Wednesday, November 30, 2011

You Are The Apple Of My Eye

Synopsis: "Adolescence is like a heavy rain. Even though you catch a cold from it, you still look forward to experiencing it once again. Ko-Teng has several close friends who had a crush on Shen Chia-Yi. Those friends of Ko's thus moved in unison from Ching Cheng's junior high school straight into the senior high school division in pursuit of her. Naughty in nature, Ko was ordered by their homeroom teacher to sit in front of honor student Shen for her to keep close tabs on him. The two hadn't hit it off at first but Ko gradually fell for Shen, who was always pressuring him to study hard. On the other hand, Shen became impressed by the contrasting values Ko represented. Ko started pursuing Shen but Shen remained hesitant. After graduation from senior high, Ko and Shen almost became a couple but the deal was spoilt by a duke out (fistfight) competition organized by Ko. Growing up together to witness their beloved Shen walking down the aisle to become someone else's wife, these boys have learned their coming-of-age lessons and continue to pursue each's happiness" (20th Century Fox).

 Love sparks between Shen Jia-yi, an outstanding girl in class with Ko Ching-Teng, a mischievous boy with "childish" behaviour. Both of this two characters shared a unique relationship through a journey of high school and university. Despite contrasting characters, both have feelings for each other and were perfectly matched as soul mates, they were not together in the end. Some might not like the ending but I find it really real as most of us do not end up with  the person we love the most. That's why I felt this movie really spoke to me and I was very emotionally touched after watching it. (I know how it felt as I as an "underperformer" in university dated a "bookworm" before. I'm sure she is reading this and I wanna thank her for sweet memories spent together.) There were many memorable quotes, among the famous "妳就是我眼中的苹果,而我就是那幼稚的男孩, 才有办法喜欢妳那么久。虽然妳不喜欢我, 但是请让我继续的喜欢妳。我不求回报,只求妳幸福快乐" towards the ending of the film. Personally I like the quote which literally translates into "The most magical stage in a relationship is the period before a couple gets together officially, that's the "ai mei" and courting stage"

Michelle Chen Yan Xi played the role of top-performing student Shen Jia-yi. I have noticed her in Miss No Good but her character in this movie is totally down to earth. She is officially the top of my list now in fictional girl-next-door character. =) How I wish there is a sweet girl poking my back with a pen every now and then. Well, gone were my student days, there's only a haggard aunty backstabbing me from behind while at work. LOL... 

 那些年,我們一起追的女孩 is indeed a heart warming, light hearted comedy which is well expressed and directed by Giddens (author of the novel with the same title). Directly translated into "In those days, the girl whom we chased after", the official English title is "You Are the Apple of My Eye". I just managed to catch it on cinema just now. Good thing as today is the last day of screening. Despite being seated 3rd row from the front in a fully packed cinema hall, I'm glad I managed to reminiscent and cherish moments of the past and see the sweet character of Shen Jia-yi on the big screen.

And yes, this is the theme song which is a hit song in radio stations, music charts and karaoke session. If you see me review a movie in a food blog, damn! That movie must be REAL GOOD! =)

Monday, November 28, 2011


101 Reasons why MYDREAM Café would be nominated and is a top contender to grab the WORSE EATERY in Ipoh 2011:

1) Service was uberly poor. I tried the Bercham outlet on a normal Wednesday afternoon. We were the only table dining there (besides there is one Malay gal lazily playing with her hand phone and did not even pay attention to us, I wonder she is an employee there.) Guess what?

1.1  At least 2/3 of the items in the menu are not available yet, either being out of stock or not launched yet.

1.2   The items on the set are served on reverse order. Drinks and garlic bread are served last. The desserts are served first. Common, don't they have basic common sense? I wonder if their gastronomical tract works in reverse direction too =p

1.3   The waiting time!!! Being the only table that time, it took more than 15 mins to prepare the Mango dessert. The spaghetti came after more than half an hour. They expect us to have 2 hours lunch break?

2) The taste of the food sucks! The garlic bread is too oily/buttery and was not toasted evenly. The mushroom spaghetti is a weird version infused with curry and cheese flavour combination and chilli oil was spotted on the surface of the gravy. Noodles were far from al dente and its worse than the instant noodles ala Spaghetti once introduced by Maggi in the early 90s. The Mango Dessert does not have mango fragrance at all. The slight unpleasant aftertaste on our tongue was something like the artificial flavoured powdered beverages in pasar malam.

