Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Revisit: Flingstones @ Subang Jaya

After a memorable first visit with my friends some months back, I recently found out that they've added a few new dishes onto their menu and I knew straightaway I had to return to try.  And I did last week with my family this time.

Knowing that the food was all good on my first visit, I knew my second experience would be no different. After all, Flingstones @ Subang Jaya holds a special place in my heart as the post I did on them is still trending among the top ten most viewed posts of all time in my blog.

Walking into Flingstones on a sunny Sunday morning, we were greeted with friendly smiles and the aroma of wondrous coffee.  Looking at the new additions to the menu, I went straight for the Babi (Porky) Fried Rice @ RM18 cooked with not-one-but-three types of porky goodness..."chee yau char" (crispy pork lard bits), pork bacon and "lap cheong" (Chinese dried sausages) what could be better than that! =)

The fried rice was fragrant with "wok hei" (breath of the wok), expertly fried with bits of chu yao char, lap cheong, eggs and onions.  The most important thing for a successful plate of fried rice (for me) is the rice...and the one here is perfectly cooked to well separated grains (nothing of the soft and mushy kind).  And then, happy days...when it's topped with two long slices of absolutely crisp streaky bacon.  And, and, and then, even happier days....when it's served with a whole (quartered) good quality century egg with a creamy and luscious yolk.  Ok.....I'm extremely contented....I'm happy as a clam! ;D

Next new dish I tried was the Porky Fat Rice XL @ RM20 which is their version of nasi lemak with their signature minced pork sambal and mama's rempah pork belly.

It was served with condiments of hard-boiled egg, ikan bilis & kacang (fried anchovies and nuts), cucumber and kangkung (water convolvulus) served on top of a piece of banana leaf.  Their minced pork sambal was flavourful, slightly spicy with a hint of sour and I liked it.  It was great eaten with everything that tasted fresh on the tray.

Their mama's recipe of rempah (spiced) pork belly was full of aromatic spices.  It's very much similar to "rempah ayam" (spiced chicken) recipe from Malay stalls except this one is done with pork.  The pork belly was totally fragrant and tender...and the meat wasn't too dry.

The final new dish we got to sample was the "Kapowww" Spaghetti @ RM18 which was actually a wok fried spicy spaghetti with "kung po" chicken.  Again, this was a success as the "kung po" chicken cubes coated in the sweet and sticky sauce were pleasantly tender and savoury.

"Kung po" chicken is a savoury stir-fry dish with chicken, peanuts, vegetables (usually onions and spring onions) and dried chillies in a spicy and sweet sauce.  Not to worry, though....the kapowww isn't quite as kapow or fiery as one thinks, the heat level is acceptably mild once it's mixed through the spaghetti.

I think these were the only 3 new dishes introduced as the rest looked familiar with a big breakfast, pork ribs and the usual pasta dishes rounding up their menu.  One of my favourites from the last visit was the "Chee Yau Char" Angel Hair Pasta @ RM18 wok fried with crispy pork lard, pork bacon bits, juicy cherry tomatoes and finely shredded cucumber, topped with rocket and finished with a grating of cheese.  It was still as good as I remembered.

With the Star Wars frenzy and the force still strong, Flingstones has introduced a 'dark side' to their coffee from 17 December 2015 while stocks last!  You have a choice of Darth Vader Coffee Cubes with Milk or Stormtrooper Milk Cubes with Black Coffee or Hot Chocolate.  My obvious choice....Darth Vader Coffee @ RM15, of course!

The cute Darth Vader coffee cubes....up close ;)

As the milk is not served hot, take note that it takes a while for the coffee cubes to melt.  Plus, I wasn't stirring it constantly to make it melt faster.

The floating Darth Vader :D

So, my experience of drinking it was (in the beginning) it had more milk than coffee taste (since the cubes have yet to melt) and (towards the end) the coffee was more bitter once it started to melt with the decreased milk that was drunk already >.<

This was the Hazelnut Latte (Cold) @ RM13 (which I had before and absolutely loved) and so ordered it for my mother-in-law who usually isn't very fond of this type of coffees as she finds it too strong for her.  She, however, found this one totally to her liking...she liked it so much she finished it all :)

And our meal ended with the same cake that I had here the last time, One Night with Cendolman @ RM12.....still as delectable as ever!

My Personal Opinion

My friends who came on the first visit with me have been back numerous times...and brought more friends.  Although I'd like to be back here more frequently too, it isn't always possible (because a food blog needs posts on new places + I'd like to visit and write about new places too).

