Sunday, March 27, 2016

Await Cafe 珈琲工坊

I have known of Await Cafe for yonks but have never had the chance to visit them. I finally had my opportunity when one random Sunday, I received a call from Evon who had nothing to do and was too bored at home. Cafe-hopping it was for us!

I suggested Await and she was like, wherever is fine as long as I get out of the house. Surprisingly, it was easy to find a spot to park the car (Taman Danau Desa is notorious for no parking). Perhaps because it was a Sunday. Even in the cafe, it was pretty quiet, with only one other table taken.


Their layout was spacious yet cosy. Quite homely as well, in fact, with one corner stacked with books and games.


They also had a smoking area, which I quite liked (the area, I meant, not the smoking part).


To find them from outside, just look for their round red cup neon signboard. The one that Evon is staring at in the picture.


In addition to the food on their menu, they also had other titbits for sale at their counter, nicely packed in eye-catching boxes and plastic wrapping.


They also had coffee for sale. To-go coffee bags convenient for travelling, which I thought was a clever idea. Nicely packed, too. A little pricey, though. I still bought three packs to try - Dad gave the thumbs up for taste.


We tried their Mushroom Quiche made from a mashed potato crust, sautéed mushroom, capsicum, broccoli and custard that was served with a side of salad. Hm, not quite sure how to describe it, could have been slightly more flavoursome. Not saying that it was bad, just perhaps both of us like food with a little more flavour.


We also had their Mashed Potato Egg Sandwich. Not too bad. Would have been good if they also offered the option of wholemeal bread instead of white.


Because Evon is not a coffee person, she ordered a pot of tea. She tried a pot of Citron Tea, which was refreshing.


I tried their famous coffee, a cup of Costa Rica La Pira Estate, which I really enjoyed. Medium roast level with a tinge of honey. Nice. Evon just cannot fathom how I downed what she called a cupful of blackness. 


We were tempted to try a dessert, too, and ended up sharing a toufufah. Not too bad, too.


Would have to come back to try their other bean varieties. And would have to remember to come on a weekend to avoid parking-related annoyance.

Await Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Await Cafe 珈琲工坊
9-1-5, Jalan 3/109F, Taman Danau Desa,, 58100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel: +60 3-7971 0978; E-mail: await.kl@gmail.com
Daily 10:00am to 11:00pm (Sunday to 8:00pm)
Cash transactions only

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Cake Jalan Tiung

One fine weekend, Alicia and I decided to trek all the way to Shah Alam to try the cakes at the currently popular Cake Jalan Tiung. Thinking that it was late afternoon and was a weekend, we thought it would be less crowded but we were so wrong - it was packed!


I liked how they used paper birds as deco at their counter - simple but clever way of infusing soft and hard lines. I wonder if it had to do with the burung tiung or Mynah bird.


From what I know, the owner used to bake from home, supplying customers near and far with her home-baked goodness. From that, she has now two branches, to extend her cakes of happiness.


I have to say, although it was crowded, they did not let their service slide. Friendly and accommodating would be how I describe the bunch there. 

Cake-wise, we chose a slice each of the Handsome Boyfriend, a rich chocolate cake with chocolate frosting and Oreo crumbs and the Jack and the Nangka Cheesecake. We first ate the cheesecake because we thought it would be better to have the lighter one first and the heavier one later. We were impressed with how well the jackfruit infused with the cheesecake. Local flavour game strong. But nothing prepared us for the Handsome Boyfriend. Oh Em Gee... no words to describe how much we liked this! You know that kind of first bite and mata terbeliak because of how amazing something tastes? Yea, that kinda awesome.


And to top it off, their coffee was good, too! If you, like me, live on the other side of town from Shah Alam and are not bothered to drive all the way there, visit The Owls in Bukit Jalil. They supply the cakes there.

