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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Food Review - Ishin

Name
Ishin Japanese Dining
Address
201, Persiaran Klang, 3¾ Mile, Off Old Klang Road, 58000 KL. Tel: 03-7980 8228
Food
Japanese
Location
Old Klang Road



Getting there
Located along Old Klang Road, one would think that the place would have a lot of traffic but in truth, that’s not the case because it’s situated at a peculiar location (it’s actually a residential area) on the Old Klang Road that’s a little quieter than one might expect. Right on the corner itself, it’s visible from Old Klang Road if you slow down after the 1st Shell station.

If you are coming from Mid Valley heading towards Pearl Point or OUG, the restaurant would be on your left. You need to lookout for the 1st Shell station on your left. It’s just about 500m after the Shell station.

Parking
Altho’ there isn’t a lot of parking spaces, it would be enough for diners as it is situated in a quiet residential area of Old Klang Road. Diners can opt to park along the road side or let the valet staff park your car for you when you dine there.

Service
The service is exceptional. They even have valet parking for diners. So the valet staff (I saw 4 of them) greet diners with a warm welcome even before you enter the restaurant premises.

As we were there for the very first time, we had some trouble deciding on what menu items to pick. We took our time trying to decide what to have and eventually asked for some help from the waiters. They warmly welcome guests with a smile and are very patient & polite.











Ambience

It’s a 2-story bungalow. It’s brightly lit, clean, minimalistic and uncluttered d├ęcor makes the place a little more formal and makes it seem a little high-brow, than say Bubba Gump’s. Right at the corner on the left as you enter is the sushi bar where the sushi chefs would prepare your food before your eyes.

The place does not have any music and without the din from diners, can make you feel a little conspicuous.








Taste

I had ordered the Ishin Bento Set Dinner which I thought was a nice introduction to the food served there as diners get samplings of the best they have to offer, incl:
- Tempura
- Tofu with Bonito flakes
- Sashimi
- Chawan Mushi
- Miso Soup
- Rice
- Teriyaki-Grilled Mackerel

Very good overall but for the sashimi pieces on my Bento set were not as fresh as some other I have had before elsewhere, BUT still top-notch.

The freshly rolled Maki have a very fresh taste to it with the soft & tangy mango slices nicely decorated on top of the maki together with the rice wrapped around a crunchy deep-fried shrimp centre. It makes for a very interesting blend of taste & sensation when consumed.


Presentation
The presentation is impeccable and makes me a little hesitant in desecrating it by eating. Very nice! The way the maki were presented with the giant prawn head and tail on the maki long plate makes it almost a piece of art. We had ordered a mixture of both the Phoenix Roll & Hawaiian Roll.

Another visually interesting item is the 3-Taste Mini chawan mushi (steamed eggs), where they are painstakingly put into 3 egg shells with their tops cut off, to be finally garnished off with 3 varieties on the tops.







Variety
There are literally so many items on the menu (plus also a few not on the menu – you need to ask the waiters for these and they would be more than happy to assist your dining experience) that diners unfamiliar with their menu might find picking a meal a little daunting.

They also offer a quite few house specialty items like wagyu beef. These are priced higher than the standard menu items, with one going up to RM180 per item.
We also had some dessert:
- the black sesame ice cream
- 3 flavors mini mochi ice-cream (ice-cream wrapped in mochi but they are REALLY SMALL!!!)
Value for Money
The sets are really good value. Most of the Set Dinners range from RM38-RM42 and the Set Lunches, from RM19-22. Of course the ala carte items cost more.


Overall
It’s a pretty good place to dine or to bring that special someone for a memorable evening. It would be a good idea to call first to make reservations as the place is usually quite packed.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Stuff So Good...7

Believe it or not, this is the lift to the Ministry of Science & Medicine offices!
The car belonging to the Minister's personal aide.
Side effects of Globalization.
Yeah, lots of guys do that - we see chicks, we point.

...per week? If not, I'd like to go to that country too...

Friday, July 16, 2010

Movie Review - Predators


Movie Title
Predators
Year
2010
Genre
Action, Sci-Fi


Story
A group of the most feared & dangerous people on Earth - Mercenaries, murderers, gangsters, convicts and the criminally insane - free-falls individually onto what they eventually discover to be an alien planet, to be hunted as game by, who else, the Predators. They soon realize that they need to work together, albeit reluctantly, in order to survive the ordeal and get somehow home.
The group includes:
- Mexican gangster Cuchillo (Danny Trejo)
- Israeli Defense Forces veteran Isabelle (Alice Braga)
- Mass murderer Stans (Walton Goggins)
- Russian Special Forces member Nikolai (Oleg Taktarov)
- RUF death squad member Mombasa (Mahershalalhashbaz Ali)
- Strong & silent Yakuza Hanzo (Louis Ozawa Changchien)
- Disgraced physician Edwin (Topher Grace)

Mercenary Royce (Adrien Brody) is reluctantly plays the role of their leader and prepare for their fight for survival.
When they encounter the mysterious but resourceful Noland (Lawrence Fishburne), a lone human who had somehow survived (well, he wasn't exactly alone - go watch the movie to know what I mean, and NO, it's not a robot or android...) on the alien world for some time because he had successfully killed several Predators on his own! They soon learn a few tricks from Noland and prepare for the fight of their lives!

Acting
The ensemble had big names like Brody (from The Pianist, The Jacket and King Kong), Alice Braga (last seen in Repo Men) & Topher Grace (Venom from Spider-Man 3), whose performances provided some depth to the supposedly unlikeable characters (they're all extremely bad people, remember?) and made the movie more than just an all-out alien-monster mayhem flick. There were a few relatively less wellknown actors thrown in but who still delivered believable performances (OK, Goggins' mass murderer and Grace's Edwin characters were irritating at some points).

Overall
I agree with most of the existing reviews that had already concluded that this is the best Predator installment since the first 2 (without the pesky Aliens). Of course, as with most of the other movies of this genre - audiences expect most of the original crew to not survive the experience, hence there is a degree of predictability there.

However, this installment would mark a milestone because it introduces a significant new element into the Predators lore - there are more than a homogenous type of Predators, unlike what we had previously thought, perhaps alluding to a class/caste system, mutations or even different sub-species!
This opens up a floodgate of future possibilities like a Predator civil war (with perhaps other creatures like the Aliens or humans being caught in between.) I foresee a movie along those lines in the next 2-5 years. Remember, you read it from here first!

This is a MUST-WATCH for fans and even for non-fans, this movie is a great summer action flick!

Rating: 7/10
Get it here at 43% off!
Predators ( + Digital Copy) [Blu-ray]