Saturday, March 19, 2011

Ah Mui Home Cooked Hakka Food (阿梅客家家鄉菜)

This lunch has been planned one week in advance. My uncle told me about this place in Kepong that served awesome Hakka home cooked food. Being a foodie himself, his assurance carries a significant vote of confidence. He has warned me in advance that we have to get there before 12pm as the queue may be bad.

When we got there at around noon, we were perhaps the 2nd or 3rd batch that arrived. We  were quite relieved that we were right on time before the crowd build up.  However, we still waited for about 20-25 minutes before the food was served. They are pretty slow. All the dishes are really nice with home cooked flavor in it though.

Of the 6 dishes that we ordered, I can't think of any one dish which is so so.  Kudos to my uncle who did the ordering. I particularly like the pork belly with "mui choy", the fish and the pork leg with ginger and vinegar very much. Party of 6 lunch costs RM101. Value for money for a satisfying lunch. It feels exceptionally satisfying eating with family members with enormous appetite!

Jalan 12/32B
Jinjang Selatan
52000 Kuala Lumpur

Taufu with minced meat. (肉碎豆腐)
Steamed pork belly with salted fish. (咸魚蒸豬肉)
Arteries clogging pork belly with seasoned "mui choi". (梅菜扣肉)
Boring veggie. (蕃薯葉)
Deep fried garoupa with chili bean paste sauce. (豆瓣魚)
Awesome pork leg with vinegar and ginger. Really appetising. (豬腳醋)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Restaurant KTL (Steamed Fish)

Restaurant KTL started off as a humble hawker stall along Taman Segar. It was only 2-3 stall away from the charcoal claypot chicken rice that I just blogged about. Over tha last 2 years, it has acquired a shoplot opposite the stall and further expanded the business to cater for bigger crowd. I believe that the quality of food tends to suffer a little once the business grown in size. It is just an inevitable process i guess.

The restaurant does not have much to offer other than a few variations of steamed fish (namely ginger steam, chili steam and bean paste steam), steamed pork ribs and steamed eggs. Hence, it is not an uncommon sight to see everyone ordering the same food. However, if you are good at what you are doing, you do not need a phone book thick of menu to impress.
During my recent visit, the dishes lived up to the expectation other than the fish that tasted a bit earthy. Remember to request for a new fish if that happens. Party of 8 costs slightly more than RM70. 

Gerai 30A, Jalan Manis,
Taman Segar, Cheras

Restaurant KTL.
Steamed pork ribs with bean paste, chili and ginger.
"Chili" steamed red tilapia.
"chiong cheng" red tilapia.
"sam sek" steamed egg. Basically steamed eggs with salted eggs and century eggs.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Meng Kee Charcoal Claypot Chicken Rice (明記炭燒瓦煲雞飯)

"Meng Kee" is rather quite a common name for restaurant. You can probably find quite a handful of "Meng Kee" in Klang Valley. I have to say most of the Meng Kees are pretty good of what they do such as Meng Kee Charsiew in Tong Shin (branch at Glenmarie), "San Meng Kee" Charsiew and Roast Duck restaurant at Taman Connaught just to name a few.

The "Meng Kee' that I am talking about is located at Taman Segar. I may possibly be the first one who blogs about it. The discovery of this gem was quite random as initially we were meant to go for another stall along the same roll for the infamous steamed tilapia. Since it was super pack when we were there, we decided to give this claypot rice stall a shot even though I am not a big fan of claypot rice. Somehow, I firmly believe that no one in the right mind would mess with cooking with charcoal if they are not good. I am fully aware of how difficult it is to control the temperature with coal fire.  

Since it is cooked with coal fire, it takes longer than usual for the food to be served. It takes from 15-25 minutes depending on the crowd. But trust me, it is worth the wait! When it is served, make sure you quickly stir it evenly to nicely blend the sauce, chicken, salted fish and chinese sausage. Coal powered rice gives you the fragrant that gas cooked version can never come close. I tell you even just by eating the rice alone is so satisfying.

Small pot = RM6.5
Big pot = RM13
Add salted fish = RM1

Gerai 30A, Jalan Manis,
Taman Segar, Cheras

Extraordinary food with a ordinary name.
Charcoal used to slow cook the claypot rice.
Stall owner patiently preparing the food.
Note that the wet cloth used around the rim of the claypot to "lock" the flavor in the pot.
By far the best claypot rice I have tasted in Klang Valley.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Hao Yi 好意 (Klang)

Hao Yi is a low key seafood restaurant within a city that is well known for seafood dishes. I have brought many friends to this restaurant and the response has always been positive. The seafood is always fresh given its constant flow of returning customers. 

Having said that, the seafood dishes in Hao Yi are normally good.  There are a party of 8 for tonight's dinner and the bill came up to be RM119. Not too bad as most dishes are seafood. Try to make reservation especially on weekends as it can be quite crowded.   

