Saturday, May 31, 2014

Classic Japanese Hokkaido Ramen by Santouka Pavilion Mall Kuala Lumpur

Of late there have been numerous Ramen restaurant sprouting out in the Klang Valley in droves. So, we have this opportunity to savour one of the pioneering Ramen joint which is Santouka located at 6th Floor, Pavilion Shopping Mall (Tokyo Street) which serves the authentic Hokkaido style Ramen.

The restaurant is decorated with wood based setting which inspired the village setting. Even the tables and chairs and accessories are also mostly wood based in line with the main theme.

Using the family recipe the SANTOUKA RAMEN was conceived with the modest salt flavoured Shio Ramen. The version of the Hokkaido Ramen serves here are the thin-noodle and are imported from Japan. 

The next most important to a perfect bowl of Ramen is the soup, which Santouka brewed up for all its Ramen, is the Tonkotsu (Pork Bones). The other ingredients added to brewed up this soup based include vegetables, dried fish, kelp and some secret ingredient. The soup had  to be maintained at the right temperature (not boiling) and continuous at this right temperature to ensure the taste is consistent.

We started with the signature Creamy Shio Ramen serves with Pork Belly. The flavour is not too overwhelming and was just the right taste to start with.

In Malaysia, there is also a need for some spicy Ramen, and Santouka have introduce the Spicy Shio Ramen which have the same Shio based soup but with an added spices. This was serves with Premium Pork Cheek. This Specialty Ramen is only available in limited quantity per day. The meat of the Pork Cheek is not tough and it is very chewy. So, If you are game for Pork Cheek, you have to come early for this specialty.

Next, we had the Shoyu Ramen (Soya Sauce) serves with Pork Belly (Char Siu). With the soya sauce based, it is a little saltier than the Shio but was very flavourful though.

Watch our second part review on YouTube below.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Sumptuous Fine Chinese Dining at Royal Gourmet Bandar Bukit Tinggi Klang

For food lovers, Klang is much more well known for it’s Bak Kut Teh and Seafood, but when it comes to Fine Chinese dining, there are very limited choices to choose from. We were invited to sample and review new signature dishes by the Royal Gourmet located at Hotel Premiere, Bandar Bukit Tinggi, 1/KS6, Jalan Langat, Klang recently.

Royal Gourmet offers a nice ambience and environment where you can entertain guests, friends or a casual dinner with family. The restaurant is well decorated with Chinese paintings, decoratives and Chinese motifs.They have a special grand room which can host about 15 people for a private function too (pictured above). 

We had the Double Boiled Black Chicken Soup With Chinese Herbs to start off our sumptuous dinner. Black Chicken contains more antioxidant than regular chicken and since their meat is a little coarser, and using it for soups especially to double boil with Chinese Herbs is the best combination to extract the good nutritional value of the black chicken.

This soup does not have an overwhelmingly herbalish taste but clear light black rich soup. The generous amount of dried scallops that the chef had put into the soup gives out a flavourful broth.

One of the uniqueness of this soup was a special ingredient that was used to complement this clear rich soup. From the first sight, it looks much like a black shitake mushroom as depicted from the picture but it is actually “Hak Fu Cheun” (Black Tiger Palm mushroom) which has a very unique taste and aroma which was heavily infused into the soup and leaves a tingling feel.

Our next dish is the Steamed Sea Garoupa In Village Style. The taste and feeling of this dish is reminiscent of yester years where in the village, they would normally used many other ingredients to steam fish dishes. This is so as most villagers would tend cook a one dish meal.

For this steamed dish, Chef Johnson uses ingredients like black mushroom, bean curd stick, red dates, black fungus and Chinese vegetarian glass noodle to prepare the sauce which complemented well with the fresh Garoupa fish.

The white fish meat was tender and very succulent. The right timing for steaming this fish is critical as if over steamed the meat will be tough. The fish head skin was also very smooth and silky and you could slurp it in.

Our vegetable dish for the night was Stir Fried Baby French Bean With Top Shell. This is another example of a simple home style dish that the chefs have innovated to add in a quality ingredient to a simple vegetable dish.

