Wednesday 31 December 2014

Kurotomon 黑燈门 @ Johor Bahru City Square, JB

Kurotomon 黑燈门 @ Johor Bahru City Square, JB

Distinguished from typical Japanese restaurants which offer Sushi, Sashimi and Teriyaki, Kurotomon is a Japanese Restaurant with its specialty of Ramen and Sumiyaki. Kurotomon is located in the busiest shopping mall in Johor Bahru-- City Square Mall. 

Kurotomon occupies a open air corner at level 4 of City Square Mall and the entrance is very welcoming. Kurotomon embodies the bond of devotion and passion of Japanese dining. Each meal prepared delicately that shapes the diner's experience be it spirited or calming , in an atmosphere of modern oak interior with contemporary touches.  

Traditional Japanese tableware is served before our meals. 
Raspberry & Lemon  RM14
There are limited choices for beverage. Other than green tea and Japanese wine, they serve several flavours of fruity sparkling drink in bottle. We have chosen Raspberry and Lemon. The bottle cap is in pink colour and the attractive packaging is the main reason we ordered this. The taste turns out good too, very chilling and refreshing. 
Kin Maru (Special) 金丸 RM29
*Each Kurotomon's ramen bowl is made with traditional techniques and sincerity. With distinct ingredients criteria for assured quality, each Kurotomon ramen bowl creates an experience that is both satisfying and rewarding.

We have ordered one of their signature Ramen- Kin Maru (Special) which consists of Chasu, Braised Pork, Flavoured Egg, Seaweed, Spring Onion and Menma. It has been a while I have not tasted an authentic bowl of Ramen and I feel great that I finally found one in Johor Bahru. The Chasu and the hot spring egg are superb! The soup base is excellent too, it is thick but not over salty, just right to my liking.

Buta Teisyoku 猪肉餐  RM26
*Ancient style of Japanese cooking prepared with skill and dedication where freshest ingredients from skewers are charcoal grilled and caramelised with robust flavours.

Sumiyaki is another signature dish of the restaurant, but instead of Sumiyaki, we have ordered another type of charcoal grilled cuisine, the set meal contains a bowl of pearl rice, side dishes, salad, soup and not to forget the main role--grilled pork belly. The pork belly is well marinated and excellently grilled. It tastes so traditional!  

The fact that this restaurant in City Square is the first and only Kurotomon restaurant in Malaysia really surprises me.  We had a good dining experience here and it will be good if the same concept and cuisine could be brought to different part of Malaysia.

Address : Kurotomon 黑燈门
Lot J4-19, Johor Bahru City Square Shopping Mall,
Jalan Wong Ah Fook, 80000 Johor Bahru.

Bussiness Hour : 11am - 10pm
Tel : 07-221 5118

Wednesday 17 December 2014

Soon Kee Bitter Gourd Soup 新顺记苦瓜汤 @ Taman Impian Senai Utama, Senai, Johor Bharu

Soon Kee Bitter Gourd Soup 新顺记苦瓜汤 @ Taman Impian Senai Utama, Senai

Senai, being one of the new villages within the district of Kulai, is full with Hakka people. This Hakka's town is famous with Hakka ground tea, yong tau foo and bitter gourd soup. There are few famous restaurant in Senai selling bitter gourd soup and Soon Kee which is situated within a row of shop near to the main road is one of them. Every weekend, you will see the big crowd in Soon Kee during dinner hours. 

