Saturday, June 30, 2007

Soy @ G Hotel

Soy is G Hotel's newest restaurant, opening its' doors just this Monday. It's so new I didn't even know of it's existence and when I was told to go for lunch at G Hotel, I thought I was going to the Japanese Restaurant, Miraku!

Soy is actually one part of the restaurant. The other part is called Sesame, which will only be opened mid July.

This was a really impromptu visit during lunch on a weekday, and I didn't have a camera with me, so had to resort to using my camera phone because the food presentation was just too good to resist! Plus, I had to 'say grace' as a blogger mah! :P

Soy serves Chinese fusion food with a simple two page menu consisting of about 10 starters, 12 mains, a few desserts (all with really lenthy names) and a drinks list.

I arrived a bit late, and so food was already ordered on my behalf. We had three starters - the Garlic Prawn Caesar Salad, Gado gado and Soft Shell Crab XO Sauce.

Garlic Prawn Caesar Salad

I loved the Garlic Prawn Caesar Salad! It was served with just the right amount of salad sauce with cripsy garlic crisps and prawns on a bed of fresh greens!

The gado gado too was not bad. It was a bit dryer than what I'm used to, with minimal sauce but it was still tasty.


As for the Soft Shell Crab, it was fried with batter and I couldn't taste the XO! Not one of my favourites. I still prefer the soft shell crabs served at Japanese restaurants in a handroll.

Soft Shell Crab XO Sauce

Next up came the mains. We were very ambitious indeed, ordering one main each, even after having 3 starters!! I had the Crispy Pork Spaghetti Aglio Olio, which is actually 'siew bak' with aglio oglio pasta. A nice chinese twist to this popular Italian dish. I enjoyed the spaghetti but the crispy pork wasn't as tasty.

Other mains we had... The BBQ Coffee Cocoa Pork Ribs & Garlic Fried Rice was tasty though the Garlic Fried Rice needed more oomph! It wasn't 'garlicky' enough and tasted rather bland.

The Slow Cooked Pork Belly & Spicy Dried Shrimp Rice was well received. The pork belly was soft and tender but the rice was a bit hard.

The Steam Egg Custard & Tiger Prawns & Shanghainese Noodles looked the best out of all the dishes due to its interesting presentation. And to me, it tasted the best among the four mains.

After all that, we still ordered dessert - the Sweet Yam Pudding with Gingko Nuts served with Vanilla ice cream and Warm Chocolate & Nuttella Tart + Banana Fritters + vanilla ice cream.

Sweet Yam Pudding (also called "or ni" in hokkien)

The Choc Nutella tart...

I was really looking forward to the Choc & Nutella tart, being a huge nutella fan. But to my disappointment I couldn't taste much Nutella. It was definitely chocolate...but no taste of nutella, plus the crust of the tart was a bit too hard. Otherwise, the desserts were passable.

For all that we ordered including 2 drinks and chinese tea, the total bill came up to about RM216.

All in all, I found the food at Soy to be passable. If you're looking for something new to try with interesting food presentation and combinations then Soy is the place. I think the concept at Soy is great and a pretty good try in the direction of the many Chinese Fusion Foods that are available in KL right now. When we asked what food Sesame (its 'other half') would be serving, the manager told us it would be Chinese Fusion Food served as a set meal with about 6-7 mini courses, which kinda reminds me a bit of Eest at Westin Hotel KL. Meanwhile, I wouldnt mind if Soy gave their food a bit more 'oomph' in the taste department!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Lecka Lecka @ Pulau Tikus

Had previously spied this place earlier on and finally....its open!!

Upon visiting the newly opened Lecka Lecka on Sunday night we were greeted by the ice cream bar...
I have tried Lecka Lecka in KL but it was a long time ago and I couldn't remember what the flavours taste my family and I had a pretty interesting time trying out almost all the flavours. I do remember the outlets in KL having more flavors though. Finally, we settled for Bacio, Creme Brule and After 8.