But now that I've fallen in love with the Babi Fried Rice (and my family loves the food here as well), that's all going to change as it'll be extremely difficult to resist coming back here on a more frequent basis!

Flingstones Cafe
24 Jalan SS15/8
Subang Jaya
47500 Petaling Jaya
Tel: 03-5879 9468

As 2015 draws to a close.....
.....& Happy Holidays to all...and I'll see you in 2016!

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

La Cucur @ Suria KLCC

La Cucur @ Suria KLCC is one of those places I'd stop-over for breakfast before starting on my shopping in KLCC because of its convenient location on the concourse level just above the car park.

Its popularity has seen this small eatery (though it used to occupy a bigger space before) sticking around for more than 15 years.

They're, first and foremost, well-known for their local kuih-muih (with more than 40 types available) from kuih talam to serimuka, kuih lapis to kuih tako, kuih sago to ubi nenas, kuih bahulu to kuih bakar, kuih ketayap to kuih puteri ayu, cucur udang to jemput pisang and lots, lots more!

This place is self-service, so grab yourself a pair of tongs and a plate and just choose what kuih you want before proceeding to the cashier's counter.  You also order (and pay for) your drinks and hot food at the counter.

You can grab some breakfast staples like roti jala and roti boom with kari ayam, pulut kuning with ayam rendang or the (pre-packed) nasi lemak bungkus from the counter too.

They also offer nasi lemak with various lauk and condiments, a perennial favourite of many for breakfast.  There are also different types of noodles on rotation basis...Soto Ayam (available every day), Laksa Johor (on Tuesdays & Fridays), Laksa Utara (Wednesdays, Saturdays & Sundays, Mee Kari (on Mondays & Thursdays) and Mee Rebus (on Wednesdays & Saturdays).

I managed to try the Laksa Johor @ RM12 which had a curry broth that was both savoury (with a fair dose of santan) and tangy which was refreshing to eat.  But some would find this bowl of noodles expensive since the ingredients are just vegetables (like what we'd get in our assam laksa), namely julienned onion, cucumber and bean sprouts, topped with a dollop of fresh sambal and a sprinkling (I think) of daun kesum (laksa leaves or Vietnamese coriander).

I thought laksa Johor resembles more of a thick assam laksa with a pale looking broth (from ikan kembong or fresh sardines) but this version looked (and tasted) more like a curry laksa.  Even though it may not seem like an authentic Laksa Johor, it tasted alright nevertheless.  I liked the nicely blanched spaghetti noodles with a squeeze of the "limau kasturi" (calamansi lime) over the curry broth.

The Soto Ayam @ RM12 is a type of Malaysian chicken noodle soup with shredded chicken, begedil (potato patty), taugeh (bean sprouts), fried shallots and topped with a sprinkling of spring onions and daun sup (parsley).  It's served with a fiery sauce of bird's eye chillies blended with soy on the side....put as much or as little as you like as it's quite potent.  You can have this with either meehoon or "nasi himpit" (compressed rice cakes).  I did like the begedil but I've had better soto ayam before.

The Mee (or Meehoon) Kari (or Curry Mee) @ RM12 came with fish cakes, tofu puffs, "choy sum" (Chinese flowering cabbage), red and green chillies, taugeh and fried onions.  I was surprised to find the broth a pale yellow instead of the red-coloured curries I'm more accustomed to (and you'll also find laksa leaves in there instead of curry leaves).  I have to say that the Laksa Johor here looked more like a curry mee than the Mee Kari! >.<

The Nasi Lemak Bungkus @ RM2.30 is your simple, every day pre-packed nasi lemak (as its name).

Filled with kacang (nuts), fried ikan bilis (dried anchovies), a slice of omelette and that ever important sambal.  I never get bored of eating this type of nasi lemak bungkus and this one was decent in its own right too.

I've always enjoyed kuih sago coz I love anything with sago in it.  The Kuih Sago @ RM1.10/pc here wasn't too sweet and the rose flavour was evidently pronounced.

The Kuih Ubi Nenas (tapioca + pineapple) @ RM1.70 (for 3 pcs) is one I don't come across very often (as it's usually just kuih ubi kayu).  This, I loved, with its tangy and sweet flavours and, with just one bite, the flavours of the pineapple came out front and centre.

I could see that the tubs of Bubur Cha Cha @ RM5 had lots of sago in it and I knew I just had to get one to eat at home later.  But, it turned out to be a big disappointment, to say the least, as it wasn't just overly was insanely sweet!  In the end, I just fished out the soft yam and sweet potato cubes (and whatever sago I could)...and ate those and discarded the rest.

