CRIZ BON APPETITE

Savoring The Best All Over Town…

Archive for the ‘cafe’ Category

For the month of June and July 2016, diners would get to savor the many different Legendary® Burgers from around the world during its World Burger Tour at Hard Rock Cafe @ Hard Rock Hotel, Penang. The promotion would be available daily from 11.30am until 10.30pm at RM65nett per set. All sets (except the Tandoori Chicken Burger) would be served with beef patty unless special request is to be made to replace it with chicken patty. Please call +604-886 8050 or email [email protected] to make your reservation.

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For June 2016, you would get to try out 4 delicious burgers.

The first one would be the Cuban Burger Miami (Cuba, USA), a tantalizing twist on the Cuban classic with mojo marinated pulled chicken, sweet plantain slices, pickle slices, melted swiss, tomato and yellow mustard, served with golden fries and special Cuban dipping sauce.

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The next one would be the I Love NY Burger (New York, USA) as you would get a cross between a burger and a pizza, served with French fries to remind you that it would still be a burger. You would get your mouthwatering burger stuffed with pepperoni, fried mozzarella cheese, sautéed mushrooms and pizza sauce.

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Of course, you should not miss out their Tandoori Chicken Burger (Mumbai, India) with fresh and light flavors of mint mayo, Monterey jack cheese and crisp cucumber planks cover a tandoori seasoned chicken burger, topped with iceberg lettuce, tomato and complimented with seasoned fries and mint mayo dipping sauce.

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You would also get to try out the El Toro Burger (Barcelona, Spain), a fury of red peppered Romesco sauce, roasted vegetables, goat cheese crumbles and arugula, dancing on an all-beef patty and between toasted slices of a bun. This set would come with seasoned fries as well.

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For July 2016, there would be another 4 delicious burgers for you to try out.

There would be the Hollywood Burger (Hollywood, USA), famously delicious with melty brie cheese, caramelized shallots, garlic aioli, fresh arugula and tomato on a toasted bun, served with golden, award-worthy French fries.

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For goat cheese lovers, there’s the Greek Burger (Athens, Greece) with Tzatziki sauce, arugula, tomato and a legendary take on feta cheese including capers, black olives, peppers and onions. This set would be presented with piping hot French fries paired with Tzatziki sauce for dipping.

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Spicy lovers must watch out for their Jamaican Jerk Burger (Montego Bay, Jamaica), a smooth and spicy fusion of mango and jalapeno cream cheese and jerk mayo, banana peppers and iceburg lettuce, chilling on an all-beef patty between a buttered and toasted bun, served with crispy French fries and jerk mayo dipping sauce. I’m impressed on how they had pepped up the burger with some fruitiness. It was indeed a great combination.

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A unique option would be their English Breakfast Burger (London, England), a proper combination of fresh tomato, slices ham and grilled Portobello mushroom, paired pleasantly with breakfast sausage and a fresh-cracked egg, simply seasoned and served with golden French fries and baked beans. Can you imagine having your usual items on your breakfast plate combined into a burger? This was one cool burger that I could consume daily except that I might add in more greens to balance it up further.

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In case you wanted more of their delicious crispy fries, you could always order their Poutine Fries (RM17nett) which would be topped with Cheddar cheese curds and potato gravy or simply add on another RM5nett to savor their Artisan Fries (Herb & Garlic Fries) which would be served with Hard Rock’s signature dipping sauce, the Chimichurri Mayo. Regardless how they prepare their fries, the crispiness on the 1/8 cut fries were amazingly addictive.

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To complement the Legendary® Burgers, Hard Rock Café Penang had created 4 types of cocktails and a mocktail to quench your thirst. These beverages would be served in pint glasses where guests would have the option to bring home the glass with a small fee. Here’s a peep at those beverages that would be available for June and July 2016. They are Crisp Sipper (RM58nett/RM130nett) with a mix of Hendrick’s gin, Monin Cucumber, lemon, orange, raspberry and topped with tonic water and garnished with rosemary and thyme, Black Cherry Melonade (RM29nett/RM85nett), a mocktail with a mix of Black Cherry Real, Monin Cucumber and topped with ginger beer, garnished with a cucumber slice and a cherry, Sweet & Fiery (RM58nett/RM130nett) with a mix of Absolut Peppar Vodka, Canton Ginger Liquor, Blue Curacao, lemonade and ginger beer and garnished with a red pepper, All Jacked Up (RM58nett/RM130nett) with a mix of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, PJ, Orgeat and lime juice, garnished with orange and pineapple wedges plus a cherry, a cocktail best paired with the Jamaican Jerk Burger and lastly the Melonpalooza (RM58nett/RM130nett) with a mix of Midori Melon Liqueur, Malibu Rum, Hard Rock’s house-made sour mix and PJ, garnished with slices of pineapple and strawberry, thus best to complement the fresh flavors of the Greek Burger.

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Here’s a quick glance on the June & July 2016 World Burger Tour Promotion:

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Overall, I like all their WBT burgers as each had their individual flavors which indeed did impress me, especially when all of them arrived in their individual “heavenly cloud” of greatness. The meatiness, juiciness and flavors on both their beef and chicken patties sure did earn them in my newest list of great burger places to dine in.

