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N.E.S.W. - East (Kuching, Day 1)

>> Monday, November 9, 2009

Date: 30 October - 1 November 2009, Friday - Sunday
Venue: Kuching, Sarawak
Occasion: Weekend get-away with 2 high school friends

There are just too many photos to be shared with all of you! In total, we took 350 photos in 3 days! It's a lot of photos to me...if I own a DSLR, I reckon there would be more photos to be processed!

What I'm gonna do is just to share with you the places we have visited as well as the food places to look out for when you're in Kuching city :) Oh yeah, one thing to take note, we didn't get out of Kuching city & all we did during the 3 days was to explore Kuching city on foot! It was supposed to just be a time of bonding & catching up after all ;)


Ling & Theng on the Air Asia flight to Kuching

Lovely weather in Kuching when we arrived

On the Tune Hotel van from Kuching International Airport to the hotel (RM8.00/way)
This is the cheapest way to Kuching city from the airport, if you're not traveling in a large group. If you have more than 4 person, I reckon the airport taxi would be slightly cheaper, RM26.00/taxi.

Our room in Tune Hotel, Kuching
We opted for Tune as we were on a budget weekend-getaway. For 2 weekend nights, we paid only RM100.92 for a room with air conditioner, shower heater, & a queen-sized bed. Not too bad ;) Especially when the cost is split among 3 persons! :D

The bed
It was comfortable enough for a budget hotel. The view wasn't any good, but at least it has windows! The room that I had in Tune, Kota Kinabalu didn't have windows....I couldn't even tell the difference from day to night!

The bathroom
As you can see, it's quite clean :) The power-shower comes with a heater & you basically have all that you need. We were slightly unlucky as one of the pipes in our bathroom was leaking, so our bathroom got somewhat damp all the time *sigh*

The doorway in the room
Once you enter the room, the bathroom is on your immediate left & the bed comes after that...

As soon as we were done unpacking, we made our first "makan" trip in town. Ling had a friend's cousin who hails from Kuching & he recommended us some food places. We ended up at one of his recommended places, but it was a disappointment. Food wasn't to our satisfaction :(


Hong Kong Noodle House, Jalan Padungan
Our 1st meal in Kuching. Almost every coffeeshop was closed by the time we wanted to have our lunch, so this was our 'best' bet. It was walking distance from Tune hotel & is located opposite Bing! cafe.

Roast Duck Noodles (RM5.50/plate)
The roast duck skin wasn't crispy & has red coloring added to enhance its color. The duck meat was not too bad in texture & taste, and there was nothing to shout about for the noodles. Not a "wow-yummy!" lunch :(

BBQ Pork Noodles (RM4.50/plate)
The waitress claims that this is the Sarawak's Mee Kolo. We were quite skeptical at first, but we thought we would just give it a try. Points: 2 out of 5. The BBQ pork wasn't juicy & tasty as we hoped it to be *cries in disappointment*

Stir-Fried "Sayur Manis" with Egg (RM4.00/small plate)
This is the typical veggie that you can find in a bowl of 'pan mee'. I didn't enjoy this dish as much as I did when I was in Sabah. We felt that the oil was reused a little too many times that it has a stale smell & taste :S The dish was also a tad oily.

Tomato Sauce Bee Hoon (RM4.00/plate)
I thought I would try this dish out as I really miss my grandpa's signature ketchup bee hoon. I reckon I could cook a better tasting ketchup bee hoon than this one....hahaha...okay, my comments on this restaurant is really not very encouraging :P 'Nuf said.

Map to Hong Kong Noodle House, Jalan Padungan

View PerutBesi in a larger map


Ratings:
Presentation: * * *
Price: * * *
Environment: * * *
Taste: * *
Service: * * 1/2


Overall





After lunch, we walked around the city to get our supply of water & tidbits. Unlike KK in Sabah, Kuching's supermarkets are dominated by this company called Everrise. Prices of items & food in Kuching aren't that cheap either. It felt very much like Kuala Lumpur! The lifestyle here in Kuching is surely slower as compared to KL.

