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What to eat in Kuantan: Oui Chef Restaurant opens today!

>> Tuesday, June 14, 2016

* nope, this is not a paid review. I just know the team personally, so the below are my honest feedback *

The much awaited day has arrived & Oui Chef Restaurant finally welcomes diners who have been following their FB page in anticipation of their 1st business day! It was a busy day 1 as expected, with every table occupied & people having to walk out or just join their friends on occupied tables due to a full house of hungry diners.

Day 1 of any restaurant business is often a war zone, with:

  1. an over-flow of people stepping into the restaurant, wanting to try the food
  2. inefficient service as the team has not picked up the momentum & probably did not expect such an explosion of hungry people
  3. supply of food running out (at times, during the wrong-est times of the day)
I've seen & known restaurant teams going through similar experiences as above & feeling defeated, tired & insanely hungry themselves as they just didn't have time to breathe, what more eat or drink. But I know for sure that the team here at Oui Chef Restaurant are doing their best to provide the best dining experience in Kuantan to all their supporters & diners. I know the core team personally & I believe that they won't short-change anyone who steps into their restaurant in any circumstance :) Given time & constructive feedback to work on, I sure look forward to better service, greater food here at Oui Chef Restaurant.

Lamb Chop (RM34.90+/serving)
Ok, before I get into my detailed post, let me share with you the winner for today's lunch! Putting aside the time we had to wait extremely long for this to arrive at our table, I must say that it's one of the best lamb chops I've eaten; thick-cut, tender, juicy, flavorful & a meal with rich, meaty lamb goodness in every bite! I love the combination of textures & bite on the plate, with some silky, chewy mushrooms ragout, sauteed spinach & silky smooth mashed potatoes that just melts in your mouth (mind you, it's freshly mashed potatoes, not those powder ones). Nearby steak houses & western restaurants have a lot to improve on with Oui Chef Restaurant serving such excellent lamb chop in Kuantan! We've got a winner yo! Highly recommended!

Anyway, those who are on a budget would be pleased to know that Oui Chef Restaurant has a set lunch menu (RM10.89 nett, inclusive of the 10% service charge), featuring their Asian Specials, which comes with a choice of either iced lemon tea or a can of coca cola. You can choose from their nasi lemak with deep-fried/curry chicken, kam heong fried rice (recommended), kam heong fried noodles, or their creamy butter chicken rice.

I also noticed a slight difference in the look & feel of their menu since the time I was there for a sneak preview & tasting (read more about it here). Seems like some of the prices & dishes have also been amended. The differences are:

Revised prices/titles:
Kam Heong Fried Rice from RM6.90/serving to RM7.90/serving
Salted Egg Pasta from RM18.90/serving to RM14.90/serving
Vegetarian Aglio Olio from RM18.90/serving to RM14.90/serving
Iced lemon tea from RM5.90/glass to RM4.90/glass
All their shakes are now classified as "Freak Shakes"

Added into the menu:
Mushroom Carbonara at RM14.90/serving

Removed from the menu:
Kam Heong Chicken with Rice
Honey-Glazed Soya Seabass

Updated, finalized menu from day 1 of business 'til they revise their menu again 
Note: Update July 2016 - Menu is changed, so not everything in this 1st version of the menu is available now.

I was there with AP & 3 of our friends, so we had the opportunity to try out more dishes in a single meal & to experience how day 1 of business at Oui Chef was like.

Breakfast Special - Cajun Chicken (RM12.90+/serving)
The cajun chicken slices, about 5-6 slices in the croissant that was overflowing with creamy, buttery scrambled eggs, were really tender. Specializing in the sous vide cooking method, the chefs sure nailed it with the chicken to keep the chicken breast meat tender, juicy & balanced in flavors. Our only wish: could we please have a larger portion of this dish? :D
*lighting at the back table that we're sitting at was quite bad, so the photos didn't come out nicely & I've tried editing as much as I could with the little time I have...