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The Hard Rock Cafe is located just next to the front entrance of the hotel. After parking your car, just head to the left wing of Hard Rock Hotel Penang and you can a little glass door leading to the cafe.

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Name: HARD ROCK CAFE @ HARD ROCK HOTEL PENANG
Address: Batu Ferringhi Beach, 11100 Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: +604-886 8054 or email [email protected]
Business Hours: 11.00am-2.00am
GPS: 5.467568, 100.241382

RATING:
Ambience: 8/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 classy)
Food Choices: 7/10 (1-4 limited, 5-7 average, 8-10 many choices)
Taste: 9/10 (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)

RESERVATIONS:

Starz Diner/Pizzeria: Call +604-886 6057 or email [email protected]
Hard Rock Café Penang: Call +604-886 8050 or email [email protected]
More information: Hard Rock Hotel Penang’s F&B Promotions

About Hard Rock International: With venues in 69 countries, including 165 cafes, 23 hotels and 11 casinos, Hard Rock International (HRI) is one of the most globally recognized companies. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world’s greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning website. HRI owns the global trademark for all Hard Rock brands. The company owns, operates and franchises Cafes in iconic cities including London, New York, San Francisco, Sydney and Dubai. HRI also owns, licenses and/or manages hotel/casino properties worldwide. Destinations include the company’s two most successful Hotel and Casino properties in Tampa and Hollywood, Fl., both owned and operated by HRI parent company The Seminole Tribe of Florida, as well as other exciting locations including Bali, Chicago, Cancun, Ibiza, Las Vegas, Macau and San Diego. Upcoming new Hard Rock Cafe locations include San Juan, Reykjavik and Lyon. New Hard Rock Hotel projects include Abu Dhabi, Atlanta, Berlin, Dubai, Itapema, Los Cabos, Tenerife, and Shenzhen, Dalian and Haikou in China. For more information on Hard Rock International, visit www.hardrock.com.

 

US POTATO CULINARY FESTIVAL PENANG 2016

Posted by crizlai On April - 24 - 2016

With the successes of the US Potato Culinary Festival Kuala Lumpur in 2013 and 2015, the US Potato Festival Penang 2016 was finally held in the Pearl of the Orient, Penang, where the culinary scenes are well known to the world. Organized by the United States Potato Board of Malaysia with the support of the Penang Chefs Association, the month long festival would last from 1-31 May 2016 with 20 participating eateries showcasing the best they could offer with U.S. potatoes, either using fresh, frozen and/or dehydrated. Each eatery would feature some mouth-watering assortments of their creative delicacies from finger food, appetizers, entrées, soups, main courses to unique desserts, fully utilizing the versatility of the quality and nutritious U.S. potatoes. The launching of the festival was held at Straits Court @ Straits Quay, Penang recently on 23 April 2016.

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According to Eddie Saw from the United States Potato Board of Malaysia, the humble looking potatoes had faced many bad reputations for being one of the most fattening food items to consume. In fact, one medium size (5.3 oz) skin on U.S. potato merely contains 110 calories per serving, boosts more potassium (620g) than a banana, and provides almost half the value of Vitamin C (45%) and contains no fat, no sodium and no cholesterol at all. He could be right with the facts and figures as potatoes surely have their fans and foes depending on how you cook them. Some of the healthier ways might include baking, roasting, mashing, scalloping or even steaming rather than dunking them into a deep fryer and dressing them up with fatty and greasy toppings. Fat-free sour cream, salsa or even simple toss in extra virgin olive oil could be your best alternative. It’s about time we give these spuds the respect they deserve, considering that they do have many nutritional benefits as well~ 🙂

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Here were some of the interesting and unique dishes pepped up by the participating eateries during the launch as shown in the photos below.

A few of the dishes caught my attention. One of them was the Stuffed Egg with U.S. Potato from What The Duck Restaurant. It had slightly sweetened mashed potatoes wrapped around a quail egg, breadcrumbed, deep fried and drizzled with some mayonnaise. I could have mistaken them as dessert as the filling was almost mung beans like as you get from those in mooncakes. Anyway, it was quite a cheeky play on the usage of potatoes.

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Another dish that I was quite impressed with was the Rib Eye (120 days Grain Fed) served with Oxtail US Potato Cake, Buttered Spinach & Brandy Sauce by Healy Mac’s Irish Bar & Restaurant. The well grilled rib eye combined with the crispy yet creamy potato cake, dressed in the sauce was something I would go for when I visit the eatery soon.

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Hotel NEO+ Penang came out with a skillfully prepared Millefuille of Braised Lamb Shank infused with Herbs, accompanied with US Gratin Potato on Grilled Scallop Shell.

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Café 32 @ Segi College Penang also did impress me with their Deep Fried Cris Cut with Pandan Cream & Palm Sugar. It was something out from the norm.

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Georgetown City Hotel also came out with a creative dessert of Chocolate Brownie with US Potato Chunks. On top of the little nutty crunch within, you would get some soft and moist potato bites as well.

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Naughty Nuri’s Warung could be real cheeky as their name with their pub grub style Wicked US Potato Chips with Salted Egg Mayo. Be warned~ The dip could be real fiery with some hidden red bird’s eye chilies~ LOL~ 😛

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As for creativity, I would think that Evergreen Laurel Hotel excelled above the rest for its colorful yet tastefully plated arrays of dishes such as their Deep Fried Bird Nest US Potato with Sliced Herbed Potatoes, Grilled Cherry Tomatoes, Fruits Salsa & Baked Capsicum Sauce plus their US Potato Wrapped with Seaweed, Vegetables and Mash, accompanied with Waffle Potato in Balsamic Reduction Sauce.

