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Nasi Kukus & Ayam Goreng Berempah - Euphoric

>> Friday, March 25, 2011

Overall comment: Yes, it is THAT good! Fragrant steamed rice - not too hard, not too soft...surprisingly, quite different from the usual rice-cooker-cooked rice! The well-marinated deep-fried chicken with spices was a great accompaniment to the fragrant steamed rice.
Halal: Yes

I reckon nasi kukus (steamed rice) is yet another East Coast dish. Once again, it was my 1st time eating the Malay nasi kukus with ayam goreng berempah *sigh* So many 1st times of late...

This humble stall by Jalan Beserah in Kuantan serves really delicious nasi kukus & deep-fried chicken. I wouldn't have known the secret that this place has, but oh, thank God for locals who shared this delicious piece of secret with me :D This place is apparently the BEST place for nasi kukus (in Kuantan)! They even take orders for events :D


Nasi kukus + Ayam berempah (RM6.00/set)
It's certainly not cheap, but hey, it's worth eating! Either I was really hungry or this steamed rice with deep-fried spiced chicken was absolutely satisfying...euphoric (I could speak at least for myself). Every serving will be packed for convenience, even if you're eating there. The rice will come with some curry on it, a few slices of cucumbers, some sambal/grounded chilli, & the large piece of deep-fried whole chicken leg. Guys, 1 serving of steamed rice may not suffice! *more! more! more!*

Map to Warung Mazenah
View PerutBesi in a larger map

If you're around the area, do drop by to try it out for yourself. I really enjoyed it & hope that you would too! :)


Warung Mazenah
Jalan Beserah
25250 Kuantan
Pahang Darul Makmur.
H/p: (+6013) 922 6985/ (+6014) 839 7574/ (+6019) 916 4559


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


Overall:






Craving for nasi kukus-lah,

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Gem's Restaurant, Jalan Gasing

>> Thursday, March 24, 2011

Overall comment: A decent place to have lovely Indian food (I think it's more towards north indian?). Prices are slightly above average, but if you share, it's actually quite worth the price you pay for the quality of food that you get. Parking can be a 'lil challenging, but there are parking spaces beside & behind the shoplots.
Halal: Yes

I have been passing by this row of shop houses every week since I-don't-know-when, but I have never eaten at Gem's. It has never occurred to me to try this place out 'til my colleague brought a group of us here. It was one of her favourite hangout places! I'm glad to try this place out :) It was quite an experience ;)


Gem's Restaurant
The interior of the restaurant is actually quite classic & "posh". It's comfy & the ambiance is really like eating at some fine-dining Indian restaurant...

Crispy papadam (on the house)
Believe it or not, I have never eaten papadam with mint chutney! It was SOOO delicious! I can just have papadam with mint chutney & mango lassi as a meal!

Mango Lassi (RM8.90/glass)
Rich, thick, & really delicious. Drinking this alone is lunch!

Murgh Badami Chicken Kebab (RM18.90/serving)
Fragrant, slightly on the soft side, & rich in flavour, this chicken dish will go very well with rice or capati.

Vegetarian Thali (RM11.90/platter)
We actually came all the way here for this. Ah, glorious food. You can opt for rice/2 pieces of capati to go with the 11 types of vegetarian dishes! Every dish has a different texture, taste, & fragrance. I didn't fancy the white dip, but I actually enjoyed the legum dishes, & the dhal kinda sauces. Yums :) Very filling for me!

Sizzling Prawn Platter (RM20.90/serving)
I would recommend this dish. The prawns were fresh, & cooked in a thick, sizzling hot slightly sweet-spicy gravy. I love the rich taste & aroma of this dish :)

Banana Kulfi (RM9.90/serving)
I have never tried "Indian ice-cream", so digging in to this was quite interesting. It felt more like fresh bananas mixed with frozen yogurt...it wasn't very sweet, nor was it very creamy like the usual ice-cream. It has some herbs & spices which just makes this dessert somewhat foreign to my taste buds :P I still prefer "actual/Westernized" ice-cream! Hahaha...

The bill for a luxurious meal that fed 5 of us

Map to Gem's @ Jalan Gasing

View PerutBesi in a larger map


Gem's Restaurant
3, Jalan Gasing
46000 Petaling Jaya
Selangor Darul Ehsan.
Tel: (+603) 7783 4345/46
Fax: (+603) 7782 5962



Ratings:

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


Overall:






Had an interesting Indian meal,

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Rumah Ku Gallery and Café, Jalan Universiti

>> Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Overall comment: Can't really comment much since I didn't really try out their food (will do so someday). The ambiance, however, is pretty interesting - very homey, to begin with. Apart from that, prices of food, according to the menu, is slightly above average (for a "house" setting). The only thing that I tried was the brownie, which I feel wasn't my cuppa tea as it was overly sweet.
Halal: Yes (Pork-free & I don't see any alcohol, but if you're concerned, give them a call)

Little did I know that such a place exists near my church! I pass by this place every week, but I didn't realize that it's a "restaurant" 'til HT suggested to gather at this place for a catch-up cum surprise birthday party for LM..."Meet at Rumah Ku" - that's what he said on the phone...I thought meet at his place! Hahaha...


