Friday, February 13, 2015

Fumo

Approaching Christmas, the month of December is always filled with festive spirit and countless of gatherings and celebrations. Therefore, my friends and I planned an early Christmas dinner last December - just a few days before Christmas - for banter, exchanging of gifts and to celebrate the beginning of the holidays. At the same time, a new restaurant, Fumo, opened nearby and it looked nice so we wanted to give it a try.

Fumo serves Italian food but in a tapas concept. So everything ordered is for sharing. That fit really well for us since we enjoyed trying various food. The extensive menu was everything that I wanted to try (like always) so it was a tough choice trying to decide what to order. It's also harder when there's everything I wanted to try but also choosing the few that everyone would be happy with trying. At least, we were not a picky bunch. Finally, after discussing again and again, we settled for 9 plates for the 4 of us. Here's our choice:

-Dining in Fumo-

-Crab and avocado salad-

-Calamari rings-

-Seafood spaghetti-

-Duck and apple salad with rockets-

-Gorgonzola gnocchi in a crispy parmesan basket-

-Roast pork belly with baked potato-

-Chicken and pesto pizza-

-Proscuitto and mushroom pizza-

-Spinach and cheese flat bread-

The food was satisfactory. It was heart-warming for the season and definitely felt very festival having a table filled with food. All the dish were suitable to our palate and it was very delicious. The ambience was a festive one as well - with its beautiful lighting and the place filled with laughter from other diners as well. It was well spirited. 

Following the meal, we ordered the dessert platter which is a platter filled with all their desserts in mini sizes. It was a nice platter to share with each other. It was nothing very special but it was a good finish to our nice meal. I also ordered a Bailey's latte for a nice finish to my lovely dinner. 

-Dessert platter-

-Hot Bailey's latte-

This is a recommended place for people who love to try out various food when visiting a restaurant. It is very lovely and the staff are friendly too. It is now in one of my favourite restaurant list.

Happy seasons, happy tummy.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Albert's Shed

I've always wanted to try Albert's Shed after having had a look at the menu once. It was really interesting and everything looked mouthwatering. One of my friends frequent this place a lot as well and he mentioned that it is one of his favourite due to the good food and nice ambience.

So, when my friend planned to meet up after a long time, and told me to suggest a good place which we haven't tried, I chose Albert's Shed. It was a choice you can't regret.

Entering the place, we were greeted by friendly staff. It wasn't a busy day so we were sat very quickly and got the luck of window seats. Despite having had a look at the menu online, I still spent a long time looking at the menu, trying to decide what I should have. Everything looked so delectable and just imagining the taste gave me a hard time to decide on one meal.

After giving it a good thought, I chose to have a pot roast beef cooked in red wine jus with two sides of my choice. I'm not the biggest fan of beef usually since there are very few places that cook beef well and I disliked the risk of having rubbery, hard meat on my plate. However, I took the challenge this time. For sides, I chose spring onion creamy mash and dauphinoise potatoes. As you would guess, when my plate arrived, it definitely looked carb overloaded. The pot roast beef was served with pancetta, mushroom and stuffing with red wine jus. Just digging in, it was one of the best meals I've had - so tasty and delicious. The meat just melts in your mouth and everything was spiced perfectly. I enjoyed the meal so much that my plate looked like it wouldn't have needed washing. 

My friend ordered a smoked duck and fig salad and crab linguine. She said it was really delicious and even wished that the portions were larger. I suppose you just keep wanting more.

-Pot roast beef with mushroom, pancetta and stuffing in red wine jus; served with spring onion creamy mash and dauphinoise potatoes-

-Top: smoked duck and fig salad; Bottom: Crab linguine-

Even though we were really full, we decided that desserts are a must. You know how they say girls always have two stomachs so there is always space for desserts. We ordered the very typical flavours - chocolate lava cake and lemon brûlée. They were both amazing desserts and if I had more space, I could eat more of them. 

-Lemon creme brûlée-

-Chocolate lava cake with vanilla ice-cream-

This is definitely one of the nicest restaurants that I've been able to try and will be on my top lists of restaurants. The price is reasonable as well for such well-cooked food. It'll be a place I will like to frequent. 

Eating to my heart's content.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Riverdance

When I was a young dancer, my ballet instructor used to organise sessions where all students of different grades gathered together to watch various dance videos. These were to help us learn the various characteristics in dances, learn from the professionals by observing and also to inspire us to dance better. I have watched many dance shows and one that captivated me the most was 'Riverdance'. I used to watch it on my own as well. The dancers always looked so amazing in the various performance outfits and they had such great character in their dance. Their talented footwork, their graceful steps and their synchronized rhythm left a great impression on me. I have always wanted to watch them live since then.

Therefore, when I heard that the 'Riverdance' troupe will be performing in town in conjunction with their 20th anniversary, I immediately jumped on the opportunity to watch them perform. As you might have known, on my previous outings for musicals, I used to pay for the cheapest tickets as they are most affordable. However, for this dance show, I willingly paid for a stall seat. It didn't cost too much with my student discount card. 


Oh, I must say, it was worth every penny paid. The show was so much more astounding live than on a television screen. The storyline and music written for this show was beautiful. The dancers made elegant entrances and performed so wholly that they told the story just from their dancing. The 'tap-tap' rhythm of their dance shoes drawn you into the rhythm of dance. When people say you feel like dancing along, it is definitely a genuine expression. Most importantly, the dancers gave us a captivating performance, deserving of a standing ovation. I can't find anymore words to describe how memorable an experience it is to be able to watch them live. 

