Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Aunty Jane Home-Cook @ Sungai Way New Village

Seeking a satisfying lunch, fuelled by family-served sustenance & succour? Search no further: Steer off the beaten path & into the cooling shade of Aunty Jane Home Cook, a weekdays-only business hidden in a house in Sungai Way New Village that's thriving through wildly potent, well-earned word of mouth.

Head here early, by noon if possible, & revel in the calm before the crowds come, while Aunty Jane (buoyant & busy), her husband & their relatives put the finishing touches on fried meat & veggies that sizzle tantalisingly in woks & send the enlivening scent of hot, fresh nourishment shooting straight out of their open kitchen.

 Aunty Jane prides herself on fare that fits the definition of 'deceptively simple,' passing the test of the finickiest taste buds. Best-of-the-market produce, prepared with no MSG & minimal oil, to be sold out in three hours.

Lift the lid & make your picks. Our tip: Take a bit of everything (you'll be glad & grateful you did), then come back for seconds.

The best bet: Deep-fried 'nam yue' pork belly; a stunning version that's practically perfect, each slice lightly crispy outside & gorgeously juicy within, swollen with knock-out bursts of flavour. Not to be missed; we helped ourselves ceaselessly to this.

Also worthwhile: Fried chicken, alluringly golden, meaty but not greasy, with crunchy skin that'll trigger incurable waves of lust.

The selection is subject to change, but there's sure to be fish, immaculately fried or irreproachably steamed with soy sauce.

 Egg ecstasy, exactly how our grandparents loved this, warm & comforting, with some crispy edges & a drizzle of dark sauce, rounded out by a yolk that still oozes out luxuriously. Go ahead; make your day.

 Chicken curry, relatively less compelling but still nice & thick with soft potatoes, alongside sambal that bears a 'spicy' warning.

The healthiest choices here: Tofu, achingly smooth, or veggies, crunchy to the last fibre.

 A plate of pure pleasure (customers can substitute the white rice with brown). Economy rice at its most enjoyable.

 The final cost for a meal for two: RM16. Marginally more than what some other places might charge, but wonderfully worth it.

Basic Chinese soup & a free flow of tea come complimentary (& much appreciated too).

Finding Aunty Jane isn't tough, thanks to navigation technology, but parking is precarious; seek out illegal spots up the street.

Aunty Jane Home-Cook
482 Jalan SS 9A/10, Seri Setia, Sungei Way New Village, Petaling Jaya
Mon-Fri, 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. (except public holidays). Tel: 016-686-2268

Stay up to date: The Eat Drink KL newsletter is sent by email to subscribers every Monday; it's the Klang Valley's foremost weekly round-up of new restaurant openings (even before they're featured on this blog), F&B promotions & other tasty tidbits.
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Sausages to sambal. Muffins to marshmallows. Peanut butter to mango chutney. Cornflake ice cream to honey aloe yogurt. Lavender-laced lemonades to lychee-&-guava juices.
Eat Drink KL: Small Businesses, Huge Flavours is the first eBook to help customers navigate the diversity of independent F&B entrepreneurs who bake & boil in their own kitchens, offering some of Malaysia's finest, most fascinating food products.
This is a catalogue of insights into what inspires our contemporary culinary craftspeople, from Elsie & her sister Jennifer's experiments with tong yuen at home to Eugene & Emrys' escapades with hand-crafted sodas in Tokyo.
This resource will be continuously updated with new listings, so bookmark the following permanent link & check back regularly to find out what's fresh: www.eatdrinkkl.publ.com/businesses

Also, take a look at the latest edition of Eat Drink KL: 100 Favourites, completely redesigned with a revamped look, featuring 100 recommended restaurants for April-June 2014, including more than 30 new entries for this quarter. This eBook is available to read or download at this link: http://eatdrinkkl.publ.com/Eat-Drink-KL-100-Favourites-Apr-Jun-2014 (Link expires June 30, 2014; see blog entries after that date for new link).

Check out EAT DRINK, a new F&B website jointly run by The Expat Group (TEG) & Eat Drink KL. This website features all of our up-to-date reviews, plus exclusive weekly articles & a searchable database on restaurants in KL & Selangor: EatDrink.my

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Tino's Pizza Express by Chatime @ Bangsar South

Bubble tea colossus Chatime is venturing into the lucrative pizza business with this new outlet in Bangsar South's Nexus complex; it's the springboard for an imminent Tino's Pizza chain that serves what it considers to be Neapolitan-style pizza.

