Monday, 29 February 2016

Bali Itinerary Day 3

We woke up early and had breakfast at the hotel. Our driver Pak Made said to meet up at 8.30am or is it 9.30am? Anyway, I was quite annoyed with him at that time because I thought he was quite calculative with the time. This is because I felt that one whole day would mean 10 hours and not 6-8 hours (yada yada yada). OK maybe that's just me. Anyway, we ended up being late for the Barong and Keris show. Not that the show was particularly enjoyable. In fact, I felt that the show was a waste of time and couldn't be happier when it finally ended. I understood that it was part of the culture and all but the show felt, random. When I found out that the Fire and Kecak dance we were supposed to watch in Uluwatu was similar with the addition of a bonfire, I was glad we did not go. LOL. I would seriously recommend giving this a miss and go ahead to other attractions when you are in Bali. I mean, there are plenty more to see and explore in this beautiful island.

Despite all that I said, we sure took our worth of photos whilst we were there. Maybe it was similar to what I regularly see when I was in Malaysia, I did not feel that the place was that impressive. Run-down and poorly maintained would probably surmissed it better. However, if you are not from ASEAN, you would probably enjoy looking at all the different "sights" here at the surrounding area where the Barong and Keris show was held.

On the way to Tirta Empul Holy Spring Water temple, we dropped by Tegalalang for a quick visit. Similar to Jatiluwih, it was also another beautiful paddy field. They have tons of stalls selling souvenirs and other knick knacks so if you browse around it could be interesting.

When we reached Tirta Empul, the whole place was already packed with devotees queueing for their turn to take the holy water. It was believed to have magical properties which can cure ailments and grant wishes. Hmmm. We decided to do what the locals do and queued up as well, especially since our guide was also going in line. It could be quite entertaining with some old aunties in "sarongs" flirting with the young tourists and giggling away with their group of friends. Children were happily playing with water whilst the adults looked indulgently on.

I cannot resist taking a photo with this weird looking fruit!

We went to Kintamani for our lunch and it was really nice with cool wind blowing throughout our meal at the terrace overlooking the beautiful mountainside. We even got a slight discount when the waitress realised we were Asians (we used bahasa with her). However, we quite regretted spending so long there. Our guide told us to take our time and we stupidly followed. We just sat there for an hour or two after we were done with our meals and because of that, it disrupted our plans as we were supposed to go to the Ubud Market and the museum too! He told us we have lots of time and to enjoy the view slowly. We actually asked to meet up earlier than his stated time already as he initially asked us to meet him at 3pm, if I am not mistaken. As you can see, at least the view was amazing. :S

The shop we went to is called Sari if I am not mistaken. I will elaborate more in another post because my line sucks at the moment and the photos couldn't seem to be uploaded.

Then we went in search of the coffee plantation and farm I wanted to visit. Satria Coffee Plantation was received quite well by a lot of tourists (based on reviews I read) so I was quite insistent to go. Our guide actually suggested another  place. I won't elaborate much as I have discussed our visit here in detail in a different post HERE :)

By the time we reached Ubud, everything has closed and we were only in time to take a few shots before the stalls all close up and the museums were no longer open to public. Some had shows for the night and entrance would be charged differently.

Honestly, I was quite disappointed and regretted spending so much time in Kintamani. Sigh.

Barong dance
Tegalalang rice terrace
Tirta Empul : Holy Spring Water Temple
Coffee plantation and farm
Ubud palace and Art Market moved to the last day
Museum: Agung Rai Museum or Blanco Museum moved to the last day

Colonial Tramcar Restaurant (Revisited), Melbourne CBD

This is a late post actually. Yes, AGAIN. LOL. Life's pretty busy after the wedding so finally, I only got time now to slowly go back in my back-dated posts. We went back to Colonial Tramcar Restaurant some time in December last year and I only finally got to get these uploaded. It's hubby's first time and he's happily taking shots of the tram! Haha. Adorable!

If you asked my opinion, I would probably recommend the luncheon menu compared to the rest; mainly because the price is pretty decent compared to the rest and had four courses. The menu is the same as my previous visit (I don't think this will ever change :P) and so we had the hummus and capsicum dip. 

