Thursday, June 27, 2024

Ban Xian Lao Wu 半闲老屋 @ Fettes Park, Tanjung Tokong, Penang.

Slightly off the beaten track- Ban Xian Lao Wu 半闲老屋 at Fettes Park is a quaint haven where the charm of antique and used knick-knacks meets the delicate art of Chinese Tea-infused delights. A stone's throw distance away from Prima Tanjung (Tanjung Tokong), Ban Xian Lao Wu is tucked in a corner right behind the Indian Temple along Jalan Fettes. The narrow alley to the entrance is found adjacent to Fatty Loh Chicken Rice (next to the Indian Temple). Step in the place and you will be instantly transported back in time where you will find yourself surrounded in antiques and used Chinese knick-knacks. Food offering-wise, the restaurant has a small menu... mainly Chinese Tea-infused delights but with great attention of details provided. 

Dumplings served with White Tea Soup 白茶饺子 (Rm 8.80)

Dried Anchovy Rice Balls 江鱼仔茶饭团 (Rm 9.90)

Kim Chi Rice Balls 韩式泡菜茶饭团 (Rm 11.90)

Scallion Oil Noodles 葱油面 (Rm 9.90)

Sour Plum Cherry Tomatoes 话梅小番茄 (Rm 4.90)

Osmanthus Jelly 桂花乌龙茶冻 (Rm 8.90)

Waffles with Premium Ice Cream- Da Hong Pao and Matcha Ice Cream 老屋沃夫大红袍抹茶冰淇淋 (Rm 13.90)

Sour Plum, Lime and Pu Er Tea 话梅青柠普尔 (Rm 10.90)

We started off with the Dumplings served with White Tea Soup; unlike the usual flavorful meat broth, it tasted light and easy on the palate with a mellow Tea aroma. Some may find it bland but we thought it was refreshing, quite an exquisite one. We enjoyed the Scallion Oil Noodles, one of the best sellers. The savory-sweet Soy Sauce worked well with the noodles, backed up a bold Pork Lard aroma... simple but delicious. Another type of tummy-fillers: the Rice Balls are available in 2 condiments- Dried Anchovies and Kim Chi. The Japanese Pearl Rice is cooked with Chinese Tea, to imbue a floral aroma to the Rice. The ones with Dried Anchovies have a salty essence while the Kim Chi version has a better crunch and a mild acidity. Both were okay and beautifully seasoned (despite salty Anchovies and Kimchi have been added). 

For dessert, the Waffle served with homemade Da Hong Pao Ice Cream and Matcha Ice Cream was amazing. The Waffle retained the crisp, not exactly very dense but light-crisp version... which worked really well with the Ice Cream. Both types of Ice Cream carry bold green Tea aroma, which offered a refreshing dimension to the sweet treat. Most dishes are above satisfactory, but the serving portion is smaller than usual.

Taste: 7.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service: 7.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Price: 7/10 (1-3 expensive, 4-7 average, 8-10 cheap)
Parking: 6.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Ambiance: 8/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No

Business Hours: 11 am to 6 pm. Closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Contact Number: 012-564 3932

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