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THE 20 PARTICIPATING OUTLETS:

1. Bayview Beach Resort
2. Bayview GeorgeTown Hotel
3. Black Kettle Café
4. Blue Reef Fish & Chips
5. Crazy Cowboy Bar & Grill
6. Evergreen Laurel Hotel
7. Gala House Café & Restaurant
8. Georgetown City Hotel
9. Hamburger Inc.
10. Harvest Time Café
11. Healy Mac’s Irish Bar & Restaurant
12. Moulmein Gourmet
13. Naughty Nuri’s Warung
14. Hotel NEO+ Penang
15. Rakkii Izakaya
16. Segi Café 32
17. Sunway Hotel Seberang Jaya
18. The Chambers Restaurant
19. Uncle Albert Fish & Chips
20. What the Duck Restaurant

 

Espressa Coffee Company (ECC) Flagship Cafe located at Gurney Tower has opened its door for business on 1 March 2016 in an effort to bridge the gap between “the third place” and “the concept store”. Executive Director, Mr. Solomon Lee and its management team strive towards establishing ECC as the solution. As a first of its kind cafe, ECC Coffee has launched its first wave of signature beverages which include coffee, chocolate and fruit tea range along with merchandises such as ECC special mix sachets and more to come.

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ECC Coffee uses its own manufacturing arm, with a whole ecosystem from coffee harvesting to distribution supply chain and integrated customer experience at the end of the day. The product is ISO 22000, a HACCP, GMP and Halal-certified. The range of their merchandises are thoroughly created and manufactured in line with the latest trends. It’s crafted to be the perfect premium gift for any season, anytime and anywhere. Basically, there are 5 types of coffee beans being sold here such as Brazil, Columbia, Ethiopia, Guatemala and Java.

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There are quite a substantial amount of beverages options you could order off the counter from basic coffee (5 options), chocolate (6 options), signature coffee (12 options) and fruit tea (10 options). The coffee beans found here were slightly below medium roast with a higher note of acidity. Though I’m more of a bitter coffee lover, ECC Coffee managed to make that fragrantly bright, snappy and earthly cup of coffee of mine to be quite mellow with a light tart of sweetness and creaminess to my liking. Just order the basic Latte and you will know what I meant. As for the Chocolate, I do find the Orange Cioccolata to suit my taste well with the right amount of citrus zesty flavor and sweetness. Of all the signature coffees that were presented, I personally like the Irish Espressa and Limon Espressa. All their fruit teas were well received by us especially the Kiwi Te Freddo which was rather unique and not frequently found elsewhere.

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If you love the beverages here and would like to enjoy them in the comfort of your home or maybe to share them with your family and friends, you could always purchase the “premix” off the shelves ranging from Espressa, Cioccolata and Te Freddo. There would be 10 sachets in each pack and they do come in quality takeaway bags. The prices are shown in the list below.

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There are also an assortment of pastries and cakes for your personal indulgence such as Blueberry Muffin, Banana Muffin, Sardine Puff, Almond Roll, Black Sesame Milk Chocolate Cake and more. I personally like the uniqueness of the Black Sesame Milk Chocolate Cake as the combination of layers were perfect over a cup of hot coffee or tea.

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Let’s have a look at pricing for the items available on their main board as well as their takeaway products as below.

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The core business of ECC is focused towards licensing where they offer interested investor to license their business plan locally and internationally. Interested parties may contact Ray Low, Franchise Developments Director at 6012-209 6100 or email [email protected] for more details.

ECC Coffee is located at the corner shoplot of Gurney Tower at Jalan Kelawai and Jalan Lim Chin Guan. The signage is quite prominent. Parking could be quite scare during peak hours. If you can’t find any parking space here, you could almost always find some further up the service road nearer to Good Hope Inn. Make sure you use your parking coupons sparingly as the MBPP staff could be real hardworking here~ LOL~ 😛

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Name: ECC COFFEE @ GURNEY TOWER, PENANG
Address: R-G-B1-2, Gurney Tower, 10250 Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: 604- 227 7001
Business Hours: 8.30am-10.00pm (Sun-Thurs), 8.30am-12.00am (Fri&Sat)
GPS: 5.429920, 100.318775

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

 

If you have yet to pay a visit to the newly revamped Wingers & Diners Café @ Merchant Hotel Penang, you should do it now as they do have some great daily offers that would be real cost saving. With ample car parks at the back of the hotel, you won’t even have to worry about paying exorbitantly at the nearby high-end car parks. Moreover, the specific daily deals are there to stay, regardless of public holidays. Now you know where to chill out this festive season when most of the cafes would be closed.

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The first promotion would be on Lunch Deals (Monday until Friday – 12.00noon until 2.00pm only) as shown in the poster below. All meals would come with an appetizer, a soup and a salad.