The Baby French Beans was very crunchy, while the top shell was chewy making it a perfect combination for this dish.

Another regular dish which most housewives will know how to cook is the minced pork meat with salted fish. But here, at Royal Gourmet, the chef has again intrigued us that instead of using pork, he uses chicken meat to cook this dish.

The chef, using a method which he would not reveal, tells us it is a great challenge to use chicken meat to cook this dish. Normally steamed minced chicken meat tends to be a little soft and does not have the meaty feel compared to using pork meat. But, surprising the chef had managed to prepare the chicken meat that had this meaty feeling with the right portion of the salted fish. You can’t help asking for a second helping of white rice to goes with the sauce.

Our last main dish was the Baked Lamb Rack With Chef Special Sauce. The sauce was pre-marinated with generous amount of bean paste, garlic, shallots, special sauce (concocted by the chef) and dashes of red wine.

The baby lamb rib was first oven baked and then cooked in the special sauce and complemented with poached asparagus to give you the overall presentation.

Although the rib was tender and succulent and does not have the gamey lamb taste which is important to cook a lamb dish, I find that the sauce was a little overwhelmed in this dish. Probably I am the type where I love my lamb to be served with minimal sauce so that I can really taste the succulent and juicy lamb instead of the taste of the sauce.

To end our wonderful dinner, we had the Double Boiled Saussurea Involucrate (Tiānshān xuělián ) With Snow Fungus And Red Dates for dessert. The Saussurea Involucrate taste much like “Suet Kap aka Hashima”.

It is yet another innovative use of ingredient by the chef to intrigue our taste buds. Served hot, it is a sweet and refreshing way to end our lovely dinner epicurean adventure.

A tummy warming dessert

Chef Johnson - Friendly Executive Sous Chef that cook up the storm for our sumptuous dinner.

Check out our other review of Royal Gourmet @ Hotel Premiere Klang

Fish & Co – New Menu and Opening at The Mines Shopping Mall Seri Kembangan

Fish and Chips are a very common dish serves in many Western restaurants in town. Most of them tend to serve the breaded type i.e. which is coated with batter and deep fried. At Fish & Co, they are introducing 2 new type of Fish dishes to their menu.

At the opening of their fourth outlet on 20th May 2014 at Level 1, L1-100*102 Mines Shopping Mall, they also took the opportunity to introduce a couple of new seafood dishes and drinks. 

At Fish & Co, they just not only serve you fish and chips (which they have many variations of how fish and chips can be served) but rather seafood i.e prawns, clams and squids with many variations either as grilled or deep fried.

As there are so many dishes to try out during the opening lunch, we were offered a delicious tasting platter, which consist of all the individual new dishes serves in a pan. It was a very creative way to let us taste all these new dishes without overwhelming our stomach. 

The first new dish that was offered that caught my taste bud was the Baked White Fish with Mozzarella Cheese. I personally like this as the fish was coated with a layer of the Mozarella Cheese instead of breadcrumb. The fish was a little salty due to the cheese which if eaten together with the paella rice will be just right. 

My second preference was the Grilled Parmesan White Fish. The fish fillet is stuffed with Parmesan Cheese and comes with Fish & Co Signature lemon sauce. 

Clams with Sambal Sauce was next on my favorite list as the sambal was not too overwhelmingly spicy and would really goes well with the rice.
Next on the line is the Fried Chicken with Peri-Peri Prawn. For me the Fried Chicken was a little too dry and lack the crunchiness and crispiness of you know which other restaurant that serves the finger licking fried chicken I am talking about. The Fried Chicken menu was added to give additional meals for the whole family as some customer might not have inkling to seafood. 

If you happen to go with a few friends or guest and not sure what to offer, you can opt for the Fisherman Platter, where you can sample a few of the dishes (different seafood) rather than ordering them as individual dishes. Among those seafood in the platter are the grilled calamari, mussels, fish fillet, baked prawns and grilled chicken. The Fisherman platters are served with mashed potatoes and the super delicious paella rice – for me it goes well with the seafood.