It was drizzling when we finished our late lunch, so we didn't really do much walking around. As soon as we got our essentials, we went back to the hotel to chill 'til dinner time. The weather kinda dampened our spirits. It was raining every evening around 4p.m. onwards while we were in Kuching! *sobs*


Unfamiliar tidbits for a PJian
Theng was fascinated by the types of junkfood that she hardly finds over in KL. Soft shell crab Pringles, anyone? I didn't like it though...hahaha...it was too salty & has a 'fake seafood' taste...

Bonding time with each other


Perhaps I'm just a 'plain Jane' that going out for a meal won't take me too long to get ready. For these 2 friends of mine, it's the opposite...hahaha...each time we wanted to get out of the hotel, they will surely put on some cream, make-up, & whatever nots... they claim that without some 'color', they look sickly & pale....right....I'm not into such things yet :P


Ling & Theng getting ready for dinner (not a grand dinner :D)

Dinner: ABC Seafood @ Topspot Seafood Centre
I read from either someone's blog or some recommendation from friends that this is one of the places in city that I shouldn't miss, so I gave it a try. Satisfied :) Topspot Seafood Centre is located on top of a multi-storey green-colored carpark building, right behind the Standard Chartered bank building & beside the Tun Jugah Shopping Complex, plus it is walking distance from The Hilton Hotel & Tune Hotel! It's quite easily located.

Theng & I before our dinner spread was served
It's like a food court here! Every stall serves seafood *woots* I read that this seafood 'stall/restaurant' is quite good & there was one, Ling Loong Seafood that I should avoid as the customer service isn't very friendly. Hmm...not too sure if what I read 'bout Ling Loong Seafood is true...

ABC Seafood Restaurant's Deco
I find the 'deco' quite interesting :P Very neat, colorful, & makes my mouth water too!! Fresh food are always appealing :D

Fresh Prawns @ ABC Seafood

Ok, here's what we ordered that night! *drumrolls*


"Orh Chien"/Fried Oysters with Egg
This was very different from the "orh chien" we have in the Peninsular. The batter is supposedly crispy like biscuit (ours was somewhat soft already) & there are oysters all over the fried batter. I somehow prefer the Sitiawan & the Penang "orh chien", both are equally delicious & unique as well! The Kuching "orh chien" is although unique, not as yummy - plus the oysters aren't very fresh :(

Sauce that came with the "Orh Chien"
It's mainly soya sauce, pepper, & oil! The "orh chien's" batter was well-seasoned so there's actually no need for this sauce.

Stir-Fried Midin with Sambal Belacan/Spicy Shrimp Paste
Midin is a type of vegetable/plant from the fern family. It's alike the "paku pakis" a.k.a. ferns, but it has a more 'sappy' taste & is not as crunchy as the fern. Quite nice. I kinda like it :)

Grilled Squid
This was unexpected. Little did we realize that grilled squid to the people in Kuching is served with spicy shrimp paste. This dish was surprisingly the best among the many dishes that we ordered! Thumbs up!!

Deep-Fried Nestum Prawns
In our opinion, this dish failed. It may be Kuching's style of Nestum prawns, but it's certainly not something that appeals to the 3 of us. The nestum weren't dry & crispy. Instead, it was slightly damp & clumpy...quite strange...hahaha....the prawns weren't excellent as well. This dish ranked last on our table *aww....* Oh, nothing could beat the authentically steamed prawns I had in KK, Sabah....

Grilled Sting Ray/Ikan Pari Bakar (RM18.00 for our serving)
Yum yum...yet another version of wet, spicy shrimp paste on a piece of grilled sting ray. Not too bad....This dish came from another stall (I've no idea which one as one guy came over to our table with the offer). The fish with the sauce was very fragrant & the piece of sting ray was also quite meaty :D Me kinda liked this...it's quite different in taste from the ones we have in the Peninsular. Oh, it tastes slightly 'peanutish' too!

Black Pepper Crabs
*fuh* This is Kuching's or mainly Sarawak's famous - pepper dishes. As Sarawak is well-known for its fragrant pepper, we decided to order the black pepper crabs. It was VERY spicy!! *on fire* The crabs weren't very fresh, in our opinion. The flesh was slightly soft (instead of 'springy') & they were stuck to the shell, so it was quite hard to eat the crabs clean...

