Random Reflections

Happy Birthday Malaysia!

Tomorrow, 31st of August 2007, my beloved country Malaysia will be celebrating her 50th birthday. The nation has gone through a lot since we achieved independence from the British in 1957.

Everything has changed, some for good, some for worse. If I want to complain and whine about the current corruptions and injustice in this country, it will takes up the whole page of this blog. But for the sake of the Merdeka spirit, I am not going to do that.

Instead, I would like to show you photos that show how patriotic I am and how much I love this multi-racial nation. Malaysia boleh!! (can someone comes up with a new slogan for Malaysia?!)

Food Reviews, Reviews

Korean BBQ Chicken in Desa Sri Hartamas

Knowing how much I love eating chicken, my managers took away some Teri Chicken Wings (RM7.50 for 4 pieces) for me. Didn’t thought of it much when they told me it was from a new Korean restaurant in Desa Sri Hartamas, although I did find it strange that a Korean restaurant would serve such a “fast-food”-ly stuff. But after a bite into the fried chicken wing, I know I gotta check it out myself real soon!

Situated on the same row of shophouse as Nam Heong Chicken Rice, they occupy the corner lot where Alberto’s used to be. Yes, it does look more like a fast-food franchise than a traditional Korean restaurant. Due to the large glass panel instead of brick walls on the front and on the side, the place looks invitingly bright.

The place was already almost filled to the brim by 12:45pm, but maybe due to the limited seats there. Service was very good, friendly waitresses/waiters attended to us immediately as we stepped in. BBQ Chicken‘s menu is very well-designed, in line with its logo and the outlet’s design. Colourful, and wonderful photos to provide you with a visual feast before the real thing.

On each table there are several placemats that promote ginseng and olive oil, the two ingredients that they use to set them apart from other fried chicken joints. Being bombarded with so many choices although all of them are chicken dishes, we took quite a while to place our orders.

First up was their Teri-Q Sticks – 2 pieces (RM12.50). This meal comes together with the standard side dishes, namely the Coleslaw and the Shrimp Fried Rice. If you are not a rice person, you can always opt for Mashed Potato instead. The chicken meat itself is wonderful, tasted very succulent and juicy. One thing that you will immediately noticed is how less oily is the chicken here as compared to other fried chicken. Good news for the more health-conscious people. But even though this is called the Teri(yaki) Chicken, there was hardly any teriyaki taste to it.

The more adventurous ones might like to try their Hot Drumsticks Set – 3 pieces (RM17.50). Also came with the standard side dishes, it did look fearfully hot & spicy when it was served. It looked pretty shiny with all the chilli sauce/gravy on the fried skin. Marinated with spices and chilli before being fried, this version actually looks more spicier than it taste like. While you can definitely taste the spiciness and it was nice, it was not hot enough for Malaysians I reckon.

The Olive Luxury Chicken – 3 pieces (RM17.50) is their default flavour here. This is the only set which you can opt for any parts you like, as compared to only drumsticks for other sets.

If you not really into fried food, you can go for their grilled chicken sets instead. One of them is the Korean Charbroiled Chicken (RM14.50), which is chicken thigh fillets grilled with herbs and other spices. Something different but  tastes so so only.

There is also one dish called the Jerk BBQ Chicken (RM14.50 for a piece). It is basically a whole chicken leg dry-rubbed with fiery spice mixture (which I think some sort of hot pepper must be one of them), then barbecued over hot pit. The result is a well-marinated piece of chicken, which is rich in flavour, not just hot.

You can actually check out how they barbecued the chicken as they have a open-kitchen concept at the back of the restaurant. The cook is pretty friendly, so it’s not even a problem if you want to take photos while he do the cooking.

The drink selections are pretty extensive too, from hot drinks to smoothies, and even Ginseng tea! Prices ranging from RM2.50 to above RM10.00. There are also desserts to choose from, such as ice-cream and “Pat Bing Soo“, a type of Korean red bean sherbet. Might want to try that on my next visit.

They also do take-aways, and you’ll be impressed by their interesting shapes and colours. Food remained hot even after travelling for 20 minutes from the restaurant to office. Though I found one of the word/message on the box slightly dubious to say the least.

“Chicken meat prevents cancer”

Overall, I was pretty satisfied with this new-found delight. Some might say that this is just a more expensive version of Kentucky Fried Chicken, but I felt it is not exactly fair to group them together in the same category. The chicken here is definitely more tender and juicier, and the fact that they only use 100% olive oil to fry the chicken is one big plus point.

I had a brief chat with BBQ Chicken’s ridiculously-friendly Deputy CEO, Mr.Goh, on that day. He was more that delighted to share with me the story of this franchise, and the details of the preparation and cooking process of the chicken. According to him, BBQ Chicken only uses 1kg-chicken, as compared to the usual practise of using 1.5-2kg chicken. Reason being the excessive fats in heavier/older chicken. The global franchise group, Genesis, that owns BBQ Chicken, even have their own Chicken University in South Korea!