For those who love to eat the Fried version of seafood, you can order the Fry-Kings Platter which includes golden fried calamari, prawns fritters, white fish, fried chicken and curry butter clams. The side dishes serves together with this platter are the mashed potatoes and paella rice.

Although there were introducing 3 new drinks, my personal preference was on the Passion Fruit Mojito (pictured above). It is a lime with mint leaves and passion fruit. The combination is very refreshing especially on a hot day and also after a heavy meal. The other 2 drinks are Candy Crush – which I find it a little too sweet while the Peach Rainbow which is a concoction of peach and cranberry was just right.

In conjunction with the opening at Mines, they are treating customers with the Best Fish and Chips in Town for only RM 1.00 for the first 50 pax at 12pm and 6pm on Saturday and Sunday from 1st June 2014 to 15th June 2014.

So, if you game for some seafood, head over to Fish & Co and have your 
Seafood Served In A Pan.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Springy Japanese Ramen At Goku Raku Mid Valley Megamall

Of late there have been numerous Ramen shops that have been setup in the Klang Valley. Each one boasting their uniqueness and flavors that will drives your loves for this hot slurpy meal that will guarantee to soothe your tummy.

We were invited for a Ramen food review at Goku Raku Ramen which is located at Lot S025 & Lot S026, Level 2, Mid Valley Megamall, Kuala Lumpur. This restaurant amplifies the neatness and casual dining atmosphere the Japanese way. It is brightly lit and provides an open kitchen concept where you can watch your fresh Ramen been made right at the shop window or watch how they prepare your favourite Ramen. to ensure freshness of the Ramen, it is prepared fresh from this outlet.

Ramen is a very common food in Japan much like our wanton noodles in Malaysia. You can get your fix of these noodles almost anywhere in Japan. But, what makes a good Ramen and what it entails for a chef to prepare such a simple dish to arouse your senses. It boils down to every little steps and processes starting from the right quality ingredient to the timing and right up to the consistency in boiling the ramen to its perfection.

Of course, the other thing, which is of utmost important is the soup base. This is the defining moments of whether the Ramen will leave you totally satisfied or so so  or yurky as they say.

Starting off the night, we had the Shanghai Fried Ramen. Frankly speaking, I had never tried Ramen cook in this style as most of the time, it is always a soup base type which I preferred. Having the first bite of this Ramen reminds me of the Hot Plate noodles that are served at the food court, although those, uses the “Yee Mee” as compared to here that uses Ramen. The Ramen mixes well with the sauce that it was cook in. What I like most is that the chef had put in a lot of vegetables in the Ramen, the only set back was that it was hard to give it a good mix so as all the sauce are at the bottom of the plate.

Next we had the Ebi Goyza. Gyoza is the Japanese dumplings and this had the vegetable and meat filling. The dumpling is pan fried so it leaves a crisp at the bottom and soft top. The complimentary sauce was the hot sesame oil with soyu. I find the filling a little too soft, i.e. when you bite it, there is no oomph of eating real meat which I favored in my dumplings.

The main course for the night is of course the Five Star Aburi Char Siew, one of the specialty Ramen served here. The Pork belly topping is cooked and lightly roasted on the top to give it the Char Siew effect. It also comes with a half of a Nitamago (soyu sauce boiled eggs). 

According to the chef, these eggs are prepared using a very long and tedious process which have to be timed to perfection to ensure that the yolk are set in the middle and it should not be overcook.

The soup based was the TONKOTSU SOUP, which was prepared using fresh pork bones and secret ingredients that was added into as the base and brewed over a period of time. At the first slurp of the hot soup, which has a topping of kuro oil (black garlic oil) infused into our tongue, you will get the feeling of taking another spoonful after another. 

The soup was very addictive and complimenting it with the freshly made Ramen and Pork Belly was a perfect combination. For those that do not fancy such a strong soup base, you can try out the Tokyo soup base which is milder in taste as it uses chicken as the main ingredient for the broth.

