Saturday, August 2, 2014

Food Review-Restoran Mee Udang Sempoi Diraja-Ipoh

Sometimes to get to the best food in town you need to ask the locals and that was what i did during my recent trip to Ipoh, Perak. Though not as popular as Penang as food heaven, Ipoh has its fair share of culinary specialties such as the world famous Ipoh white coffee, chee cheong fun and other mostly Chinese influenced dishes.

From the word of mouth, i was informed of one restaurant that i should not miss to try in Ipoh which serves delicious Prawn Mee and other seafood dishes which has become so popular with the locals and even throughout the state of Perak due to the freshness of the seafoods used in their dishes, the great taste of the same and the affordable price. This restaurant is aptly named "Restoran Mee Udang Sempoi Diraja" which i believe can be deemed to represent the greatness of the speciality served here which is the Prawn Mee with the word "Diraja" or "Royal" in its name.

Locating this restaurant can be a challenge for those who are not familiar with roads within Ipoh town and truth be told me and my friend had to make few turns, u-turns and queries along our way to reach this place. However once we got there, we noticed that the landmark to this place is the Best Western Premier Haven Ipoh Hotel whereby from there you have to drive straight heading to Tanjung Rambutan about 5 minutes until you see a mosque named Masjid An Nur on your right and a Petronas station on your left. This restaurant is located in the cornerlot of the one-storey shoplot behind the Petronas Station.

Here is the location map which i found from the net for better understanding and direction:

Once we arrived, we were warmly greeted by the owner and the waiter and handed with the menu. I felt so excited to see so many choices of dishes served here as they not only specialized in serving Prawn Mee, but vast selections of other seafood dishes that you may find in other restaurant such as Sweet and Sour Fish, Butter Prawn, Chilli Crab, to name a few and they even have lobster here which may not be available in other restaurant of similar establishment. Do note that this is no fancy restaurant but a small laid back place, no frills which serve good food at affordable price-which is hard to find nowadays.

The simple design of the restaurant

I had to try their speciality which is the Prawn Mee and i chose this to be served with Giant Fresh Water Prawn. Take note that you may choose other types of prawn such as Tiger Prawn or even Lobster for the noodle. The price for this dish will depend on the size of the prawn used and you may choose the prawn yourself or ask the friendly waiter to choose for you, which i did the latter and asked for the smallest prawn. To my surprise and delight, when the plate was brought to my table, i was impressed with the size of the prawn used which is literally the size of my palm and this being the smallest that they have.

Truth be told, the taste of the Prawn Mee is tantalizingly delicious. The prawn was succulent, sweet and fresh. The gravy was thick with balance taste of sweet and sour and with cuts of chillies to give it some extra kick. I can testament to the great taste of this dish that made it so popular.

My friend ordered Mixed Crab and Prawn Mee, which was similarly delicious. With one medium sized fresh Blue Crab and good amount of prawns thrown into the dish.

We also ordered Sweet and Sour Seabass. The fish was fried to perfection and the gravy was just  perfect with balances of sweet and sour taste in it.

All the above came to a price of RM 74 only-much to our surprise,which we believe was quite cheap for the dishes that we ordered. 

This place does not offer stunning views for dining or any other luxuries of upscale eateries however it does offer first class foods and for that i will keep coming back for more, just like other people who had sworn to the deliciousness of the foods do all these time. Cheers-Kay2014

Friday, August 1, 2014

Food Review-Old Town White Coffee Grand-Ipoh

Ipoh has been associated as the place where white coffee was originated and its also the birthplace of one of the iconic white coffee franchise chain in Malaysia, Old Town White Coffee. I can give them credit for their brilliant business plans and ideas in expanding their market not only in Malaysia but also in other parts of Asia and Australia and by having continuous innovation in their products such as introducing new menus and opening new outlets. One of the new concept that they have introduced and ive known recently is with the opening of Old Town White Coffee Grand, a kind of more upscale outlet which not only provides more premium experience and atmosphere but also menus which are not made available in other types of outlets.

As per their website, i can confirm that there is only one such outlet currently available which is in Ipoh and i cant be sure of its distinction or similarities with their "signature" outlets.

The Old Town White Coffee Grand outlet is located at 2 Hala Datuk 5, Ipoh, Perak, and it is in the same building with the M Boutique Hotel Ipoh.

The first thing that you will notice at the entrance is that the majestic and grand wooden double door similar to what you'll find in 5 stars hotel adorned the entrance to this eatery and the best part of it is the staffs are stationed to open them for you.

overlooking the entrance

You can really feel the effort made to ensure the design and the furnishings in this outlet will exude the feel of luxury, from its ornate tiling, the beautiful chandelier, the furnitures and how the outlet had been ornately designed with fine accessories.

 wash basin at the restroom

the accessory shop at the M Boutique Hotel which is accessible from the cafe

The floor design is of split level with 2 separate dining areas with the one situated at the lower level near the entrance having comfortable 2 seaters and round dining tables for 4-5 people for more privacy for couples and the one at the upper level are more suitable for families and large group dining. They also have tables laid outside for those who prefer alfresco dining.

In line with the concept of upscale dining experience, the menu itself was nicely bound in nice leather cover.

And as expected, myriads of tantalizing dishes and beverages to choose from...

As ive just had a filling lunch earlier and its too early for dinner, i ordered something light from the menu which was the Sardine Paratha and Iced White Coffee.

No different in taste for the Iced White Coffee served here with other outlets but i believe the paratha is not offered in other outlet. For the price of this dish i can say that it is affordable and filling with generous amount of paratha served which is suitable for sharing.Its also an ingenious way of eating paratha with the paratha being made as a wrap in substitute for the usual flat bread.

Since my first visit, ive never failed to drop by this place each time im in Ipoh as it offers a relaxing and a different dining atmosphere. I also like the fact that they have arranged the seating in a way so as to make the place feels private but not secluded. In addition, the staffs were friendly and attentive and with high speed wifi connection, this place will surely be my go-to place in Ipoh. Cheers-Kay 2014