Sunday, February 25, 2018

The Han Room 滿漢城酒家

No. The siew yuk is just bad - portion, presentation, barely any crispiness.

The rest of the items felt like it was frozen items supplied in bulk and they just put it into the basket and steam it.

It's an okay, decent place in the mall for Chinese food but just no high expectations. In fact, I found them to be one of the lousiest under Oriental Group. Even the Halal Maju Palace serves better dimsum than The Han Room.

But I guess there will always be a crowd due to the convienence and it is relatively reasonable for mall prices.

The place is extremely packed on weekends, even as early as 11am. No booking is quite impossible to get a table unless you're willing to wait for a long time.

But honestly, this wil not be a great place to host dinners. It's alright for casual hang out lunch with no expectations for food quality and ambience.

We ordered the Yee Sang for fun as it was CNY season. The salmon was a mistake - somehow Chinese restaurants can never get this right. It was too fishy and awful for consumption.

Likes: Decent quality dimsum in the mall
Dislikes: Roast pork, cheung fun, har gau, salmon on Yee Sang

The Han Room
T-216A, The Gardens Mall,
Mid Valley City
59200 Kuala Lumpur
Opening Hours 
Mon-Fri 11am - 10.20pm
Sat & Sun 10am - 10.20pm
The Han Room 滿漢城酒家's Page
The Han Room 滿漢城酒家 on Facebook

The Han Room Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Cafe Giang

 I think Hanoi has this no menu policy so they can price it however they want to?? Another place that does not have a menu with price. 
 The egg coffee that looks the same, regardless if it's chocolate or the version with rum. Yes it's fluffy and creamy but...

 There is no difference with the cocktails that I usually order?? Hot, fluffy, creamy, and the version with rum is really strong! I thought it was just alright and really nothing to shout about. I could get such fluffy eggy just by ordering cocktails in any bar anyway?? And I personally like my coffee without egg. I've tried, I've tested it but it's really not my kind of thing.

Likes: Good rum portion for the alcoholic version!
Dislikes: Nothing special at all and the place is very dirty. Not the best place to chill.. But if that's authentic Vietnamese Egg Coffee then you could try it at least once. Also not a place I would return/recommend.

Giảng Cafe
39 Nguyễn Hữu Huân, 
Hàng Bạc
Hoàn Kiếm
Hanoi Vietnam
Opening Hours
Daily 7am - 10pm

Friday, February 23, 2018

Grand Harbour Restaurant 大港中菜

As usual, every Chinese New Year, there will be company dinners, gatherings between friends and family which is pretty common. This dinner was organised by someone else where I had no control or say to the order. If I do, I will definitely go against ordering Shark's Fin.

Speaking of the Yee Sang - the salmon is very unfresh. Bring your own fish or do not order their unfresh salmon, it's very fishy and high chance that you may contract bacteria from the unfresh slices.

Unfortunately, shark's fin was part of the menu selected by the organiser. I consumed it anyway, as it was already on the table and nobody should waste food. If I was given the opportunity to select the menu, I would have picked a different item instead.

Grand Harbour serves one of the worst I've had for CNY banquet dinner..

The pork was unacceptably tiny, the abalone looks shiny, huge and glamourous but such a nice piece of abalone was wasted because they overcooked it. I have never had such a soft abalone - softer than your steamed cod fish.

Overly salty soup.

Barely any prawn flavours in the bowl - obviously throwing in a large prawn is necessary but the broth is just some MSG broth which was not appetising.

We would normally have it at Noble House but this time around, Grand Harbour was selected to host the dinner as a change. But this was a very wrong decision, and there will not be anymore banquet dinners at Grand Harbour considering that the price they charge is just as high as Noble House but the quality is a far cry.

Likes: Nothing. Probably only the dessert?
Dislikes: Most of the items - yee sang, suckling pig, abalone, veggie soup, prawn noodles. I mean, they tried their best to copy Noble House's version but it's a failure

Grand Harbour Restaurant 大港中菜
Lot LG2 - 01 & 02 Lower Ground Two,
Fahrenheit 88,
No. 179, Jalan Walter Grenier,
Bukit Bintang
55100 Kuala Lumpur
Opening Hours
Mon-Sat 10am - 10.30pm
Sunday 9am - 10.30pm
Grand Harbour Restaurant's Page
Grand Harbour Restaurant on Facebook

Grand Harbour Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Bun Cha Dac Kim

 The bun cha place we found through Foursquare. We happen to be about 5 minutes away so we decided to pop by to try some local food. Ordering is an issue because they don't seem to be able to speak in English. I think they only serve two items and that is seen on everyone's table... There is no menu or price so they are free to charge however they want to? That was the feeling I got from my experience here. Let's get to it...

