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Review: King's Grand Green Tea Ice Cream

>> Thursday, May 30, 2013

Overall comment: Quite smooth, but the taste of green tea is not evident enough. It has more "cream" & sugar than green tea, which made the ice-cream disappointing in my opinion (for the price to pay per 1-liter tub). This is just my personal opinion, so you may actually like this ice-cream ;)
Halal: Certainly!

"Celebrate Life's Grand Moments with king's Grand"!

My box of ice-cream for sampling :D Nicely wrapped!

Delivered in a cooler-box

Early this month, King's Grand introduced a new, improved, "GRAND" look plus a brand new Green Tea ice-cream variant! This new baby joins its other cousins i.e. Tin Roof Brownie, Cappuccino Chips, Tiramisu, Caramel Almond Fudge & Triple Chocolate, to bring all ice-cream lovers an enjoyable treat for all occasions.

King's Grand aims to bring all its supporters an intense & soothing experience of a green tea flavored ice-cream that will be great on a hot afternoon, in the all-new elegant red tub that reflects its premium positioning.

Available in 2 pack sizes: 115ml cup (RM0.99/cup) & 1-liter tub (RM9.90/tub)
The ice-cream is available at all leading hypermarkets, supermarkets, & even your nearest grocery outlets.

So what's my review & opinion?

Upon scooping out the ice-cream, it felt pretty smooth, but the ice-cream melted quite fast, so I had to scoop it out quickly & not spend time taking photos!

Texture-wise, it is quite smooth, but not the satisfying-smooth. The flavor, as I have mentioned earlier is also not strong enough for my liking as I prefer green tea ice-creams that are really pungent in green tea flavor 'til it's sometimes slightly bitter (bitter-sweet). I personally find it too sweet as well 'til it "stings" the tongue & leaves a not-very-pleasant feeling. My housemate felt the same.

The taste of the green tea comes only when you let the ice-cream "sit in your mouth a little longer". I couldn't really taste the green tea on my 1st mouthful & I had to eat it up really quick instead of enjoying/savoring every bit of it since it melts too fast. Weather & temperature certainly play a part in the ice cream's melting-speed, but I guess this ice-cream isn't as "solid" as the really premium ones like Haagen Dazs, where you can really enjoy each scoop without having the fear that it will become "milk shake" all too soon....

To be fair, King's have come quite a long way in the ice-cream industry. They have certainly improved with this variant from its predecessors, but I guess there's still much room for improvement if they want to be the top of the list for "affordable premium ice-cream".

It's so hot I need ice-cream,


Trip to the US: The Cooper-Garrod Vineyard Tour & Wine Tasting (Part 1)

>> Sunday, May 26, 2013

*yeah, I know, this is a delayed post....I didn't have time to blog.... :(

On a sunny Sunday morning 2 weeks ago, KW & I took the opportunity to visit a nearby vineyard i.e. Cooper-Garrod Estate Vineyard to learn more on grapes planting & harvesting for wine-making. The journey to Mount Eden took us approximately half an hour from our hotel. It's an "uphill" journey & kinda scenic as well.

Upon arriving at the vineyard's carpark, we were directed to the "introduction" session, where the story of how Cooper-Garrod was established was shared.

Doris Cooper sharing some information on how the business began

Bill Cooper, the guy behind the wine-making & sales

They've horses too...
That's where part of the fertilizers come from :P

We were guided to the nearest plot of vines. The grapes aren't in full-bloom yet, but the vines were growing steadily with the sunlight throughout the day & some cool air as well. The grapes will only be harvested around August-September (summer), depending on the weather & season.

There are basically 2 ways of planting vine: lateral & horizontal. Both ways have its pros & cons, so Cooper-Garrod does a mixture of both ways.

Lateral way of planting...

Grapes, when they're "babies" are all green, but as they grow, their skin will turn to the color that they're supposed to be. If I'm not mistaken, this one is a green grape for Chardonnay (white wine).

The vines require much sunlight to grow, but too much of scorching heat will cause the grapes to turn into raisins. So the grapes will always require the shade of the leaves to protect them while they grow into full-grown grapes for wine-making. The workers of the vineyard will pop-by to check the vines & ensure that the grapes grow healthily :)

Pretty flowers around the vineyard :P

Another part of the vineyard...must look lovely during summer!

After touring the vineyard & standing in the scorching hot sun for half an hour or more, Bill took us to the area where the grapes get processed for their juice. Both the red grapes & white grapes are processed differently. The red grapes need to be processed with the skin since the red color comes from the skin, whereas the green grapes for white wine just requires the flesh/juice without the grapes' skin.

The percentage of sugar plays a large part in the type & taste of wine that is produced. During the process of fermentation, sugars are broken down and converted by yeast into alcohol (ethanol) and carbon dioxide [wikipedia]. If I'm not mistaken, more sugar = higher alcohol content, but most of the time, the grapes won't be as sweet as "table grapes" where you can just pop into your mouth as fruits.

