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LOCAL DELICACIES VERSUS FRANCHISED FOOD

Posted by crizlai On April - 7 - 2009|

If you were in Penang, where would you dine? Would you go sweating under the humid weather and hunt for yummy street food or just visit any of those air-conditioned franchise fast food outlets for your meal? Again, it will also depend whether you are a local or a tourist but the end results would still be the preferences of individuals. With the current unpredictable weather from skin scorching weather to wet and chilly nights, I had decided to opt for the later by visiting the latest fast food outlet – Marrybrown within the premise of the upcoming Penang Times Square.

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What did I have then? It’s definitely not any of the burgers and fried chickens but a bowl of Chicken Curry Noodles with a medium sized 7-Up set at RM8.50nett. Surprised? Yes, they do serve local hawker food in the 28 years of establishment Malaysian franchise restaurant. I order this dish just to compare how great it would be at that pricing compared to the local street food. Unfortunately, the results had my pocket burning with the size of the bowl of noodles and ingredients within. There were only 4 mouthful of noodles, some not fully cooked long beans, half an egg, 3 thinly sliced fish cake and 4 miserably soggy chicken pieces in the bowl. The soup tasted like curry powder with some coconut milk with not even a single hint of lemon grass or ginger flower. To my taste bud, it’s truly flat and the amount of oil floating would be quite bad for anyone’s health. Although the restaurant has been serving halal (non-pork) dishes ever since its opening, I still prefer to get my Chulia Street Curry Mee with cuttlefish slices, cockles, tofu puff, fish balls with the onion enhanced flavor of the chili paste and a glass of herbal tea at barely RM3.50.

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I also did try out the Spicy Chicken Rice with a topped up 7-Up (additional 90sen for top up) at RM8.90nett. It came as a multi-racial combination in which consist of Malay style rice, salad and soup, Chinese style sweet and sour sauce garnished on sliced Marrybrown crispy chicken piece and Indian papadam. The amount of rice was small and there were nothing really special in the taste except that the chicken slices were quite crispy. The soup was just average too. If only they can provide this dish as the one from Rosli Nasi Ayam at Lorong Kulit. At least this simple type of serving tasted better and priced only at RM3.50 minus a drink.

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Even the soup there tasted richer than this one I had from Marrybrown. The restaurant should really improve on their mildly flavored chicken soup.

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Buck up Marrybrown! It does not mean that you are originated from Malaysia with outlets in Indonesia, China, India, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Dubai, Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Azerbaijan and Iran and yet we are not getting the best food quality from you.

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The best way to reach the shop would be by using Jalan Magazine (Traders Hotel). Drive into Jalan Dato Kramat (2nd junction at the right of Gama Supermarket) until you have reached Penang Times Square on your left. Find a parking space along the road or within the allocated parking bay. Just walk into the mall and go to the open space area with all the fountains. The restaurant is located a few shop away from Tsuruya Sushi Bar.

MARRYBROWNMAP

Name: Marrybrown Restaurant
Address: 77-G-12, Penang Times Square, Jalan Dato Kramat, 10150 Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: 604-227 6000
Opening Hours: 10.00am-10.00pm
GPS: 5.413067, 100.325767

RATING:
Ambience: 7.5/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 classy)
Food Choices: 7.5/10 (1-4 limited, 5-7 average, 8-10 many choices)
Taste: 6/10 (1-4 tasteless, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)
Pricing: 7.5/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 expensive)
Service: 7.5/10 (1-4 bad, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)

18 Responses to “LOCAL DELICACIES VERSUS FRANCHISED FOOD”

  1. Selba says:

    The presentation of the food is actually not bad (looking at the pictures) but sounds so disappointing…

    They have an outlet here in Indonesia? I’ve never heard it though…

    Haha… we are a bunch of spoil brats Selby. Our taste buds got use to the real delicious food. 😛

  2. hahha.. thats why I nvr eat at the not-so-famous franchise places!

    You do go to franchise outlets? I thought you love street food only? 😛

  3. Ummm… I think I will stick to plain fried chicken thanks. That’s all they started out doing, that’s all they should stick to doing! The effort to infuse local flavours is noble, but frankly doesn’t work lah…

    Yup.. the effort was there but somehow the taste did not go through the proper R&D to determine the taste of the majority. Too bad!

  4. yiphing says:

    hi.
    im busy with my study recently.
    spm this year. =]

    p/s: marrybrown is expensive. mcd is the best . =]’

    I thought I’m the only one who realized about the high pricing. Even the Large French Fries (even lesser than McD Medium size) cost RM3.20.