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For Monday & Wednesday, it would be BUY 1-FREE 1 Pasta Day. You could have an option of Beef Bolognese (RM15.90++), Turkey Ham & Mushroom Carbonara (RM15.90++) or Aglio Olio with Chili Padi & Chicken Wing (RM16.90++). All the pastas were quite nice especially the Aglio Olio with Chili Padi & Chicken Wing which had a mildly pungent spicy level and these little hot “devils” indeed boosted up the overall flavors. All meals would come with an appetizer, a soup and a salad.

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For Tuesday & Thursday, it would be BUY 1-FREE 1 Cheesy Baked Rice Day. You have the option of Creole Chicken (RM16.90++), Beef Bolognese (RM15.90++) or Spicy Paprika Vegetarian (RM13.90++). I always love to have my baked cheesy rice to be creamy and the winner went to the Creole Chicken. The sensation of having the cheesiness on every grain of the rice was heavenly. All meals would come with an appetizer, a soup and a salad.

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Friday would be the Burger Madness Day where all burgers would be at 30% off. You have the option to choose from Wannapull (RM18.90++ – beef), The Rocky (RM15.90++ – beef), Chugger (RM15.90++ – beef), Kimchi “Soul” Burger (RM15.90++ – free range chicken) and Not Just A Burger (RM15.90++ – free range chicken). All meals would come with an appetizer, a soup and a salad. All burgers had their own signature flavors and uniqueness. However, I fell in love with the Chugger as not only was I served with a juicy 100% quality beef patty, the burger had added beef bacon, turkey ham, caramelized onion, pickles and smoky BBQ sauce, the melted cheese indeed spiked up the overall flavors to the peak. Thumbs up!

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The second and third promotions would be on Tea Time Deal (Monday until Friday – 3.00pm until 5.00pm only) and Daily Dinner Deal (Daily – 6.00pm until 10.30pm only – minimum order of 2 FOOD ONLY items) as shown in the poster below.

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If you love to have some coffee or tea with some finger food, you should check out their Weekdays Tea Time Deal. Just purchase any beverage at RM5.00++ and you could order some add-ons at discounted price such as Garlic Bread (RM3.00++), Mushroom Bruschetta (RM4.00++), Slab Pizza (RM5.00++/pc – 3 flavors), Chicken Wings (RM5.00++ – 2pcs with 6 flavors), Bread Butter Pudding with Ice Cream (RM3.50++) and Fruit Skewer (RM3.50++). I was quite amazed with the Slab Pizza (mini pizza) as it came with 3 flavor options such as Hawaiian, Margarita and Smoked Salami. It was something so simple and yet pepped with flavors. On the other hand, you could also choose your flavor for your chicken wings. They do have 6 options such as Teriyaki, Honey Mustard, Cheese, BBQ, Bird’s Eye Chili and Sambal Asian. For dessert lovers, their Bread Butter Pudding with Ice Cream would be something you won’t want to miss especially on a humid day~ 🙂

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The Daily Dinner Deal would suit many food enthusiasts as for any 2 food items ordered, you would get 50% off (excluding beverages). Some of the interesting food dishes might include Cajun Salad (RM10.50++), Chicken Wings (RM8.90++/3pcs or RM13.90++/5 pcs), Cheeky Chick (RM17.90++) and more. You order might also include dishes such as pastas, baked rice, burgers and desserts. The Cajun Salad was quite interesting as it had some crunchy deep fried turkey ham on it with light sprinkles of cajun spices and a squeeze of lemon juice. That would surely boost up your appetite for more meaty dishes.

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As for Beverages and Desserts, there are quite a few options available such as Café Latte (RM8.50++), Hot Chocolate (RM9.50++), Hot Lavazza Coffee Float (RM7.50++), Root Beer Jelly Float (RM7.50++), Peachy Delight (RM6.50++), Sunset Cooler (RM6.50++) and more. What I loved most were their desserts. The Massacre (RM15.90++) which consisted of vanilla ice cream, meringue crumbles, peach slices, oreo cookies and oozy chocolate sauce was a killer. Another great dessert would be their Bread Butter Pudding (RM13.90++) with a nice scoop of vanilla ice cream.

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Check out the full menu here (all prices stated are exclusive of 10% service tax and 6% GST):

Overall, I quite like the dishes served here as they were simple and yet tasty enough to fill you up. If I were you, I won’t want to miss out their burgers and desserts. It’s truly a great bargain to dine in here.

Wingers & Diners Café is located within the premises of Merchant Hotel, Penang. You can’t miss it as it’s at the junction of Jalan Penang and Jalan Muntri. There will be ample parking spaces behind the hotel and the good news is it’s free for guests and in-house diners.

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Name: Wingers & Diners Café @ Merchant Hotel
Address: 55 Jalan Penang, 10000 Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: 604-263 2828
Business Hours: 12.00pm-2.00pm (lunch), 3.00pm-5.00pm (tea), 6.00pm until 10.30pm (dinner)
GPS: 5.421071, 100.333456

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

 

Summer Dessert Bakery which is a Penang based bakery had finally opened its first café at Icon City, Bukit Tengah, Bukit Mertajam on Mainland Penang recently. It’s named as Summer Dessert Bakery Café. Compared to many other cafes out there, this outlet has a different concept with the ground floor being a complete bake supply area plus al fresco area and both mezzanine and first floor being the chill out areas for in-house dining. On top of that, there’s also a small room on first floor for private functions.

