"Alas! We only possess one stomach each"
This lovely little Bistro is set deep in the heart of Bukit Bandaraya and only those who have been led here know of it. Set in a small strip of shophouses often missed due to the proximity to the suburbs, Opus always seems to be full whenever we visit it leading us to conclude how powerful the word of mouth is and how appreciative food lovers are of somewhere quiet to eat and talk. And of course...the food here is great too.
We sat down to Grilled Scallops and Rocket Salad. This is a tasty starter beautifully done, the peppery taste of the rocket goes well with the mellow taste of the scallops. This salad is an instant favourite. They have a number of salads here and on occasion, a tapas or two but all are in dainty portions, to whet the appetite so you definitely have space for mains and dessert.
We first heard about this place from one of our friends raving about the angel hair pasta. Not many places here do angel hair well and here it is just wonderful, sautÃ©ed with scallops, capsicum and a hint of lemon. The Spaghetti ala Opus too is a favourite with lots of seafood. We also tried a new concoction which is spaghetti with strong flavoured porcini mushrooms. Divine... we asked where they get it and the Chef just smiled enigmatically and said 'adalah...' The porcinis here are not dried and are brought in frozen to retain the freshness. A dish to try out for all you pasta fans out there!
"There is a stronger presence of dried chilli"
How many ways can you grill satay and still call it satay? What if it does not come with peanut sauce? And it's from Penang? Well... hold on to your forks, Batu Maung Satay is up for a review and you can get it in PJ. We're here at the South Pacific Seafood Restaurant to taste the famous Batu Maung Satay from Penang. This restaurant actually gets its supply of satays from Penang! Rumour has it that they serve approximately 15,000 sticks a week! This is the only restaurant in PJ serving this type of satay (that we know of) outside of Batu Maung, Penang.
"My heart belongs to the Luc Lac"
This was the forerunner of the hip and artistic Asian Heritage Row. Frankly it's about time that someone did something about our abundance of old shop houses. So it was no surprise that as soon as Bar Savanh (the bar below Cochine) opened, they were flooded with punters thirsty for a new place to quench their thirst.
We now review Cochine to see whether they can slake our hunger. Cochine serves Indochinese cuisine from Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. Now if you are familiar with Thai food, Cochine's menu will be familiar though there are certain variations to it. Take for instance the well loved young papaya salad. Laotians call it tham som as oppose to the Thai song tham. The Laotian version is sweeter and has less dried prawns in it.
Today though, we tried the pamelo salad which is called Goi Buoi Saigon. It's got a tartness to it and even if I'm an Ipoh girl, I don't normally like pameloes but this is certainly a great way to serve it. The prawns in it adds texture and a richness to the dish. Try this for something different to start your meal.
Then, we had the Cochine platter, a nice showcase of starters that you can munch on. The Cha Gio which is spring rolls come in two versions. There's a fried version which you eat with a sweet dipping sauce and a Vietnamese style where it's raw and you wrap it up in leaves before popping it in your mouth. Both are yummy but one reviewer especially liked the chao tom which is prawn quenelles speared on sugarcane. When you eat it, you're supposed to bite and suck the sweet juices out of the sugarcane. I remembered eating this in Cambodia and they used fresh grilled prawns but this works just as well. Make you sure you suck out all the juices from the sugarcane...mmm...
"Scones in the rose garden dear?"
Where better to savour a good plate of Sirloin Steak with Yorkshire Pudding than The Smokehouse, Cameron Highlands? The cool climate of Cameron Highlands is perfect for evening tea and scones in the flower gardens. Come dinnertime, the fireplace will definitely set the mood going for a good plate of Sirloin Steak and perhaps a rack of lamb topped up with some creme brule for desserts. That's what we are having today at The Smokehose.
If you are looking for escapism into something somewhat British for a quick while, this place will not disappoint you. Overlooking the golf course, this quiet, tudor house is very ideal for some rest and relaxation. As the restaurant joins with the hotel living room cum lobby together with Victorian chairs and 'all things British', ambience here is simply wonderful day or night. I was perfectly happy sitting down sipping my lime juice absorbing the ambience when dinner came. I was in for a surprise.....
"They use wood fire to cook it on"
You've not tasted laksa until you have tried Laksa Teluk Kechai in Kedah. This is one of the best Malay dishes I have ever tasted and if you are from KL, it is worth the four hundred fifty kilometer drive to Zakaria Laksa for several plates of their laksa! Ultimate satisfaction!....
This particular laksa dish is made of rice flour and clear gravy a concoction of sardine fish, bunga kantan, onions and lemon grass to give it a very distinctive laksa fragrance. This dish is nice eaten with hard boiled eggs, chopped cucumber and onions. At Teluk Kechai, there's the additional daun putat and coconut sambal that will definitely send your tastebuds skyrocketing to laksa heaven...
This laksa tasted homemade and the best thing is that this is one of the few places I know that still uses wood fire to cook both the laksa and the clear gravy! Their additional effort to maintain the taste by slow cooking over wood fire shows in the wonderfully delicious taste of the sardine gravy, not overly fish pungent... just nice smooth flavourful taste.
"So hold up your lobster crackers and get stuck in"
Aren't lobster meals expensive? Nah..you shouldn't think about your wallet when having lobsters especially when you can get them for as low as RM58.00++ per lobster from Lobsterman. No need to travel far, Lobsterman is in SS2. So hold up your lobster crackers, we going in for some American Lobsters!
Lobsterman is situated at the quiet area of SS2 which definitely simplifies parking. The decor is cozy with huge tanks full of live lobsters. You get to droll on the ones you want and select how you want it prepared. There are three different sizes to choose from, Small from RM88.00++ and Medium from RM108.00++. Large has a larger price.
If you want something filling, you will want to have the lobster prepared Heavenly Palace style. It's their specialty. The lobster is cooked in superior soup (made from chicken stock) and cheese before being served with fried yee mee. Lobsters are best eaten fresh and this one is no different. The flesh is very succulent and if you are on a budget, the yee mee will fill in the tummy spaces not filled by the lobsters.
"Forget the cutlery, just use your hands"
Ai Carramba! I was shocked when I had my first taste of Mexican food. Mexican food has a very strong taste - hot, sour, sweet, salty or all at once. I reckon the food in many ways reflect the landscape of this vast country, very extreme! Have you seen a Wild West movie? Yup, most of Mexico (in the exception of the south) looks like that rugged country you see. Makes you wonder what kind of food they eat.
When I heard about a Mexican restaurant on our shores, I headed out with my posse to Las Carretas in Subang USJ to try it out. The restaurant serving a variety of Tex-Mex food has a very lively atmosphere and very helpful waiters. Our waiter was kind enough to explain about the dishes as the names are in Spanish. No hablo en espanol. The Carts, the restaurant's name in English gives you a feeling that you are at the south of the border and just stopped for a hearty meal. The menu has an interesting personal touch noting the recommendations of their patrons.
Today we're trying out tacos, ribs and lamb at Las Carretas! For starters we had Quesadillas, a kind of Mexican meat pie. It's stuffed with meat, tomatoes, lettuce and other garnishes wrapped with a taco shell. The big portions whetted my appetite for the main course.