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SurF tHis SitE RaNdoMly

What to eat in Kuantan: Herbal soup noodles at Restoran Guan Heng

>> Friday, July 22, 2016

Lately, I've been feeling slightly more nostalgic & wanting to find certain cuisines that I used to enjoy back in PJ, right here in Kuantan. Thanks to uncle FT, my "Kuantan dad" since uni days, I got to enjoy a delicious herbal soup noodles breakfast yesterday morning at Bukit Sekilau area.

It's a very simple coffeeshop with 1 stall in the morning (yeah, this is available only for breakfast, I think. Not sure if she's opened for lunch as well), selling noodles & uncle FT brought me here to try her herbal soup noodles.

Usually, the soup is served with yellow noodles, but I opted to have it with mee suah instead of yellow noodles. You can order herbal duck, herbal chicken or herbal pork ribs with your noodles as well, with the duck noodles a ringgit more than others.

Herbal Pork Ribs Mee Suah (RM5.50/serving)
Not too bad. I think it lacks the sweetness from the licorice root/"kam chou", but it's comparatively more herbal than most places that I've tried although nothing beats what I have back home :)

See I told you it's a simple coffeeshop... 


Street view: Jalan Sekilau 4/1

This probably is one of my shorter posts, eh? :P I thought it'll be nice to just share so that if you've cravings as such, at least you have an option. Cheers!


Herbal soup any time,

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Trip to Houston, June 2016: Rudy's Country Store & Bar-B-Q

>> Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Any day is a good day for some barbecue pork ribs, eh? Couple it with a nice, cold bottle of beer/soda, I think it'll make the end of your work day one that's relaxing enough to keep you satisfied 'til you tuck into bed for the night's rest.

In this final post of the Houston trip (yes, apologies that it took me so long to complete things these days), I would like to share with you my experience at Rudy's, a fast-food style BBQ restaurant that sells delectable pork & beef ribs, sausages, sandwiches & more!


My dinner for that evening...couldn't finish that gigantic smoked potato!

Try their BBQ sauce as well or enjoy your meats with hot & spicy peppers sauces 

I went to the branch of Rudy's at the Tomball Parkway area. It's a typical southern-looking ranch-like-restaurant that serves what the southerns do best, barbecues!

The skyline on that evening was extremely beautiful! No filter!

As you enter the restaurant, you'll find yourself greeted by a mini convenience store like area on your left, where you can purchase chips & snacks to accompany your meal at Rudy's.

Snacks section

Walking further up, you'll find a canteen-style area to order your food. As it was my 1st time there, I was quite lost as to what I should do...hahaha. All you need to do is to grab a bottle of drink of your choice, be it beer or soda or juice (I think they have that too), then pick your side dish from the chiller (optional) before ordering your hot food at the counter.

The maze towards the counter

Fresh from the charcoal pit & grills
Plenty of choices - some by weight, which you can determine according to your level of hunger :P
As this is a BBQ restaurant, I had 1/2 lb of pork ribs & as a sucker for potatoes, I ordered their jumbo smoked potato as well! You can actually order more or less than 1/2 lb of ribs. It's all up to you, just like purchasing meat/ham over the meat section of the supermarket.

Some of the guys working at Rudy's that evening :)

I have to say that I enjoyed the juicy & flavorful pork ribs although as usual, I find Texan flavors slightly too salty for my liking. I love it that the meat was tender & succulent & has that smokey, charred charcoal taste on the crust of the ribs.


The potato, on the other hand was slightly too heavy to compliment my dinner that evening. Flavors were a little bland with just cheese & sour cream for taste. I think you'll need to share this with 2-3 persons... 

Here are some photos of how the restaurant looks like. It's a weekday & probably too late by the time I took the photos to see the dinner crowd.



You can sit outside as well, especially if you would like to have a ciggy...



Love the view that evening. On one side, it was really blue, on another, it was greyish with hues of red, orange & yellow. Oh, so lovely! 