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What I like about this café is that it’s practically the one-stop bakes and desserts center where you could buy practically anything from buns, cakes, breads, desserts, cookies, nougats, birthday cakes with hot and cold beverages under one roof. Here are some of their fresh bakes and desserts for the day.

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On top of that, there are more custom order dishes for breakfast and tea time too such as Summer Breakfast (RM13.90), Summer Snack Platter (RM13.90), Burger Chicken Chop (RM12.90), Special Sandwiches (RM8.90), Noodle Cintan with Ham, Egg & Sausage (RM8.90), Flatbread Pizza (RM15.90 – Sausage Tomato, Tomyam Chicken or Chicken Pepperoni), Belgium Chocolate Waffle (RM12.90), Ice Cream Honey Toast (RM13.90), Mexico Sesame Flatbread with Chicken Pepperoni (RM15/4 pcs), Danish Cream Roll (Original RM3.50/pc or Chocolate RM4.00/pc), Portuguese Tart (RM2.20/pc or RM8.00/4 pcs), Dacquoise (RM3.80/pc), Rose Chocolate Moist Cake (RM11.90/pc), Mango Passion Mousse Cake (RM12.90/pc), Chocolate Mango Passion Mousse (RM11.90/pc) and more. I quite like the texture and taste of the Dacquoise as it resembled a less sweet version of Macaron as the recipe is basically the same but with the additional usage of all purpose flour.

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There do have Hi-Tea too but their concept is totally different than others as it’s based on DIY concept, meaning you choose what you want from their spreads of bakes and desserts and they would help you to display on their 2-tier stands. Each item would be charged individually. Some of the most sought after items could include Sushi Roll (RM3.10/pc – cut into 2-4 pieces), Panna Cotta (RM4.50/bottle), Danish Blueberries Custard (RM3.90/pc), Danish Sugar (RM2.50/pc), Lemon Tart (RM7.90/pc), Chocolate Truffle Tart (RM7.90/pc), Green Tea Truffle Tart (RM7.90/pc), Lemington Cake (RM3.90/pc – Green Tea, Chocolate or Raspberry), Macarons (RM3.00/pc) and more.

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As for beverages, there are many types of coffee, tea, chocolate, ice blended, iced to fruit juices to cater to the needs of all ages. Summer Coffee (RM12.90 – large with salted caramel & crème brulee), Toffee Nuts Latte (RM10.90 – large), Paris Tower (RM13.90 – raspberry & oreo), Ice Blended Raspberry & Blackcurrant (RM14.90 – with some blue berries added), Black Eagle (RM13.90 – ice blended chocolate & mint), Blue Citrus Mint (RM25.00 – blue lagoon, lemon juice, mint with apple slices) and After Dinner (RM25.00 – orange & mango juice with mango slices) are some of my recommendations.

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Overall, I quite like the concept of the café as it’s so far the only café in Penang which enable its diners to be spoiled for choices. Moreover, the beverages are of a better quality than many cafes out there. As for the coffee, the beans are of somewhere nearer to medium roasted and can be of high acidity to many. I do hope they have more options as I’m more of a medium-dark roasted coffee drinker.

It’s not hard to locate Summer Dessert Bakery Cafe as it’s situated within the newly built Icon City. If you are coming from the North-South Highway towards Auto City, just keep to the left after you passed by the Juru Rest Area (you can see the Petron petrol kiosk there). Turn left into Jalan Kebun Nenas until you reach the first traffic lights. Before the traffic lights, turn left into Jalan Bukit Tengah. Drive all the way until the second junction on your left and turn left into the service road. Drive further until the second left junction and that’s Jalan Icon City. Turn left, drive on for about 250m and you will see the café on your left. Parking could be scare during peak period of the day, especially dinner time. So, do plan your time wisely.

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Name: SUMMER DESSERT BAKERY CAFE @ ICON CITY
Address: 16 Jalan Icon City, Icon City, Bukit Tengah, 14000 Bukit Mertajam, Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: +604-504 1848
Business Hours: 9.30am-1.00am
GPS: 5.344477, 100.434177

RATING:
Ambience: 8.5/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 classy)
Food Choices: 9/10 (1-4 limited, 5-7 average, 8-10 many choices)
Taste: 7.5/10 (1-4 tasteless, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)
Pricing: 7/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 expensive)
Service: 9/10 (1-4 bad, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)

 

BIG COFFEE – A CAFÉ OUT FROM NOWHERE IN LUNAS KULIM KEDAH

Posted by crizlai On January - 3 - 2016

“Curiosity kills the cat” may be a common term used but it sure did not kill this adventurous cat. In fact, it fattened him up even more~ LOL~ 😛 At times, we should just leave everything behind, go for a short excursion to some place secluded, adapt to its environment and find out more on what it has to offer. To my luck, I stumbled upon a small make shift café named Big Coffee along the Butterworth-Kulim Expressway (Lebuhraya Butterworth-Kulim). The “café” served a variety of beverages from coffee, tea, chocolate to some local beverages.