Bacio on the left and Creme Brule on the right

The waitress told us that there are a few types of basic bases for the gelatos - water mixed with milk, water with yoghurt and water with fruits. All milk based gelatos are 94% fat free while all fruit based gelatos are 99.9% fat free! Cool no?

Since we tried the milk based gelatos, I'd have to say that they don't taste as creamy as say Basking Robbins or Haegen Daez. So I think I'll try the fruit based ones next time as I do believe they will fare better. Also, we found the gelato too soft and was melting rather quickly. Coincidentally, we met the manager Darren, who told us that the texture of the gelato that day was really a bit too soft as the actual texture is supposed to taste sponge-y. But he assured us he had a new refrigerator from Italy coming in soon in time for their Grand Opening this coming Saturday.

With cool and comfortable decor, WIFI, healthy gelatos (they're about Rm5 per scoop) and a good selection of cocktails and alcoholic drinks available, I reckon this place will be the next hip hang out. This Lecka Lecka outlet also serves main meals (mostly Western food). Looking forward to trying their main meals as well the brownies which I heard are really good.

Lecka Lecka is located at Pulau Tikus at the row of shoplots next to the Burmah House Maybank. It is two doors away from Nippon Yataimura Japanese Restaurant, next to Teow Chew Meng restaurant.

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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Adzuki Mania @ Starbucks

I must admit I am a Starbucks fan. It is my sanctuary when I need a quiet place to relax over a cup of steaming Caramel Macchiato. It is also my hang out, a place to catch up with friends over cups of Green Tea Frappucinos and Ice Shaken Tazo Lemon Zen. And of course, Starbucks is the place I go to when I have a chocolate craving - their Signature Hot Chocolate is definitely one of the the best hot chocolates around - rich, chocolatey thick and creamy.

For the summer, Starbucks has gone Adzuki (red bean) crazy. There's the Adzuki frappucino (which I find a lil too sweet for my liking) and the adzuki foods - Adzuki Scone and an Azuki Cake. Have yet to try to cake. But the Adzuki scones are to die for! Very buttery with a generous layer of red bean paste...A must try!

The Adzuki Scone with an Ice Shaken Tazo Lemon Zen (very refreshing drink!) in the foreground

And oh yes, a Jusco card entitles you to a 10% discount at Starbucks. :)

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Saturday, June 16, 2007

Expectations vs Disappointment

Another non food topic again today.

Am rather disappointed today, feeling rather let down and neglected by a friend, who had earlier promised to do something for me. But now it seems like he can't fulfill that promise.

I suppose its only natural to feel some disappointment because expectations were there. And its natural to have some expectations of your friends and your family right? And yet, I wonder if I should feel disappointed? Maybe I'm expecting too much, and maybe I should be more understanding of his situation.

But still... it just makes me feel that he doesn't really value me very much. And that's not a nice feeling to have.

So back to my question... am I expecting too much? Or should I be more understanding and just brush this aside?

I understand that when there are no expectations there are no disappointments. But how on earth do you be friends, put your emotions into your relationships and yet expect nothing in return?


Thursday, June 14, 2007

So You Think You Can Dance Malaysia

Another rant post coming please bear with me for a little, while I veer off topic.
Have been faithfully following So You Think You Can Dance Malaysia since it started and this is the second time I feel so frustrated!
The first time was when Sean was eliminated in the second week. I was totally shocked and thought he did not deserve to be eliminated so early in the competition because I felt he had so much potential. So yeah, he didn't really deliver a great performance that week, but did he deserve to be kicked out just because of one lousy, slightly below par performance?? Definitely not! Despite my mom, my brother and I furiously voting for him, he still had to leave....
But that, is history, and something that I've let go. I still believe Sean is a great dancer and he shouldn't let this dampen his spirits.

Tonight! Another frustrating night, mainly because I 'beh tahan' that blardee host anymore! Yep, the female host. I already didn't like her from the beginning but I just gritted my teeth and focused more on the contestants and the dancing. But each week she got more and more irritating and she made so many fumbles that they had to bring in a co host to save her.