3) Pricing of the items! The Tiramisu, Cheesecake and Durian Mille Crepe are priced at RM16 per slice! This is even more expensive than Indulgence. It’s in the league of my personal favourite in Italianese which served a bigger portion. The lacklustre garlic bread was RM8 per ala carte serving. Watermelon blended is priced at RM8, The crappy mango desserts are RM10 onwards, Banana Crepe (RM8) and Mango Crepe (RM10) compared to Yoke Fook Moon’s Durian Crepe at only RM3-4. Tastewise, they are NOT on par with Yoke Fook Moon’s version. Environment wise, they are NOT close to Indulgence’s. So, what justification they have to price their food exorbitantly?

4. The safety of consumers! The plate of spaghetti cracked into 2 pieces in front of our eyes when served a few minutes later. Since no cutting using knife and fork is involved, I believed the breakage of the plate was not resulted to human factor. I can further draw conclusions that the spaghetti is microwaved and the plate is not suitable to withstand high heat.

5. The place is understaffed. There were a total of 5 people at work in the whole café from the front line to the kitchen. Apparently I glanced at the board and saw 1 worker was on leave. Well, if the spaghetti was microwaved, how come they still need half an hour to prepare it? And most of the desserts are pre-prepared and kept refrigerated, I presume. Why the lousy and untimely service?

Currently MYDREAM cafes have been mushrooming in Greentown, Bercham, Menglembu and even Kampar. They have advertisements on thte VOXEL LED screen in front of JUSCO traffic lights. But, how come they can even get the basics of what a food and beverage outlet should have? The proprietor must have a lot of money to waste in this area as most of the time, the outlets are empty. Angry patrons like yours truly will NEVER return to their outlets! I did not expect such title contender to my category lousiest place to dine to appear in the last quarter of 2011. I'm sure this surpases Tambun's RIVER NILE and TASTE GOOD kopitiam in clinching the title of WORSE EATERY in Ipoh 2011!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Haagan Dazs, De Garden, Ipoh

 There is a new kid in town which carries a slight burden and hope on its shoulder in helping to revive De Garden. De Garden seems once a happening nite spot with the "biggest club" Airport, the first Burger King in Ipoh, the first.... Wong Kuok, Ayam Penyet, Tutti Fruitti, FruitLand, Strawberry Moments, Papa Rich, I Love Yoo, Boston and the latest addition would be the Korean BBQ chain Daorae. A few has thrown in the towel due to factors like high rental, poor management policy set by De Garden and personally I feel Ipoh's purchasing power is still limited with the ever stagnant salary range. Within the first week of opening, I would like to gauge how far the new outlet of Haagan Dazs can spike up the ranks of De Garden.

Well, the crowd was indeed big, filling up every single table by 9pm on a Wednesday night. Well, while waiting for my friends, I can spot an empty Strawberry Moments, few tables in Ding Fung, ONE table in Dragon ONE and quarterly filled Wong Kuok and Oh Sushi. I wonder how long Haagan Dazs can sustain in Ipoh. Most of us Ipohians are just one timers when it comes to expensive food.
Ok, I would let you judge for yourself. The platter in this photo cost you RM29.90, excluding the service and government tax. You get 4 scoops of ice cream, a waffle and some banana and strawberry slices. Cookies and Cream is rich and tasted just like most other brands. Tiramisu is rich and creamy. Caramel and Biscuit is abit on the sweet side, also very rich indeed with a strong aftertaste. Strawberry Cheesecake is also very rich with a slight tangy side. Surprisingly the waffle was well prepared, light and fluffy. I could easily finish this plate on my own, but due to tight on budget, 3 of us shared one plate. Told ya, Ipoh people are really underpaid!!!!

 Due to overwhelming OPENING response, most of the hit flavours like Belgium Chocolate were sold out. Yours truly even did not get his hands on his ever insatiable cravings of Rum And Raisins. Personally, I would advice most of you to wait for a little longer if you wish to dine in peace and savour every possible favourite flavours of your choice. I even have trouble picking the flavour for my free scoop (for minimum RM20 spent) and I settled with Coffee flavour.

IMHO, I will anyhow prefer Baskin Robbins as it has more flavours to offer and the portion and pricing is more.... reasonable. One scoop in HG is RM10.90 compared to BR's RM7.90. Wear pink on a Wednesday and you can easily get a double scoop deal for less than RM10. That's why I doubt how long HD can survive in Ipoh. Ok, this should wrap up my commitment to update my blog regularly despite there is work tomorrow, a supposedly PUBLIC HOLIDAY! (don't let it spoil my mood as I have great plans for the whole Sunday! To those who gets a deserved day off tomorrow, enjoy!)