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If you are a regular at a certain coffee chain, you would know about volume for Tall (12 US fl oz/350ml), Grande (16 US fl oz/470ml), Venti (20 US oz/590ml) or even their Trenta (31 US fl oz/920ml – at times known as “Thirty”). What about something bigger (42 US fl oz/1.24L – at times known as “Forty”) with a cute container to bring home for just RM10nett? If more than a liter of coffee were to be too big for you, you can always opt for their so called “Trenta” size at RM7nett with a cute container or “Venti” size at RM5nett with normal disposable container. You can choose the color of your container too (transparent – RM5 each, big container without white base – RM7 each and big container with white base/football shaped – RM10).

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Here’s my JUMBO SIZE “FORTY” Iced Horlick at RM10nett.

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The best part of the deal is that you can order anything listed based on the price (RM5/RM7/RM10) and not on the type of beverage ordered. Beverages type which mostly are Thailand-imported include Vanilla, Mixed Coffee, Latte, Mocha, Milo, Red Tea, Horlick, Nescafe, Chocolate, Cappuccino, White Coffee, Green Tea, Classic Coffee, a variety of Cordial Juices and more.

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Overall, I would say the beverage was quite concentrated with quite a reasonably quality thick plastic container. Though the sweetness could be a bit too much for my sugar intake, it was still a great bargain as the containers (RM7 & RM10 ones) can be recycled.

It’s not really hard to locate the little shed by the roadside but you have to slow down and keep a watch out for it as it could be highly congested at times. From Butterworth towards Kulim/Baling/Pengkalan Hulu via Butterworth-Kulim Expressway (Lebuhraya Butterworth-Kulim), you would need to pay RM1.60 toll. Upon paying and exiting the toll booth, drive another 11KM (pass Kulim Hi-Tech Park junction) and you would reach Big Coffee & Tea by the roadside on your left. When you see Dongwha Malaysia (Kulim Branch) on your left, slow down and drive another 250m ahead towards your destination. You can see the Sime Darby factory directly opposite the “café”. As this is an expressway with high traffic, please make sure that the road is all clear before making any turn. The best way to reach Big Coffee is to key in the GPS (5.487308, 100.600595) onto your WAZE app and set to go.

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Name: BIG COFFEE
Address: Butterworth-Kulim Expressway roadside at Lunas, Kulim, Kedah.
Contact: N/A
Business Hours: 11.00am-6.30pm (daily)
GPS: 5.487308, 100.600595

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

 

Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa’s F.I.P. (Fun, Interactive & Play) Lounge celebrated its first anniversary recently. Other than serving us with lots of canapés, cakes and pastries, they concurrently also introduced some new items for the year, especially for their weekend Coffee and Cakes Buffet. The buffet would be served from 3.00pm until 6.00pm on all weekends (Saturday & Sunday) for RM47nett (adult) and RM24nett (child: 6-11 years old). You would get to try out some of the Executive Pastry Chef, Chef Dino Wan and his creative pastry team’s best of cakes and pastries within the chic and comfortable lounge.

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Here are some peeps at the delicious spread served during the celebration night which included a variety of homemade cakes such as Apple Crumble Cake, Chocolate Orange Cake, Blueberry Cheese Cake, Chocolate Chiffon Cake, Red Velvet Cake, finger snacks and mini glass desserts such as Mini Macaroon, Recette de Madeleines à l’orange et au Chocolat, Pistachio Crème Brulee, Mini Pecan Tart, Mini, Lemon Tart, Mini Fruit Tart, Berries Financier, Mini Scone with Strawberries and Cream, Cake Pop, Chocolate Éclair, Mini Carrot Cake, Mini Cup Cakes (Chocolate, Poppy Seed & Charcoal), Strawberry Chocolate Dip, Fruit Mousse In Glass, Vanilla Panna Cotta and more savory items such as Assorted Sandwich with Smoked Chicken and Cheese, Mini Sundried Tomato Bread with Goat Cheese and Rocket Lettuce .

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To get to the F.I.P Lounge, just park your car at the furthest right wing of the hotel upon entering the hotel premises. Walk through the main lobby and you can see the entrance to the lounge.

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Name: FIP LOUNGE @ RASA SAYANG RESORT & SPA
Address: Batu Feringgi Beach, 11100 Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: 604-888 8888, 604-888 8788 (C&C Buffet Reservation)
GPS: 5.478365, 100.253709

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

 

If you are planning to find a 3 legged furry cat or any other cats which you could cuddle in this café, you have visited the wrong café. The newly opened 3 Leg Cat Café (三腳貓) today is actually a hangout place for those whom would like relax over some nicely brewed coffee and Western-Asian fusion meals. For those TV game enthusiasts, there’s also a big screen TV with game consoles to entertain you urge to have a game or two. Anyway, the true story behind the fictional shop name, created by the husband-wife team (Ted Soo & Jereen Tan), was rather interesting based on Ted’s childhood encounter with a friend. Ted jokingly told his friend that he owned a 3-legged cat and his friend believed in his story for many years until they have grown into adulthood. I wondered why it did not spark his friend’s curiosity during that time to actually see the proof~ LOL!

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There’s also a huge display of anime figurines on the racks, creatively designed by Ted himself. Of course, there are some cat figurines on display too since both the couples are also cat lovers.

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As for some basic meals, we ordered their Aglio Olio (RM12). Except for the al dente of the spaghetti which was more towards the softness of Asian liking, the dish was flavorfully prepared with some added bacons which pepped up the overall flavors. You won’t go wrong ordering this dish but do watch out for the spicy hot dried chilies. Maybe, it would be great if you inform the counter on your spicy level.