Tonight! wah, she made the biggest fumble yet! While they were announcing the bottom six for the female dancers, the male co host had called both Brancy and Sue. And later announced that Sue was safe, meaning Brancy was in the bottom six. Right after this, the very brilliant female host happily announced "Congratulations Brancy!" (I can't remember what she said exactly after that, except for the very glaring mistake of saying Congratulations Brancy!!) After that, my gosh, both the host 'kelam kabut' already to cover up that mistake!!
I mean, as a Brancy fan, I'm furious la! Dah lah people feel so bad for being in the bottom 6, suddenly you have to go tell people Congratulations! Congratulations?? For being in the bottom 6??? Thank goodness Brancy is still safe!

I think that at this stage, all the dancers are really really good and its tough to see someone go home. So, the least they could do is to handle eliminations with a lil bit more sensitivity! Previously, they even messed up the numbers for voting for the contestants!

Tonight, I'm sad to see Jimmy go home, cos I do think he's great. All of them are actually. To all of you Top 20 guys (& gals) are the best!!

And to 8tv, please please please get a better (female) host!


Tua Pui Curry Mee & "O Kio" @ Weld Quay

One of my favourite Curry Mee stalls in Penang is located along Weld Quay just outside the stall owner's house. If you are travelling with the jetty on your left, Tua Pui (hokkien for 'fat') Curry Mee stall is further down from the jetty, after the Shell station, on the opposite side of the road.
There you will spot a lone stall with a bright yellow signboard.

To me, a great bowl of curry mee is largely dependent upon its curry soup. The curry must be 'lemak' (creamy) enough and spicy enough, and most definitely the chilli paste that comes with it must be fragrant and spicy. What makes Tua Pui Curry Mee special is the variety of 'side dishes' you can add into your bowl of curry mee. The selection being offered here include curry chicken, curry squids, prawns, chicken feet, fish balls and gizzards (all cooked in curry). And when you order these extras, the curry from these sides will be added into your curry mee, thus making the soup thicker and tastier!

I usually drop by this place for lunch, despite it being skin burningly hot! If you prefer, you can also sit in a little corner inside Tua Pui's house so that its cooler.

And as my usual 'ritual' goes, after my bowl of piping hot curry mee, I'll make a stop at this little drinks van just next to Tua Pui Curry Mee.

They have chendol and other drinks here, but I will always, always order the "O Kio". I have no idea what that name means...but the "O Kio" is actually "Ai Yu Ping" dessert. This dessert is more common in KL I think, because this place is the only place I know of in Penang that sells this dessert! What IS an "O Kio" and a "Ai Yu Ping"??
Its basically a jelly with a slight orange hint, topped with some canned lychee, mixed with syrup and fresh lemon juice. This stall tops is up with ice shavings, delivering a refreshingly cool dessert!

The "O Kio" or "Ai Yu Ping" Jelly

This drinks stall is located a few steps way from Tua Pui Curry Mee, at the corner of Weld Quay and Gat Lebuh Acheh underneath a big tree. Open for business most afternoons.
Meanwhile, Tua Pui Curry Mee is open from about 9am-4pm, closed on Thursdays (if i remember correctly!!)

And oh yes....opposite Tua Pui Curry Mee is this heavenly 'goreng pisang' stall...but that's another story altogether...!

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Lorong Selamat Char Koay Teow

Char Koay Teow is definitely one of the must eats when one visits Penang. And Penang is blessed with many places that serve really good Char Koay Teow, one of them being the famous (or rather 'infamous') Lorong Selamat Char Koay Teow.

This place seems to be very popular amongst tourists. And sometimes I wonder if its the koay teow thats the crowd puller, or the infamous less than pleasant aunty who wears a red beret and safety glasses while frying her koay teow!

Recently, on a Saturday afternoon, which also happened to be a public holiday, I took a friend from out of town to Lorong Selamat because she had a craving for Char Koay Teow. And we proceeded to wait in line for almost 40 minutes before we could get our order!

The very very long queue...

Finally! Our Char Koay Teow...

