event will see sweet tooths gathering for delectable greatness. Jointly organized by Gurney Paragon Mall, the mall invites you to embark on a decadent journey in search of some of the best desserts in town. Sweet creators for the event include Safe Room, Arabica Estate, Paul Loiis, Frank Laurent, HK Triple Milk etc and the objective for the event is to enhance and encourage growth for the coffee and dessert industry in Penang. A string of fun-filled events that participants could partake would be Latte Art Competition, Brewer's Cup Competition. Dessert making workshop etc. The Penang Coffee & Dessert Festival 2016 will only take place for 3 days from 12th August 2016 (Friday) to 14th August 2016 (Sunday), at Ground Floor of Gurney Paragon Mall... right in front of St. Jo's.  

Friday, August 5, 2016

Ddung's Bob Burger @ Gurney Plaza, Penang.

Forget the customary Burger with soft-pillowy bun cuddle juicy-succulent meat patty with slender crunchy greens; the newly opened Ddung's Bob Burger offers eccentric and playful Korean-inspired Rice Burger. The kiosk at Level 6 of Gurney Plaza seeks to provide grab and go service, though there are a couple of tables and a few chairs; the seating was rather uncomfortable and meant for a quick meal. The real pull factor however, is the rather uncommon offering of Korean Rice Burger and Dosirak Rice Cups (Korean's Lunch Boxes); those with a sweet tooth would be glad to know that Ddung's Bob Burger offers Bungeoppang/ Korean Fish Waffle with Ice Cream too (though prices are on the higher side).

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Red House 23 Teo Chew Porridge (红屋清粥小菜) @ Bagan Lallang, Butterworth.

Rainy days or sultry warm days, a bowl of simple-straight forward Teo Chew Porridge will give you all the satisfaction you need. For an extravagant Teo Chew Porridge meal, make your way to Bagan Lallang, off Raja Uda at Butterworth area and you will find Red House 23 near by the traffic light to Raja Uda. A good Teo Chew Porridge experience should come with myriad of small dishes and you will find the same at Red House. The restaurant is ensconced in one of the terrace houses along the street, with an eye-catchy red signage. Step in the restaurant and you will be welcomed by the wide variety of dishes; the sweet tooth would be glad to know that Red House 23 offers different type of Tong Sui (Chinese boiled Dessert) every day. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

The North Banquet (鸿宴) 2016- of The Hosts and The VIPs [proudly organized by CHT Network and Ichi Media]

With an ambitious aim to host the first Red Carpet Gala Dinner at mainland Butterworth, CHT Network collaborated with Ichi Media for the first time to host an exclusive Red Carpet Gala Dinner- "The North Banquet 2016- of The Hosts and The VIPs". The event was held on 30 July 2016 at Sunway Carnival Mall's Convention Centre and has received tremendous support from many big brands such as RADO, Shiseido Professional, Lamborghini Kuala Lumpur, Sunway Hotel, Royals Blue, Airmas Group, GST Group, Gartien, Starbucks Malaysia, Red Box Karaoke, One East Museum, Passionis and DCOVA etc. The North Banquet provides a platform for identified outstanding and influential personalities as hosts to invite their guests to the aforementioned Red Carpet event in Butterworth and to further promote business networking opportunities. Business industries involved by the Hosts are Tourism and Hospitality, Media, Construction, Manufacturing, Business Consultancy and Legal. The highlights of the evening included charity Auction, Fashion Show, specially crafted 5-course fine dining dinner etc.

Many Thanks to CHT Network and Ichi Media for hosting us that evening. 

Monday, August 1, 2016

Bao Culture @ Maritime Piazza, Karpal Singh Drive, Penang.

Gua Bao (刈包) is commonly known as the national burger for the Taiwanese; though they are quite common in Penang but the Taiwanese delicacy does not seem to have stirred up the interest of the gourmands. With the Gua Bao-scene going on for a few years, Maritime Piazza sees the opening of a new Gua Bao-specialist. It settles in the slot right next to Milkcow Soft Serve, 1st floor of the building. The place is not fully air-conditioned but one could enjoy the natural sea breeze, though it can be quite warm in the sultry afternoons. The menu is pretty Gua Bao-focused, though there are a few sides that diners can order.