There are few reasons that Soon Kee is famous. First, the price of the dishes is extremely reasonable to all people from different levels. Second, other than bitter gourd soup, Soon Kee also offers a wide variety of home-cooked dishes, just to name few, including sweet sour pork, dried-chilies chicken, minced meat tau foo, hakka deep-fried pork and various vegetables.  
Bittergourd Soup 苦瓜汤  RM3.50/pax
The bitter gourd soup, being the signature dish of Soon Kee, is one of the must order. The soup base is made from the pork bone broth. The bitter gourd is cut into very thin slices, slightly boiled in the broth with pork slices and pork intestines (which is optional according to customer's preference). Chinese always says that bitter gourd is good and suitable to be eaten during summer days to reduce heat and to release toxic in human body. Bitter gourd soup is only at RM3.50 per portion.
Bean Sprout with Salted Fish 咸鱼豆芽  RM5 (S)
We have also ordered this superb ordinary dish- bean sprout with salted fish. Other than salted fish, they also put in fresh shredded carrot, Chinese mushroom and leeks, rendering the dish  looks colourful and also more interesting.
Pineapple Pork Intestine 黄梨大肠  RM6 (S)
I always like this dish as it is really appetizing, with this, I can easily clear one big bowl of rice.
Fried Pork 炸肉  RM2.50 / pax
Last but not least, the famous fried pork belly. The interesting part is that the pork belly is marinated with the fermented beancurd and only cut into slices after deep-frying. It is very flavourful and also crispy.

Now you know why this restaurant is always crowded? If the housewife of your home decides to have a break during weekends, here is a good destination to settle a family's dinner as a table of dishes for whole family may cost less than RM50.

Address : Soon Kee Bitter Gourd Soup 新顺记苦瓜汤 
28, Jalan Impian Senai Utama, 
Taman Impian Senai, 
81400 Senai
GPS : N1 35.645' E103 38.816'

Tel : 012-712 8567 / 07-598 0955
Business Hour : 11am - 9pm ( Closed on Tuesday)

Wednesday 3 December 2014

Warakuya Japanese Restaurant 和乐屋 @ Taman Pelangi, Johor Bharu

Warakuya Japanese Restaurant 和乐屋 @ Taman Pelangi, Johor Bharu

This is our second visit to Warakuya, and it was during off-peak hour again to avoid the big crowd and long waiting queue. Warakuya might not be the most authentic Japanese cuisine, but the winning point is the fusion of Japanese flavour with Western elements which attracts teenagers and youngster's curiosity.  

Salmon Sashimi 三文鱼生鱼片  RM22.90
Despite the recent news that Salmon may contain parasites, we still risk our stomach to order Salmon Sashimi as I just could not resist myself from enjoying the nice texture of the fish. 

Chicken Teriyaki Set 烧烤鸡肉套餐  RM13.90
While we normally order from ala carte menu, this round we have taken the opportunity to try their set meal. One thing that I like Warakuya is that no matter how busy the kitchen is, I can still feel their passionate in preparing good and quality food for customers, it never disappoint me. Even the simple chicken teriyaki set, the rice, soup and the teriyaki chicken are served piping hot, and they never compromise on the use of ingredients, they use fresh and really sufficient ingredients in preparing the food, rendering customers enjoy every bite of the food. 
Hana Sushi 花寿司  RM11.90
Salmon AGAIN! Crazy love over the fish roe which burst in my mouth.
Chuka Idako Sushi  小章鱼寿司  RM5.90
Chuka Idako is our must order, but this round slightly transformed into chuka idako sushi.
Negi Maguro 红金枪鱼  RM6.90
Negi Maguro is good too, fresh and juicy.
Kani Karaage 香脆软壳蟹  RM13.90
Craving to taste crab but lazy to remove its shell? Kani Karaage must be your choice then, deep-fried to perfection, a very good snack indeed.
Edamame 毛豆  RM4.90
It is just like our Chinese loved steamed peanut, Edamame is very common but once in a while, I really enjoy to eat this while chatting with friends. 

As usual, our meal ended with Warakuya's complimentary dessert. The dessert does not really taste the best, but it always warm and buy our heart. I think most of the regular customers could feel it as well.

