The Charm of Ipoh Old Town: Burps & Giggles

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It was a visual feast the moment we stepped into the rustic, but quirky Burps & Giggles, occupying two pre-war shoplots in Ipoh old town (Ipohans should have no problem recognising the old U.S. Peter dressmaking signboard).

Burps & Giggles is the third and latest brainchild of chef and restauranteur Julie Song (the first was the famed Indulgence, followed by Allegra) – a tapas (or more accurately known as “pincho“) bar and bistro. Big, heavy main course are not their forte as they focuses primarily on small bites but if you must have something more substantial for the tummy, they serves burgers, pastries and sandwiches too (baked fresh daily from their main kitchen in Indulgence).

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Word of mouth about this place has been all over Facebook, so when we dropped by one fine Sunday, as expected, the place was packed to the brim. We eventually chose to sit at the bar top with natural lighting from above. We had Harvey (RM16), a fish burger that was grilled instead of the conventional deep fried. Studded with coriander and mint leaves, coupled with a tarty Thai-infused dressing and abundant of chopped veggies, the patty has a texture resembling firm tofu.

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My Jammy (RM18), combination of Angue beef patty, jalapeno, cheese, tomato jam, onion and tomato doesn’t look very appetising but alas, the patty was juicy and moist (luckily), with add-on thick cut fries (I opted for truffle oil but couldn’t really taste the subtle flavour of it, probably my tongue is overwhelmed by the beefy taste of the burger).

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Feeling a little greedy, we chose something else from the pastry counter as well. The Passionfruit Sugee Cake has a crumbly texture but I like the tangy topping which complements the cake, however, my sister finds the topping too sour to her liking. She finds her Banana Muffin fares better, though.

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If you’re looking for some light bites after lunch hour or to “lepak” with your friends over couple of drinks and cakes, do try out their tapas after 3pm daily – I heard they serves quite a mean spread of it.

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Burps & Giggles (Halal)
93 & 95, Jalan Sultan Yussuf,
30000 Ipoh, Perak.
(Behind Kong Heng in Ipoh old town)

Tel: 05-242 6188
Business Hours: 8am – 8pm, closed on Tuesdays.
Email: burps.giggles@indulgencerestaurant.com

Want more pictures? Try sharonisme and EatDrinkKL.

Brunch @ Mandarin Grill, Mandarin Oriental Hotel

Gosh. It’s already February and I had only updated my blog once. *sweats*

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It was certainly one of those odd days where I found myself seated inside Mandarin Grill restaurant on a Saturday morning. In case you didn’t notice, fine dining is not a monthly affair (not even yearly!) to me. But then, a friend actually made the effort to arrange the brunch, so there is no reason for me to reject, isn’t it?

*Oh, just a quick note for those who are clueless about Mandarin Oriental (like me, duh. I actually had to ask the guard in KLCC on the direction to the hotel), it is actually located right next to Suria KLCC. There are just too many hotels in KL that we sometimes lost count (and lost their sense of location as well). For a complete list of Kuala Lumpur hotels, you could always check out hotel booking website such as Asia Web Direct.

It was a quiet Saturday morning. We were the first bunch of patrons of the day and we get to sit next to the high window overlooking the KLCC park – plenty of natural light for snapshots. A menu is presented to us with limitations (RM78 for 2 courses and RM94 for 3 courses) – 3 items for each appetizer, main and dessert categories. There were four of us, therefore we ordered almost everything from the menu except the fruit platter.

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For starters, we had the Vitello Tonato (roasted veal with tuna cream sauce and endives), Scallop Carpaccio (fresh scallop paired with green apple dressing and apple slices and coriander cress and Roasted Beetroot Salad (beetroot chunks served with blocks of feta cheese, crushed pine nuts and leafy greens). Out of the three, the scallop carpaccio has our highest votes for freshness and the sourish green apple dressing complement the scallop nicely. The veal fillet were a little bit dry and stringy, while the beetroot doesn’t seems roasted prior to serving.