This place is actually a house, converted into a gallery & café. It serves all sorts of local food, & even some western food as well. No doubts, they're more focused on the Malaysian favourites in some Malaysian ambiance :)


Each room in the house is converted into dining areas with different themes. You'll come across the Malay Hall, Chinese Room, & Indian Room, each room featuring a touch of the particular race's culture (it's not meant to be racist, but surely to feature the various culture & accessories that the different races usually have).

Chinese Room  

Indian Room

Entrance (Malay Hall)

Rumah Ku is certainly quite a comfy place to chill & relax, apart from the fact that it faces the busiest main roads in Petaling Jaya. As its name speaks, Rumah Ku Gallery & Café is also a gallery that showcases the works of local artists, once every 2-3 months.


Ice Lime Tea
Er...not up to my standard. Lacking of tea & the taste of lime as well!

Chocolate Brownie with Vanilla Ice Cream
We were there for a catch-up, so some dessert was of good company :P I didn't really like the brownie that I ordered though. It was too sweet for my liking & I felt that the portion was really small! I don't think it's that cheap as well...hahaha...you may probably wanna come here for their local dishes & rice instead of their desserts...

American Chocolate Cake
This cake looked more impressive than the brownie...at least it was of a decent portion. I'm not sure how it tasted since I didn't order this. Its 1st impression is not too bad :P


You'll find a map to Rumah Ku on their website. I've yet to try the food there. It shouldn't be too bad although I thought the price was a 'lil above average for a house-setting. 


Rumah Ku Gallery and Café
6A, Jalan Universiti
46200 Petaling Jaya
Tel: (+603) 7957 1073/ (+6012) 3131073
Website: www.rumahkuonline.com


Much love for food,

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Edo Ichi, Solaris Dutamas & Nihon Kai, Sunway Mentari

>> Sunday, March 6, 2011

Occasion: Valentine's Day celebration with family & friends!
Overall comment: Edo Ichi, albeit much mentioned, didn't impress me. It's expensive (in my personal opinion), portion is small, & taste isn't all that fantastic. I still prefer Nihon Kai on the overall. Affordable, generous portion & taste of food is consistent all this while :)
Halal: Pork-Free only (Alcohol/Sake is served)

Edo Ichi Japanese Restaurant
So many people are talking about this place. Some gave good reviews, some didn't, & I shall join those from the latter.

ST, JG, & I went all the way to Solaris Dutamas to try out this Edo Ichi Japanese Restaurant. Thankfully, it wasn't too difficult to locate the place. Paid parking is quite an abundance (basement), but depending on where you park, you may have to walk a wee bit more to get to the restaurant.

The restaurant's ambiance is not very Japanese, but it is comfortable enough for a meal. Their Set Lunch menu makes the food look 'oh-so-good', & even with only 2-handful of choices to select from, we had a hard time to select what we wanted. For me, it's the price issue...hahaha...quite expensive for my budget at that point of time! The main menu has more ala-carte options to order, but as usual, set meals are more pocket-friendly & you get to try more things at one go.

The Lunch Set Menu 

Unagi Kabayaki Set + Add-On Sashimi (RM40.00)
The picture does no justice, ya. The portion looks generous & the presentation looks quite impressive from here, but I reckon the scale of the photo to the actual food is quite a difference. The unagi doesn't taste too bad, but after completing this set lunch, JG said, "I felt like I haven't eaten lunch yet....the portion is SO small. I'm not coming back here again...."

Mini Sashimi Add-On
Thankfully the sashimi is fresh. If not, I'm very sure that JG will call for the manager to give him/her a pep-talk...hahaha...

Horenso Goma (RM9.00)
Nothing can go too wrong with such a simple dish. It's blanched spinach/Chinese "por choy" (in Cantonese) with sesame seed sauce. I actually like such a simple veggie dish, but it certainly is very pricey. The portion is probably the size of my palm only, & my palm isn't very big. *sigh* Yes, fine-dining will not be our greatest desire since portion is compromised with presentation of food.

Sukiyaki Set + Add-On Tempura (RM34.00)
Nope, the sukiyaki didn't gain very high marks as well. It is fortunate that we're giving a passing mark to this set meal. Apart from the portion of food that I've been ranting about, the soup just tastes bland & salty. The only plus point is that the beef slices aren't over-cooked. I also have to say that the agedashi tofu (side dish) is quite good, hence the passing mark for this set meal...hahaha...