The final process is storage, where all the fermented juice a.k.a. wine, is placed into wooden barrels. Different barrels would give different taste as well! Most of the barrels have oak tops.

Thus ends the process of wine-making. It's actually a long process that takes days & months. I'm glad we came over to learn up a little bit more on wine-making since we'll never get to do such a thing in Malaysia!

Up next, I will be sharing on wine-tasting ;) Stay tuned!

Cooper-Garrod Estate Vineyards
22645 Garrod Rd‎
Saratoga, CA 95070
United States of America
Toll Free: (+1) (877) 923 4616

Directions: Map here

I love wine,


Trip to the US: Stanford University

>> Monday, May 13, 2013

The Stanford University offers a more "architectural" & nature-like sights, which are fantastic. I think we've only been to 1 part of it, but it was still good that we actually got there! We've still MUCH to explore...perhaps another trip ;)

Some of Stanford's Best Athletes - World Record Holders! *wow*

Track & Field/Stadium 

With such a lovely environment, I'm sure all the "smarty" students here would be even smarter (brains would probably tick better here...hahaha)! A great environment to study & relax in between studies + play sports & enjoy university life with friends....*dreams*

Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research 

There were fruit trees right outside the building (as above)!
I think they're either oranges/grapefruits/lemons...they're still yellowish-orange, so I'm not sure which kinda tree this is since I've never seen any of such fruit trees back in Malaysia :P

Hoover Tower
We were led to this tower by the lovely sound of the bells chiming out a song that sounded familiar, yet I've no clue of the title...hahaha...this tower was completed in 1941 to mark the 50th anniversary of Stanford University. It has a carillon of FORTY-EIGHT bells which chimed out the beautiful music that filled the air on that sunny evening! *love* You can actually go on a tour to the top of the tower, which will cost you $2.00 from 10:00a.m. - 4:00p.m. daily.

Lovely lovely evening
I LOVE the view of the sun rising/setting...the ray of sunlight bursting through the clouds is just perfect to make my heart leap with joy & excitement :D 

I found this 'cute' :P
Lawn...renovated...? Never came across such a phrase back home...haha... 

These trees are MIGHTY!
Wait 'til I get to Yosemite...kekeke...these trees will be dwarfs! 

If I'm not mistaken, this is the center of arts studies... 

Center for History Studies
Such intricate art-work... 

This is one of my FAVOURITE photos - NON-edited!
Managed to get this straight from the camera...LOVE THE BURST OF COLOURS - sun-light!!! 

At one of the building's corridors...looks like a good place for photos ;)
If I'm not mistaken, this is the Department of Slavic Languages & Literature.

I am in Hawaii...not! :P
Looks quite like it, eh? 

Fountain outside the library..since 1934!

100 years & counting...fuh! Such rich history... 

Hello America :D
After attempting to take more than 5 shots, I finally managed to get this one taken just perfectly. 

It has been an interesting "self-tour" walk around this part of the famous Stanford University in Palo Alto area. We took approximately  1.5 hours just walking around, taking photos & being mesmerised by the unique buildings, the architecture & the natural elements/plants as well. I would say that it's a must see if you happen to be here (especially if you like the sight of old buildings). There's nothing really much at Palo Alto, but this is something that you'll definitely not get back in Malaysia, so enjoy it to the max! :D

I doubt I'll ever get to enter Stanford *not a smarty*


Trip to the US: Stanford Shopping Center

One of the few things that you can do if you happen to be in Palo Alto is to pop-by the Stanford Shopping Center. It has all sorts of shops & restaurants, some of which we also have back in Malaysia e.g. Gap, Ralph Lauren, & California Pizza Kitchen, to name a few.

The most amazing thing, in my opinion (as a person who LOVES flowers) are the variety of flowers planted around the shopping center! The flowers were in FULL BLOOM! How I wish we had such things back home, but we don't... :(

I think these are foxgloves :D SO PRETTY!

Look at the row of flowers....ahhh....shooou naaiiiseee..

More flowers :)

Large rose...isn't it pretty?

They also have the Sigona's Farmers Market, which offers an abundance of fresh & dried fruits, fresh vegetables, wine, nuts, & more!


One of the many brands/shopping areas in the Stanford Shopping Center

There's a shop that sells all sorts of kitchen-related items: my dream kitchen!!
I would LOVE to have my own kitchen with a stove, oven, baking equipment, & a larder full of food items, spices, & sauces that I can use for cooking! *dreams*

Good quality pots & pans would be great! 

And not to forget, a good set of knives! Ah...dream dream... 

There's nothing really WOW about the Stanford Shopping Center, but it does offer most of the basic things that you'll need if you're there for work/leisure. Up next, I'll share some photos on my little "tour" at the well-known, IV League university, Stanford University! Stay tuned ;)

Just the basics will do,

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