Address : Warakuya Japanese Restaurant 和乐屋
43, Jalan Kuning 2,
Taman Pelangi, 80400 Johor Bahru
GPS : N01 28.675'  E103 46.042'

Tel: 07- 332 0789 / 016 - 7778234
(Reservation is advisable)
Business Hours: Mon-Sun  11.30am-11.00pm

Wednesday 19 November 2014

Briyani Village @ Jalan Tun Abdul Razak, Johor Bharu

Briyani Village @ Jalan Tun Abdul Razak, Johor Bharu

The Briyani Village is a great Indian restaurant in Johor Bahru downtown. The Briyani Village offers Northern Indian food and tandoori specialties which tendency to village countryside cuisine as I can feel it through my dining experience. Despite its location in a hidden street, it is very popular among Indian food lovers.

The service is prompt and pleasant. As we are first timer in Briyani Village, the waiter is very passionate to recommend the signature dishes in the restaurant.
Garlic Naan  RM4.50
Their Naan is made in the traditional way, which is baked in traditional charcoal tandoori oven. Instead of plain Naan, we have opted the Garlic Naan. The Naan is full with the garlic fragrance, the texture of which is fluffy. I also find that the Nan is salted and buttered, renders it being flavourful even without curry.
Mutton Roganjosh  RM17.50
They offers wide variety of cooking method for mutton, this Mutton Roganjosh is recommended by the waiter which is not overly spicy to suit my liking. The mutton is well cooked, fully absorbed with the flavour of the spices. The mutton is soft and tender, very good to go with Naan or nasi briyani.
Briyani Rice  RM7.50
Different from Malay styled briyani rice, fragrant basmathi rice (which is longer in shape) is used for Indian briyani rice. 
The side dishes for the briyani rice.
Chicken Tikka Achari Masala  RM16.50
Chicken Tikka Achari Masala means boneless chicken in unique mango achar-based gravy. the mango achar-based gravy is good to balance the spiciness of the dish.

A spoon of Chicken Tikka on the Naan! It tastes heavenly good.
The environment is clean and comfortable. The atmosphere is very good too for family dining and friends gathering. It is highly recommended if you are looking for authentic Indian cuisine.

Address : Village Briyani Cafe
15 Susur 1/1, Jalan Tun Abdul Razak, 
 80000 Johor Bahru
GPS : N1 28.194'  E103 45.529'

Bussiness Hour : 12pm - 3pm and 6pm - 10.30pm
Tel : 07-2220360

Wednesday 5 November 2014

D'Shanghai 大上海 @ Sutera Mall, Skudai

D'Shanghai 大上海 @ Sutera Mall, Skudai

Trying to look for excellent dim sum restaurants in Johor Bahru other than Dragon-i? D'Shanghai which is located adjacent to Sutera Mall is definitely one of the better choice. The oriental exterior in red and big Chinese words on the top of wall which means "Big Shanghai" easily attract people's attention. 

The choices of condiment to go along with your Dim Dum- black sweet sauce, chili sauce and chili oil. 
Fresh Shrimp & Cuttlefish Beancurd Skin Rolls  墨鱼鲜虾腐皮卷  RM8.80
The cuttlefish paste together with fresh whole prawn is wrapped in beancurd skin, deep fried to a perfect golden brown colour and served with mayonnaise. It does not disappoint me- fresh, crunchy, flavourful!
Rice Rolls With Carrot, Yam & Yam Bean 三不见天脆皮肠  RM5.20
This Rice Rolls are highly recommended by the netizens, a layer of rice sheet (chee cheong fun), a layer of beancurd skin and with the yam and carrot paste as filling. We ordered this due to its popularity and to cure our curiosity, yet we don't find it really tasty except being unique and creative.

A close up to the famous dim sum.
D' Shanghai Prawn Dumpling 大上海虾饺皇  RM4.80
This is one of the best har kaw that I have tasted, it is really juicy inside.
Signature Xiao Long Bao 灌汤小笼包  RM3.80
Like all Shanghai Dim Sum restaurants, D'Shanghai is also famous with its xiao long bao (mini broth bun). The bun skin is extremely thin and we can easily look through the contents of the bun! It tastes good but still cannot beat Ding Tai Fung's Number 1 in my heart.