Baked at high temperatures of 500 °C for slightly more than a minute, Tino's pizzas showcase hand-tossed soft dough for a thick & filling bread-like base (not a crunchy thin crust). Tasty toppings like beef bacon, spinach & a sunny-side up (RM21.90 for this medium-sized, six-slice Fiorentina) help to make these recipes sufficiently satisfying.

We also like the Duck Caponata (RM25.90 for medium, RM38.90 for large), well-covered with roast duck, broccoli, capsicum & melted cheese. Everything tastes flavoursome & fairly fresh (for fast food), probably a notch above the large pizza corporations.

Lamb Abruzzo, with lamb, garlic, chilli flakes & mozzarella cheese (RM24.90 for medium). The pizzas are ready really fast, scarcely within 10 minutes of our order. But a customer's enjoyment of this might hinge on his/her tolerance for heavy crusts.

Oval-shaped pizzas are also available; we like the sweet-savoury four-cheese one made gooey with blue, parmesan, mozzarella & cheddar, drizzled with honey for the icing on this cake. RM19.90 (four slices).

Distinctive-looking 'Crustar' dessert pizzas are a speciality here too; this Matcha Mochi (RM16.90) comes with green tea powder, white rice cakes, red bean, crushed peanuts & mint leaves. Another possibility would be the Fruity Honey Pearl, which features apple, peach, kiwi fruit, cranberries & tapioca pearls.

Peanut butter alert! Among the sides, the top temptation is indisputably these fries, blanketed with peanut butter, beef bacon & chilli powder (RM9.90). The flavours blend well together in one addictive ensemble.

Other options: Pumpkin soup with dough slices (RM8.90), minestrone, fried jalapeno strips with passion fruit yoghurt dips, chicken wings with a 'Sicilian sauce' & more.

Beverages comprise a longer-than-expected list of lattes (vanilla, hazelnut, mocha, caramel), smoothies, fruit teas, soft drinks & of course, milk tea.

Tino's Pizza Express
Ground Floor, Nexus, Bangsar South, Kuala Lumpur. Next outlet possibly in Mid Valley
Open 10am-10pm, but last orders might be around 9:30pm. Tel: 03-2242-0580 for pick-up pre-orders

Stay up to date: The Eat Drink KL newsletter is sent by email to subscribers every Monday; it's the Klang Valley's foremost weekly round-up of new restaurant openings (even before they're featured on this blog), F&B promotions & other tasty tidbits.
Subscribe to Eat Drink KL Weekly for free via this following link: 
Note to subscribers on Gmail: The newsletter will be in the Promotions folder of your inbox.

Sausages to sambal. Muffins to marshmallows. Peanut butter to mango chutney. Cornflake ice cream to honey aloe yogurt. Lavender-laced lemonades to lychee-&-guava juices.
Eat Drink KL: Small Businesses, Huge Flavours is the first eBook to help customers navigate the diversity of independent F&B entrepreneurs who bake & boil in their own kitchens, offering some of Malaysia's finest, most fascinating food products.
This is a catalogue of insights into what inspires our contemporary culinary craftspeople, from Elsie & her sister Jennifer's experiments with tong yuen at home to Eugene & Emrys' escapades with hand-crafted sodas in Tokyo.
This resource will be continuously updated with new listings, so bookmark the following permanent link & check back regularly to find out what's fresh: www.eatdrinkkl.publ.com/businesses

Also, take a look at the latest edition of Eat Drink KL: 100 Favourites, completely redesigned with a revamped look, featuring 100 recommended restaurants for April-June 2014, including more than 30 new entries for this quarter. This eBook is available to read or download at this link: http://eatdrinkkl.publ.com/Eat-Drink-KL-100-Favourites-Apr-Jun-2014 (Link expires June 30, 2014; see blog entries after that date for new link).

Check out EAT DRINK, a new F&B website jointly run by The Expat Group (TEG) & Eat Drink KL. This website features all of our up-to-date reviews, plus exclusive weekly articles & a searchable database on restaurants in KL & Selangor: EatDrink.my

Monday, April 28, 2014

Bari-Uma Ramen @ Jaya Shopping Centre

Jaya Shopping Centre opened/reopened this week, positioning itself as 'The Heart & Soul of PJ' in a canny, nostalgia-coloured campaign to lure visitors. But with more than half this mall's tenants still racing through renovations, there's scant shopping or eating to be conducted here for the next few days.

 Many of the F&B brands here are familiar mall-based ones, from Chili's Grill to Kenny Rogers Roasters, Serai to Soup Restaurant, Heritage Village to Ah Cheng Laksa. The cherished exception & chief attraction: Bari-Uma, a ramen restaurant with a handful of branches in Japan (plus one or two in Singapore).