Mini Tempura Add-On
Nope, not as good as Nihon Kai & some other Japanese restaurants around town....I can do without this add-on.

Edo Ichi Pizza (RM30.00)
I'll give Edo Ichi some plus points for presentation, but that's about it. The deep fried pizza base tastes a little too oily. The toppings were fine, but I guess Japanese pizza is just not my cup of tea. It's definitely less than 6" in diameter! Call it a kid's size pizza (for kids 6 years old & below). Oh, for the price we're paying, let's just go back to the original Italian pizza place...hahaha...

Spider Roll (RM22.00)
This is by far the better dish among what we have ordered. The deep-fried soft shell crabs were crispy & the presentation made it look more appetizing. There were 4 pieces/serving. Nevertheless, it is still ranked below Nihonkai's where their soft shell crab maki costs RM26.00 for 8 pieces & even the simple Shun Japanese Restaurant's (Subang) costs RM18.00/serving of 4 pieces. Perhaps the shop rental at Solaris Dutamas contributes to the higher prices of food here...

Note: Prices shown above excludes 10% service tax.

JG, ST, & I weren't too glad with our lunch that day. If not for work, we would have gone for another round of food, but I had to get back in time for a meeting. How unfortunate. JG said he'll never want to come back here again. It's THAT traumatizing. He just came back from UK for a short break & this Japanese lunch just didn't satisfy his palette.


Edo Ichi Japanese Restaurant
A4-G1-1, Solaris Dutamas
No. 1, Jalan Dutamas 1
50480 Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: (+603) 6205 5228
Fax: (+603) 6205 5229



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

Overall




 *********
Venue: Nihon Kai Japanese Restaurant, Sunway Mentari
Halal: No (pork-free only as sake/alcohol is served)

I spent Valentine's Day 2011 with my friends at a Japanese restaurant & believe it or not, the same night itself, we were out for another Japanese meal! The former wasn't pre-planned, so I didn't really have a choice.

I booked a place for 8 at Nihon Kai in hopes to try out their Valentine's Day set meal. Unfortunately, it was sold out! *surprise suprise* I was glad for the restaurant manager who requested my assistance to promote the Valentine' Day set meal, but I wish I could get to try out what I have promoted earlier!

Bento Set for the Day  (RM18.90/set)
I ended up trying their Bento Set for the Day & I was SATISFIED! Oh, thank God for good Japanese food at such a reasonable price!! I rarely go for cooked poultry at a Japanese restaurant. Usually, I'll go for the typical unagi or salmon meals, but I decided to try something different this time. You'll get a portion of simple salt-marinated pan fried Saba/Mackerel, 3 slices of fresh sashimi, a generous portion of stir-fried chicken fillet with mushrooms, a portion of salad with sesame seed sauce/dressing, & enough rice to last you through the day. I feel that it's not 100% Japanese, but it's a truly substantial meal. Believe it or not, I couldn't finish the whole bento set!

Here are some of the other dishes that we ordered. I've a write-up on some of the dishes in my previous posts, so do check it out for my review & prices.

Chuka Idako
Nicely seasoned/marinated :) The 'crunchy' jellyfish strips go pretty nicely with the baby octopus. I can't recall the price, but it's certainly not very expensive.

Unagi Maki (around RM23.00/serving)
Tamago/Egg + Cucumbers + Seaweed wrapped in a rice roll & topped with a slice of unagi/eel - ah, lovely...

Salmon Maki (around RM23.00/serving)
The salmon here is pretty yummy...I'm not sure if it's salmon belly (wish) or it's just the way the salmon is prepared for the maki. There's this special texture of the salmon that I can't really describe. Half seared, half uncooked, perhaps? It just melts in your mouth...!

Unagi Kabayaki (around RM32.00/lunch set - with fruit & without the cawanmushi)
Generous serving of unagi...what more can you ask for? :P

My Happy Dad
Nope, he didn't fancy the salmon...prefers the chicken...typical "china-man" father...hahaha...

Mixed Fried (around RM20.00/serving)
Truly crispy & delicious. The frying didn't dry up the meat/vegetables, so juices were flowing out when you bite into the fried pieces (either fish/prawns/squid/vegetables).

Mixed Tempura (RM17.00/serving)
Eat it while it's hot & fresh from the wok - *crunch crunch*

AP with his complimentary fruit/dessert

My parents were too full to move after the sumptuous & scrumptious meal

Verdict: A meal for 3 persons at Edo Ichi costs us RM148.50 (and we felt like we have not eaten - it wasn't filling), while a meal for 8 persons at Nihon Kai costs RM345.18 (we struggled to finish all the food! The set meals were really worth-eating)

For more on Nihon Kai, please visit my previous post here.


