Dragon Gate Dim Sum, Kota Damansara

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Uh, no. This is not related to any kungfu or martial arts school whatsoever. But how cool it would be if the waiters and waitresses are able to deliver your order to your table by walking in the air, yeah?

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Coincidentally, when Motormouth dragged me along for dim sum here, another friend of mine asked us to buy the Living Social voucher for Dragon Gate as well. So, yeah… I actually been here twice.

Conventional classics like har gau (prawn dumplings), siew mai (minced pork and prawn dumplings), char siew pau (BBQ pork bun) and crispy woo kok (deep fried yam puff) are available here among others. However, the famed and multi-branched Jin Xuan Hong is just a few streets away; so, to survive in the competition, one has to be creative and innovative.

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Dragon Gate came up with some quirky selection like Shanghai fried rice sheets with shrimps (transparent rice sheets resembles jelly), Wasabi shrimp balls, Pheonix shrimps with seaweed, HK’s style cha leong (yau char kuey wrapped with rice sheet), Shanghai xiao long bao and the list goes on. The spinach HK chee cheong fun looked as pretty as it tastes, the rice sheets were slippery smooth and not too thick in size.

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My other personal pick would be the lau sar bao/nai yau bao (custard salted egg bun), sweet potatoes and yam cake – deep fried to perfection, egg tart, and Shanghai xiao long bao. The custard salted egg bun were not up to our expectation during our first visit as the filling has harden up, rather than lava molten-alike but the issue was rectified during our second visit. The sweet potatoes and yam cake can be rather filling as they are about 2/3 the size of a ping pong ball, so indulge with care. I’ve tasted better xiao long bao in Guangzhou, China before but Dragon Gate did a pretty good job on this as well.

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As for dessert, I love the mah tai kang (egg drop dessert with water chestnuts and white fungus). Reminds me very much of my mom’s version. The durian pancake, as expected, has more cream than durian flesh, while the mango pudding would be better without the evaporated milk.

Overall, quite a pleasant dim sum experience at Dragon Gate. There are some hit and misses, which is no surprise as they just started operation about a year ago. But with the reasonable price tags and slightly lesser crowd than other dim sum joints, I wouldn’t mind to come again.

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Dragon Gate Dim Sum
1-1, Jalan PJU 5/3,
Dataran Sunway,
47810 Kota Damansara
Selangor, Malaysia
Tel No : 017-626 7026

Business Hours: Breakfast until 3pm daily

Tong Ah Restaurant, Chinatown, Singapore

Happy New Year to you! How was your Christmas and New Year celebration? 2011 marked my first time throwing a Christmas Eve dinner – preparations were ok, but it turned out a little bit chaotic when the guests starts arriving but we managed to pull it off.

Last year, I made a resolution to increase my postings but it seems that I failed to achieve that. But anyway, here’s my first posting for 2012, with the new layout.

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Trip to Singapore has becoming more and more frequent for me, thanks to the affordable air fares by Jetstar/Tiger Airways/AirAsia etc. It is a good opportunity for me to meet and catch up with my friends who are working and staying there, as well as exploring what Singapore has to offer on the menu too. Singaporean friends knew that I write about food, so they took great effort to bring me around for a good meal whenever I goes down to the Merlion City. With that in mind, I found myself standing in front of a charming colonial corner shoplot in Chinatown called Tong Ah (not Ah Tong, as I initially thought. Pardon the label on the picture).

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Mr. D insist that I have to try this: Coffee Spare Ribs (again, pardon the label on the picture, I’m just too lazy to re-edit a new one). Now, this is new to me… I’ve heard about Coke Chicken before (rumour has it that it was invented in Hong Kong, anyone can confirm this?) but I have not tried it before. So, how does the Coffee Spare Ribs tastes like? I would say it’s like a cross in between Marmite Chicken and “pai kuat wong” (spare ribs in dark, sticky sauce). The sticky, caramelized coffee sauce has a good coffee aroma and not bitter, but the spare ribs were kinda tough, though. Nevertheless, interesting try.

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In between eggs and green veggie, we succumbed to the temptation of “fu yong dan” (Fu Yong-style omelette). Loaded with small prawns, chopped onions, sliced Chinese mushroom and spring onion, this was rather ordinary, but delectable nonetheless. On the other hand, their deep fried beancurd with minced pork and chilli was good – silky-smooth homemade beancurd brimming with egg-y aroma and topped with loads of chillied-minced pork and in-house special gravy, this was a great accompaniment with white rice.

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And there are more meat for the carnivores! Belacan Fried Chicken smells really good but it lacks the pungent belacan taste to it, perhaps more belacan would make a difference to the dish. And lastly, dry Butter Squid with thin butter/margarine-based batter encasing the squids. A pretty decent dish without the heavy use of butter/margarine – allows you to taste the squid without being overwhelmed by the batter.

All in all, Tong Ah serves some decent Cantonese dai chow fares. Service can be a bit slow especially during peak hour, so if possible, go with a bunch of friends or family members and chat away while waiting, just like we did. No price tags were availabe for each individual dish as it was a treat by my friends :)

Tong Ah Restaurant
36, Keong Saik Road (intersection in between Keong Saik Road and Teck Lim Road),
089143, Singapore.

Oh My Pork! @ J Thean Kitchen

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OMG, I was actually drooling while editing the picture above! Heard of this place from WMW about their delicious pork dishes. Best of all, it is located just a few stones throw away from my house, convenient enough to drop by for lunch on weekend or dinner.

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Still relatively new, J Thean Kitchen was a kinda quiet that evening. The overall place is painted in white (including furniture) with some Chinese influence thrown in here and there. Easy to read menu, friendly waitresses, al fresco seating for those who smokes. Oh by the way, that J-Porky Bun (RM 16.90, picture above) came in a longish shape, served together with potato wedges and fried mantou bun instead of the usual burger bun. If there were two things to compliment about this bun, it would be a) the pork patty and b) the fried mantou bun. The patty was juicy, thick enough to satiate a pork-lover’s appetite and well-seasoned. The fried mantou bun further elevate the experience with its crispy exterior. Each bite sent my mouth and brain into “food orgasm”, no kidding!

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Their fusion bak kut teh (RM 10.90) tasted just right to me, however I did not try the belly meat as they were too fatty to my liking (you can choose the cuts of meat you like, in this case, CK loves his meat fat). Having tasted so much different types of bak kut teh recently, I personally feel that J Thean’s version is slightly less greasy.

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For dessert, try the Melaka Rainbow – chilled gula melaka with coconut milk, chewy red jelly bits and sago. The mango pudding was okay too, although the colour made it looked kinda artificial, the texture is similar to a caramel custard with mango bits in it.

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SS2 Mall is still been pretty quiet nowadays even when after Celebrity Fitness Express opened its doors. Let’s hope that J Thean Kitchen would stay on and there would be increase traffic to the place soon. In the mean time, if you’re a pork-lover, you could help out as well – just drop by J Thean! (if you haven’t do so)

J Thean Kitchen
Lot G-58, Ground Floor,
SStwo Mall,
40, Jalan SS2/72,
47300 Petaling Jaya.

*Also available – FatBoyBakes and PureGlutton’s thoughts on this place.