The Iced Teh Tarik @ RM3.90 was alright but...
.....the Iced Local Black Coffee @ RM3.90 was not

My Personal Opinion

It's obvious that this place is pretty popular seeing that they've lasted more than 15 years in KLCC and there's always a crowd during peak times.  Their noodles (averaging RM12 a bowl) with small portions and scant ingredients aren't really good value for that price but then this is KLCC we're talking about.

Their more than 40 types of traditional kuih is great, value-wise, as they're double the size of those offered by Nyonya Colors but, taste-wise, not as good as the latter.  I prefer the kuih from Nyonya Colors as I find them to be less sweet and more fragrant.

Give the noodles a miss and have a packet of nasi lemak and some kuih (the right ones) with a steaming hot cup of teh tarik....and you can still come away fairly satisfied with a fast and simple local breakfast here! ;)

La Cucur
Lot C33 Concourse Level
Suria KLCC
Kuala Lumpur City Centre
50088 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-2161 4810

Monday, 28 December 2015

KGB Soul Food @ Jalan Tun Razak

So, did you all enjoy the long Christmas holidays?  I'm sure you did......and welcome back!

After our dinner at Steaks & Lobsters, we already had prior plans to proceed to KGB Soul Food @ Jalan Tun Razak for more food and drinks.  KGB occupies the ground floor of Live House @ TREC KL, which is a newly opened lifestyle and entertainment hub (with construction still ongoing) in Jalan Tun Razak.

Since the opening of its flagship burger joint in Bangsar (they now have other outposts in TTDI and Mid Valley), I had always wanted to try their gourmet burgers and when one opened in TREC KL closer to home, there was no reason not to.

But the dining experience was not meant to be as I came off it totally disappointed.  Let me tell you the story.....

My friends and I wanted a place where we could exchange our Xmas gifts, have a few drinks along with some nice finger food and snacks.  With my friends' children in tow, I knew we wouldn't be allowed into pubs or bars and so I chose this place (beforehand) after seeing (from blogs) the kind of food they serve (which looked very much like any family-type restaurant serving burgers, sliders, fried chicken, sandwiches, steamed bao buns, nachos, quesadillas, speciality fries, milkshakes and all that) how would we have known that they do not allow children in such a place!!! @_@

We left Steaks & Lobsters in separate cars and one of my friends was the first to arrive.  She asked the staff at KGB Soul Food if they allow children and they said...yes....but only until 10.30pm.  She called me and I said...well, that's perfect!  My friend (with children) and I then reached the place at about 8+.  We proceeded to enter the place (which was cooling and comfortable) but was stopped by some staff (at the entrance) who told us that children weren't allowed in (obviously not all the staff were on the same page since we were told something different earlier) but we'd be more than welcome to sit outside (at the alfresco area).  I said this is a place that serves food but don't allow children??  The reason they gave us was that it's a smoking area (inside where it's air-conditioned??...well, so is outside!!) plus the live band comes on at 9pm (the live band turned out to be just 3 singers singing soft tunes while seated).  I didn't want to come off as difficult and so we sat outside.  Although it was evening, it was still hot and humid...and because it was dark, we had mosquitoes to contend with as well! >:(

Based on the not-so-comfortable seating arrangements, we weren't all that excited about having to eat food in such conditions and so ordered just two snacks (that were easy to eat) and a drink each (plus a milkshake for the kids to share) given the circumstance.

Fry Lab @ RM16 with a choice of 3 frys (Cajun or herbed fries, spicy wedges, onion rings & sweet potato fries) served with 3 house dips

Our choice of herbed fries, spicy wedges & onion rings

Mamacita Grilled Corn @ RM10

3 pieces of Mexican street-style chargrilled corn cobs with queso (cheese) & smoked chipotle, served with lime

Cinderella @ RM18.87

Mojito @ RM24.01

Long Island @ RM27.44

Heineken @ RM24.01
and a Nutella Smores Milkshake @ RM15 (for the kids)

I'll refrain from making any comments on the food or drinks coz 1) there weren't much to comment on and 2) taste gets screwed when you're not in a 'happy mood'! >_<

Worst still was the server brought us the bill right after our food and drinks were served.  I don't remember ever having to pay first other than in a coffee shop.  Were they afraid we would run off without paying the bill since we were seated outside?  Or is this the norm at bar-type places, in case customers get too intoxicated to pay?  I don't know...whatever it left a bad taste in my mouth!  