Next, we had the GRR Pork meatballs. The meatballs are first fried and then cooked with a sweet and sour sauce. Taking my first bite, the crust was nice and blended well with the sauce but the inside filling, the meat was a little too soft for me, I always enjoy meatballs that are firm and which are of the bouncy type when you bite into it. 

Specially Just For You - Goku Raku is offering a 50% off for you to try out this GRR meatball from 9th May 2014 to 30th June 2014. You can print out the voucher to redeem it. Voucher is at the end of this blog. Enjoy Yourself and let me know your comments.

(Details Below)

Lastly, we were served a Set Dish Meal called Set C, which has a combination of more than 10 separate dishes cook in small portion which you can share with friends. My advice is to eat these with either plain white rice or plain Ramen as it can be a little salty if you were to eat it as it is. 

My personal favorite are the Crispy Mayo Shrimp. The prawn was very fresh and you can taste the crunchy and succulent prawn feeling with every bite of it.

Pork Loin Rei Shabu. 

Here are the dishes served as part of Set C

Aburi Char Siew
Chef Salad
Pork Loin Rei Shabu
Tori Momo Karaage
Crispy Mayo Shrimp
Siew Mai
Ebi Chilli
Sweet and Sour Pork
Utsunomiya Sui Gyoza
Garlic Fried Rice/Mini Ramen
Today's Dessert
Sesame Ball


Brazil Biggest Match of Year Kick Off At Domino’s Pizza

Ole Ole comes 12th June 2014, football fans around the world will once again rejoice to the feast of the Biggest Match of Year which happens once every four years. As they say, this is the greatest sporting events that are being watch by billions of people around the globe, making at least half of them to become zombies especially in Malaysia where our time zone are at the opposite side of the globe meaning they will be countless of late night for most of the football fans here.

Pizzas have been traditional, the food for football fans all around the world as it is a great wholesome food that can be eaten while watching your favourite teams battling it out right in the comfort of your home and with your buddies. And, you can order it using your phone and have it delivered right at your door step.

It is easy to order and it provides a variety of flavours to choose from that will suit almost everyone. At Domino’s, they are also celebrating this sporting event by introducing three special Biggest Match of Year flavours which are as follows.

For those that prefer a not so meaty stuff, you can try out Chickensaurus on Thin Crust which have the toppings of roasted chicken, chicken pepperoni and mushroom topped with Smoky Blended BBQ sauce and cheese.

If you can’t decide whether to go for chicken or beef then order the Smoky Beef and Chick which are topped with onion slices, green peppers, ground beef and chicken potpourri sausage and also topped with Smoky Blended BBQ sauce and cheese.

And lastly the Smoky Pepperoni and Mushroom which is topped with Beef Pepperoni and Mushroom and topped with Smoky Blended BBQ sauce and cheese.

Of course if you are a fan of Domino’s you can also order some of their all time favorite like the :-

Metasaurus on Classic Hand Tossed Crust – If you are really like me, loves a lot of meat in my Pizza then Go for this.

Or If you are a very into Malaysian makan taste then the Spicy Sambal with thin crust will keep you wide awake.

Or order some of their side kick - Drummet

To make it more exciting for this event, Domino’s is also organizing an online contest which is Domino’s Kick Off – it is an online game where customer can play this game (which is a football juggling) and score points from each game.

The grand prize is a FREE ALL EXPENSE PAID TRIP TO BRAZIL for 2. Also they have weekly winners where Domino’s will host you and 20 guest for a football viewing party with all the Domino’s Pizza you can eat.

Here is how you can join this online contest.

1.                  PLAY - Logon to and play the game.
2.                  EAT – Purchase Domino’s Pizza online to multiply your weekly high score.
3.                  WIN – Win the highest score at the end of the contest to win a trip for 2 to Brazil and also the weekly prizes to be won.


To make the contest more interesting and rewarding to Domino’s customer you can get extra points for each pizza that you order. So the more you play and the more Pizza you buy or eat the more chances of winning the weekly and grand prize.

ORDER Your Favorite Pizza At