May 21, 2011

El Casa Restaurant

Another food joint mushroomed in Penang and the one we found was El Casa. El Casa is new to the eatery scene, only six months old. Housed in a heritage enclave, El Casa boasts both Asian and Western cuisine at the place.The place exudes a romantic atmosphere with its dim lights and quiet atmosphere. The tables placed wide apart from each other gave me dining comfort. I did not have to speak in whispers (of course, no shouting here). Ahh...Another new place to dine. Hubby settled for the Grilled Steak and Pan Roasted Salmon set. It was on promotion with a 50% off the rack rate (rm29.90). It came with a glass of white wine, a bowl of tomato soup, the main course and a dessert. The tomato soup was a disappointment as it was from a can and too bland. The salmon was not too bad and not too good either. Palatable was what both of us would describe it. Dessert came in the form of a soybean jelly. Actually, we were here to 'check out' the place.I was not too hungry so I settled for just a bowl of cream of mushroom soup and a main course. The cream of mushroom soup was delicious. I would say it was yummy and to my taste. The soup was creamy with a good amount of chopped mushrooms.
I had their signature dish the Chicken De El Casa for my main. It was a big piece of chicken drumstick deep-fried with a layer of Mozzarella cheese on top. For a price RM17.90, the portion served was generous. The chicken, seasoned with Italian herbs, was nothing spectacular. It was well marinated, deep-fried and crispy to the bite. The potato wedges was to my liking. It was tasty and properly deep-fried. (Some places seved them burnt and dry.) This dish also came with a deep-fried banana. I thought that was a good dessert to end the main course.
You can opt to dine alfresco if you like the outdoor feeling. El Casa has a nice patio with nice lightings and a ceiling fan. It was 'closed' when I took the picture (below). You do not have to worry about parking space, as there is ample. There are parking spaces in front of El Casa.:o) El Casa Restaurant is located at No.2 Jalan Irrawady, 10500 Penang. Tel No: 04-2299223 **10% Service Charge & zero Government Tax.

May 14, 2011

Louis Cafe...western/fusion style

Louis Cafe was featured in The Star and from the review; we thought we would pay the restaurant a visit. The place gave me a cosy feeling as I stepped inside. The interior done in light colours with simple decorations looked pleasant. Brightly lit, it exuded the 'family kind' of place feeling. Food served at the place was actually fusion style. We went for the set-dinner, which comprised of a salad, a soup, one main course, a beverage and a dessert of the day. We had six choices (meat) to choose from the menu. Louis Cafe has quite an extensive menu. What we had was the Chicken with prunes (sorry I forgot the name of the dish) and the grilled lamb cutlet. For the chicken, both of us did not quite like the taste. I personally do not like something as sweet as the prunes cooked together with meat. Hubby had the same comments. The grilled lamb cutlet was tasty. It did not smell of 'unbathed' lamb and it was tender. In addition, it was well marinated.The salad served was quite generous in portion.The cream of mushroom soup that we had was their signature dish. We were not disappointed as there was a lot chopped mushroom in every scoop put in the mouth. The soup served was creamy and not too liquid. One thing I liked, cornstarch was not used to make the soup thick. The pumpkin soup that we had, it was not so tasty. We both agreed it was too watery and tasted bland.I noticed that the chef took a lot of trouble to make the dish look presentable. The mash potato, it was deep-fried and came in the shape of a pear! The picture above showed a plate of Smoked salmon steak with Dijon creme sauce. It was good to the last bite. The sauce was good. Could it be because I love Dijon mustard? LOL.The baked stuffed chicken was quite ordinary. It was just chicken stuffed with a jumbo sausage and baked. The only thing I noted was the chicken was tender and juicy.What I went oohlala with..at Louis was the deep-fried chicken wing. The batter was very crispy and the chicken wings tasted good. Sugar, spices and all...made them tasty.
The price of the set dinner ranged between RM32.90 - RM39.90Louis Cafe is located at 161C Argyll Road, Penang. Tel: 042287729 **10% Service Charge