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The next dish was the Special Grilled Tennessee Chicken (RM16), served on mashed potatoes and a bunch of fresh greens, alongside with more of the Tennessee style gravy. It was quite a thick slab of fresh chicken breast meat with minimal seasoning grilled to perfection. However, I would prefer the meat to be slightly fork-poke to enable more flavors to marinate through. Though the gravy provided was quite nice, it could be a bit too sweet for those who prefer to cut down on their sugar intake. After all, the recipe would consist of sugar/brown sugar to sweeten up the gravy. Personally, I would love to see more options for gravy such as rosemary brown sauce or even cheesy white sauce.

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Since we were quite full with the mains, we managed to try out only one of their many homemade cakes and bakes. We had their Hummingbird Cake (RM10). Wow! I’m impressed! Not only was the texture of the cake just right for my liking, the taste for the cream cheese frosting was just right too. Overall, it was the type of cake with the right amount of sweetness to my liking.

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For those coffee lovers with a liking for dark roasted Indonesian coffee beans, this is the place for you to indulge in your caffeine booster. You should try out their Shakerato Latte (Original – RM12). Ted sure knows how to get the balance right for this iced beverage. The amount of coffee, milk, ice cubes plus a light touch of syrup, shaken to perfection was just the beverage I was looking for on a humid Sunday.

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I’m normally quite a fussy person when having my cup of coffee. It has to be at the right temperature with a less acidic coffee brew and the barista did not fail me at all. It was a perfect cup of Salted Caramel Latte (RM10) with the type of bitterness from the dark roast I was expecting… mildly sweetened with a mild salty after taste.

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Overall, the café is still new and would need to have more improvements on their menu to provide more options.

It’s not hard to locate 3 Leg Cat Café as you can visibly see the shop along the main road. If you are coming from Relau along Jalan Paya Terubong, just watch out for the traffic lights just right before The Golden Triangle building. Turn right into Lintang Sungai Ara 5 and you can see the shop just 2 shop lots away from the famous Wah Chai Roasted Meat shop. Parking in front of the shop might be a hassle during peak hours. I would advise you to go straight into the car park in the building and walk to the shop. However, do take note that it could be quite a distance of walk.

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Name: 3 LEG CAT CAFE (三腳貓) @ THE GOLDEN TRIANGLE
Address: The Golden Triangle, 29-1-62, Jalan Paya Terubong, Relau, 11900 Bayan Lepas, Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: +6012-427 3021
Business Hours: 11.00am-11.00pm (Tues-Fri), 11.00am-12.00am (Sat & Sun)
GPS: 5.332499, 100.275641

RATING:
Ambience: 7/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 classy)
Food Choices: 7/10 (1-4 limited, 5-7 average, 8-10 many choices)
Taste: 7.5/10 (1-4 tasteless, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)
Pricing: 7.5/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 expensive)
Service: 9/10 (1-4 bad, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)

 

BREAKFAST AT ZEST BAR CAFE @ GLOW BY ZINC PENANG

Posted by crizlai On August - 4 - 2015

ZEST Bar Café @ GLOW by Zinc, a cool and comfortable café within a modern and chic hotel, located right in the heart of George Town, do serve nice and balance spread of breakfast. Available from 7.30am until 10.30am daily, the breakfast do not only cater for in-house guests, you can also walk in to savor their spread at RM26.50nett per pax.

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I don’t think I’ll have to stress on all the individual items as photos would definitely speak for themselves well. That would also include your free flow of morning juices and coffee. To start off, let’s view the photos below.

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There’s surely something in the spread for everybody, whether you like your breakfast to be light or something to lead to brunch hours.

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Overall, I would consider the spread of dishes served here are better than most hotels of the same standard. What I loved most here were the availability of the many choices of salads and fresh fruit cuts plus the high quality bread rolls supplied by a reputable bakery in Penang.

ZEST Bar Cafe @ GLOW by Zinc is located at the 1st floor of the hotel along Jalan Macalister just opposite Red Rock Hotel. There are about 20 car park spaces in this hotel with 10 spaces available right in front of the hotel and another 10 spaces behind the hotel via Jalan Naning (opposite Sum Sum Motors). There are also many coupon based parking spaces available surrounding the hotel. Please make sure you have your parking coupons ready as you would need to pay between 9.00am and 5.00pm (Except Saturday until 1.00pm and free on Sunday).

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Name: ZEST BAR CAFÉ @ GLOW BY ZINC
Address: 101 Jalan Macalister, 10400 George Town, Penang, Malaysia.
Contact: 604-226 0084
Business Hours: 7.30am-11.00am (breakfast), 11.30am-5.00pm (lunch), 6.00pm-10.30pm (dinner by booking)
GPS: 5.416638, 100.322952

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: 7.5/10 (1-4 tasteless, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)
Pricing: 6/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 expensive)
Service: 8/10 (1-4 bad, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)

 

Before I start my post on the Sanrio Hello Kitty House in Bangkok, Thailand, let’s welcome the latest addition to the Hello Kitty family right in Malaysia. I’m sure those who had frequent Sunway Pyramid in Bandar Sunway, Petaling Jaya, Selangor, would have noticed a huge pink signage on the construction site next to Caffe Benne. Yup! Malaysia will be having its first Hello Kitty Gourmet Café right in the heart of Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall real soon. I’m sure due the limited space within the complex, the layout might not be the same as the rest of the cafes throughout the world. However, I would be sure that it would be pink everywhere with whatever corner filled with your beloved Hello Kitty decors. Don’t you love PINK now? LOL~ 😛

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Recently, I paid a visit to the Sanrio Hello Kitty House at Siam Square One in Bangkok, Thailand. It was a unique multi-storey shop unit filled with lots of pink, love and cuteness at every possible corner within the premises. Why is it called Sanrio Hello Kitty House? It actually housed two levels of Hello Kitty Café and a basement level of Hello Kitty Shop and Hello Kitty Spa.