 Bun Cha (VND60k)

Some grilled pork meat in sweet soup. It tastes delicious but I can't get the dirty black bits off my head so I barely drank the broth.

 Spring Rolls (VND100k)

It was alright, it came piping hot but the skin was not crispy - it was dry like paper? I don't know but I found the skin to be difficult to consume.

This is what you see on most tables. Few things to note - the cleanliness is an issue. The vegetables doesn't look like it had been washed thoroughly. It came from the section that looks horribly awful and smelly. The chilli and garlic on everyone's table does not have a spoon to scoop so everyone just dig in it with their used chopsticks!! Oh my god, the sight of the man next to us is still in my head. And they seem to be fine transferring their saliva and germs for the next customer!! Bring your own garlic and chilli if you have to???

Also, their calculation is bad. I've read online that the Bun Cha costs VND60k and spring rolls are VND15k each or about VND90k per plate. How did ours gone up to VND100k? Not to mentioned, we were charged VND500k++ initially but I felt something wasn't right so I insisted that she recalculate it. It turns out to be a lot lesser? I went on TripAdvisor to check and it seems like we were not the only ones who had such problems - they tend to mark up thinking that tourists will not realise it... Beware, as they are prone to cheating!

All in all, no matter how good the food is, cleanliness and honesty is an issue, therefore I will not recommend / return for it again.

Likes: Great local snack
Dislikes: Cleanliness, honesty (beware, as they will charge more. Insist for an itemised receipt and ask them for the price before ordering...), poorly kept place

Bun Cha Dac Kim
1 Hàng Mành,
Hàng Gai,
Hoàn Kiếm,
Hanoi Vietnam
Opening Hours
Daily 9am - 9pm

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Banh Mi 25

One of the popular Banh Mi where everyone deemed as "the best" according to the internet, so we decide to pop by and try some of their sandwiches. We ordered the standard banhmi pate (VND15k) and banhmi barbequed pork with pate (VND20k). 

The little store where they prepare their snadwiches.

There is a little cafe next to the store which is also part of Banh Mi 25, and they have tables and stools for you to sit and enjoy your banhmi.

What we had in Ho Chi Minh was a little different - theirs doesn't come with cheese and they don't serve roast pork. The pate version is very little and stingy to be honest so it was the "best", I thought. If you've tried Huynh Hoa you'll get what I mean. Huynh Hoa is definitely more expensive but they are generous with it. Perhaps you could ask for additional fillings and pay for it, lack of fillings made the sandwich rather difficult to eat as it's really dry. The one thing that did not disappoint was the baguette. Very crispy!!

Likes: Reasonably cheap, great place to try local banhmi if you haven't
Dislikes: Meat portion a bit too stingy, but can try to ask if they could give additional pate - just pay for it

Bánh Mì 25
25 Hàng Cá,
Hàng Bồ,
Hoàn Kiếm
Hanoi Vietnam
Opening Hours
Daily 7am - 9pm
Banh Mi 25 on Facebook

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Cau Go Authentic Vietnamese Cuisine

That restaurant with the weirdest pathway to go up to the 5th floor. Not exactly weird but it looks like it's under renovation. There's no signboards either...

 But you'll love the view once you get up here.

 Cau Go Quencher (VND120k)

Don't bother with their cocktails though. This is plain sugar water...

 Deep Fried Tofu (VND100k)

 Coconut Salad (VND125k)

 Deep Fried Calamari (VND215k)

 Fried Beef with Lemongrass and Chilli (VND180k)

 Fish Stew (VND175k)

 Pork Ribs Stew with Eggplant (VND245k)

 Morning Glory (VND105k)

 To summarise it in a short paragraph, this place reminded me of Cuc Gach Quan in Ho Chi Minh City where it's slightly pricier but you get good food. These are all rice dishes and the ingredients used are definitely better grade ones. If I have to pick a favourite it would be the coconut salad which is something you can't find it unless you're in Indochine area. The calamari, tofu and morning glory is rather normal which you can get similar quality in Chinese restaurants. The stews are something differet which uses a lot of local herbs especially mint. All of us loved the food here, which is why the prices here are exceptionally high for Vietnam's standards. Also, a reason why you won't really spot locals and may be deemed as tourist trap. I did try other places with rice dishes but they did not do as well as Cau Go did. I have to admit, despite the high prices, it is still my favourite in Hanoi.

Do remember to make a reservation as this place is occassionally full.

Likes: Wonderful local selections, coconut salad is a must, try some local stews
Dislikes: Unfortunately good food comes with a high price, an exceptionally high price for the view too

Cau Go Authentic Vietnamese Cuisine
73 Cầu Gỗ,
Hàng Trống,
Hanoi Vietnam
Opening Hours
Daily 9.30am - 11pm
Cau Go's Page
Cau Go on Facebook