Cake Jalan Tiung Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Cake Jalan Tiung
31-M Jalan Tengku Ampuan Zabedah J9/J, Seksyen 9, 40100 Shah Alam, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 12-445 4230; E-mail: cakejalantiung@gmail.com
Wednesday to Sunday 12:00pm to 7:00pm

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Fishee Coffee

It was one of those random cafe-hopping days with Alicia that I visited Fishee Coffee for the first time. They were pretty new then. All we knew was that they had good traditional waffle, which was enough to entice me for a try.

Located on the first floor of shoplots, it took us a while to find them because we could not find the road they were at - stupid GPS. Okay, not the GPS' fault, more like we could not see their sign because it blended so well with their white paint. Haha - but when we finally spotted their fish logo, we both went, "Oh... here is it..."


The cafe owner in Alicia was busy trying to guess how much their reno costed, what types of furniture they used, their layout, their counter, their coffee machine and what not. I was there just to enjoy a new place and find out what kind of service they offered, as some places may look very pretty but offer lousy service, which is a big shame.


As they are located within close vicinity of IMU, we made the assumption that most of their customers would be IMU students. Heck, we even thought their employees could have been students, too. Maybe not from IMU but would be around that age - geez, we are really aging...


Not sure if it was because of how "green" they are in the coffee business but their mocha did not quite give me the kick I needed. Again, they were pretty new when I visited so expectations were not high. Am sure by now their coffee has improved.


Their Eggee Ham Toast was alright. Was very much like a brekkie I would have with XW in Sydney during our weekends.


But this, their Fishee Classic Gold Waffle was absolute gold! I have not had such tasty classic waffle in a long time, especially in KL! I do not think I even have had waffle in such perfect crispy-outside-warm-and-fluffy-inside texture in Sydney.


Only street parking available and it is a pain to find a proper parking spot during weekdays because of the offices there. I am not a big fan of double parking and so, parking further away would have to do at times. Weekends are better if you would rather not walk.

Fishee Coffee Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Fishee Coffee
12-20 M, Jalan Jalil Perkasa 13, Arked Esplanad Bukit Jalil, 57000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 3 8999 2012; E-mail: fisheecoffee@gmail.com
Wednesday to Monday 10:00am to 7:00pm (Thursday to Saturday until 11:00pm)
Cash transactions only

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Franco @ IOI City Mall

Since IOI City Mall started operations, my family and I have had an extra place to go to for shopping, eating and catch ups. Of course, being a shopping mall means there will be makan places and one of them situated on the Lower Ground level is an outlet of Franco Malaysia.

I visited twice - once with Dad and another time with the bestie. Both occasions I had different things to eat but the same to drink - this glass of refreshing Matcha Frappe with Azuki. Brain freeze, every time. Next time should try their warm drinks, instead.


Their menu comes with a variety of food options, from pasta to rice to dessert. I tried their Squid Ink Rice, just because I thought it sounded interesting. Although it looked small served in a cast iron pot, it was actually quite filling due to the rice. I thought the Omu egg could have been a little more moist but I suppose it really depends on the chef on shift.


And because I always order French toast if offered on any menu, Franco's was no exception. I had to try theirs to see if worth coming back for more and I was so happy that I found another place to come for French toast! No fuss, just straightforward French toast, I like.


Now that they also offer souffle on their menu, I have more reason to visit again.

LG-80C & 80D, Lower Ground Floor, IOI City Mall, Lebuh IRC, IOI Resort City, 62502 Putrajaya, Malaysia. 
Tel: +603 8959 3928
Daily 10:00am to 10:00pm

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Midsummer Night Cafe 仲夏夜

Located above a car workshop, this unassuming cafe is the brainchild and a side hobby/income of Jon, a person who lectures at a local institution. It is obvious from the interior decor that he is someone who is really into the movie business. Or at least, arts and entertainment.


The main wall is lined with posters of both Western and Asian content. On both my visits, I felt strange having Maleficent watch me drink my coffee. 


There are also other movie-related paraphernalia and magazines for fellow movie enthusiasts.