Friday, November 25, 2011

A night out with my girls @ Frontera-Sol of Mexico

Oh no.... Amnesiac has hit me. This is the consequence of procrastination. I actually edited the photos but the draft was pending for nearly a month. It wont be surprising if I forgot the name as this makan session was in end of Oct... Anyway, this is the food I had in Frontera, a Mexican food bar/bistro like chill out place. Its soft taco shell served with ground beef, cheese, tomatoes, shredded lettuce and zuchinni. Served with tomato-salsa like sauce strongly infused with smoky aroma, believed to be incorporation of BBQ sauce. 

The sauce is not spicy at all. Well, perhaps mildly spiced. Do not overdo with it else it would be a messy affair. This is the last shot of a properly arrangement before hell breaks loose. Ground beef mixed with the sauce reminded me of a good and hearty Bolognaisse gravy =D One serving at RM6.90!

Surprisingly the taco wrapped turns out to be more filling than expected. The next appetiser was something similar like the first. This time the taco shell is toasted, hence giving a crispy exterior. Served on a steel plate which was not hot (else the vege would lose its juiciness and crisp), this is a meatless version but was well compensated with generous amount of cheese! One portion at RM10.90.

The 2 appetisers were certainly filling enough, especially with some booze.... To kick of the Monday blues, happy hour is all nite long on a Monday! YAY!!! One Jug of Tiger Draft is RM30++. Besides that, they also  feature different promotional alcoholic beverages daily.

The interior of the dimly lit environment with cosy PU seats. They have a few LCD TVs for football fans. If I'm not mistaken, they have live band on weekends as well.

Great to meet up with some of coursemates. I hope there will be more chances of going on "business trip" to KL. Hehe... so happen I was attending a course pertaining to JAKIM Halal in MATRADE.

There you have it, a simple write up on Frontera @ Jaya One.

Jaya One, a centre point for most of my KL friends to meetup. Else, Sunway Giza would be great night spot too. Can't wait to make a trip down KL again, most likely in early 2012. At the meantime, there are a few pending blog posts about happenings in Ipoh. Stay tune for my back log work. Hehe....

Sunday, November 13, 2011

a Bercham porky affair...

So peeps, it's Sunday afternoon and I'm sure most of you are joining me on frowning the fact that it's Monday tomorrow. Since it's unavoidable to be back at work the next morning, why not we make the best of our meals at our own leisure. =) Yours truly had a return visit to Wong Fai Kee in Bercham, famous for their porridge...

The have numerous type of porridge served, ranging from chicken, fish, pork.... and to their famous Pork Offals (Chu Chap) porridge. Liver and pork blood are no-nos for me, hence I just opted for the plain pork porridge with additional fried pork intestines (surcharge applies). This bowl costs RM4.50 with just a skimpy serving of fried crullers (yau char kwai),  ginger and spring onions. Underneath the smooth porridge are pork pastes (quite similar to the yu wak) instead of my personal preference of minced pork balls/patties. I find the porridge a bit plain. Perhaps a bit more ginger and a dash or pepper and sesame oil could do the trick? Well, that's my preference, perhaps the clear version is appealing to most of the rest? =)

Besides the porridge, you can order some roasted pork (Siu Yoke). The Char Siu was sold out when I was there around 1pm. Inflation has certainly hit Ipoh, with the Siu Yoke of this portion costing RM10!!! Or perhaps Chinese food traders (especially those dealing with pork) just have the license to raise price by blaming the increasing cost of ingredients, electricity, petrol, gas, water, etc... Criticism aside, have to admit the Siu Yoke is nice with crackling skin, but the price is a bit over the ceiling. If you feel like trying, head over to the corner shop along the main road Jalan Bercham, after the first traffic lights after you pass YoYo. This shop is at your left and parking would be a problem on lunch hours.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

weekends with my buddies =D

Finally after all the talking and planning AND PROCRASTINATION, my besties decided to pay me a visit.   After 4 years of studying together and 2 years of working, a trip to Ipoh finally fell into place. Arriving on a late Saturday afternoon, I took them to Strawberry Moments Cafe to "alas perut". Why Strawberry Moments? Well, because one need to drive up to Camerons as this is their 3rd branch (The first two are in Camerons)

Errr.... wat was this? Capucinno or Tiramisu Cake. Tastewise, its just so so, but the display and presentation is indeed a feast to the eyes.

