Saturday, 30 January 2016

D'Brown Cafe, Miri

D'Brown has given their menu a facelift since our last visit which was a while ago.  Sadly, after spending a few minutes contemplating the menu, I found out that the brunch and breakfast menu are not available unless it's the weekend. Pretty disappointing. 

The coffee was relatively nice given the fact that they are using Monin syrup and flavouring like what most cafes in Miri are doing.

The chicken breast was quite bland even though it is still relatively tender to the bite.

I do enjoy their Mac N Cheese even though it was a little under seasoned and had the minimal amount of bacon.

Overall, the food here "don't impress me much" (do it to the tune of the song by Shania Twain) yay yay

Thursday, 28 January 2016

Senda Shabu Shabu, Miri - Revisited

"It is not the same as it was previously". Those were our thoughts when our food came. LOL. The ingredients looked quite pathetic to be honest but I guess beggars can't be choosers since the other shabu-shabu place (Korean ste) closed down recently. 

However, the meat looked alright although they seemed a little jagged at the sides. This was exemplified by the lamb meat below.

The beef chuck slices fared slightly better as well as the pork tenderloin.

The free dessert nowadays consisted of a small bowl of barley. Hmm...

They are located on the second floor of Hong Kong Duck. :)

Chatterbox, Mega Hotel

It's been a few years since we last visited Chatterbox. We revisited it today for tea break. The cake selection has increased in terms of choices. After 6pm, cakes are sold at half price. A bargain if you asked me. RM10 will get you two cheesecake! A bargain right?

We had ours in the coffee house itself with two cups of hot cappuccino. Their cappuccino looked more like lattes with cocoa powder sprinkled on top but it was pretty good so no complaints there. The accompanying butter cookie was excellent as well!

I would really recommend their cheesecakes. Although not exactly Secret Recipe, it was better than some of the cafes I usually patronised in Miri, and cheaper too!

We had the TimTam cheesecake as well as the strawberry cheesecake. Both were excellent and the cheese flavour could still be distinctly detected unlike some places' which are more like flavoured whipped cream only. 

A should go for teabreaks! 

Ground floor of Mega Hotel,
Lot 907, Jln Merbau,
98000 Miri.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Diner Spot Cafe, Miri

This is a recent addition to the eating scene in Miri. Finally today we decided to give it a try. At first glance, the menu is pretty limited especially if you are looking for oriental dishes for lunch meals. The prices are slightly higher too compared to its other competitors like Lotus Cafe. Ambience-wise, it is extremely cold inside. LOL. Air conditioning are turned to their maximum I think and maybe because the shop is new. We had to change seats because our first table was directly under the air-con and it was so cold we were uncomfortable. Haha. It is actually the coffee house for Grand SH Hotel but it looked pretty much like any other air-conditioned cafe here.

The three layer tea special. For RM5.50 a glass, it is very nice. However, if I would probably go back to Lotus since it is cheaper there and the three layer tea there is good too.

The coffee "Tarik" (pulled local coffee) is also RM5.50. I actually like their coffee although my sis thinks it is a little too sweet. Heh! I got very sweet tooth, so maybe that's why.

The Sarawak laksa would set you back RM6.50. It was alright but not as good as the one opposite Permaisuri Mall (28 Kopitiam?). 

The Nestum fish rice was also not bad. Portion was a good size as I get a bite of fish with nearly every bite. 

A point to be considered is that they do not serve pork here. So if you are not too particular about the HALAL status, this  could be an option for dining.

They are located at:
Lot 802 & 803, 
Jalan Bintang, MCLD,
98008 Miri.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Ming Xin Coffee House, Miri

Finally I had the chance to eat at Ming Xin Coffee House. It is located right next to the only HSBC building in Miri. My dad and sis have always told me that they love the fried carrot cake there. Only after I went today that I realised it's a dimsum place, a HALAL one and the carrot cake was actually one of the dimsum dishes. OMG. I had the false impression that it was a one plate fried noodles kind of size. Anyway, the food here is pretty good and the ambience was nice. The place was clean and air-conditioned; so perfect for a hot day and even to catch up among friends.

I must really recommend their Stir-fried carrot cake. It was NYUM and had lots of chai-poh (a type of fermented or salted vege).

Their cheesy prawn fritters was a little disappointing as all the sesame seeds made it a little bitter (as they burn quite easily).

The sweet and sour roll on the other hand was not bad too.

They have assorted Halal dimsum here as well as chinese dishes and western food. Dimsum costs about RM5/plate or basket which I think is pretty fair considering Halal dimsum at Grand Palace would cost about RM8-12/basket.