I would say that Rudy's is a nice place for some good dose of Texan BBQ ribs & more. I wouldn't mind going there again. Prices are affordable for the portion served as well, so I'm pretty satisfied to have my meal there ;)


Rudy's Country Store & Bar-B-Q
24503 Tomball Pkwy
Tomball, TX 77375
USA.
Tel: (+1) 281-205-4812
Business hours: Sun - Thurs 7:00a.m. - 10:00p.m., Fri & Sat 7:00a.m. - 10:30p.m.
GPS: 30.0390243,-95.6096064

Ratings:
Presentation (does it look mouth-watering): * * * 1/2
Price (is it affordable - more stars = YES): * * * 1/2
Environment (is the place comfortable, cosy, clean, pleasant): * * * 1/2
Taste (is the food delicious, worth coming back for more): * * * 1/2
Service (are the service providers friendly, efficient, polite): * * * 1/2


Overall:





Salty, but still delicious,

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Trip to Houston, June 2016: El Tiempo Cantina

>> Friday, July 15, 2016

Tex-Mex cuisine is very popular in Texas, so one of the evenings, the team had dinner together at El Tiampo Cantina, located at Vintage Park.

The restaurant may look quiet from the outside, but as the door opened, whoa...the place was packed even at 6:30p.m.! Thankfully the team made a reservation, especially since it'll be a large group of like 20 over people.


The interior of the restaurant feels very 'old school + Mexican'. The stairs to the 1st floor was really steep, so walking up the stairs with heels just didn't feel like the best idea, especially after work with the laptop & all. Lighting was REALLY dim, so please excuse my photos quality.


Their menu is extensive, with tonnes of Tex-Mex dishes! If you're new to Tex-Mex dishes, you'll be totally lost. AK who's vegetarian was really lost with the menu & she gave up looking at it after a while. Thankfully, the team lead pre-ordered the dishes for that evening with some vegetarian dishes for our Indian-vegetarian colleagues.


Without any images, one will seriously be confused as to what's what

Side: Guacamole & salsa - to go with the meat + tortilla

Appetizer: Fried Tortilla with Cheese Dip
As it's AK's first time having Tex-Mex food, I had to explain to her what each dish is like & to assure her that it's vegetarian. She was very amused when I connected each dish with her roots of Indian cuisine! Check out how I did that in the next photo ;)

Fajita, Tortilla, Rice & Beans & the grilled Meats
Flavors were pleasant, but I didn't find them "wow". The grill was quite unique though & they used charcoal for the grills, which gave the meats/vegetables a nicer, smokier taste. I told AK to imagine:
Fajita = alike Tandoori vegetables/meats
Tortilla = alike Chapati
Mexican-flavored rice = alike Briyani Rice

We ended the evening with some happy chatters before calling it a night. There goes another day in Houston. One last blog post on Houston & I'll move to something else :)


El Tiempo Cantina
Vintage Park Leasing & Management
114 Vintage Park Blvd
Houston, TX 77070.
Tel: (+1) 281-374-0500
Business hours: Mon & Tues 11:00a.m. - 9:00p.m.; Wed & Thurs  11:00a.m. - 9:30p.m.; Fri & Sat 11:00a.m. - 10:30p.m.; Sun  9:30a.m. - 9:00p.m.
URL: http://eltiempocantina.com/vintage-park/
GPS: 29.9947833,-95.5747085


Enjoy Tex-Mex, but this was nothing "wow" to me,

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Trip to Houston, June 2016: Pho An 2 - Vietnamese Noodle Soup

>> Thursday, July 14, 2016

I'm quite a fan of Vietnamese Beef Noodles/Pho & it seems like Pho An 2 is a common restaurant where the team will dine at during meeting/workshop weeks after work whenever they're at Houston. What's not to like about clear broth with generous servings of beef, clear rice noodles called bánh phở & some fresh sprigs of mint leaves, green lime & bean sprouts? :D It's strictly non-vegetarian though. Those who don't take beef can opt for chicken, so don't get too disappointed!