53, Jalan Batu Unjur,
Taman Chi Liung,
42000 Perlabuhan Klang,

Fried kai lan with garlic.
Homemade fish taufu.
Steamed "la la" with chinese wine. One of the signature dish.
Fried mantis prawns with cream. One of my favorite dishes.

Another signature dish. "Big prawns fried small prawns". Basically it is dried shrimped in sweet, spicy and sourish sauce fried with prawns. An appetising and a must try dish.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Khunthai (PJ)

While there are tons of Thai restaurants in Malaysia that claimed to be authentic Thai food, very few really live up to how good they claimed to be including some of the really pricy Thai restaurants. Khunthai in Gasing is one of the better ones. They have a rather extensive menu even though they are halal and do not serve pork and beef.
This is my very first visit and since my eating partner do not have a big appetite, we can only manage to order 3 dishes:- Tom Yum, Steamed Spicy Lime Siakap and "No Name" Chicken. The tom yum is pretty good but we felt that the flavoring is a bit too heavy (sweet) to our liking. The chicken was not bad and it really goes well with the sambal. When the steamed fish arrived, we know that we have nailed the right dish. It just have the perfect balance of spiciness, sourness and sweetness. I have a strong inclination to believe that if there is one dish to cure depression, this would be it. Truly exceptional! I will be back to try on other dishes on the menu with a bigger group perhaps. 

6, Jalan 5/44, Petaling Garden
46000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Khunthai Restaurant

My favorite "Kedongdong" juice.
"No Name" chicken.
Tom Yam.
Spicy lemon fish. This dish is simply awesome!
Goodies in the bowl of soup. Very fresh shrimp and squid.

Kanna Curry House (Malaysia)

Kanna Curry House is a well known Indian Banana Leaf Rice restaurant that has about 6 or 7 branches in Klang Valley. The challenge of most chain restaurants is their ability to maintain the consistency of food served. Kanna has done an excellent job in maintaining the quality of the food throughout most if not all the branches. I have tried 3 different branches and they are all pretty good.

Hence, Kanna is one of the restaurants that I frequented the most. I was there for lunch yesterday and today. If you ask if I can eat that everyday? The answer is probably yes! Sometimes I wonder if I have Indian blood in me. Where else can you find a meal full of flavors, nutritious (if you do not overdose on meat and free flow curry) and reasonably priced?

For the benefit of non Malaysians, Indian banana leave rice works something like buffet. Other than meat dishes, the rice, curry sauce, vegetables, condiments can be refilled unlimited. The base meal (without meat) costs around RM5 and each meat dish costs from RM5-7. So for RM10, you can have a pretty decent and satisfying meal.

Food = 8.0 out of 10

Cleanliness = 7.0 out of 10
Price = 8.0 out of 10

Address: Jalan 17/45 Petaling Jaya
GPS Coordinates: 3.119.819, 101.629.887

Great variety of side dishes.
More condiments.
Meal before the curry is poured in.
I like it flooded with curry.

Cilantro (KL)

When I was back to Malaysia for good. I decided to treat myself a good meal for the homecoming and the sacrifice of my 2.4 years stint in Macau. Well, it is a convenient excuse to spoil myself for another good meal without feeling guilty cause it was really a valid reason.  :)

I was researching online for a good restaurant and come across the "Mieleguide" (since I believe there is no Michelin rating restaurants in Malaysia). Out of the top 20, the highest ranking restaurant in Malaysia is "Cilantro". Cilantro is ranked a reputable 8 out of the top 20 restaurant in Asia.  

We chose the "Chef Degustation" dinner. I think I have missed out the picture of the soup and scallop which we had impatiently consumed. Overall, it was an enjoyable meal. Definitely one of the better fine dining choices in KL even though I think it is quite pricy for almost RM400 per person. There was no cockage  fee for the 2 bottles of wines that we brought though.  

Food = 8.5 out of 10
Ambience = 7 out of 10 (some rowdy drunk golfers were having some gathering downstairs)
Cleanliness = 8.5 out of 10
Price = 6.5 out of 10 (you can afford some Michelin 2 or 3 star rated restaurants elsewhere to blow your palate away with flawless service for the same price)

Cod fish, lobster tail with mushroom. Ingredients are super fresh so you do not need a lot of flavor in this.
Smoked duck breast. Fragrant smoky flavor.
Melts in your mouth medium rear wagyu beef. Nicely done.
Zesty lime and lemon sherbet with mint.
Vanilla icecream with cherries.


Opening Hours

Lunch - Fridays only (12.00pm-2.00pm)
Dinner - Monday-Saturday (6.00pm-10.30pm)
Closed on Sundays

Dress code = smart casual.

Address & Contact

Cilantro Restaurant & Wine Bar,
MiCasa All Suite Hotel,
368-B, Jalan Tun Razak,
50400 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +603 2179 8082
Fax: +603 2164 3730

GPS coordinates (N03° 9.416' E101° 43.351')