I know I should not be choosing my coffee based on pretty photos, but I was so tempted to. Thankfully, the very friendly Jon explained the coffee and recommended his signature Dream coffee - star-shaped coffee ice cubes, iced coffee, gula Melaka, milk and butter cookies. A little DIY was needed, as I had to add the ingredients according to personal liking.


Evon, although not much a coffee person, was game enough to try the Pineapple Coffee. We could not quite picture how pineapple and coffee could go together but they surprisingly did. Jon explained that he sources fresh pineapples from Sarawak (my guess it would have been from Sarikei, also known as Pineapple Town), fresh-press the fruits and then freeze them into these cute little pineapple ice balls you see floating in the glass of cold coffee that Chow Yun-fat is looking at below.


They serve food, too. Probably the only main dish they serve here is Japanese rice. You could have Japanese rice with just onsen egg or also with shishamo. I really love this bowl of onsen egg rice - I drove all the way here just to have this bowl of rice, in fact.


No food outing with Evon is complete without dessert, and so we decided on sharing a Rum and Raisin Chocolate. I told her she would not regret trying this and indeed, she loved it. She nearly ordered another serving but held back after thinking of all the dieting that she has undergone to achieve her current weight. I laughed myself silly watching her in dilemma.


Even without the food, the cafe is worth a visit just for a good session of chillaxing. Or studying. How cool is doing work with Doraemon watching over you? ;)

Midsummer Night Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Midsummer Night Cafe 仲夏夜
36A Jalan Awan Hijau, Taman Overseas Union, 58200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 3 7971 2345
Tuesday to Friday 7:00pm to midnight
Weekends 3:00pm to midnight

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Cakes De Lemari

I have lived in Seri Kembangan for all my life and I did not know that there was a cupcakery here? How can???

Anyhow, I did find out thanks to technology (I do not remember exactly how I found out but I have a feeling it was one of those random Instagram surfing moments). And so, one fine afternoon, when Alicia had some time in between her lessons, we ducked across to the other side of Equine. Dad and I drive past Putrawalk almost every morning to get to our usual mamak hangout and yet I fail to note that there was a cupcakery.

I mean, yes, cupcakeries are not new a concept but in SK, it is! I mean, we are such a kampung place, okay, so to have a shop specialising in cupcakes is big news.

Address obtained and location checked on Maps, I was pretty confident that I would be able to find it with no problems at all. And surely enough, it was in front of me as soon as I made the turning into the row of shops. OMG, how could I not know when it is located in such a conspicuous location?

Okay, enough self-bashing for one post. On with the cupcakes now.

It helped to be an end-lot shop, as they had windows on one side of the shop that allowed more natural lighting in. Although they were more of a takeaway than a dine-in place, they still had a few seats available, in case.


From what I observed, they do catering for events and also take orders for Raya biscuits. As it is owned by a lovely Malay lady, everything is halal.


There were so many flavours to choose from! The chiller was so colourful from the different cupcakes!




In addition to flavours that we are familiar with, they also had some unique ones that incorporated local flavours.


They also sold other biscuits and cookies, nicely packed in simple clear containers.


I wonder if there will be more cupcakeries open. Regardless, this is a good start!

B-10-G Putrawalk, Jalan PP 25, Taman Pinggiran Putra, 43300 Seri Kembangan, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 3 8940 4833; E-mail: cakesdelemari@gmail.com
Daily (except Sunday and public holidays) 11:00am to 8:00pm

Monday, March 07, 2016

Khaiphaen

Have you heard of the TREE Alliance? No? Neither had I until my visit to Luang Prabang. TREE stands for Training Restaurants for Employment and Entrepreneurship and is a global alliance of restaurants collaborating to help former street youths, as well as marginalised young people and adults.


I learnt about this alliance because Dad made it a point to visit one of their restaurants, their latest addition in fact. Called Khaiphaen, it is named after a popular Laotian street snake made of crispy Mekong River weed unique to Luang Prabang. 


TREE restaurants are training grounds that aim to provide high quality service and food. More importantly, they are social business with the higher aim of providing former street youth the skills required to become employable in the hospitality industry.