This stall's char koay teow is definitely tasty but most times I'd give it a miss because of the long wait under the hot sun. My favourite Char Koay Teow is still Ah Leng's. :)

The Lorong Selamat Char Koay Teow comes in 3 versions - RM5 for the normal version (without egg), Rm5.50 normal version with egg and RM7.50 big version with added prawns. Business hours approximately 11am-6pm, closed on Tuesdays.

And yes, the aunty is every bit like the description. She wears the red beret and the safety glasses. Doesn't talk to anyone (you order with her assistant) and she continues frying plate after plate of char koay teow with utmost concentration! Just watching her makes me feel exhausted! And...a lil something else I noticed while waiting in line...our Lorong Selamat Char Koay Teow aunty also wears Crocs Shoes!! Original one okay?! :)


Sunday, June 10, 2007

The Complete MY List

The brainchild of Daryl, the final complete MY List is here! I managed to participate right on the day of the closing date! For those of you Malaysian Bloggers who have not joined the list and would like to, please feel free to drop a note to Daryl and I'm sure he'll be able to help you out. Let's group together fellow Malaysian bloggers to help each other and learn from each other! Many thanks Daryl!

Kitchen Experiments
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Internet-Crazy Blog
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Make Money Online Review Center
Little Penang
Healing tips and home remedies
Ornamental Fish
Grasp! Seize! Get hold of it!
Life Snapshot
Mental Freedom, Por Favor
Eat. Live. Be Merry!
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mott�s island
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Easy Home Cooking
Pink Poison Store
Show Me Health Biz
The Undeniable Beauty - Revamped
An Anonymous Journal
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She Rambles On
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life is beautiful
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Saturday, June 09, 2007

Balik Pulau Laksa!

Continuing my adventure from the Balik Pulau durians, my friends and I headed off in search of laksa. Usually, people will go for the laksa at Balik Pulau market. But my friend told me, 'Cannot, must go to the one at someone's house one. Nicer.' I've heard of this famous laksa before but have never tried it. And since my friend can vaguely remember where it is, we decided to try and find the place.

Now, I can't really give directions cos I'm so lost in Balik Pulau, but the place is at Kuala Jalan Baru and I have GPS co ordinates of the place!! heehee... N5 21.227 E100 12.05
whatever that means...but I presume if you have a GPS unit and punch in those co ordinates, your GPS will bring you right to the place!

Sure enough, we arrived at someone's house. Its a row of houses opposite a small river. We were told in the afternoons when the fishermen come back, we could buy very fresh seafood off their boats on that river. Upon arrival, I spotted this... only on Saturday and Sunday!

Quickly, we ordered our laksa and waited in anticipation. I must say that we were not disappointed! Our laksa came loaded with lots of fish! Very flavorful and utterly delicious!! Rating: A+


Despite being so full from the durians, I still polished off one bowl of laksa and drank all the soup! (which I don't normally do)

If laksa's not your favourite, you can also choose to have Hokkien Mee/Prawn Mee. I couldn't eat another bite after my laksa, but my other friends ordered a bowl of Hokkien Mee to share and said it was pretty good. But laksa is their main attraction here.

So, the next time you're in the mood for some laksa and feeling a tad bit know where to go!

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Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Balik Pulau Durians!

Over the weekend, I had the chance to go to Balik Pulau for some durians! A friend knows the owner of a durian orchard, and so organized for us to go eat unlimited amounts of durian, all for only RM12!! Although I've loved durians for as long as I can remember (I used to eat durian rice when I was a kid - pour some water on the rice to make it slightly wet, add in a bit of salt and eat it with durian....yummy!!) I hardly ever went to Balik Pulau to eat their famous durians for the very reason that it was too far and my parents didn't want to take us. But now....muahaha...durian revenge!

Balik Pulau is not really that far (especially if you've got great company), and don't be thwarted by the narrow, uneven roads into the orchards...because in there you will find... durians galore!

and all 'branded' one some more!

Once we got to Uncle John's orchard, we wasted no time...he opened durian after durian for us, each time telling us the 'species' of the durian. I for one, have no idea how to differentiate them... I only know what I like - durians that have 'oomph', don't taste too bitter and have texture that is thick and creamy!
Uncle John doing his thing...

