Month: July 2023

Chinese omakase at Chef Photographer Andy Ong

Chinese omakase at Chef Photographer Andy Ong

A spin on the omakase experience, with reimagined Chinese classic dishes. Are you game? At Chef Photographer Andy Ong in Jaya One, PJ, you only get to know the menu when the food arrives. Andy is a little whimsical, a little temperature and as ardent in his 

Guinness Flavour By Fire returns

Guinness Flavour By Fire returns

 Guinness Malaysia invites fans and food enthusiasts to discover a taste experience beyond the ordinary, made possible through the power of fire and infusion. Guinness Flavour By Fire returns with a bigger line-up of renowned chefs to fire up the flavours of Guinness-infused flame-cooked foods 

Mixed delights at Penghulu Seafood

Mixed delights at Penghulu Seafood

With name like Penghulu Seafood, we weren’t sure what to expect. Malay food at best with Asian nuances, probably, we guessed.

We weren’t far off, as Leslie, who also owns Esan Thai Kitchen near door, ventured that it’s a mix of Chinese food with influences from Malay, Thai and Vietnamese cooking with chef Wan Yee Kwong helming the Muslim-friendly kitchen. 

The signature Penghulu Crisp Fried Thai Style (Lai Sa Fish in Chinese) was a good start to lunch, its flesh sliced then coated in flour, then fried till crispy. The talapia slices were rearranged into a whole fish, and came with sliced onions, chilli, curry leaves and fried garlic. Different from the usual fish presentation, takes skill to debone the flesh and then assemble it back again. I think I liked this dish the best.

Malay-style Ikan bakar (grilled stingray) marinated in turmeric was also very good, juicy and aromatic, though lacking a good sambal to go with it.

Beef Noodles came with tender and juicy pieces of beef tenderloin, doused in eggy gravy. A Wat Tan Hor fan, I was happy.

The E San Seafood Tom Yum had well-balanced and mellow flavours, and decent amount of seafood, but was too mild for my liking. Seems most customers prefer this version, but I’ll def dial up the spice on my next visit. 

Garlic Mixed Seafood with Kailan featured springy sotong and prawns in a Thai-style sauce – sweetish, sour and spicy – quite delectable; similarly, Pattaya Chicken cooked in ‘oil bath’ came with piquant flavours of sliced onion, fresh coriander, Thai chilli, fish sauce and lime juice was tasty too.

Hard to go wrong with spicy and robust flavour of the Belacan Four King Vegetables comprising long beans, petai (stink beans), eggplant and okra, while Chilli Prawns drenched in a tomato-chilli sauce reminded me of Singapore’s chilli crab. Crowd-pleaser Salt and pepper Deep-fried Soft Shell Crabs disappeared fast while Teochew-style Steamed Jenahak (snapper) offered clear, understated notes.

Soft shell crabs

I chose Thai Pumpkin Custard from E San Thai next door as I enjoy the soft steamed pumpkin and discreetly sweet custard centre. At the moment, Penghulu shares the dessert menu with E San Thai so other options such as Red Ruby and Mango Sticky Rice are also available.

Generally, food here is a step up from the coffeeshop ‘dai chao’, sizeable portions in comfortable settings. Prices are reasonable and it’s nice enough place for a family dinner, or to bring guests.

Add: G-G-3A, Block G, Jalan PJU1A/3, Ara Damansara, Petaling Jaya. call: 011-5633 6377

The iconic Chalet returns for limited time to EQ

The iconic Chalet returns for limited time to EQ

One of EQ’s best loved dining establishments will make a return to the property for a limited time. Chalet, premiere Continental fine dining restaurant of the 1980s, will make a special pop-up appearance from July 24 to August 12, bringing with it the nostalgia of 

Indulgent affair at Elegant Inn HK Cuisine

Indulgent affair at Elegant Inn HK Cuisine

I was privileged to be invited for ‘a meal among friends’ by Jeanette of Elegant Inn (EI) Hong Kong Cuisine restaurant recently. And what a splendid affair it was, kicking off with a Happy Start platter that had crisp yet light Salt & Pepper Hong 

The day I Meat The Porkers

The day I Meat The Porkers

I’ve always felt that Meat the Porkers (MTP) was quite ingenious in naming the restaurant, probably inspired by the comedy Meet the Fockers some years back.

Located upstairs in a spacious setting in Plaza Damansara, Kuala Lumpur, the decor features piggy figurines collected by the owners during their travels, including a piggy artwork by owner Herukh’s wife on one of the walls. There’s also a balcony area which can be cordoned off that’s large enough for private events.

Apart from the usual crowd-pleaser mango lassi (RM12), there are other flavours such as watermelon and apple lassi, and cocktails as well. Most people don’t realise that Indian food can be paired with wine too – MTP offers a decent wine list to go with its food.

Claimed to be the only Indian restaurant in SEA offering pork, it has a wide range of dishes with the usual North Indian favourites such as butter chicken, palak paneer and tandoori, but the standout dishes here are the Tandoori Pork Ribs (RM60) and Siew Yuk Briyani (RM35).

The fall-off-bone tender ribs were individually marinated and grilled as they found this method to be more effective in flavouring the meat rather than maintaining it as a slab. The rice was fluffy and fragrant with spices, with hidden pieces of roasted pork. Personally though, I still prefer tandoori chicken to pork, and having lamb or mutton in the briyani rice as they give off a stronger character and taste note.    

Tandoori pork ribs

I was more taken up with how MTP has adapted to trends and offered small plates, a la tapas fashion, which are great with drinks. We had Crispy Pork Puri (RM38), little heavenly puri puff balls filled with savoury minced pork and a little gravy – great start to the meal; Palak Fish Tacos (RM42) which was juicy deep-fried sea bass on mini tortillas, topped with creamy palak spinach gravy – nice different textures and marriage of spices; Prawn Mirchi Masala (RM45) – fresh prawns topped with a drizzle of tomato and onion gravy – tasty but salty; and vegetarian potato dumpling sliders Vada Pav ((RM24) – a cool meatless option. Each small plate offered a small, whimsical explosion of flavours in the mouth, and you might be surprised to find yourself quite stuffed despite the small morsels. Prices for the small plates can add up to quite a bit, so pace yourself. 

Minced Pork Puri
Fish Tacos

Dry Prawn Masala

Vada Pav

My fav for the night was the Spicy Mutton with Crispy Naan (RM45), great for sharing. Naan, flattened and super thin, then cut to small triangles, were cracker crispy and great with any dish, but together with the spicy mutton, it was beyond awesome.

Crispy Naan and Spicy Mutton

Anything bacon is a win in my books so MTP’s soft, fluffy Bacon and cheese Naan (RM15) brought the game home. Paired with Butter Chicken and Eggplant Masala, we couldn’t ask for better partners to this bread and spice party. 

Wrapping up the meal were creamy cold Kulfis-almond and saffron, and sweet, indulgent Gulab Jamun. Both kulfis were creamy, icy and refreshing.

Found the quality of food generally above average, though some dishes were on the salty side. Some dishes are pricier than others depending on what you order, but still affordable. It goes to show that pork can just as brilliantly match with Indian cuisine as other meats, especially when it’s handled well like how MTP has done it.

Add: 9M, Jalan Medan Setia 1, Bukit Damansara, Kuala Lumpur. call: 019-987 1945