Siew Mai Pork Dumpling 鱼子干蒸烧卖皇  RM3.80
It is labelled as "King of Siew Mai" by the restaurant. The ingredients used are indeed generous and worth for the price.
Fried Liu Sha Bun 炸黄金流沙包  RM5.20
Being bored of having the normal steamed golden lava bun? D' Shanghai offers their creativity to the diners by introducing deep-fried version of golden lava bun. With a crispy outer skin, it definitely provides layers of different biting texture.

Lotus Leaf Rice 腊味荷叶饭  RM5.20
Last but not least- lotus leaf rice. The glutinous rice is cooked with preserved meat and dried mushroom. The fragrance of the lotus leaf is well-mingled with the rice and the seasoning is just to our taste, not too salty.

Other than excellent dim sum, D'Shanghai is also offering steamboat which we have not tasted this round. We look forward to have chance to taste their steamboat too!

AddressD'Shanghai 大上海
L1-501-506, Level 1, Sutera Mall,
1, Jalan Sutera Tanjung 8/4,
Taman Sutera Utama, 81300 Skudai, Johor
GPS : N1 31.045 '  E103 40.258'

Bussiness Hour : Mon to Fri 1030 to 2230
Sat, Sun & PH 0800 to 2230 Hrs
Tel : 07-5576338

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Matang Seafood 马登瓦锅海鲜鱼粥 @ Taman Mount Austin, Johor Bharu

Matang Seafood 马登瓦锅海鲜鱼粥 @ Taman Mount Austin, Johor Bharu

The seafood porridge are flown from Northern to Southern, Johor. Not long ago, I discovered this seafood restaurant located at Mount Austin. When I take a closer look on the name, I was so surprised that the origin of this restaurant is actually not far from my hometown, originated from Matang, Taiping. And yet, I only to taste it out at the southern part of Malaysia. 

Seafood Porridge in Claypot 海鲜沙锅粥
This portion of two in piping hot claypot cost us about RM44, which comprised of ingredients of our choice, such as big prawn (RM8), fish (RM12), crab (RM14), squid (RM5), clams (RM5). I am impressed that all the ingredients used are very fresh and with the natural sweetness of seafood, I love it very much. The texture of the porridge is different from the typical Cantonese congee type of porridge, which is fine and smooth. The rice is cooked and fully absorbed with seafood broth, rendering it soft but remains its shape and not totally crushed.

You Ma  油麻 RM6.50

For seafood porridge lover, this restaurant is open whole day from 11am to 10pm and no rest hour in between, enable the customers who are craving for seafood to enjoy their dishes whole day long. The price is considered reasonable as well with the wide variety of fresh seafood. There are few more seafood porridge restaurants nearby, however Matang Seafood is always ranked as one of the most outstanding among the others. We have planned to visit another famous seafood porridge restaurant in Johor Jaya too, and the comparison will be up soon in near future. 

Address : Matang Seafood 马登瓦锅海鲜鱼粥
91, Jalan Austin Heights 3, 
Taman Mount Austin, 
81100 Johor Bahru
GPS : N1 33.718 E103 46.753

Business Hour : 11am - 10pm
Tel : 016 - 761 8909

Wednesday 8 October 2014

Goh Zha Lang Taiwan Porridge 古早人台湾粥馆 @ Skudai, Johor Bahru

Goh Zha Lang Taiwan Porridge 古早人台湾粥馆 @ Skudai, Johor Bahru

Goh Zha Lang Taiwan Porridge is not strange to Southern Johorean, as it has several branches in Taman Sentosa, Taman Abad and Taman Sutera Utama respectively. By chance, we visited this Goh Zha Lang Restaurant in Taman Sutera Utama to look for shelter during a heavy rain. It is definitely a good idea to have hot porridge during such a rainy day. 