'Green Skin' durian




A very cute and small D2, but very 'meaty' indeed!

I have no idea how many durians I had... I just knew that each one was as good as the next but if I had to choose, I would say I loved the D2 and D24 the best. About an hour later, I couldn't eat anymore because it was just so rich! Uncle John also served us pineapples which I thought were a nice contrast to the rich durians.

After complaining and whining that we were all so full, someone suggested we go for Balik Pulau laksa.... and immediately everyone said yes! So much for being soooooo full!!
Coming up in the next entry... balik pulau laksa....stay tuned!

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Monday, June 04, 2007

Coming Soon to Penang....

heeheehee..spotted this place over the weekend... Can't wait for it to open!!!! Gelato heaven man! and its 99.9% fat free too!

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Friday, June 01, 2007

Dragon-i @ Queensbay Mall Penang

Oooh...finally Dragon-i makes its debut in Penang! I've only tried it once in Midvalley KL and absolutely fell in love with their "Xiu Long Bao". So I was absolutely dying to go to the new outlet in Penang and managed to pay them a visit on Wednesday.

First things first, Dragon-i is located on the 2nd floor Centre Court Queensbay Mall, opposite Swensens and Sakae Sushi. Thinking that I was clever enough to find the place on my own without asking for directions, I ended up walking for 15 mins before I found out where it was. (and that's cos I stopped to ask a security guard too!) So... I ended up at Dragon-i at 7.30pm and there was already a long queue. Typical Penangite behaviour to flock to a new place and wait like hell, when a few months down the road, the place would be 'pak bang' (swatting mosquitoes in hokkien) empty!

Now I understand why they need to have the see through open kitchen at the front of the keep waiting patrons entertained!!

After a 20 minute wait, we were shown our table and we took our orders quickly.
Surprisingly we didn't have to wait long for our food. First up was the Hot & Sour La Mien (hand pulled noodle), which was a tad bit too starchy for me and not spicy enough. But it was still tasty and given a stamp of approval by my grandpa (not easy to get you know!)

Then came the Cold Pig Shank with Seasoned Jellyfish. This I like! The jelly fish is very much like the Japanese Chuka Karage which is another one of my favourites. And the cold pig shank definitely tastes better than it sounds. It was lovely with the special soya sauce dip.

The famous "Xiu Long Bao" needs no introduction. They even have a write up placed on each table educating customers on how the perfect "Xiu Long Bao" is made and what it should taste like. Definitely a must try!!

Another must try is the Sauteed Chicken with Dried Chilli. This dish, for some reason is much bigger in portion compared to the other dishes. But since I love it so much I don't mind. The chicken pieces are nice, crunchy and spicy!

We also had the Fried Rice with shrimp which was tasty but nothing fancy.

Next came dessert, Mango and Pomelo Sago Cream. It was good, but not something I'm crazy about. I will definitely try the other desserts on my next visit as they have so many!

Service was fast, friendly and efficient...until we had to wait a whole half and hour for our last item - deep fried durian pancake! I'm not sure what went wrong but we just waited... and kept reminding the waitresses...and waited some more!! I was fuming mad by that time, cos we'd already paid the bill and was still waiting! Finally I noticed that there was a note written that we could sms a number for any feedbacks to the management! I angrily punched in the sms, and just when I hit 'send'...the pancake arrived.....

It was....rather tasteless to be honest. And definitely not worth the wait. And I'm not being bitter because I had to wait so long. But honestly, the batter was tasteless and the durian...tasted like 'watered down' durian.

But all in all, its still definitely worth a visit despite it being rather expensive for Penang (our total bill came up to about RM113 including 2 drinks) The decor is really lovely, Terracotta style. Plus, the menu is extensive and there are other things I am keen to try out in future.

And what happened to the complaint sms I sent? I actually got a reply apologizing and asking which outlet I went to. After which, they apologized once again and thanked me for my feedback. I do hope that this slight inefficiency is due to the fact that they are still new. Definitely worth a visit, but you might want to wait another month or two for the hype to die down and avoid the long queues!

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