The Special ($7.25/small serving as photo below or $7.75/large serving)
Rare steak, well-done flank, fatty flank, soft tendon, tripe, brisket, beef balls & crunchy flank
I usually go for this option of mixed beef parts as I enjoy the different textures of each part. Since serving portions at Texas are usually huge, I didn't dare order the large serving (although it was just $0.50 difference!). I think they'll give you more noodles for the large serving, so I was quite satisfied with my regular/small serving of this delicious beef noodles. Somehow it's not as tasty as the one that I had in California 3 years ago i.e. Pho 75 #2 Oriental Restaurant. Having said that, a bowl of warm, Asian, soup noodles is just comforting whenever I'm in a foreign country :D

Fresh mint leaves, bean sprouts, green chili & green lime slices

Beefy goodness! 

This is how the restaurant looks like from the outside 

How the restaurant looks like on the inside
We were there quite early to avoid the usual dinner crowd 

House Special Fried Shrimp Cakes ($6.75/serving of 4 pieces)
We also ordered some appetizers/snacks/side dishes. This was quite tasty, with diced shrimps & vegetables wrapped in beancurd sheets & deep-fried 'til golden brown. It was quite juicy & still has the slight 'sweetness' of the shrimps.

Crispy Shrimp Tempura ($6.75/serving of 7 pieces)
I can't recall if I did get to try this...maybe not, since there were more than 7 of us & this plate was placed at the other end of the table :P Looks nice though...hahaha... 

Vietnamese Fried Egg Rolls ($5.50/serving of 4 rolls)
I did't find this very special somehow. It was crispy like a usual spring roll & that's about it.

Their menu...quite a lot offered here! 





So, now you have one more dining option whenever you're in Houston for work or vacation ;) Stay tuned for the last 2 posts of this series. 'Til the next post, have loads of fun eating & exploring various food around you!


Ratings:
Presentation (does it look mouth-watering): * * *
Price (is it affordable - more stars = YES): * * *
Environment (is the place comfortable, cosy, clean, pleasant): * * *
Taste (is the food delicious, worth coming back for more): * * *
Service (are the service providers friendly, efficient, polite): * * *


Overall:






Warn, beefy noodles are best any time! :P

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What to eat in Kuantan: New & Improved Menu at Oui Chef Restaurant

>> Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Most Kuantanians & even friends of Kuantanians who live in neighboring states/countries would have heard the 'big buzz' on Oui Chef's opening last month. With just a month into the restaurant industry, this restaurant with humble beginnings sure satisfied many customers. Of course, they'll find the occasional dissatisfied customers, varying from reasons like the below:

1. Full House Disbelief
Oui Chef: "Sorry, we're fully booked. Please come again. Would you like to make a reservation first?"
Customer's response #1: "Wah, what's so good about your restaurant 'til it's fully booked?!"

2. Medium-Well Steak Fury
Oui Chef: "Sir, your medium-well steak..."
Customer's response #1: "Why still red/pink wan...not cooked ar?"

The reality of opening a restaurant business doesn't hit an individual 'til he/she is faced with both the good & bad of humans...hahaha. Nevertheless, negative feedback & comments did not deter the team at Oui Chef to improve on their menu & service to please their continuous flow of customers each day & to give of their best to their customers.