Our dinner spread for 3 young ladies
Note: A glass of orange juice was RM3.00. It wasn't some pure no-water-added juice *sigh* Me & my high expectations.

Enjoying the dinner spread

PerutBesi Ruth at work on the crabs...
I feel that I look like some 'kid' with 2 ladies =.=" I shall console myself that I just look much younger than my peers...gah...

Must try: Sugarcane with Lemon (RM2.50/glass)
I read online that this is a drink that I must try, & I loved it! It's very different & I thought it was VERY refreshing as well. After a full & spicy meal, something cool like this is excellent! Various variants of sugarcane drinks are offered by this particular stall at the food centre. There's the pure sugarcane, sugarcane + lemon, sugarcane + salted plum/'shimui', & sugarcane + lemon + salted plum. A small glass costs RM1.50, while a large glass like what I had costs RM2.50. By default, they serve the large glass.

So what's the damage for the satisfying meal that we had that night? *drumrolls* Was it of any damage....? *ROFL* It costs us only RM83.00 for the 5-course seafood meal ("orh chien", squid, prawns, crabs, & midin)!! I was so full that you could literally just roll me on the ground & I won't complain....hahahaha...I was too full to walk! Ling & Theng were laughing away at the way I walked....my hands were on my extremely filled-up belly...oh, glorious dinner...


Topspot Seafood Centre on a wet night

The sugarcane stall
You don't really need to walk over to order the sugarcane. One of the guys from that stall will stop by every table to ask if you would want his sugarcane drink.

Map to Top Spot Seafood Centre

View PerutBesi in a larger map



Ratings:
Presentation: * * * 1/2
Price: * * * *
Environment: * * *
Taste: * * * *
Service: * * * 1/2


Overall:






It was only right to walk around Kuching city at night after a full meal. It was quite cooling to walk around the city after the pour. Thank goodness it wasn't raining heavily anymore after dinner (it was raining during dinner =.="). We managed to take a stroll at the Kuching Waterfront before we headed back to the hotel for a night's rest. Ling & Theng stopped by a small bar/lounge, Cat City, for some drinks, while I headed back to the hotel to shower (since I don't enjoy drinking anyways). It was quite a nice, relaxing day 1 in Kuching :)


One of the main roads on a Friday night - SO quiet...
Photo was taken at 8:44p.m! My, my...at such a day & hour, KL could be jammed!

Posts for Kuching Day 2 & Day 3 + more posts on the recent JB trip will be coming up soon! Do stay tuned & bear with me for the delay in posts. I've been working 'til 8+p.m. every night since 2 weeks ago & by the time I come back from office, I'm actually quite tired to work on the blog posts already. Nevertheless, I will still post it up in due time.

Thanks for all the encouraging comments & support! Stay tuned with PerutBesi!!


- Ruth

9 comments:

hApPy HaPpY November 10, 2009 at 4:22 AM  

What an interesting makan trip in Kuching..

PerutBesi November 10, 2009 at 10:45 AM  

->hApPy HaPpY: Thanks for your support towards my site :) More info on the Kuching jalan-jalan cari makan coming up!! :D

HenRy LeE ® November 11, 2009 at 12:40 AM  

wahhh... what a long write up... cool! :) crab pringles? i wonder how does it taste like... hehe

ciki November 11, 2009 at 1:47 PM  

excellent road trip and i love the bonding time with each other, the food shots and the happy faces!

nice one:)

oh yar, i forgot, pls cld u kindly update our link to www.cumidanciki.com (ignore if you already have) Thx so much:)

PerutBesi November 11, 2009 at 7:41 PM  

->HenRy LeE: Oh yes, I write 'til wanna pengsan d :P The soft shell crab pringles ain't that nice la...expensive also :S Well, Pringles is always expensive :(

->ciki: Hello!!! Thanks for the comment! Very encouraging ;) I've updated your blog's link already since the time I found out :D Don't worry! Keep up the good work! One day, I should seek your advice on maintaining & upgrading the blog ;) Keep in touch!

コンパ February 6, 2010 at 5:04 PM  

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家出 February 11, 2010 at 4:45 PM  

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