The month of fasting for the Muslims is just around the corner and Swez Brasserie @ Eastin Hotel, Penang, would be having its Ramadan Buffet Dinner from 21 July until 18 August 2012 (6.30pm – 10.00pm) for those who want to “buka puasa” in a comfortable environment. Adult would be at RM85++/pax while child would be at RM43++/pax. The Ramadan Buffet Dinner would consist of delicious authentic Malay cuisine the traditional kampong style under the experienced hands of the Jr. Sous Chefs, Chef Mohamad Bakri and Chef Mohd Fauzi.
Together they would storm out some of the greatest Malay kampong recipes to please the taste buds of diners.
Of course appetizers such as the Lemang & Serunding Ayam (Steamed Bamboo Glutinous Rice & Spicy Chicken Floss) would be a must have, may it be during the Ramadan month or during the Hari Raya Aidil Fitri. Though it quite hard for the chef to bake the Lemang in green bamboo in open space, the duo did quite a good job in preparing the Lemang through steaming. The Lemang was soft and filled with the nice fragrant from the coconut milk used. Even the Serunding Ayam was done in a superb way. Every strand of the chicken was evenly spiced up with a nice crunch.
Another of the appetizers would be the Kerabu Nangka Muda (Young Jackfruit Salad). The young jackfruits were specially cooked in such a way that the flesh remained tender such as the texture of young coconut flesh. These would be then tossed with some ginger flowers, kerisik (toasted desiccated coconut), toasted belacan (shrimp paste), cooked squids and more with a squeeze of lime juice. Overall, the dish was nice but the nice sweetness and flavor from ripe jackfruit was not present.
No matter which Malay cuisine outlet you would visit, Ulam-ulaman (assorted fresh greens) would be available. They would consist of raw vegetables, herbs and occasionally with tempeh (fermented soybean).
The only difference at Swez Brasserie is that you might get different condiment such as the Sambal Cincaluk (Salted Baby Shrimps Sambal) and Sambal Mempelam (Mango Sambal). The Sambal Cincaluk could be a bit salty for many while the Sambal Mempelam would be a great alternative for something spicy sweet.
One of the more notable dished for more energy and stamina would be their Gearbox Soup. The spices and herbs used in slowly simmering the bull’s thigh bones combined with some potatoes and carrots were indeed “powerful”. A bowl of this heavenly dish would sure keep anyone’s body energetic for any activities during the fasting month.
As for main course, there will be quite a variety of dishes to go with their fragrantly cooked Nasi Tomato (Tomato Rice). You can taste out the rich flavors from each rice grain with has fresh tomatoes, cloves, star anise, cardamom, curry leaves with chopped almonds and raisins as garnishing. Thumbs up! I love this rice a lot as the texture was just as fluffy as I would have expected.
Some of the main dishes would include Ayam Masak Ros (Rose Chicken). The supposing red colored curry was not spicy at all as it had more of tomato puree plus a combination of herbs and spices to give it the necessary oomph~ What I like most was the thick gravy which has some hints of coconut milk for the extra creaminess.
Next on the list was the Ikan Keli Goreng Cili Merah (Fried Cat Fish in Red Chili Paste). The fish was indeed fresh and the mild sourness from the tamarind used plus some hints of lemongrass and coconut milk really complemented each flavor well.
Another unique dish would be the Pucuk Paku Masak Lemak (Stir Fry Fern Shoots in Coconut Cream). The creamy gravy with some turmeric and lime juice was quite good, except that the fern shoot were rather old for a smoother bite.
As for dessert, we had an assortment of Malay Kuih which consisted of Kuih Cara, Ketayap and Goreng Pisang (Banana Fritter). The chefs did a great job in maintaining the crispiness of the banana fritters, most probably with a light touch of bicarbonate soda in the batter.
Since the durian season is still around, we were also treated with some Bubur Kacang Hijau with Durian. It had some durian flesh added in the mung bean porridge. It was a totally great experience having dessert this way except that I would prefer a stronger touch of coconut milk added in for the extra creaminess.
Overall, the Ramadan Buffet Dinner spreads fairs better in term of choices and taste as the dishes were prepared by the two Malay chefs who know their cuisine real well. The dishes were rather family-oriented with a nice touch of kampong style cooking. I love the way the chefs pepped up dishes that would impress even the non-Muslims like me. Well done~
For MAYBANKARD, VISA, CIMB, UOB and CitiBank card members, you can enjoy 15% discount for the Ramadan Buffet Dinner from 6.30pm – 10.00pm daily (21 July – 18 August, 2012).
The Swez Brasserie is located at the ring wing of Eastin Hotel, Penang (next to Queensbay Mall). If you are coming from Georgetown towards Bayan Lepas Free Trade Zone via Bayan Lepas Expressway, do watch out for the Pulau Jerejak signboard (leading to Pulau Jerejak jetty). Ignore the turning and drive on to the next left junction. Turn left into Jalan Aziz Ibrahim and drive on until you a roundabout. Turn 3 o’ clock and drive on until you see a big Eastin Hotel signboard at the first right junction. Turn right and drive on. Park your car at the basement car park. Take a lift to the first floor lobby and you would see the restaurant there.
Name: SWEZ BRASSERIE @ EASTIN HOTEL
Address: 1 Solok Bayan Indah, Queens Bay, 11900 Bayan Lepas, Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: 604-612 1128, 604-612 1138
Business Hours: 6.30pm-10.00pm (Ramadan Buffet Dinner only)
GPS: 5.33643, 100.306345
Ambience: 8/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 classy)
Food Choices: 8/10 (1-4 limited, 5-7 average, 8-10 many choices)
Taste: 8/10 (1-4 tasteless, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)
Pricing: 8/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 expensive)
Service: 8/10 (1-4 bad, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)