Look for them at:

Ming Xin Coffee House
Lot 1623, Pujut 1A,
Pujut-Lutong Road,

I took down the HSBC location map just in case (for better reference). Heh!


Sunday, 24 January 2016

Jamie's Italian, Bali

I love Italian food. If you haven't figured it out by now, you will if you see what I usually ordered especially when looking out for new places to explore. We saw this place during our trip to Bali late last year. Who never heard of Jamie Oliver? Yeah, I know right. So when we saw this shop, our curiosity was piqued.

I  know I should have ordered the thirst quenching drink here but I just couldn't resist the Nutella Chocolate concoction. Anyway, I wished I had ordered the same thing Hubby did. It was a mocktail of sort. Apple Martini maybe? This post was so back-logged that I couldn't remember properly the name already.

We shared a black truffle rissotto and a pizza. Needless to say, the black truffle rissotto was amazing! and the pizza extremely delish as well. We managed to polish off everything between the two of us. The rissoto was well-flavoured and you get the woody taste of the black truffle at the back of your tongue. Subtle and light, it was not overpowering. The pizza had crunchy thin crust and the toppings were just adequate to bring out the fragrance of the herbs. Loved it!

Jamie's Italian
Jalan Raya Kuta No. 47, 
Banjar Pande Mas, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, 
Bali 80361, Indonesia

Western Palace Restaurant, Grand Palace Miri

I have always liked Western Palace just because it is one of the few western joints in Miri which offers relaxing music (they have pianist playing soft music every night) and their food was also not bad at all, better than some newer hotels' (like Meritz where I had very bad experience). Granted, sometimes they do not serve the correct cut of meat as advertised (which was a few years ago) but now they definitely have improved.

Their oxtail soup was simply amazing. I have been disappointed by many restaurants and cafes before as Malaysian shops seemed to think that the local "sup tulang" is OK to be served in a Western restaurant alongside their usual mushroom soup. I have no problems with it but it would be pretty misleading if they do not put the word "Local Oxtail Soup" when they put it up with the rest of the western dishes. I usually expected the creamy, rich red broth synonym with the western Oxtail soup to be let down again and again. This did NOT happen here. They served up a very delicious oxtail soup, one of the best I have had and I was soooo happy to polish off the whole bowl.

We had a few of their steaks and also their lamb which did not disappoint. In fact, I found their steaks done to perfection this time around. I ordered Medium Rare, a rather difficult find in Malaysia especially since I do not appreciate restaurants overcooking my steaks or cooked them to such a state where they might be rare but the outside of my steak lacked all forms of caramelisation. Thankfully, during my last visit here, they managed to get it just the way I love it!

The lamb rack was also not bad at all as the lamb was tender and the accompanying sauce was delicious. I just couldn't get enough of my steak though. If I were to come again, I would probably have the steak again just because it was THAT good. Haha.

The avocado juice on the other hand was mediocre. It was pretty tasteless actually. While I appreciate the thoughtful gesture of not adding any sugar to the freshly squeezed juices, avocado on its own is always pretty bland although it is creamy. Some "gula Melaka" would probably elevate it to a much higher level. I do not like Chocolate syrup on my avocado juice although some cafes usually use that. I ended up having to ask for some syrup to "improve" my juice.

Their coffee was alright, the usual you get from good coffee beans and a coffee machine. I do not sound pretty impressed I know but it is I said, alright.

I would definitely give them a big thumbs up and come back soon for more dinners if I am in town.

Look for them at the ground floor of Grand Palace Hotel Miri. :)

Sofia Restaurant, Melbourne

If you are in Melbourne CBD and wanted the biggest bang for your buck, you definitely shouldn't miss this place. They have one of the biggest portion for Italian food at very reasonable prices in the CBD.

It was almost always packed, so reservations could be a wise choice if you do not want to wait for your tables. The service was usually prompt and good (probably to clear off tables as soon as possible for the next customers). We ordered TWO of everything and even with 10 of us, we couldn't finish all of them.

We had the garlic bread to start. It was basically a really cheesy and garlicky pizza (not complaining as the dough was fluffy and pipping hot-straight out of the oven!).

The salmon salad was HUGE. I have never actually seen such a big plate of salad served in a restaurant. LOL. Most people who opted for salad are probably aiming to lose some weight I think so I was so used to seeing a small plate of salad that this big platter of it threw me off a little. They had beets and lots of capers inside, so be prepared so some Zingggg when you are having those little morsels of greens. ;)

The seafood pasta was excellent. Lots of fresh succulent seafood, creamy pasta, what more could you ask for? It was a little too rich by the time I finish a portion of it so maybe sharing would be the best way to go here.