May 12, 2011

Ji De Lai San Ding Seafood Restaurant

There are many places offering 'choo char' (Chinese dishes) in Penang. They can be found in every nook and cranny in Penang. This open concept 'restaurant' is one that is found in a peculiar place. Restaurant Ji De Lai San Ding Seafood is located on a playground inside a residential area. This restaurant has 'specialty' dishes daily. The night we were there they had homemade tofu with chopped seaweed sprinkled on top. The pieces of tofu were then deep-fried. The deep-fried tofu with the seaweed was tasty. The seaweed gave it a salty and fishy taste.
The next dish we had was also a specialty of the day. The deep-fried chicken thighs with pumpkin sauce. The pumpkin gave the dish a sweet taste. There was also lime/lemon juice in the sauce so it was actually sweet and sour chicken. It can be described as a new kind of sweet and sour chicken. I did not quite like the dish but hubby and son did not mind. This eatery has many specialty of the day. If you are someone who is adventurous, try them. Sometimes you can be disappointed or shocked. The last time we visited, we had deep fried tofu that came with a purple coloured sauce. It was sauce made from dragon fruit. Oh my, I have never seen sauce in that colour. Of the many restaurants that we have been to, this one served this dish the best. The stir-fry 'bayam' (spinach) with three different kinds of eggs. The 'bayam' was cooked but not over cooked. The amount of 'bayam' served together with the egg, salted egg and century egg was generous. The gravy was very tasty and not too liquid. The grilled spare ribs was also another dish getting the thumbs up from us. Whilst you are there, you can also try the 'kam heong' stir-fried brinjal (aubergine) with dried prawns. The aubergine is prepared in a very nice way. The aubergine though cooked was not mushy and the dried prawns done fragrantly. However, I found the dish to be rather salty (I think the dried prawns were not washed). The clay-pot fish is also a good dish to order. One thing to remember is to check the price of the dish before placing your order. The last time we had this dish it cost us a whopping RM60 (small sized fish) for the dish.
Jie De Lai San Ding Seafood Restaurant is located on a playground. To get to this place drive along Jalan Hamilton and turn right into Taman Hijau 3. (If you are coming from Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah.) Drive straight in (across a t-junction) until you reached the playground (on your right). This is a residential area. Look for a brightly lit open-space. :o)

May 11, 2011

Hei Yeong Seng Chinese Restaurant...

Hei Yeong Seng Chinese Restaurant is about three to four months old. This restaurant is so spacious, I exclaimed as we walked inside.There were about 20 tables occupied and it was a weekday. The restaurant is brightly lit and very clean. The staff was friendly and there were many of them. That meant efficient service.We decided to settle for the common dishes for comparison.
We had the stir-fried broccoli with dried fish flakes. A very tasty dish with the broccoli cooked but still crunchy.The dried scallop tofu was a good choice recommended by the waiter. The Japanese tofu was tasty. The tofu made with a lot of egg was soft but not watery. We ate it to the last bit, as even the gravy was tasty. We did not waste even a drop of the gravy, as there was a lot of shredded scallop in the gravy. Yummy!The steamed cod was normal as compared with the other restaurants we have visited. The fish was juicy and fresh.This is one tasty dish we had, the 3-cup clay pot chicken. What pleased the three of us was no breast meat used in this dish. Similar dish served at other restaurants used the breast part of the chicken. That made the meat dry. Every single piece of the chicken meat came from the thigh of the chicken. We enjoyed every bite of the chicken. The chef must be very experienced as the dishes (all that we ate) were simply delicious. If you are wondering about the price of the dishes, I would say it is reasonable. The whole dinner cost us less than RM100. If you are looking for a new place for your meals...here is one!:o) **Please read the comments if you are ALLERGIC TO PEANUTS. There is a feedback from a reader. This is here to serve as awareness to food (peanuts in this case) allergy for my blog readers. There is no malice here. TQ
Hei Yeong Seng Chinese Restaurant, 2nd Floor, Penang Plaza, Jalan Burmah, Penang Tel: 04-2291623/04-2293623Open daily.**5% Service Charge & 6% Government Tax.