Big Breakfast (RM21.90+/serving)
BW ordered this thinking that it will satisfy his HUGE appetite, but was somewhat disappointed with the portion as it wasn't 'big enough'...hahaha. Having said that, Oui Chef's big breakfast came with 2 juicy slices of beef bacon (you can opt for chicken cheese sausage), 2 large slices of hash browns, creamy & buttery scrambled eggs & somehow the croissant appeared on the platter as well. It's not really as per their menu, which stated sauteed spinach, mushrooms & toast as part of the Big Breakfast (and we didn't realize that what we were served was different from what's stated on the menu that referred to). Chef Eugene, what's the reason behind the differences? :D

Chili Cheese Fries (RM8.90+/serving)
I think using crinkle-cut fries is a good idea as there's more potatoes to chew on. They didn't hold back on the cheese sauce, but I felt that more chili flakes or some sort of spicy, meaty sauce would taste better & give more texture to this snack. 

Set Lunch: Kam Heong Fried Rice (RM9.90+/serving for set lunch or RM7.90+/serving ala carte)
I've always looked up to Eugene for his Asian dishes & yes, this kam heong fried rice was no less fragrant & flavorful. I just find the rice slightly under-cooked or at least somewhat chewy (I prefer fluffier rice) & the kam heong dried shrimp mix slightly over-salted. I personally think that it'll be nicer to have some chunks of chicken breasts to chew on as well, so that this flavorful fried rice will have various layers of texture for a more enriching meal experience. I've yet to provide these feedback personally to the team at Oui Chef Restaurant, so I'll do so later & let's see to the improvement in the days ahead :)

Set Lunch: Creamy Butter Chicken with Rice (RM9.90+/serving for set lunch or RM7.90+/serving ala carte)
Not too bad, although there's room for improvement. I think they were really rushing to get all the orders out as efficiently as possible, so this felt slightly below standard. Flavor was no doubt delicious & the portion was more generous than my recent favorite, The Plain, just a couple of shops away from Oui Chef Restaurant, which I have recently wrote a review. Both prices are the same, both have its distinctive taste. I feel that if Oui Chef's creamy butter chicken had a thicker consistency of the gravy & a fluffier serving of rice, that'll be a satisfying combination. 

Tiramisu (RM8.90+/serving)
Which cheese-lover would give this a miss? BW enjoyed this without having to think twice & he mentioned that this will be his next tea-time restaurant (BW, they're closed at 3:00p.m., so better pack & have this back at your workplace ya...). I liked the thick, creamy consistency of the cheese & the chocolate + coffee flavor in the same serving. The only thing that probably needs to be lessen is the powdered cocoa, which could cause people to choke due to the dry, powdery texture at the top of the tiramisu :P The cake sticks/biscuits that soaked up the coffee were also slightly 'over-soaked', so the bottom of the tiramisu had liquid coffee visible. I reckon, you won't experience this in the days to come.

Give them some time & I believe this team will indeed achieve their dream to be the best restaurant in Kuantan :D

I'm such a hard-core believer in this team...hehehe...


Nick June 15, 2016 at 6:55 PM  

the food looks very good wor!


PerutBesi June 16, 2016 at 12:33 AM  

@Nick: It IS good! Excellent quality & delicious taste from what I've tried so far :) Some of their items are still in need of improvement & tweaking, but overall, thumbs-up!

Alexandra Luella June 16, 2016 at 10:19 PM  

The tiramisu looks really good! But thus far I have not come across Tiramisu that is infused with amaretto or masala in Malaysia.

I enjoy reading your blog darling! It doesn't help when Im hungry though :p Nice recommendation!

Love from Paris,
Michelle - AlexandraLuella.com

PerutBesi June 16, 2016 at 11:33 PM  

@Alexandra Luella: Thanks for dropping by! This tiramisu is non-alcoholic as it caters to Muslims as well, who aren't allowed to take alcohol. I haven't had tiramisu infused with amaretto or masala as well, so it'll be interesting to try it someday! :)

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