"Hummus dip: A smooth blend of chickpea and tahini with a hint of mint, served with crisp lavosh
Roasted Red Capsicum Dip: Fresh roasted capsicum blended with Australian cream cheese and tapenade, served with golden baked water crackers"

It was really nice and we both agreed that the capsicum dip far surpassed the hummus with its smoky flavours and creamy texture.

I recommended the duck terrine to Hubby but I don't think he enjoyed it much. LOL. I probably should let him make his own decision without influencing them :P Sorryyyyy

"Duck Terrine: Tender confit duck terrine wrapped in prosciutto, accompanied by a wild berry relish and cornichons
Smoked Salmon & Avocado: Smoked Tasmanian salmon and avocado mousse, dressed with baby capers, red onion and tomato salsa"

Anyway, I liked the cold confit and when eaten with the relish and bits of the gherkins, I find them very enjoyable, especially on a hot afternoon. I guess this is pretty subjective and believed that Hubby probably would have enjoyed the smoked salmon better. :D

The following were some of the drinks we took during our lunch. They offer unlimited flow of drinks and liquor so don't go too crazy okay? ;)

Mains were a fillet of steak each and I love my steak medium rare. On this occasion though, somehow I felt that my steak was not as good as my previous visit. I am not sure whether its the seasoning or the way it's cooked. It is still pretty decent but I would not be raving about it after I am done.

"Grilled Chicken Breast: Marinated in herbs on a bed of sautéed spinach served with seasonal vegetables and a rich reduction
Victorian Farmed Eye Fillet of Beef: Paired with a rosemary and thyme scallop potato, fresh seasonal vegetables, onion marmalade and red wine jus"

PS: I love their onion marmalade by the way!

The meal is concluded with a cheese platter. I simply love their quince paste! I cleaned them off their bowl during my first trip and the second one wasn't any different.

"Chef’s Selection of Local Cheese: Matched with a quince paste, golden crisp water crackers, and a spiced fruit loaf"

The fruit loaf was not my favourite but Hubby seemed to like it LOL. It felt slightly dry to me but I could probably blame that on the nuts and biscuits. Anyway, it was pleasant enough a dish.

Coffee and baileys rounded off my lunch perfectly. Chocolates were handed out at the very end too.

I have always enjoyed my experience with Colonial Tramcar probably because of their excellent service and the quaint environment enhance the dining experience even more. Definitely worth visiting, even after the first time.

Shukie, Jln Permaisuri

It's a pretty normal cafe for lunch. But its main attraction would be its reasonable prices and ideal location in town. Food-wise, average would be my opinion. That said, the kaya toast was quite nice actually according to my sister. For RM3 which included a hot coffee, it was very reasonable.

The herbal soup was a little on the salty side. Tasty but probably had a lot of MSG. Hahaha.

The drama probably started with their economy set meal for the lunch promotion depicted below. The beef rendang was icy cold and despite its pretty presentation, it was just not acceptable. However, their staff was kind enough to exchange mine for a heated plate which did not improve my impression much as the new plate was a less-than prettier version of the former.

I am not so sure about the omelette they served up. It seemed to be a blend of the local omelette with the drizzle of chilli sauce all over it and yet the stuffings (if you can call it that) seemed to be "westernised". They did a mushroom omelette if I am not mistaken since this was a really late post but oh well, for the price they charged, I guess this can be forgiven. ;)

They are located in front of the Permaisuri Mall Miri right across the road. 

Urbean, Avenue K

After my first jog in more than two years, it's reward time! Trying out this new cafe down in Avenue K just because their set dinner looks pretty decent; price-wise.

All the sets come with either iced or hot lemon tea and plain water is free!

Their set ranges from RM15.90-RM16.90. However, the food was quite disappointing and we would probably not be coming back. 

Both of us were feeling healthy *ahem* and decided to go for their pan-fried chicken breast. It was the worst decision of the night I think. The chicken was tender, I would grant it that but it was reminiscent of a poached or boiled breast which my hubby used to do in big batches for his "gym diet". The mashed pesto potato was really...unappetising. They used lots of basil and maybe some mint which was quite overpowering and left a bitter after taste. It tasted better if you mixed it with the tomato paste from the chicken, but not by much. The French beans on the side was a little soggy and had their hard "stringy" side still attached.

Would I be back? Definitely not. LOL


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