Next time, they are in town, you should definitely catch their performance. You will never regret it. 

The dance shoes go 'tap-tap'.

Friday, October 17, 2014

North Tea Power

After a 4 week placement in a district, I decided to complete my placement early by pushing myself to do a 30 hour shift and rewarding myself with a day off. That meant I could be back early in town and also enjoy a free day. I had some studying to catch up with as well. What better way to have a relaxing study time than to find a little hideout in a tearoom to enjoy some tea while revising. I have read several reviews of this nice tearoom, North Tea Power, located in Northern Quarter. Therefore, I made my early weekend escape there for a tea treat.

The tearoom had a very simple and welcoming set up, making it very cosy. You could choose to sit indoor or outdoors. I always chose indoors because I want to avoid the smoking, and the passing vehicles. Apart from that, it was easier to work indoors. On the background, they play very nice indie music as well. The staff are very friendly as well. It was a pleasant place to work. 

I ordered my favourite tea, Earl Grey and a homely plate of french toast. The tea comes in an individual pot which poured out 4 cups of tea. The french toast was a sweet and savoury toast - pancetta and cheddar filled sandwich, fried in egg, drenched in maple syrup and topped with crushed walnut. It was one of the nicest french toast I have had in a cafe. This has made my cafe one of my favourite afternoon escapes. 

- A favourite tea time -

I recommend anyone looking for a lovely hideout to work and simple yet good food to visit this place. 

A little hideout for work and food.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Little Town of Ipoh

When I was back in Ipoh last summer, my friends also decided to pay a visit. They were my housemates during college time so we anticipated this meet up very much. Since they were visiting, I decided that I should bring them around this town - so little, so old, yet vibrant and lively.

Truthfully, I haven't been going around town much, myself. I suppose there isn't the urge to do anything 'tourist' when you've grown up in the same place. In the past years, Ipoh has grown a lot. There were some new changes to which I have not seen myself. Therefore, I thought this meet up will be an even greater opportunity for me to visit this place.

One of the main attractions are the wall arts by Lithuanian artist, Ernest Zacharevic. He painted seven beautiful, characteristic illustrations across the old town of Ipoh. The artwork was on the walls of some of the old buildings. With his artwork gaining fame, you could almost imagine how crowds gathered in front of the artwork - to the point that it was difficult for you to obtain a photo without anyone else getting in your way. You would have better luck if you go on a weekday or a non-public holiday. I must say that he is very creative. His artwork definitely captivates his audiences and creates a deep sense of nostalgia, especially in those who have grown up in this little old, bustling town.
- The artwork of Ernest Zacharevic -
Apart from that, boutique cafes and little shops have now been creatively decorated along some of the streets. Many of them have chosen the 'travelling back the years' concept for their shops. Not only have they decorated the interior, but also the exterior - allowing tourists to take snapshots of all that depicts their childhood. When I walked down the lanes, there is so much familiarity in those scenes, bringing me back to the carefree schooldays. It is not even that long ago that I left school but it makes me feel really old when I see this as part of the past. Most of these scenes no longer exists in many children's life with the advancement of technology. Who still plays hopscotch, marbles, batu seremban, or those skipping rope games we played everyday before and after school? I am sure very few no much about them now. That reminds me when everyone says the generation of the 90's enjoys the best of time's advancing changes. I can't disagree. We have the benefit of knowing all these old-school games as well as the grew up with technology.

- The five-foot-ways designed to bring you back to childhood -

- An open space work place -

Ipoh is a city where old meets new. Many shops that stand around, you could say, are heritage buildings. I haven't a clue how long they have been around for. Some of these shops still run old businesses. Some of them are much newer. Most importantly, there are unending numbers of food stalls around. If you didn't know, Ipoh is very well famous for its food. People would travel just as far, or make day trips to have a taste of their favourite food. Of course, it's nothing like years back. Food was much better and much cheaper then. With that said, food is still good. You may recognise the famous 'ngar choi kai' (beansprouts and chicken) commonly served with rice or our signature Ipoh 'hor fun', salted chicken 'yim kok kai', charkoayteow, popiah, curry noodles and the list goes on. If you wonder why such common food is mentioned here, I can only tell you how good it is that people will travel to Ipoh to have a taste of them and buy bulks of them back with them - to store for later meals or as 'souvenirs' to their friends. We know of many people who do this. Unfortunately, I haven't taken much photos of food during this visit.

- Dining the Ipoh way - 

- Popiah -

With the mention of old meets new, I should definitely bring up some of our heritage buildings that still stand majestically till today. There is the Ipoh Railway Station. Just a fun fact for those of you who didn't know - the Anna and the King (1999) was filmed there. Other buildings are the schools that are more than 100 years old, the High Court, the Clock Tower and many more. All you need to do is explore freely and be ready to walk under the heat of the sun. 


Down new town of Ipoh, you will find many paintings of the multicultural tradition of people of Malaysia on the walls of shops at the back lanes. Their colourful simplistic paintings depicts the harmonious, happy lives of Malaysians. It also brings us back to childhood.

- Paintings of traditions -

I could go on to tell you how amazing Ipoh is as a city. Making a trip as a tourist of Ipoh after so many years definitely opened my eyes to how rich Ipoh is as a city - its culture, its heritage, its people, its food. 

My little hometown.

- Photo credits to Ji Yun.