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Let’s have a look at the respective floor of the Hello Kitty Cafe. The first floor comprised of the ordering counter where you can have glimpses all the cute desserts on display. There was also a take-away counter on the far right for your beverages and light snacks. The system here was somewhat like how you would order your items at Starbucks, eg. Order-Pay-Collect. For orders that would require some period of preparation time, you would be given a number and the staff would deliver to your table.

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Though there were some dining areas at the first floor, the second floor itself was more spacious and basically just for dine-in with more selfie corners, pinkish chairs and lounge sofas for you to slumber in.

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When you are so far away from home and at such a themed café, you would want to try the best items that they would offer. All price quoted is inclusive of 7% VAT. The Lemon Tart (THB280nett) display at the chiller caught my attention. Well, looks can be real deceiving. Sometimes, when we deemed an item to be photo-worthy, it might not appear to be tasty at all. That was what happened. The lemon tart set was horrendous! The lemon filling tasted rather fake and extremely sour. As for the crust, I would recommend you to request for a hammer and chisel. It was so rock hard that I might break the given pair of fork and knife. Those “chick pea” like pebbles were nothing more than some bland biscuits. If not for the chocolate sauce, I would just leave them aside. For that lovely looking mini mug with red mousse, it was just some tasteless cream with red coloring. As one of the most expensive desserts on the menu, it was one order that was barely consumable.

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Thanks goodness the kitchen ad hoc prepared Ham & Cheese Sandwich (THB200nett) was at least edible. It was just two slices of “Hello Kitty” face shaped toasted bread with rolled ham and cheese, accompanied with some cheap greens with salad dressing. It was normal and nothing to shout about.

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As for drinks, I ordered their recommended Kitty Smoothie (THB150nett) and Hello Kitty Mineral Water (THB30nett). Except for the bottled water, I really can’t figure out what I was drinking. It was like drinking a glass of syrup with some light hints of milk and strawberries. It was so sweet that I had to leave it after a few sips as it might juggle up my glucose level. I’m still wondering why the Thais like their drinks to be so artificially sweetened up.

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Let’s leave the food and beverage woes away and check out the basement of the unit. The Hello Kitty Shop will be a merchandise heaven for those Hello Kitty enthusiasts as they have practically everything you ever dreamed of having here from little memorabilia to items such as T-shirt, bags, umbrellas, etc. I’ve to forewarn you that prices of the items are not cheap. They are original franchised items after all.

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On the other hand, you would find the Hello Kitty Spa at the other further end of the basement level. This might not be the type of spa you would be expecting as it would basically cater to the feminine parties, kid inclusive.

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The facilities would include nail services, lash extensions, waxing, face and body treatments plus massages. You can check out the prices below (click to enlarge for a better view).

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Overall, Sanrio Hello Kitty House is quite a nice place to bring your family or dates for the first time experience but most people won’t be able to stay there for too long. The reason is that the never ending replaying of the theme song can drive anyone up the wall with madness. Can you imagine having the same few seconds theme song playing over and over again at the moment you step into the place until you leave? OMG! As for the food and beverage wise, I was expecting something more edible rather than loads of food and drinks with high level of sugar and coloring contents. I hope we don’t get these experiences at other franchised outlets in the near future.

Name: SANRIO HELLO KITTY HOUSE BANGKOK
Address: 388 Siam Square One Building, LG, 1st & 2nd Floor, Siam Square Soi (Alley) 7, Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand.
Contact: +662 115 1335
Business Hours: 10.00am-10.00pm
GPS: 13.744526, 100.533489

DIRECTIONS:

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Take the BTS Sukhumvit Line and stop at BTS Siam Station. Use the Skywalk towards Exit 2 and walk downstairs all the way until you reach a junction. Turn into Siam Square Soi 4 and walk straight until the cross junction of Siam Square Soi 4/Siam Square Soi 7. The Sanrio Hello Kitty House is just at the corner unit.

RATING:
Ambience: 9/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 classy)
Food Choices: 6/10 (1-4 limited, 5-7 average, 8-10 many choices)
Taste: 5/10 (1-4 tasteless, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)
Pricing: 8/10 (1-4 cheap, 5-7 average, 8-10 expensive)
Service: 6/10 (1-4 bad, 5-7 average, 8-10 excellent)

 

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About Me

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.

By the way, you might not notice it but CRIZ BON APPETITE is iPhone/Mobile Compatible. Please do feel free to hop over to http://ip.crizfood.com to get the latest updates! If you want to contact me for any questions, don’t hesitate to email me at crizlai [at] hotmail [dot] com. Spamming would not be tolerated – you are being tracked here!

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