I think this was the meat lovers' pizza or something along that line. It was packed full of meat. Minced beef, some ham, chunks of chicken, lots of cheese. OMG! One slice and one portion of pasta would be enough to fill up anyone's stomach. If you are super hungry, maybe two...
Haha. The photo did not do this pizza true justice because it was also really humongous!

They have my favourite Brown Brothers and it was my first time trying Cienna here. But they give complimentary Port after the meal too! Lots of sweet wine, just my kind of place.

Reasonable and filling. Worth going especially if you have big appetites! Address on the very first picture! :)

Monday, 18 January 2016

Cherry Hill Orchards, Yarra Valley

During my last trip to Melbourne, I finally visited a cherry farm! Cherry Hill Orchards was located in Yarra Valley and about 30-45 minutes drive from my in-laws' place. 

I only saw this pamphlet on our way out. It was a shame as we didn't know that cherries we picked are now to be charged by the kilograms. According to my in-law, before this they allow you to buy just the amount you wanted. This explained the huge amount of left-behind buckets we saw filled to the brim with cherries on our way back. 

Nevertheless, the cherries were sold at about AUD10/kg (still cheaper than the markets in downtown Melbourne but it's not cheap if you ended up with two buckets of cherries). We did not plucked that much so thank goodness but it was still a hefty 3kg between the two of us. For estimation, a quarter of the bucket would yield more a less a kilo.

Anyway, they have a bus system which will transport their visitors to the orchards and back. The farm was huge!

Munching on the cherries were quite fun but after the first hour I was pretty tired and ready to call it a day. It can be really hot especially since it was summer. I stepped on so much dropped cherries my sandals were stained throughout with blood-like red color by the time I left.

They are located at:
474 Queens Road, Wandin East,

Open daily during cherries season (mid-Nov to early January) except Christmas. 
9am to 5pm

Fuel Shack, Miri

This popular burger slash wrap place finally opened up its branch in Miri, at the Permaisuri Mall to be exact. Excited over this new addition to Miri eatery, my family and I went to give it a try on the last weekend. It was packed and the queue was quite long, which was a rare sight in Miri. Nevertheless, we loitered around until a free space came up and I queued for our burgers and wrap. 

PS: I couldn't resist taking this photo though I saw it before.

Unfortunately, all their lamb burgers and minced lamb wraps with yoghurt were sold out! Uh, it's just 1+pm actually. I saw my friend posted on Facebook a while back about going a few times before she finally got to have their lamb but Fuel Shack has been here for weeks and still they are sold out? Really? 

Anyway since we were there already, we all just had the Original Shack set with milkshake. You get to choose a normal fries and soft drinks with an addition of RM4 to your order or RM8 for a large fries with milkshake of your choice. I seriously recommend their shake. It's thick and creamy with lots of ice cream instead of milk. The large fries however look about the same like their normal fries. Hmm...

Look for them at the second floor at the intersection bridge between Permaisuri Mall and the old Imperial Mall. 

Escapade Sushi, Miri

A franchise of the same namesake in Brunei, this sushi and Japanese eatery has always been popular with the local Mirian who would drive down to Brunei for a meal there. When they opened a branch in Miri (about time I think!), the crowd's response has been amazing. The queues were horrible and waiting lists each night was for hours. In fact, they were reserved daily for three weeks when I enquired about 2 months ago. Now, the enthusiasm has probably dwindled a little but booking are still necessary to secure a table. LOL.

Food was good and portions were generous and fair. For all the food below, the bill was still under RM200, so I would definitely be back as I no longer have to drive down to Brunei. Service was quite good as well and food arrived really promptly. I suspected the efficiency in part was to clear the table faster but no complaints there.

I forgot what were the names of all d food we ordered but the memorable ones included the seafood ramen which had an incredible amount of scallop, cuttlefish, prawns and mushrooms, the tuna tataki? Which came with my favourite sesame dressing and was really refreshing with the cucumber inside and Godzilla roll which had unagi and prawns. YUM! The sashimi (salmon) was thick and expertly cut. I dislike the ones with veins tangled inside when you bite (usual when amateur chefs cut the fish). Most people think cutting sashimi can be done by simply anyone but I personally find that to be untrue. 

Anyway, they are located at the Tanjong Lobang's Taman Selera which had ample parking but rather confusing entry points.


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