Their famous Strawberry Strudel. Strawberries and fresh cream sandwiched between puff pastry. A light dessert. You can easily finish the portion on your own.

Pancake with Strawberry Ice Cream and Fresh Strawberries. Ok, now this is abit HEAVY.

Told ya, it was INDEED HEAVY!!!.... 

Strawberries Moments is currently having a tea time promotion. Sets are available from RM7.90 onwards, comes with a meal/dessert/cake and a drink and a small serving of fresh strawberries. 

Surprisingly, Strawberry Moments is still surviving in De Garden. Though being special, nicely decorated with well presented and attractive looking desserts, I would see a near empty cafe every time I pass by. I Love Yoo, Tutti Fruitti, and Airport has already throw in the towels. Guess the few other to follow suit would be Boston and Burger King? Sigh... what is happening to Ipoh? There is really no market here besides hawkers and fast food? Good luck to Haagan Dasz for their opening in November in De Garden.

After a quick rest in my humble abode, we decided to make a twist by having Dim Sum for dinner! Yoke Fook Moon is the only option that I know which serves Dim Sum at night. Not gonna elaborate further on this though. Neither will I touch on the Snow Beer we had for second round after our dim sum.

Next, we took them to Too Boo Keong temple as they had some Nine Gods Festival celebration. They had some Chinese opera going on. The street was filled up with stalls selling the "tortoise bun".....

......... and Angry Birds merchandise =p

Just before calling it a night, I brought them to experience the "night life" in Ipoh. Well, I always wanted to prove to KL peeps that Ipoh people do "club". Though, relatively speaking, if KL clubs are like hypermarkets, Ipoh "clubs" are just minimarkets or sundry shops. Seriously, Ipoh people should call it PUB-bing instead of clubbing

Yaya, they had some Hellriders show off superbikes parade. With some hot chicks as well.

The next morning, we kick started the morning by opening our own "club". Played DDR in my PS2.

Next, we headed for a simple breakfast nearby in k10 Claypot Chicken Rice in Bandar Medan Bestari. But we had "liew fun" la... While waiting, Sin Mei disclosed her pressie for us, a souvenir from Hong Kong - Egg Custard mooncakes. =D

I just couldn't describe it much further. Neither did I get a clear shot of it. But it was indeed crumbly and tasty =)

Next, we headed to Sam Poh Tong and Kek Lok Toong to enjoy the sight of limestone. I personally prefer Kek Look Toong because the air is not filled with smoke from joss sticks. There is a lake in the middle of the "valley" which was once filled with lotus plants, but was poorly maintained in recent times. There is limited "cave climbing" involved compared to Perak Tong which you can see a breath taking view of Ipoh city at its "peak"

Dropped by one of my friend's grandma pomelo stall. The "tourist" bought some souvenirs home.... FYI, pomelo is something Ipoh is famous for, and Tambun is the place where most of the pomelos are grown. Perhaps same reason with the beansprout, lets give credit to the unpolluted natural water from the limestone caves. rAwrrRrs....

Next, I would never fail to bring my tourist to my personal favourite dessert stall, Funny Mountain Tau Fu Fah. I just love their fragrant sugary syrup infused with pandan leaves. They are very famous with numerous coverage from food reviews and write ups by floggers. Certain celebrities have expressed their fondness over this warm and velvety dessert.

The price has gone up to a whopping 90 cents for a small bowl but the portion still is small. You can slurp it down your throat in just 3 or 4 spoonfuls. However, the long bee line shows that business is brisk indeed, especially on weekends and public holidays. Do not take your chances by coming in the late afternoon as you might be disappointed when this sought after commodity is sold out. Yup, cars even make a long queue ala drive through. You can see cars with number plates "W" and "P"s making big purchases in bottles and plastic containers.

It was just a nearby street where we get our flaky Kaya Puffs from Sun Eng Heong Confectionery. Kaya puffs are sold out within minutes. The long queue is moving even slower than a traffic light jam. You might even grip your fist when you see a customer in front ordering 10 boxes of 10 pieces each causing the queue to crawl. The MORE THAN 20 minutes wait was worth it as we sinked our teeth in the the flaky pastry and the warm kaya filling inside. Best eaten fresh, it was indeed total comfort food.

A late lunch at Lou Wong wraps up the Ipoh trip as our visitors geared up to head back to KL. Next post, MY VISIT to KL - "backlash"/reunions with my ji muis =D

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Theme Song from this year's inaugural IKUPM's Musical

I have a crush on girls who are musically inclined and have a sweet vocal I'm looking forward to next year's IKUPM Musical! =)