"Tandoori here is so good, you'll be back for more"
Around the Ampang area, if you are hankering for some tandoori, go to Arumugams. Mouth-watering butter and garlic naan piping hot with one of the best tandoori chicken in town. The tandoori paste is marinated deep in the chicken and you get it hot and succulent, grilled to perfection! The naans here are so soft it melts in your mouth. The butter naan here is to die for. Apparently the tandoori fish is also good. Everything is good here.
"Deep fried devils? Yes please..."
‘Ming Kee Rice and Noodle House’ has more than 30 years of history since they started their business. Even the street where Ming Kee is located is called Lazat which means delicious. If you are around Taman Gembira, grab a dish of their wanton noodles and dumplings. Cooking wanton mee is a skill where timing is of utmost importance. A good plate of wanton noodles cannot be under or over cooked, and it must have a smooth texture as you shovel it into your mouth. At Ming Kee’s, their noodles certainly fit this criteria.
And there’s more! Their pork wantons are quite huge and the filling is ample enough for you to taste the sweetness of the minced pork. The sui kow deliciously has herbs, slices of carrots and Chinese coriander. For our dish, we love some stewed chicken feet and juicy black elephant eared mushrooms. It’s not really elephant ears but it’s real chicken feet. Optional though… but adventurous ones will want to try these…. stewed to perfection.
"Nothing like fresh cockles with a spicy dip"
Bagan Lalang is a great place to relax, unwind, enjoy some fresh sea breezes and at the same time, delicious seafood. Believe it or not, this place is just half and hours drive from the Sepang F1 Circuit. Totally different from KL! If you arrive an hour before sunset, you will be amazed at the unspoiled beaches, fine sands and the beautiful sunset. Definitely worth the drive...
Being located close to a fishing village has also given Bagan Lalang a reputation for fresh seafood and there is no shortage of ikan bakar stalls which offers a wide range of other seafood prepared in various styles at reasonable prices. Our favourite is HMS Seri Bagan located on the far left (just before the fishing village) as you get to the beach.They have one section built on stilts that provides guests with a nice view of the sun setting over the horizon.
The fun thing at Seri Bagan is that you get to choose your own seafood. Most of the seafood are sourced from the nearby fishing village so freshness is guaranteed. There is a whole assortment of fishes from siakap, garoupa, seabass, kembung and cencaru to choose from. That is not all, they have a healthy stock of flower crabs, bamboo lala, sea prawns and for great appetizers, otak otak. Items are priced per gramme and includes cooking as well.
"Try the ox tongue if you're feeling adventurous"
Overlooking the KLCC park on the 3rd floor of PNB Darby Park, sit next to the glass walls for the great ambience. The restaurant can be a bit busy during dinner as it is popular with Koreans and locals as well. An all Korean meal at Kung Joong starts with a selection of about nine different starter dishes from kim chi, seaweed, potatoes, fried beansprouts to fishball cuts.
One of the winning starters is the Paj Jeon, a kind of Korean styled pancake stuffed with spring onions and seafood. Cut into bite size pieces, it is delicious finger food to accompany one or another of the restaurant dishes.
"This is a gem of a place"
I must admit this find is a goldmine. I could never imagine finding such a charming place away from the busy and chaotic traffic (just 5 minutes away from the old airport). Tucked in an upscale condo, Chuka Cafe (non-halal) appears to be well patronized by the Japanese expats in the area. And if they are here, then this place must definitely be doing something right to please their very picky palate. Thus we must be on to a good thing right? Well, let's find out....
When we arrived, almost all the tables were taken with the clientele consisting mostly of... you guessed it, Japanese! Even the menus arrived in 2 versions - Japanese or English. The cafe overlooks the condo's swimming pool. So there's a nice, serene ambiance to it, though the place looks fairly basic and simple. Reminds me of those little humble roadside/ryokan inns you drop by for a bite, reminiscent of Japanese serials.
Service was efficient and very helpful. Just voice your preference to the waitress and she will recommend what to order. We did, and the stuff she named was not even listed in the menu! Methinks you can even request the chef to prepare something you concocted in your head, and they will try their best to comply. True to Japanese hospitality!
Food came pretty quick. First up was our Tofu salad. It was chock-full of ham, tomatoes, tofu, cucumber and lettuce. A typical salad with a Japanese/Asian twist to it. The dressing was piquant and gave a tasty tang to the salad. Tofu cubes were soft and smooth. The lettuce came with a dash of wasabi for that extra kick to your tastebuds! Definitely a healthy way to kickstart our meal.
"Yut Kee serves Hainanese classics from your childhood"
When you enter Yut Kee, it's like a blast from the past. Think round marble tables with rickety chairs. Old fashioned wooden shutter windows and winding wooden staircase. The wall is adorned with a simple hand-written menu while an old portrait of the founder hangs over the counter. Casually dressed waiters run round the shop like clockwork ferrying dishes fresh from the kitchen to the hungry customers' tables.
Yut Kee is a traditional kopitiam situated smack in old KL that's a legendary institution for Hainanese style western or local fare. Historically, many of the colonialist families in Malaya hired Hainanese chefs for their homes. This was where they were exposed to Western cuisine and then adapted them to our local ingredients and cooking style. Until this day, the Hainanese are still well known for their versatile cooking prowess, most notably chicken rice, noodles and Malaysianised Western food.
Arriving at 11.30am, the place was packed with patrons waiting for their turn. We got our seats immediately though we shared the table with another couple. First to arrive was the soft-boiled eggs. I remember taking this during my schooldays. My granny will use this yellow plastic contraption and the eggs always came out perfect each time. Soft and smooth white with yolks cooked just right, Yut Kee's no exception. From the texture and the way it moves on the saucer, I know it's super fresh and top quality. With a dash of pepper and soy sauce, simply slurp it from the saucer til it's all gone. It slides down your throat and sits warmly in my tummy. Wonderful comfort food this is!
"The Kumi sauce is tastebud ambrosia"
This charming basement restaurant is a breath of fresh air (Hawaiian to be exact) from all the other stoic Japanese eateries in town. The lighting is lowered to comfortable levels giving Wasabi's modern looking restaurant a good ambience at night. It's menu is quirky and full of local ingredients, Wasabi (it's founder migrated to Hawaii and started the restaurant there) embraces the spirit of Japanese cooking using the freshest produce and what's indigenous to the country it's in. That's why it has unique items like Papaya Motoyaki, sauteed seafood in half papaya shells a refreshing dish.
You MUST try the Kumi's No. 1-an orgasm in your mouth folks! The secret is the Kumi sauce which is tastebud ambrosia. We then had some rolls which is delicious. Rainbow rolls are sushi inside out with the rice rolled in sashimi. The super California rolls are lightly fried giving a slight crunch on the inside.