PEr FYI

May 12, 2018

Ping’s, Bangkok…Never go here. Ever.

No one ever makes good decisions on an empty stomach, which explains a lot why I tragically made the worst restaurant choice I can make in Bangkok. Ping’s.

Ping’s is a sad restaurant nestled in Pathumwan Princess Hotel. You won’t find anything near good authentic Chinese food, and you’ll pay full on tourist prices.

Braised fish maw with crabmeat in claypot, Baked crab with vermicelli in claypot, Fried oyster omelette on sizzling hotplate and Stir fried kale with garlic aren’t worth the money — and a couple are total rip-offs!

Head to just anywhere that’s not Ping’s. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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December 10, 2016

New Ubin Seafood, Singapore…steak is a melt-in-the-mouth delight.

This restaurant is bang on the money. It is a Zi Char place. It is not a steakhouse. No indeed. But the steak is so unashamedly good.

The main event is the US Black Angus ribeye steak served together with sea salt flakes and fried rice caramelized with beef drippings. What’s the steak like? Simply perfect. Affordably priced. A melt-in-the-mouth delight. Its intense, juicy twang – offset by a small pile of caramelized onions and Idaho potato wedges – is an education in how good beef can be.

Another lip-smaking items on the menu is the orh chien oyster omelettes with fresh live oysters. The fish roe – deep fried with petai and sambal, served with chinchalok is also chest-thumpingly good. Only item NOT to order is the utterly disgusting salted egg squid.

All in, this is a purist’s encounter with beef, and it is as uncomplicated as it is excellent. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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January 10, 2016

New Lane hawker centre, Penang…avoid this place like a leech-infested swamp

People usually don’t have high expectations from hawker centres. Hot and delicious will do.

New Lane used to be a street food paradise with concentrations of about 50 street side food vendors. USED TO BE!! By all that is holy and good in the world, I say unto you, eat anywhere else in Penang, except at New Lane. For nostalgia reason, I went there recently, and, oh my, I paid the price. The food is, simply, diabolical. It is probably the worst, most overpriced and inedible food I’ve endured in all my visits to Penang since my first trip twenty eight years ago.

The good: the congee with pigs innards was decent. But lest we get lulled into complacency, the texture of the congee was more like porridge than congee.

The bad: The char kway teow was perversely bad, chewy and insipid and completely devoid of “wok hei”- the flavour imparted by a flaming wok.

The bladdy horrible: The gummy or chien (oyster omelette) contained a lot of starch but hardly any egg and very few oysters. One spoonful of it and you realise it was probably not intended for human consumption. The viciously overcooked ikan bakar (chargrilled fish) was dry and totally inedible that I took one bite and then leave untouched.

I have to stop writing this review, my blood pressure is thru the roof just thinking about that pathetic place. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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January 26, 2014

Hoi-Tod Chaw-Lae Restaurant, Bangkok…..oyster omelette. Mmmm. Double mmmm.

I have found it!!! I have found my new favourite restaurant!

This small, humble Thai eatery does have indoor seating, but it still qualifies as street food.  They proudly display a sign proclaiming them to make the 5th best pad Thai in the world.

Anyway, I really love, LOVE, thai food. That being said, my expectations are high [when are they ever low?] but I was seriously impressed by the food here. The Or-suan (oyster, fried eggs, rice flour) was fresh and well-prepared…one portion at a time. The egg and starch batter in is perfectly crunchy, crispy outside and soft, moist and gummy inside studded with plump, briny taste of the ocean. I love Pad Thai! Pad Thai is one of Thailand’s more famous dishes. A-OK on the pat-thai-sea-food (seafood, and rice noodles wrapped in egg)here, good texture and it is a piping hot amalgamation of crispy and gooey ecstasy.

Never judge a book by its cover nor a restaurant by its outlook either.  Hoi Tod Chaw Lae is no exception. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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January 13, 2014

Ratchanonsee Seafood, Bangkok…..the suckling pig is a work of art. This is the mona lisa right here

“And on the Seventh Day, before God rested…He made Ratchanonsee Seafood and asked them to create barbeque suckling pig – Honggong style.”

Okay, so maybe it REALLY didn’t exactly happen like that in the big book; maybe that’s hovering my foot over that invisible line that we all love to cross every now and then.  BUT!  I can tell you that this was really a heavenly experience from beginning to end.  This place is the Alpha and Omega of what is defined as REAL suckling pig. It is INSANELY good. INSANELY. It’s sweet, the crispy skin was roasted perfectly, covering a surprisingly generous portion of tender porcine goodness and super juicy. Very little fat too. Love it.

To be honest, I haven’t tried many of their other dishes. Their suckling pig is all I need. I’ve sampled the deep fried pastry prawn fish, garoupa fish deep fried with chilli sauce and oyster omelette. All three were tasty but not nearly as mind-blowing, life-changing, paradigm shift causing as their suckling pig.

One word of caution…don’t expect a restaurant environment. It’s far from it. And oh yes, CASH ONLY. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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June 5, 2011

Restoran Woo Lan, Kuala Lumpur…pretty decent food.

Milleniums ago, I used to enjoy the food at an old wooden zinc-roofed shed in Brickfields. One day they moved and was gone. Last week, a relative brought me to Restoran Woo Lan – a nice air-conditioned and brightly lit eatery hidden nicely in a quiet corner of Brickfields – and what’d ya know? Once lost. Now found.

The food is pretty decent. A dish a with a diff is the ginger steamed fish head aka song yee tau.  It is silver carp fish head steamed with lots of ginger. The full-of-flavour seafood curry in claypot is a definite must-have, a bit  high on the cholestrol bit but ok once in awhile (I justified to myself). Another favourite is their braised tiger skin pork. The oyster omelette is pretty cool too. Lastly, the glass noodles with fresh water prawns was good but nothing extraordinary.

This is my personal “re-discovery”of the year! This is the true truth as I still say it as it is…

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