So is this worth checking out you ask?? The choice is in your hand! (ala Celcom)

Korean BBQ Chicken

Address: 24, Jalan 27/70A,
              Desa Sri Hartamas, 50480 K.L.

Telephone: 03-2300 1019,  03-2300 2036

Fax: 03-2300 0619

Website: www.bbq.co.kr

Operating Hours/Days: 10:00am – 10:00pm, Daily

Food Reviews, Reviews

Restoran Sri Nirwana Maju at Bangsar

Lately, the raining season in KL has been a blessing to my gastronomic world. Now I can indulge myself in hot and heaty stuff without being in fear of fever and throat inflammation. So when one fine day my managers suggested banana leaf rice, I was more than happy to follow them.

My MD was suggesting us to go Kanna in Section 17, but my senior manager kept on trying to convince us to go to this Restoran Sri Nirwana Maju in Bangsar instead. Heck we thought, might as well try this one out, especially after our not-so-pleasant visit to Kanna earlier.

The first good sign that greeted us when we reached that place was how big the crowd was. Every single tables were taken, including those outside on the walkway. And there were few groups of people waiting as well.

Once you are lucky enough to get a table, an army of staff will be swarming around to serve you. The modus operandi here is pretty much standard in this sort of curry house. First they will lay banana leaves on the table as a “plate”. Then they will give you default side dishes before they serve you white rice.

Side dishes vary from one curry house to another. Here they serve a sort of mixed vegetables, cucumber salad, and the oh-so-delicious deep fried bitter gourd. Crunchy on the outside, and soft in the inside, this is one fabulous side dish that almost become my main.

And of course, the everybody’s favourite papadum. The crispy crackers are a perfect appetizer before the curry rice itself. The papadums here tasted saltier than elsewhere, in a good way though. And the best thing is they are fresh and not “lau foong” ones.

You are given few types of curries for you to choose to be poured on your rice. Besides those curries, you can also choose a type of dried chillies that I can assure you they are very, very potent.

You can either order using the menu/order form, or point at the food when they bring it around. Just like those pushy staff at Kanna Curry House, the staff here will also try to persuade and recommend you certain dishes that are not so cheap. But the difference here is they won’t give you unfriendly faces or just walk away when you say no. Now this is how it supposed to be isn’t it?

There are many dishes that scored highly in my humble opinion. One of the best among the best would be the Masala Chicken (RM2.50 per portion). Cut into small cubes, this dish goes superbly with the rice.

The other worthy winner would be their Curry Mutton, fresh and without any overwhelming “goaty” taste to it. It can be a bit too hot for those who are not too good with hot and spicy food.

The Fried Calamari is very good as well, marinated and then deep fried almost to perfection. Best eaten together with the onions that come with it.

Now, not everything is as tasty as those that I have mentioned. The deep fried fish and the deep fried chicken were major disappointments. Not well-marinated enough, not hot enough, and too tough. Please do stay away from these two.

There are many more types of dishes there, but of course we didn’t got to try them all. Most of the dishes look good, but for your wallet sake do check the price with the staff first.

Oh have I mentioned to you they serve great teh tarik too? But being mere mortals with limit to how spicy the food we can take, most of us went for bottles after bottles of chilled mineral water.

Besides banana leaf rice, they do serve other mamak food, such as roti canai, maggi goreng and etc. I heard that their breakfast menu items are worth checking out as well.

Price wise, they are pretty similar to other more established curry houses, such as Sri Paandi, Lotus and Kanna. Parking here can be hell, but the friendly staff and good food are more than enough to convince me for more visits. So whether you are a rich expat living in Bangsar, college kids with more-than-enough pocket money, a corporate slave like me, or even funky night clubbers, head straight now to Restoran Sri Nirwana Maju for fantastic banana leaf rice.

Restoran Sri Nirwana Maju

Address: 43, Jalan Telawi 3,
              Bangsar Baru, 59100 KL.

Telephone: 03-2287 8445

Food Reviews, Reviews

Seng Kee Wantan Mee @ Restoran Hock Lim, PJ State

When I read about how Carol of Oh For The Love of Food! raved about her aunt’s wantan mee, I straight away made up my mind to check it out. Located at the PJ New Town area where finding a parking spot can be as difficult as finding a good wantan mee in Klang Valley, one need to have mighty patience to round and round that area.

Well, I rounded that area extra more times as I just can’t seems to be able to see any Restoran Hock Lim there. After awhile, I decided to park my car and continue my hunt on foot. Just minutes before my MD loses his patience, I saw it from a distance, Seng Kee Wanton Mee stall.

There is no signboard outside to tell you that this is Restoran Hock Lim, except for a lighted drinks menu inside. But one look at this old-styled coffee shop, you know there got to be good food here.

After placing my orders with the woman at the stall, I asked her if she’s the aunt of Carol, just to be friendly. But no discounts, kekeke. The cook (I assumed he’s the uncle) seems to be cooking the noodle non-stop. In fact besides the couple, they have another 2 helpers as their business is so brisk.