Luckily, our gift exchange lifted our mood...and brought a smile to our faces :)  We had to eat and drink (the little we had) and exchange our presents quickly as the hot and humid weather (plus mosquitoes) was getting to us...and we left soon after.  In the end, we adjourned to Starbucks (also at TREC KL) and felt relieved and comforted by the coolness of the air-conditioning inside.

Taking a stroll around the place (before we left), we could see that this place is clearly meant for those into drinking and clubbing.....and not suitable for families.

My Personal Opinion

We obviously failed to meet our objective of having some good snacks....and a drink or two here (mothers need to drink too).  Who would have thought that an establishment specialising in gourmet burgers would end up to be a place that has a "no kids" policy.  We came wanting to try their burgers, sliders, steamed baos and fried chicken but, in the end, left without trying anything.

I'm aware that TREC houses a mix of casual to fine dining restaurants, indie cafes, wine bars, pubs and lounges....that's why I didn't choose a full-fledged bar-type outlet but it would seem even the eating places here aren't child-friendly.  I wonder how they can keep a full kitchen running without catering to families who might want to dine here.  A better option, in my opinion, would have been to open for dinner to all (up to a certain time) and turn it into a drinks and snacks bar (with a live band) at a later time (when drinkers come alive), say after 10pm.

If a place even like KGB doesn't welcome children, I wonder if there are any restaurants here that would.  So, unless you intend to leave your kids at home, I think it's best to choose some other venue! :(

KGB Soul Food @ Live House
E-G-07 Electric Boulevard
Lot 434 Jalan Tun Razak
50400 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 012-223 1937

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Steaks & Lobsters @ Desa Sri Hartamas

The Christmas season is upon's a time for merriment.....a time for giving and receiving......and my pressies (for my dearest friends) are ready and wrapped.

For our pre-Christmas dinner get-together this year, we decided on Steaks & Lobsters @ Desa Sri Hartamas coz what more can be more Christmas-y than steaks and we really wanted to eat some lobsters!

Steaks & Lobsters, a fairly new addition (about 5 months old) to recent entries of places offering lobsters, I was attracted to the place after reading that they've switched to a prime breed of wild-caught live Boston Lobsters recently.

As we had intentions to proceed to a second place for more food (plus maybe some tipples) after an early dinner, we exercised restraint when ordering (although there were lots more on the menu I wanted to try).  We were served these complimentary bread rolls before the start of our meal.  These rolls, soft and fluffy, came with their house-made cinnamon butter.  The bread rolls were served warm (which I appreciate) and we were off to a great start! 

If you wish to sample a bit of everything (well, almost but-not-quite everything), nothing beats ordering the S&L Four-Sampler Platter @ RM48.  This sampler platter was made up of onion rings, hot BBQ wings, mini lobster & crab cakes and lamb steak & cheese bruschetta.

The battered onion rings were light and crisp although they'd probably offer a bit more bite and juiciness if they were cut slightly thicker.  Served with a marinara & dill tartare, it was enjoyed by the adults and popular with the kids too.

The lamb steak & cheese bruschetta was actually minced lamb (although, from the description, I was expecting lamb strips) but nevertheless still acceptable since this was a sampler platter.  The minced lamb came sitting on top of a crisp piece of charcoal bruschetta and paired with a garlic cheese sauce.

The third item on the sampler platter was the mini lobster & crab cakes that were nicely crumbed and fried, accompanied by a marinara sauce.  Definitely something your young ones will like.

The last sampler item was the hot BBQ wings which had 2 wingettes and 2 drummettes nicely coated in their signature spicy BBQ sauce (quite tolerable and not that spicy).  Crunchy on the outside, moist on the inside with hints of spicy, sweet flavours.  Absolutely finger-licking good and highly recommended.

Everything on this sampler platter is also available separately as a starter on its own (in bigger portions, of course)....the onion rings @ RM18, lamb steak & cheese bruschetta @ RM22, lobster & crab cakes @ RM28 and hot BBQ wings @ RM25.

Our final appetiser was the highly addictive Fried Portobello Fries (6 pcs) @ RM19 that have received many "thumbs up" from blogs.  I concur, a must-order if you love mushrooms (like me).

They were simply battered Portobello mushrooms served with a drizzle of smoky sriracha aioli underneath (and more for dipping).  Again, the batter was incredibly light, the mushrooms not oily and perfectly fried to offer a crunch with a natural sweetness from the large Portobello mushrooms.