Based on a proven and highly successful model combining hands-on, on-the-job training with life skills education, the training and social support provided are tailored to individual needs of the students, building their confidence and empowering them to build a better future for themselves. So you could say that Khaiphaen is a vocational training restaurant.


Khaiphaen is run by Peuan Mit, an organisation founded by Friends-International in Vientiane in 2004, in partnership with the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare to address the needs of street children and young people in Laos. The restaurant also has a small gift shop attached to it that sells products made by families to help their children stay in education.

I have to say that I was pretty impressed by their menu. To start off, I needed a cold drink and immediately flipped the menu to the drinks section. My choice of Makphet's Hibiscus and Lime Daiquiri was very refreshing and not to mention cooling. The award-winning Makphet is one of the other TREE restaurants and is situated in Vientiane.


We chose a few dishes from the Veggie Lover section of their menu. Because we were at Khaiphaen, we had to order their Khaiphaen and Rice Sticks with Tomato and Hmong Mushroom Dips. Needless to say, nothing was left on the plate, except for the banana leaf. Mum and Dad particularly liked the dips.


As for me, I really liked the Crispy Tofu with Khaiphaen Salt and Spicy Green Mango Dip. Sour and salty tastes combined together went exceptionally well with my drink.


Dad felt like having meat and we agreed to try what sounded like an interesting combination of spices and flavours. We were not disappointed by the Crispy Cinnamon Pork Belly with Ginger Pumpkin Mash and Hibiscus Honey. Although we thought the pork belly was just normal, the ginger pumpkin mash and hibiscus honey really stole the show. My aunt more or less licked the plate clean.


Mum wanted to try their laksa, to see how different it was from our Malaysian laksa. She ordered a bowl of Mekong River Fish and Coconut Laksa with Prawns, Rice Noodles and Banana Blossoms. Even though it had coconut in it, it was not as milky and had a strong fishy taste, perhaps due to the Mekong River Fish. The rice noodles they used were also a thicker kind compared to what we are used to in Malaysia.


We wanted to have some greens and so ordered a plate of Green Beans with Browned Butter, Cashew and Lime. Crunchy and flavoursome, this one.


And there was no way that we would end the meal without dessert. We tried a Pumpkin Tart with Toasted Sesame and Ginger Five Spice Ice Cream. It would have been a meal on its own, as it was so compact and filling. I really liked the exotic taste of the Ginger Five Spice Ice Cream.


Last but not least, we had Sandan's Cashew Crusted Banana Fritters with Kaffir Lime and Coconut Ice Cream and it was one of the best versions of pisang goreng I have ever had. To add kaffir lime to the banana fritters was just genius. Sandan is one of the other TREE restaurants and is situated in Sihanoukville, Cambodia.


As the washroom was upstairs, we had to climb the steep and narrow stairs to get there. There was a class in session upstairs. They were having a Maths class. It instantly made me think, perhaps, one day I could contribute to this cause by teaching, too. One day.

I wonder if it was my background and experience as an educator, I felt so much during my meal here. Observing them trying their hardest to speak in English, to serve us, to explain to us the dishes in a foreign language, to exude confidence in a setting totally unlike what they are used to, I nearly teared at one point. I am ever so thankful for the people with the heart, soul and audacity to fight for a better future for these kids/youths from marginalised or at-risk backgrounds, or who before this called the streets their home.

Rest assured, all profits from TREE restaurants are invested in the students who train there and the social support programs designed to assist them on their journey to become skilled, happy and productive individuals with a more secured future. It was clear from my dining experience here that my meal here was not just for me, it was for the youths training here. It was to support their training and education, to help them build a more hopeful future.

100 Sisavang Vatana Road, Ban Wat Nong, 06000 Luang Prabang, Lao PDR (between the French Institute and the Mekong River)
Tel: +856 30 515 5221 / 71 524 135
E-mail: contact@khaiphaen-restaurant.org
Monday to Saturday 11:00am to 10:30pm (kitchen closes at 9:30pm)

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...