Photo taken after our high tea session at Goh Zha Lang Restaurant. This big word of "粥" in front of the porridge restaurant simply cannot be escaped from passerby's eyes. Although it is named as "Taiwan Porridge" restaurant, it actually offers wide variety of dishes accommodating the taste bud of local people to pair with rice, plain porridge or sweet potato porridge.
Fried Sweet Potato Leaf with Sambal  参峇番薯叶  RM8
Departing from the norm that porridge must be paired with light dishes, we have ordered this stir fried sweet potato leaves with sambal, which is heavy in taste.
Fried Pork Intestine With Pineapple 黄梨大肠  RM9
This is one of my favourite dishes in Goh Zha Lang, and has become a MUST whenever I visit Goh Zha Lang nowadays. Freshly cut pineapples have been used rendering the dishes very refreshing, the heat control is very good too. It is extremely appetizing and tasteful, I can easily eat this with two big bowls of porridge.
Fried Prawns With Dry Chillies  宫保虾球  RM14
We have ordered another heavy taste dish-- prawn balls with dried chilies. Although the portion is not very big, it is very flavourful to go with porridge.
Sweet Potatoes Porridge  番薯粥  RM1.30/per head
 We have ordered sweet potatoes porridge, which is with additional natural sweetness. Diners can enjoy unlimited refill at no extra charge.

Complementary desserts of the day- red bean with black glutinous rice.

Address : Goh Zha Lang Taiwan Porridge 古早人台湾粥馆
65, Jalan Sutera Utama 8/3,
Taman Sutera Utama,
81300 Skudai, Johor Bharu
GPS : N1 30.917'   E103 40.140'

Business Hour : 11am - 12pm
Tel : 07 - 5585172

Branch at Taman Sentosa, Century Garden, Taman Gaya

Wednesday 24 September 2014

Steam Tasty Restaurant 蒸好味 @ Skudai, Johor

Steam Tasty Restaurant 蒸好味 @ Skudai, Johor

Food business mushroomed in Taman Sutera Utama within few years and now it is established as a food paradise, where renders consumers pampered with various choices, ranging from Chinese food, western food, Thai food, Japanese Food, Korean Food, Taiwanese dessert and even fast foods.  
If you are looking for some comfort food, Steam Tasty Restaurant may be one of your choice, which offers a wide range of steamed dishes, such as steamed fish, steamed minced meat, steamed egg and steam spare ribs. During lunch hour, the restaurant also provide set meals at reasonable price, each set meal comprises a white rice, a main dish, a portion of green and a soup of the day.
Stir Fried Sweet Potato Leaves 炒番薯苗  RM7
We have ordered for stir fried sweet potato leaves, without sambal belacan, as I am not fancy of having spicy.
Salted Egg Pork Ribs  黄金排骨  RM16
Other than steamed dishes, this restaurant also provides some other popular local dishes. While most of the restaurant offers dried version salted egg dishes, Steam Tasty Restaurant excellently have this deep fried pork ribs coated with the sticky salted egg sauce, which definitely enable every single piece of pork rib taste better with the tangy salted egg sauce. The saltiness is just appropriate. Thumbs up for this!
Steamed Black Tilapia with Nyonya Style 娘惹蒸黑尼罗  RM13
Steam Tasty Restaurant has the set meal of one rice and one fish too, as in Lan Jie Tilapia in Klang Valley. Albeit the fact that Lan Jie steamed Tilapia is still unbeatable, I still believe by bringing down the idea to Johor Bahru, it has attracted people's interest and curiosity. Other than choosing a fish, diners are able to choose the sauce/ingredients to perfect the steamed fish too, either with bean sauce, nyonya style steamed, teochew steamed or Hong Kong steamed, definitely satisfy everybody taste buds.

Overall, I recommend this restaurant to my readers. Foods are generally good with reasonable price, the foods were served quite fast too. 

Address : Steam Tasty Restaurant 蒸好味
29,Jalan Sutera Tanjung 8/2,
Taman Sutera Utama, 
81300 Skudai, Johor
GPS : N1 30.891' E103 40.077'

Business Hour : 11am - 11pm