Battle of the Japanese restaurants,

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Plan B

>> Saturday, March 5, 2011

Venue: Plan B, Bangsar Village 1 (opposite Starbucks)
Occasion: Gathering with high-school friends
Overall comment: Popular hang-out place with a good variety of food & desserts. Prices aren't too steep either...not bad ;)
Halal: No (Pork-free only. Alcohol's sold here)

Frankly speaking, I rarely swing by areas like Bangsar for the fact that #1. it's quite far from where I stay, & #2. most of the food & items sold there are priced above average. So, when FY suggested that we head over to Plan B for lunch, I was like "hmm...will the food there burn a hole in my pocket...?"

I was wondering why a restaurant would get a name like Plan B. Why not Plan A? Hmmm...I didn't manage to find out, but anyhow, Plan B is a cafe/restaurant founded by The Big Group. It offers a wide variety of food & drinks, from breakfast up to supper. Their breakfast menu starts from 8:00a.m. all the way to 6:00p.m! So if you're just craving for the simple sausages, eggs, & toast for dinner, you can jolly well find it at Plan B.

I was quite surprised by the prices of food at this restaurant. What surprised me more was that the food is pretty good, just like what I've heard from people & read up from the many reputable blogs that shout out how pleased they are with the food here. I love such consistency...


Water is served free & it comes in this strange-looking bottle that resembles some drug-bottle. It felt more like a drug when Dr Goh poured it out for all of us! *lol*


Here are some of the pastas & sandwiches that we had...I'm quite impressed...at least the portion is reasonably generous for the price paid at a restaurant/cafe...it's not VERY cheap, but it's not over-priced either ;)

Turkey Ham & Cheese Toastie (RM14.00)
- A simple favourite oozing melted cheese on country white bread -
Looks like a "light yet substantial" meal. I think the taste can't go very wrong...it's a sandwich after all...

Nasi Lemak (RM25.00)
- with ayam berempah, sambal sotong, & traditional condiments -
I tried some of the nasi lemak with the chicken. It's quite tasty, really. The chicken is fragrantly marinated with herbs & spices, plus the rice is really coconut-milk rice...not those fake 'nasi lemak' ;)

Classic Egg Sandwich (RM10.00)
The bread looks nice. It's different from the toastie's; looks more "fluffy". I didn't ask if this tastes good, but I'm assuming that there's nothing to complain about. It surely is quite expensive for an egg sandwich, which you can make it yourself at home, but to the very least, the portion is generous & it comes with chips & some salad as well :)

Carbonara (RM19.00)
If you're a lover of cream sauce pasta, this could be something for you. But, bear in mind that it gets kinda "jelak" after dishing through half the pasta.

Moroccan Lamb Meatballs (RM22.00)
ST & I ordered this & oh, no regrets! Being a lamb-lover, this pasta dish certainly didn't disappoint the both of us. The lamb meatballs were well marinated with herbs & spices that the strong "lamb-smell" isn't very evident. The sweetish-sourish red sauce that went with the meatballs & pasta just made this dish very appetizing :)

Wild Mushroom (RM19.00)
This is the dish that calls out to all mushroom lovers/vegetarians, but SA said that it wasn't very "wow"...hahaha...

Variety of cakes & pastries
Plan B has an extensive variety of cake & pastries for dessert lovers. Prices are slightly steeper (but it's the usual cafe kinda price, I guess), but the cakes that we tried aren't too bad. Apparently the muffins are quite good (costs around RM10.00/muffin - a gigantic one, that is). 



Chocolate Mud Cake
Rich, quite moist, & slightly too sweet for the PerutBesi. If you need some good dose of sugar, this could do the trick.

Rocky Mountain
I think that's the name of this cake/pastry. It's marshmallows on some really hard biscuit crust, topped with melted chocolate. The name says it all. It was SO HARD that I couldn't be bothered to sink my teeth into it. The "rock-hard" texture of this cake could kill a rat if the cake falls onto that creature. (Yes, it's THAT hard!!)


Red Velvet
I've never really been a fan of red velvets, & I wasn't too impressed with this either...hahaha...in my opinion, the cake lacks fragrance & that "umpph". It's also too sweet for my personal liking :P

High School Friends :)


On the overall, Plan B is quite a good hang out place with some good food. It's not excellent, but it's good enough to make you drop by yet another time :)


Plan B
G5, Bangsar Village 1
Jalan Telawi 1
Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia.
Tel: (+603) 2287 2630
Opening hours: 8:00a.m.- 12:00a.m. daily
Website: http://www.facebook.com/planb.big
(directly opposite Starbucks)


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


Overall:


Love the Moroccan Lamb Meatballs Pasta,

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