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The mains – Braised Short Rib Ravioli (with cauliflower puree and rosemary jus), Butter Poached Salmon Fillet (served in lemon balm consomme and fennel) and Tagliatelle Pasta (tagliatelle in tomato concasse). The pasta texture was too soft (overcooked?) to my liking and nothing outstanding with the tomato sauce. The ravioli fares better, the shredded short rib filling was flavourful but portion too small. The salmon was nicely charred on the sides, with slight crisp and the consomme not too overpowering the fish.

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We skipped the fruit platter and went for the more sinful ones when it comes to dessert. CK had the Chocolate Ice Cream Coupe (with caramelized pistachio nuts and chocolate swirl) while me and the others had the Creme Brulee with fresh berries. The ice cream definitely came from a premium manufacturer (not sure which company though) – silky smooth and bursting with intense chocolate taste. The Creme Brulee was pretty nice as well – the caramelized sugar on top wasn’t too thick and every spoonfuls of the custard were full of egg-y flavour, with the berries lent a slight tang to the dessert.

Mandarin Grill @ Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur City Centre,
50088 Kuala Lumpur,
Malaysia.

Tel: +60 (3) 2179 8818
Fax: +60 (3) 2179 8659
Email: mokul-sales@mohg.com
Web: http://www.mandarinoriental.com/kualalumpur/dining/restaurants/mandarin_grill/

Shooting With Canon EOS 1000D – Eastern’s Brasserie, Ipoh

*Finally joined the league of DSLRs among the food bloggers. This is my first post, with all photos shot with Canon EOS 1000D. WB a bit off, especially on the white plates that turned blue… :(

It was a not-so-warm afternoon where Motormouth and I were driving around Ipoh, trying to look a place for lunch… Then he remembered a new place called Eastern’s Brasserie featured on the All About Ipoh Facebook page and he suggested that we go and have a look.

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This sparkling new restaurant occupied the corner lot of the previous Rendezvous Cafe at the junction in between Jalan Sultan Idris Shah (Brewster Street) and Jalan Dato’ Onn Jaafar (Cockman Street) and is part of Eastern Hotel’s refurbishment project. White dining tables and chairs dominate the overall dining area, with splashes of warm tone on the walls, while interesting marbled-effect flooring complements the whole picture.

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Their menu is utterly simple; appetizers, salads, soups, main courses, desserts and drinks were all chucked into a 3 pages menu, with prices ranged from RM8 – RM75 (the most expensive item would be the grilled lobster). Set lunches starts from RM24 that comes with a soup of the day, main course and drink.

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My Potage of Broccoli and Potato (RM8 a la carte) was thick, creamy and came in a generous portion, and could be easily shared by two person (which we did!).

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My choice proves to be a right one as the Grilled Chicken with Mushroom Ragout was a delight to the palate. The boneless chicken thigh was grilled to juicy-perfection, with every bites exudes a pleasant smoky, charred aroma, while the meat retains its juiciness with a tinge of fruity-sweetness. Served over a bed of mashed potato (?), some vegetables and mushroom ragout, the ragout doesn’t overpower the chicken but I doubt it was mashed potato as it tastes more like polenta to me.

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My dining companion chose to go light instead, with Cod Fillet with Mango (RM24). Although the portion seems a little bit too small for our dear Motormouth, he enjoyed the dish tremendously. The mango coulis lent a slightly sweetish aftertaste to the lightly charred cod fillet.

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We end our lunch on a sweet note by having the Poached Guava (RM10). A rare find for Ipoh standard; I found it ok while Motormouth prefers it if they would asked beforehand what type of ice cream flavour we wanted as chocolate ice cream does not exactly match the flavour of the dessert.

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Eastern’s Brasserie
118, Jalan Sultan Idris Shah,
30000 Ipoh, Perak.

Tel: 05-254 9847 / 012 – 471 9847 (KK Loke)
Business Hours: Monday – Saturday, 12pm – 2.30pm and 7pm – 10pm. Closed on Sundays.

p/s: Seems like blogger V!Nni3 has a different opinion on this place. Read about her experience here.