Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Food Review - Foh San (Ipoh)

Foh San (Dim Sum) Restaurant
Dim Sum 

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Getting There
The new restaurant is located just behind one of Ipoh's oldest hotels - the Excelsior and almost directly opposite its competitor - Ming Court Dim Sum.

This new restaurant is located in the heart of Ipoh New Town (as opposed to the Old Town made famous by the Ipoh White Coffee in,...where else but Ipoh Old Town!)

As this is an amped up, newer, hence, younger & sexier version of the iconic Ipoh Dim Sum place, this 2-storey restaurant has an ambience of an upscale dining place uncommon in a laid back city like Ipoh! If you were not aware of it, one might not know by looking at the photos here that this was in Ipoh.

The place is well maintained and kept very clean. A great place to dine or bring friends for some Dim Sum or Chinese food.
Their Dim Sum is served in 2 ways. Diners can either wait for the Mobile Dim Sum cart to come by the table where you can pick and choose from the dozens of Dim Sum goodies or go directly to the Dim Sum preparation area near the entrances or main foyer of either level. 

Taste-wise, it's not bad but ain't great either. However, the history and nostalgia will add to the overall experience of diners. 
There are literally dozens of types of Dim Sum served from different Dim Sum categories including:
- Steamed
- Fried
- Braised
- Congee/Porridge
- YTF (Yong Tau Foo)

They range from the standard and familiar Char Siew Pau & Siew Mai to some that are either house specialty like the Scallop Dumpling, Century Egg Siew Mai, Nam Yee Pau & Phoenix Bun, just to name a few (very interesting name - esp for Comic Fanboys...=)  )

Food prices in Ipoh has been slowly but surely been creeping up to KL levels and catching up with their Klang Valley counterparts. However, they are still slightly lower than KL prices with prices ranging from RM3 - RM7 per item.

For decades, they used to be at an old Colonial-style building diagonally across where Lou Wong is located. Apparently, their leasing arrangement with the building owner expired and the owner decided put the building to other uses (It is now a Purple Cane outlet)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Comic Review - Kull 1-6

Kull: Shadow Kingdom 1-6
Publish Date/Year

Creative Team

Arvid Nelson, Will Conrad, José Villarrubia

Dark Horse Comics
The Atlantean conquerer Kull, has recently crowned himself king after he conquered Valusia and seeks to unite the once proud and powerful land of Valusia. As representatives from all corners of his kingdom seek his counsel, Kull hesitantly accepts a strange invitation from the Pictish emissary, despite the fact that the Picts and Atlanteans were ancient enemies.

King Kull will need to discard ancient prejudices against the Picts if he's to save the newly united Valusian empire from an ancient but clandestine enemy that once threatened to enslave and exterminate all of mankind!

Aided by the fierce but loyal Pict confidant Brule the Spear-Slayer, King Kull uncovers layers of sinister mystery, deception and treachery in the ancient halls of his kingdom's palace - the Tower of Splendor, and faces the growing threat of the mysterious shape-changing Serpent Cult!

Conrad does a great job interpreting Robert E. Howard's literary works (along side Conan, Solomon Kane, etc) in this 6 issue mini-series. I look forward to more from this team and King Kull! I admit that I had not read any of the King Kull stories from Marvel or other publishers but this one did not disappoint!

Other Comments
This mini series reads like a good movie! I was thinking how great a movie this would be given the CGI tech capabilities of today. They actually made a Kull movie some years back but that one tanked (just as the first Conan movie tanked as well!). Dark Horse is really doing this right - taking these properties and telling great stories with great art! Looks like I'll be looking for the Solomon Kane series and the new Kull mini from Dark Horse.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Food Review - Cheong Kee Beef Noodles (Ipoh)

Cheong Kee Beef Noodles (Diagonally across Sam Tet Primary School, 
Stall #47)
Open at night till late (possibly even midnight if they have not sold out by then).
Chinese Beef (tripe) Noodles


Getting There
Located right in front of the famous Ipoh Sam Tet primary school (or Jalan Sultan Ekram), among an enclave of night food stalls, this stall had been serving great beef noodles for decades. Referred to affectionately by loyal customers as the "Sisters" as it is run by 2 rather elderly sisters. Look for the giant York Air Con Neon billboard if you're unsure of the roads. It's just right it front of it.

There's ample parking in the vicinty either directly in front of the stalls or across the main Hugh Low street. However, be prepared to be confronted by the illegal parking touts who ask for money. You have been warned!

Nestled among a row of literally dozens of food stalls, this street side eatery has been a major part of Ipoh's food culture for decades. It may not be the best place to bring your foreign friends unless they have a strong constitution! However, I must say that the place has a lot of character - very good for photography or in trying to capture the essence or spirit of Ipoh!
Served in the little traditional white porcelain bowls that is synonymous with the good ol' 70's. it's sure to bring on a wave of nostalgia.

This is one of the main reasons why i like this stall's food so much! The beef soup is of the clear variety (rarely found in the Klang Valley) and combined with the home-made chilli sauce, and the smooth texture of the hor-fun (well, if you ordered the mihun or yellow mee, then it'd be slightly different), the taste is a tiny slice of heaven!

There isn't much veriety to expect from a beef noodle stall as that's exactly what they sell. Altho' there are different beef parts and noodle types, it's more of a personal preference than anything else. Personally, it's be a sin to have this with anything other than hor-fun. As for the beef parts, I like the tripe and the ligaments (if available!).

Value For Money
At RM3.50 a standard bowl (RM4.50 for large) during these inflationary times, it doesn't get than this in terms of value. Altho' the serving is rather dainty, but this had always been the size that they had used from days long gone. Hence, even for an average eater like me, you can easily go for 2 bowls! (but in my case this time, I only had 1 because prior to this, I just had my share of Lou Wong's Chicken & Bean Sprout noodles! see.....)

I admit that this is not the best beef noodles I've ever had but the nostalgia combined with the clear beef broth & chilli, this place never disappoints! If you have never tried it before, give it a go!