Friday, May 24, 2013

Crystal Jade @ Causeway Point Woodlands

Everywhere seemed rather packed on this public holiday and it was difficult to find a restaurant that can accommodate 7 pax with no reservations. Was told of a 30 minutes wait for the first restaurant that we enquired. Fortunately, Crystal Jade managed to get us seated within 2 minutes.

Ordered a pot of pu-er tea while we contemplated on the dishes.

pu-er tea
table for bigger groups
wet towel

Dad wanted to try fried rice, so we got a medium plate to share on top of dishes like tofu, vegetable, pork, chicken and steam rice.

braised pork with preserved vege (梅菜扣肉)

The steel burner not only gleames and shines but it did a great job in heating up the food. So much so that the waitress had to turn off the fire after less than a minute.

don't underestimate the fire
fatty portion was nice

The 梅菜扣肉 dish was not too salty and the ratio of fat to meat was just 1:4. Surprisingly, there wasn't alot of preserved vege in this dish.

Vegetables is a must, so we had spinach stir fried with garlic.

spinach (菠菜)
Loved the greens. Nicely tender and none of that 'old' fibrious texture.

spicy chilies
beancurd dish
chicken with black snow fungus

The fried rice was a tad dry, so the bubbling sauce from the chicken dish made a good companion. The chicken dish tasted quite homely.

Service in general was good. The staff who took our orders would come by repeatedly and ask if we needed to add anymore dishes as she strongly feels that our order was insufficient.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Seoul Yummy @ The Central, Clarke Quay

Located at Level 3 of The Central. Had a late dinner with my niece. First impression of the place? It felt somewhat smallish.

Placed our order and was served with complimentary banchan right after. Liked the anchovies, tofu and kimchi.

kimchi, anchovies, tofu, peanuts, radish and potato

For drinks, I had the Korean pear drink (@$3.90++). The glass was rather slim so one could finish the drink in no time. It tasted kind of familiar. A bit similar to Qoo minus the jelly and substituted with small pear cubes.

Korean pear

My niece wasn't feeling hungry so we ordered small snacks to share.

fried kimchi dumplings (@$6.90++)
closer view
seafood pancake (@$7.90++)

The kimchi dumplings and seafood pancake were disappointing, in terms of size, price and taste.

tender beef (light portion @$9.90++)

The beef was sweetish and nice. This was a smaller portion. The regular ones would costs about six dollars more.

Service was intriguing. The lady who brought out the dishes to our table was sullen looking and deposited the items onto the table disinterestingly.

Dinner for two costs around $38.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Pinos Pizza and Pasta @ Wisma Thrifty, Petaling Jaya

Located at a little rundown looking Wisma Thrifty (there's a Courts inside) at Jalan Barat, Petaling Jaya, a friend bought us there to try simple Italian food.

And by simple, it means that the menu has only that few items. The mains consist only of pizza and pasta. Just 10 types of pizza and 8 types of pasta. That's it. A no frills joint.

quaint serving dish

For pizza, we tried their Super Special aka "what also have" kind of pizza. It has mozzarella cheese, chicken, capsicum, seafood, pineapple, anchovies and olives.

Super Special Pizza
thin crust

We liked. Not a big pizza, perhaps just nice for two pax, although I suspect a guy could finish this on his own.


Also tried the Carbonara and boy, it was tasty! Yums! The sauce was just right, not too watery, flavourful and noodles well cooked. Best of all, the cream was not overpowering. Polished it up in seconds.

Also tried another pasta dish, the Tony's Special Ala Mama. This has the tomato based sauce, anchovies, chicken sausage, olives and lots of chili padi. Hahaa, my friend had to reach out for her cold drink every now so often!

Prices for the pasta and pizza ranged between RM12 to RM18, if not wrong.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Paradise Dynasty @ Lot One Choa Chu Kang (Part II)

Birthday lunch treat from bro, yippee! It's weekend plus Mother's Day celebration, and that meant the queue was about 10-15 minutes wait.

Nevertheless, we got a comfy table and the floor manager/supervisor was apologetic about the longer waiting time. Liked her pro-activeness in offering explanation, and it made us feel valued as customers. Good approach!

tick your orders

Ordered the Paradise Dynasty 4 Flavours Pork Dumplings (those signature colourful xiao long baos), appetiser of beef organ and a prawn fried rice.

spicy beef organ cold dish (@$8.80++)
beef tripe and sliced beef shank

The spicy beef organ cold dish was enjoyable. Lots of heat but shioks.

Prawn Fried Rice with vegetables (@$10.80++)
yummy looking

The fried rice was nice and ample enough to feed two pax comfortably. Purposely chose this prawn fried rice because it has chopped vege bits in it. So pretty!