As with the name of the restaurant, I'd presume steaks and lobsters would be among their signature mains on offer here but, if you're not into either of these, there are also lamb, chicken, fish and burgers on the menu.  For beef lovers, there are plenty of options here from Aussie grass-fed to grain-fed angus to wagyu and cuts of your choice from sirloin to ribeye, tenderloin to T-Bone (with prices ranging from a modest RM48 to the more expensive cuts at RM189).

But I went for their special promotion of Wagyu MB7 Round Sirloin (300g) @ RM82 served with four side dishes.  I'm not even sure what sauce came with it (probably whole grain mustard?) coz I never ever eat my steaks (certainly not a good piece of steak) with any sauce...I like them naked in all its glory! ;)

The sirloin, with good marbling, was perfectly executed to medium-rare as requested.  The bits of fats provided the steak with was tender, it was juicy, it was oh-so-flavourful.

Of course, you can't leave here satisfied without sinking your teeth into some kind of lobster dish.  Lobster preparations available include their signature flaming, cheese baked, grilled or steamed options (RM98 for half, RM195 for whole for the latter three).  Also available, the Boston lobster roll @ RM58 and baby lobster pesto pasta @ RM48 for a more budget-conscious meal. 

We went for a whole lobster and I (unashamedly) asked if we could see our "live friend" (and they kindly obliged) before he (maybe she) meets his death, unselfishly sacrificing himself to satisfy our needs.  The server held the lobster down (in case he wants to make a quick dash for freedom *wink wink* hehe!) and asked if I wanted to hold it.  I said, "No, I don't want to hold it, I want to eat it!"  Although I did touch its whiskers...and they moved...and I swore he rolled his eyes at me.

He's a beauty :)  Sorry, Mr Lobster (you're going up in flames.....shortly)!

Finally, our much-awaited lobster feast made its grand entrance, the Signature Flaming Live Lobster @ RM205 (for whole, RM110 for half) offering a charbroiled lobster flamed and served with homemade aioli.

Both their steaks and lobsters dishes come with four side dishes...yay....and all refillable (at no extra cost)...double yay!! ;D

Coleslaw and Potato Salad with Creamy Avocado

Fresh Greens and Fries

The four side dishes may vary slightly on different days.  Of the four, my favourite was the guacamole inspired potato salad with the luscious avocado.  The fries, freshly fried and crisp, were enjoyable too.  Servers will come round with a 4-in-1 contraption (like those you come across in Banana Leaf Rice restaurants) to repeatedly heap replenishments for you (we had refills of everything except the fresh greens), so you'd be assured of leaving here with your stomachs full and satisfied.

But now, let's get to the "star of the show", shall we?  The lobsters here (usually weigh around 800 - 900g) and the one we had was undisputedly fresh.....its flesh retaining all its natural moisture and juices.  The charred edges brought flavour and smokiness...absolutely 'drop-dead' gorgeous!

Just look at the size of those pincers....and the charring :)  I tend to stay clear of lobsters when I see it on a menu in steakhouses as I find eating a whole lobster way too heavy (from past experience)...but that's probably because I've not come across a really good one yet.  The one here, I can say (with conviction)...I can devour the whole thing by myself! ;p  Again, I was oblivious to the sauce provided, I simply didn't need any as the meat, with its natural sweetness, was juicy and succulent just on its own.

With smiles on our faces, we proceeded to our next venue for more food.....some drinks.......and exchange of gifts!

My Personal Opinion

I don't indulge in lobsters all that much, mainly because it's rich (and the price too) but that was before I savoured the awesome lobsters at Steaks & Lobsters.  The one here was way better than any lobster I had at other steakhouses...Red Lobster included!

Even if you're not a steak or lobster lover, there's enough here to keep you satisfied especially with their good list of delectable appetisers.  I can't wait to come back for their great lobsters, and equally good steaks, or to try some other stuff they have on their menu.  Service is particularly warm and friendly from their young team of servers.

Now that I'm more "open" to having a whole lobster, I wish I had "deeper" and more "open" pockets too! T_T  But, you'd be pleased to know that currently offers a 15% discount (during certain hours) and so, there's no better time than now to hop over to Steaks & Lobsters to try.....well, their steaks and lobsters!

Steaks & Lobsters Restaurant
42 Jalan 24/70A
Desa Sri Hartamas
50480 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 012-743 7167
'Tis the season.....

Have a fun Christmas...and I'll be back next week :)

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