Bari-Uma's signature ramen, elegantly striking, with relatively light, pork-flavoured shoyu broth flanked by crisp seaweed sheets, crowned with reasonably thick slices of tender flame-cooked cha shu. RM27 before taxes, sufficient for a not-very-heavy lunch.

Customers can select a preference for the firmness of their noodles (our 'regular' boasted a pleasant bite), but otherwise, variety is not Bari-Uma's forte. A spicy soup is available, as are add-ons such as a seasoned egg & corn (RM2 each), but that's about all there is to say about the ramen here.

Two Japanese chefs currently oversee the kitchen, keeping a close eye on how the gyoza turns out; ironically, there's a wider-than-usual assortment of chicken-stuffed dumplings here, from the negi-mayo version with a mildly spicy sauce (RM12 for five) ... 

 ... to pan-fried ones with teriyaki sauce & sesame seeds ...

... & boiled ones that probably won't linger very long in the memory. Kushiyaki will be offered by next week _ skewers of pork belly or chicken breast & thigh with leeks.

Customers will probably be satisfied with how this aburi salmon salad tastes. But it's the one dish here that could benefit from a more appealing presentation. RM19.90.

Ishiyaki chaofan forms the final component of the menu _ rice in hot stone bowls with plenty of pork & accompaniments like salmon or shrimp (RM15.90).

Dessert revolves around ice cream. And with that, it's a wrap for Bari-Uma's menu. All in all, since fans of porky ramen in Petaling Jaya have comparatively few options, this is a welcome entry to Section 14.

Basic sake should be offered by next week; for now, there's beer (RM20 per can).

 Bari-Uma's service team works hard to live by this creed; not a simple task & sometimes a thankless one, so we salute them.

Bari-Uma Ramen Malaysia
L3-11, Level Three, Jaya Shopping Centre, Jalan Semangat, Section 14, Petaling Jaya
Tel: 03-7932-2958

Stay up to date: The Eat Drink KL newsletter is sent by email to subscribers every Monday; it's the Klang Valley's foremost weekly round-up of new restaurant openings (even before they're featured on this blog), F&B promotions & other tasty tidbits.
Subscribe to Eat Drink KL Weekly for free via this following link: 
Note to subscribers on Gmail: The newsletter will be in the Promotions folder of your inbox.

Sausages to sambal. Muffins to marshmallows. Peanut butter to mango chutney. Cornflake ice cream to honey aloe yogurt. Lavender-laced lemonades to lychee-&-guava juices.
Eat Drink KL: Small Businesses, Huge Flavours is the first eBook to help customers navigate the diversity of independent F&B entrepreneurs who bake & boil in their own kitchens, offering some of Malaysia's finest, most fascinating food products.
This is a catalogue of insights into what inspires our contemporary culinary craftspeople, from Elsie & her sister Jennifer's experiments with tong yuen at home to Eugene & Emrys' escapades with hand-crafted sodas in Tokyo.
This resource will be continuously updated with new listings, so bookmark the following permanent link & check back regularly to find out what's fresh: www.eatdrinkkl.publ.com/businesses

Also, take a look at the latest edition of Eat Drink KL: 100 Favourites, completely redesigned with a revamped look, featuring 100 recommended restaurants for April-June 2014, including more than 30 new entries for this quarter. This eBook is available to read or download at this link: http://eatdrinkkl.publ.com/Eat-Drink-KL-100-Favourites-Apr-Jun-2014 (Link expires June 30, 2014; see blog entries after that date for new link).

Check out EAT DRINK, a new F&B website jointly run by The Expat Group (TEG) & Eat Drink KL. This website features all of our up-to-date reviews, plus exclusive weekly articles & a searchable database on restaurants in KL & Selangor: EatDrink.my

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Buns Burger Bar @ Desa Sri Hartamas

One of KL's most ambitious burger joints so far, Buns Burger Bar is the brainchild of Aaron & Angela, whose cross-border search for the world's tastiest burgers has spurred them to open a place that seeks to offer not only luscious burgers but tempting tapas too. Many thanks to the friendly young couple for inviting us to this preview tasting session earlier this month.

Buns is finicky about its burgers, employing patties constructed from free-range, grass-fed Australian beef, freshly ground daily, & buns sourced from a cautiously selected supplier; mercifully though, the outlet keeps prices relatively affordable, with a basic burger starting from RM16, with none surpassing RM20.