Once you have placed your orders, it won’t be long before one of the helper comes to you with chopsticks and the customary green chillis. But don’t be too happy yet, as the wait for the noodle to actually be served can be really lengthy. My first visit there was ok, only waited for about 10 minutes. But the second visit me and my colleagues waited for at least 25 minutes. So if you have a strict 1-hour lunch, you can basically forget about this.

But fortunately, the wait was all worth it. The first thing that you will noticed when you take your first mouthful, is how springy the noodle is. The texture was really good, although still lacking if compared to the mighty Ang Kee Wantan Mee at Restoran OK.

The taste was really nice too, with the right amount of soy sauce and other ingredients. They are very generous with the char siew as well. The char siew is more lean than fat type, will definitely appeals more to the fairer sex. They are very chunky and the taste is sweeter than usual. Very nice, though I thought it was a little bit too dry if you ask me.

And what is wantan mee without the wantan right? Well, the wantan here is not exactly big, but the good thing is the thickness of the skin is just right and the fillings tasted fresh. The soup has a very MSG-ish taste to it though.

Besides the default char siew and the wantan that comes with the noodle, you can also order Siew Yuk and Poached Chicken as well. The siew yuk is alright, without any overpowering porky taste although just like the char siew, it was a bit too dry.

Thumbs up for the poached chicken as I really like the fresh taste. As I mentioned before many times on this blog, the sight of blood on chicken meat is a very big turn off for me. But thank goodness there was none of it here. They serve the chicken plainly, with just minimal amount of soy sauce and oil. No fried shallots, spring onions or taugeh (beansprouts).

No doubt Seng Kee Wantan Mee does serve good wantan mee. The noodle itself is definitely nicer than the average out there. While the char siew and siew yuk are more to the downside, their wantans and poached chicken scored highly in my book.

But I do have to warn you, based on my three visits there, the quality swings from good to mediocre and back to good. It seems like their quality suffers whenever there is a big crowd patronising their stall. So go there earlier for better taste, and easier to find a table as well as a parking spot. Pricewise, they are basically in line with most of the wantan mee stalls with prices start at RM3.50 onwards. Do check it out and you might want to give your feedback to Carol.

* click on the map to enlarge *

Seng Kee Wanton Mee at Restoran Hock Lim

Address: 18 & 20, Jalan 52/18 (Jln Tengah),
               46200 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
               *facing Menara MBPJ*

Operating Hours/Days: 8:00am to 3:00pm, Daily (except some Saturdays according to the owner)

Other reviews:

You Get What You Give…Sometimes


Ipoh mali!!

I am sitting in the Starbucks at Ipoh Parade right now. Went to Lahat earlier this morning for business matters, and now need to e-mail some files back to office urgently.

Later I am so going to raid the Old Town of Ipoh for its famous fantastic food. I want taugeh chicken, I want salted chicken, I want hor fun, I want chicken su, I want Ipoh girls white coffee!!!! So long Kuala Lumpur!!

Random Reflections

Yet another milestone for tankiasu.com

Tankiasu.com proudly introducing, its very own spin-off blog dedicated for movie reviews:

Tai Jor Lah!” (watched already), is the latest catchphrase made popular by Astro‘s current publicity advertisements of its new Astro-On-Demand package. I thought this phrase is super appropriate to be used as the name of this new blog. At Tai Jor Lah!, you can find overly-honest reviews of all the movies that me and some of my friends have “tai jor lah”!

So next time when you are deciding what movie to watch, please don’t go to those cinema’s websites where they give you a general sypnosis and hyped-up previews. Rather, click straight to Tai Jor Lah! for no-nonsense and no-hold-barred comments and reviews from our panel of not-so-professional movie buffs.


Fannie’s 2007 Birthday at CoDo, Mid Valley

This is a looooooong overdue post that I have promised the birthday girl. But better be late than never right?

So some of us ex-OCFers of Adelaide (both UniSA and Adelaide U), met up at Co’Do, a Vietnamese restaurant at Mid Valley Megamall. There were 8 of us, namely Fannie the birthday girl, Eileen, Hui Yin, Elena, Crisandra, William, Danny and me.

As usual with ex-OCFers gathering like this, we basically chat chat chat, laugh laugh laugh, update update update, encourage encourage encourage and eat eat eat the whole night!

Plenty of good authentic (I think) Vietnamese food there at Co’Do. But of course, that means nothing without great fellowship with old friends eh?

And what’s a birthday celebration without a good big fattening cake right?


Happy 2*th Birthday to Fannie Lim aka Adelaide’s “Chi Fa” (The Flower)

Then most of us joined in Fannie‘s obsession with shape-able balloons. She was actually perfecting her skills with those balloons for her short-term mission trip to Salatiga, Indonesia.

Danny the Balloon Pumper

Look how frustrated William was! Kakakaka….

Gotta take a shot of him!

We had such a blast that day, just like any other time spent with other ex-OCFers (and OCFers too of course). Especially glad to get to catch up with Danny, who was back here from Adelaide for holiday. And also with Crisandra and Elena that I don’t meet up with often.

We really ought to do this more often la buddies!


There you go Fannie, stop haunting me in my dreams and boycotting my blog already ok?