  5. Little Inbox says:

    There was once I ordered their nasi lemak set. Ended up the I just saw few little tiny anchovies, then the rest is peanuts. Damn disappointed.

    I think the agency handling their advertising work left out a phrase in all the printed matters… “The food is for display purposes only”. Even some of the items listed on the flyers did not have the “standard” ingredients.

  6. allie says:

    I like the “I feel so demotivated” text you put at the mascot there. So funny lol!

    Well… I was lucky to shoot that shot. The mascot just deflated right in front of me after I had complained about the food.. haha 😛

  7. I have never been to Marry Brown for the local delight, for me I would rather prefer to sit under the tree with humid weather there for the good food. I believe Marry is not specialized in local food compare to their signature bugger and fried chicken. This is a good lesson you provided that teaches us not to order local food at any franchisee restaurants.

    Now only you know I love to test them out… haha. You should have seen the ingredients on the porridge… no comments!! 😛

  8. Btw, the taste u are giving 6 out of 10, I feel that you are very generous.

    After all, the restaurant was the brainchild of a Malaysian. The extra was for their effort to expand to so many parts of the world and being innovative to provide local delights. It would be higher if the restaurant were to have a better quality of food served.

  9. SimpleGirl says:

    hmm, Marry Brown will not be my choice,,,as far as fried chicken is concerned, not as good as international brand,,,local delights? must as well go to hawker place…haha….sad to say I am not supportive to local brand. However, Anyway, a little bird told me they are doing better overseas. As far as local brand franchise is concerned, I prefer Old Town, the food has been improved quite a lot…

    Haha… no secret recipe is it? 😛 I should check out Old Town soon too. 🙂

  10. Chin says:

    Surprising my son and I like the fried chicken! Franchise food when need to be benchmarked against McDonald arguably the most admired franchise of any kind in the world. This way it will improved in service and delivery. Food is still very much a matter of taste. As for me I still prefer coffee shop food anytime.

    Well, the chicken was fine but surely not as great as the other international franchises in terms of taste, quality and QC. Haha.. I love street food too, especially in Penang. 😛

  11. Christy says:

    Yeah, I would opt for a air-conditioned place anytime in this kind of weather!
    We are spoilt..haha, and brats too is another term:p

    But hawker food in a fast food outlet (which I always see as western), think the good ol’ authentic hawker food still serves better.
    After all, they were the experts…;)

    Yup… street food should be left to the hawkers to handle. They know their food better. 🙂

  12. foodbin says:

    Marrybrown is local, isn’t it? good to support our local food.

    Yea… They are local franchise. I love to support the local food industry but on one condition that they would get their food quality right. 🙂

  13. Duckie says:

    firstly, i never knew marrybrown is local.
    secondly, i never knew they had in so many countries.
    thirdly, i don’t quite like their food, so who cares if they’re local with branches all over or not?! =)

    Haha… that was very direct to the point. 😛

  14. cariso says:

    Nah, I won’t go to Marry Brown liao. Not attractive at all lah. 🙂

    Maybe some of the food Carrie. Their fries were still nice and crispy just like those from MD. 🙂

  15. I agree with Allie… like the mascot text and pictures that you took. So funny! lol

    That was a lucky shot as I was at the right place and at the right time. 🙂

  16. lingzie says:

    aiyo how come the poor mascot look so sad?? lol
    i tried marry brown years ago (fried chicken) not really my cup of tea. i still like my mom’s fried chicken (marinated with plain n simple soya sauce!) 😛

    Who would deny Mummy’s cooking is the best? 🙂

  17. J2Kfm says:

    cannot lah …. Marrybrown scores very few points in my book, judgining from repeated visits.

    the nasi lemak horrible, fried chicken lacklustre, and now they venture out to reach the Penang Curry Mee crowd?!

    too ambitious.

    You know the term “Bringing sand to the Sahara Desert”? It just won’t work in Penang as Penangites are a great bunch of food complainers.. LOL!

  18. Chef Mel says:

    hey! the mascot was funny 😛 Anyway, thanks for leaving comments on my blog! Love your blog, the layout’s great. You’re from Penang is it? Maybe we should go for makan session if i’m in Penang!

    Yup… I’m from Penang. Thanks for dropping by too Melanie 🙂

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Howdy from the Isle of delicious Asian food and the UNESCO Heritage City of Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia. Just call me Criz Lai and I am here to share with you on what’s the best food you can get in town as well as from many other parts of Malaysia.

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