With meat cooked slightly pink, the spotlight also shines on tantalising toppings; the S.E.A. features a lemongrass-infused patty crowned with fish sauce, sambal mayo, coriander, carrots, radish & cucumber, while the Guac showcases guacamole & hand-chopped salsa (note: neither is pictured here, but we'll return soon to try them).

 Meet the Champ: Beef wrapped in turkey ham, with a sunny-side-up, shiitake mushrooms, herbs, tomatoes & red cabbage. Note that Buns' buns lean a bit more toward the dense side, not exactly the fluffy sort.

The sole representative for chickens so far won't ruffle any feathers, with a slice of thigh fried in lemon & thyme, topped with crunchy crackling skin (the piece de resistance), arugula & garlic-rosemary mayo. 

Dill-battered dory fillet was what we had above for this session; now that Buns is officially open, this recipe has been fine-tuned to come with shrimp, cucumber ribbons & lemon mint mayo.

What makes Buns more distinctive: the presence of tapas, including a succulent serving of gyutan _ ox tongue, ponzu & daikon _ that's marvellous by every measure (especially since it costs only RM12).

Buns is blessed with an experienced chef who's honed his craft in KL (including at the Carcosa Seri Negara) & abroad (in Dubai); his craftsmanship is evident in offerings like bruschetta topped with smoked salmon, egg & balsamic tomatoes (RM14).

Buns plans to eventually serve wine & cocktails to partner with its parade of tapas, currently comprising tiger prawns with garlic, chilli & lime (RM18) ...

 ... meatballs of minced lamb shoulder with tomatoes (RM14) ...

 ... buffalo wings with kitchen-made hot sauce (RM11) ...

 ... can't-stop-munching-them strips of chicken breast with sriracha mayo & lime (RM11) ...

 ... won't-share-them-with-anyone lightly battered tempura of local sweet corn with paprika (RM9) ...

 ... protein-powered skewers of lamb shoulder with capsicum & yoghurt (RM12) ...

 ... & carb-crazed croquettes stuffed with potato, mozzarella & raspberries (RM9).

Aaron & Angela's determination to serve the best at Buns extends to their desserts. The sweetest incentive: Customers here can also enjoy Ong Kee Win's incredible gelato in flavours of peanut butter, pistachio, coffee caramel & Belgian chocolate (the public knows Kee Win's brand better as Cielo Dolci) ...

 ... as well as Lim Cheng Cheng's inimitable cakes (check out her Gula Melaka Cempedak, French Vanilla Cheese or Carrot Cranberry), for which she has become beloved as the founder of Swich Cafe in Publika.

Buns Burger Bar
48, Jalan 27/70A, Desa Sri Hartamas, Kuala Lumpur
Open Tues-Sun, 12pm-11pm. No pork served.

Stay up to date: The Eat Drink KL newsletter is sent by email to subscribers every Monday; it's the Klang Valley's foremost weekly round-up of new restaurant openings (even before they're featured on this blog), F&B promotions & other tasty tidbits.
Subscribe to Eat Drink KL Weekly for free via this following link: 
Note to subscribers on Gmail: The newsletter will be in the Promotions folder of your inbox.

Sausages to sambal. Muffins to marshmallows. Peanut butter to mango chutney. Cornflake ice cream to honey aloe yogurt. Lavender-laced lemonades to lychee-&-guava juices.
Eat Drink KL: Small Businesses, Huge Flavours is the first eBook to help customers navigate the diversity of independent F&B entrepreneurs who bake & boil in their own kitchens, offering some of Malaysia's finest, most fascinating food products.
This is a catalogue of insights into what inspires our contemporary culinary craftspeople, from Elsie & her sister Jennifer's experiments with tong yuen at home to Eugene & Emrys' escapades with hand-crafted sodas in Tokyo.
This resource will be continuously updated with new listings, so bookmark the following permanent link & check back regularly to find out what's fresh: www.eatdrinkkl.publ.com/businesses

Also, take a look at the latest edition of Eat Drink KL: 100 Favourites, completely redesigned with a revamped look, featuring 100 recommended restaurants for April-June 2014, including more than 30 new entries for this quarter. This eBook is available to read or download at this link: http://eatdrinkkl.publ.com/Eat-Drink-KL-100-Favourites-Apr-Jun-2014 (Link expires June 30, 2014; see blog entries after that date for new link).

Check out EAT DRINK, a new F&B website jointly run by The Expat Group (TEG) & Eat Drink KL. This website features all of our up-to-date reviews, plus exclusive weekly articles & a searchable database on restaurants in KL & Selangor: EatDrink.my