Just yesterday, they launched a new & improved menu, featuring some fusion pastas. Here are the changes on their menu:

Added into the menu
Percik Spaghetti with Chicken
Seafood Green Curry Spaghetti
Spicy Seafood Arrabbiata
Honey Baked Cod Fish (seasonal)
Wagyu Beef Steak (seasonal)
Mashed potatoes

Removed from the menu
"Breakfast Specials" section
"Asian Specials" section - removed from the main menu, but is available during lunch hours only on their lunch menu
Spaghetti Bolognase

Spaghetti Aglio Olio


Percik Spaghetti with Chicken (RM22.90+/serving)
If you've been following my blog, you'll know that I love intense flavors & I dare say that Oui Chef's Percik Spaghetti with Chicken was lip-smacking! I love it when restaurants put together fresh ingredients & bring out the best of each ingredient in a dish. You can expect a creamy, aromatic, typically Asian yet still having a touch of Western element in this dish. It's not overly spicy, yet there was enough chili 'heat' to take away any cloying feel to this cream-based pasta.

Seafood Green Curry Spaghetti (RM26.90+/serving)
I thought the flavor for this dish was rather similar to the percik, but as I took bite after bite, both these dishes had its distinct flavors. In every mouthful, you can actually play the game of "guess what ingredients are in the green curry/percik paste?" & the best part is to actually be able to call out the ingredients one by one! I know there are kaffir lime leaves, galangal, tumeric, chili, lemongrass, & cream among the many other ingredients blended into the paste. Seriously, the food here can only get better each time I dine here. Hats off to the passionate team of chefs at Oui Chef Restaurant!

Spicy Seafood Arrabbiata (RM26.90+/serving)
This pasta's style is certainly different from the 2 other newly introduced pastas above. It's a tomato-based spaghetti instead of cream-based. We thought it's kinda spicy, living up to its name, that those who love spicy dishes will certainly be pleased with this pasta. When we tried it, we felt that it was slightly heavy on the capsicums, so we informed Chef Eugene, who will certainly tweak the recipe to reduce the amount of capsicums added to the dish. Overall, this dish was delicious, "syiok" & has a "kick". The seafood were fresh (thankfully! I rarely order seafood pastas as the probability to sink my teeth into some not-so-fresh seafood is quite high) & the pasta was flavorful.
Note: This photo is taken using a phone camera instead of the Lumix as we went back the following day to try it.

Earl Grey Creme Brulee (RM9.90+/serving)
The earl grey creme brulee has been on their menu since day 1, but I've never tasted it 'til last evening. One will just fall in love with the sight of a semi golden brown sugar-crusted custard with some fresh strawberries to brighten up the dessert. As you dig into the custard (I didn't take the messy picture of the 'inner custard' though), you'll find the light grey custard that when you place a mouthful into your mouth, the lovely taste of earl grey tea will fill the space behind your lips...hahaha...it's refreshingly delicious!

The new menu introduced on 11th July 2016 

If you've tried their fusion pastas yesterday, do share your experience with me & let Oui Chef Restaurant know if there's any area of improvement that they can work on as well ;)

** Update, 21 July 2016

Wagyu Beef Steak with Black Pepper Sauce (RM120.00+/serving)
Comes with some salad dressed in balsamic vinaigrette, mashed potatoes & sauteed mushrooms
The steak was tender & juicy, with the marbling/fat-contents tasted in every bite :) We enjoyed this steak despite the price (yup, it's not your everyday kinda steak, but more for special occasions or to try at least once for AP, who hasn't had wagyu before this) & would recommend it to those who would love a slightly 'fatty steak' :P This dish is seasonal, so the restaurant will place a notice outside the restaurant if it's available. The mashed potatoes, salad & mushrooms went well with the dish, but the black pepper sauce wasn't necessary if you want to enjoy the steak as it is with a simple salt & pepper seasoning ;)


Oui Chef Restaurant
B28, Ground Floor, Star City
Jalan Seri Kuantan 81
25300 Kampong Kuantan
Pahang Darul Makmur
Malaysia.
Tel: (+609) 505 5004
Business hours: Thurs - Tues 12:00p.m. - 3:00p.m. & 6:30p.m. - 10:00p.m. (last order at 9:30p.m.; close on Wednesdays)
FB: https://www.facebook.com/ouichefrestaurant/
GPS: 3.8242806,103.3347442


Certainly innovative & delicious!

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