Dynasty 4 Flavours Pork Dumplings
from top, clockwise: cheese, original, foie gras, crab roe

The colourful xiao long bao's indeed made me want to take a bite into them and to discover how does these exotic flavours tasted like.

I would not have been able to imagine how does a cheese xiao long bao is suppose to taste like. Could you?

cheese pork dumpling
cheesy strand

insides of cheese xiao long bao

Actually the cheese dumpling tasted like the regular xiao long bao, with just that tiny bit of cheese inside. It's like 98% pork dumpling original taste with 2% cheese hint.

The foie gras was somewhat indecipherable. It's definitely different tasting but it also doesn't seem to taste nor smell like the foie gras that we know.

crab roe pork dumpling

So the curiosity for these exotic flavoured xiao long baos were finally put to rest with this visit.
The service here, in overall was quite good. Tea was topped up without us having to ask for it. A meal for two would typically cost around $20 per pax.

Communal: Diner.Bar.New American Restaurant @ North Canal Road

Located at the short row of shophouses along North Canal Road. Nearest MRT station is Clarke Quay and North Canal Road is supposed to be opposite of the station. My non-sense of direction has been proven, once again. Was at Clarke Quay station, followed the signs inside the station to North Canal Road but couldn't find North Canal but saw South Bridge, Upper Pickering Street and somehow still ended up at China Square. Gosh!

There's a valet parking just outside of Communal. Otherwise, pretty hard to find a lot if you're there around 8+pm. We had prior reservations, so got a table for 7 pax with ease.

entrance to Communal
table, overlooking the streets outside
shall we have one of each main course?

Happy Hour offers one-for-one Stella. Why not?


For starters, we had the Communal Chicken Wings (@$12+). Simple fried wings, crunchy batter and still juicy on the insides. Served piping hot.

Communal Chicken Wings with Bourbon BBQ sauce

Also ordered various sides to try. All sides are priced at $6+.

Cornbread with Honey Butter

Liked the cornbread very much. Crescent shaped and its outsides has a bit of crunch, plus it was savoury sweet. Goes well with the honey butter. Think I ate most of it! But they're so tiny. So tiny.

Parmesan and Parsley French Fries
salted and ready to eat

Very strong parmesan cheese smell, and the fries are pretty heavily salted. Washed it down with beer.

Mac and Cheese

The macaronis looked good, with cheese sprinkled ontop but all these were sitting in a shallow pool of watery cream/milk/cheese. Scooped some using the fork, accidentally dropped a few of onto the plate and had tiny sploshes of white sauce on my shirt. Hahaa! Should request for a spoon to eat the mac & cheese with. I think it's a must-have utensil. Not a fork, definitely not a fork.

Had the Smoked Potato Puree, and it was smooth and easy to eat. Like baby food but much smoother.

Now for the mains. Read rave reviews for fried chicken, so we ordered two portions to share. Each portion has two pieces; drumstick and breast meat. This tasted similar to the batter as the chicken wings. The jus oozed out of the chicken as soon as the knife cuts into the it. But for drumsticks, the best way was to eat it by hand. Yums. Ratte potatoes were nicely flavoured and cooked just right.

Fried Chicken (@$18+) with crushed ratte potatoes
firm meat, not too dry

 Next, had the Boston Lobster Mac & Cheese (@$22+).

Boston Lobster Mac & Cheese
parmesan, gruyere, white cheddar cheese, toasted bread crumbs

The texture of the Boston lobster was incredible. How is it that the meat can be so firm, yet bouncy and tasty? Very nice. The toasted crumbs really gave this dish an added distinction. Enjoyable, overall.

Next up, Pan Seared Barramundi (@$25+). The fish here was done lightly, soft flesh with mild, pleasant taste. The skin was rather salty but bursting with flavours that I liked.

Pan Seared Barramundi, peas, carrots, swiss chard, saffron-mussel jus
loved the skin

My friend ordered a sandwich. But why have sandwich, when we have meat?

BBQ Chicken Sandwich (@$12+)

And now, presenting to you, one of the best dish for the night..*insert drum roll here* The Braised Beef Cheek! *insert confettis falling*

Braised Beef Cheek with smoked potato puree, asparagus
closer view

Strong flavours, well braised meaty beef cheeks and crunchy greens contrasted against soft potato puree enhanced by the sauce. Must try, if you're a beef cheek lover. Truth to be told, I wished there was more meat. But it's ok, we savoured and enjoyed each and every bite of this!

Chef seemed to be quite liberal with the salt that night, but hey, iced water is served freely. Or, have that one-for-one Stella if you're not driving.

eat, drink and be happy

Ended the night with chocolate cake. Thank you to Communal for allowing us to bring our own cake.

Thank You, my friends
simple joy, shared with friends
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