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Kampachi, Hotel Equatorial Penang – Authentic Japanese Cuisine with Chef Koji Tamaru


Looking for an authentic Japanese Cuisine? Worry no more as Kampachi at Hotel Equatorial is one of the few restaurants in Penang, if not pioneer, to serve authentic Japanese Cuisine. The food ingredients are air-flown directly from Japan in order to maintain the authenticity of the cuisine.


Kampachi Executive Chef Koji Tamaru is one of the most experienced Japanese Cuisine Chefs around. Chef Tamaru has been mastering Japanese Cuisine for more then 40 years. Aside from cooking great Japanese dishes, Koji Tamaru San is also able to speak fluent Malay as he has been staying in Malaysia for 20 years.


Chef Tamaru is especially talented in preparing Omakase (Japanese for “entrust’) meals – a procession of elegantly presented authentic Japanese dishes using the best seasonal ingredients. As a well-rounded chef, he is sharp at his judgment to be able to deliver an outstanding curated menu that goes well with patrons’ preferences. Each dish is meticulously prepared and artistically presented, not just a feast for the palate but for the eyes as well.


The showcase for the night presented all the best that Chef Tamaru that capable of. One of the signatures of Chef Tamaru is the Hanakago Bento. This is a very delegate and distinguish 9-course Japanese bento meal. The highlight of this meal is the refined and precised arrangement by the chef with passion. The Hanakago Bento costs RM150 nett per person.

Cocktails are also available at Nadaba.


Another star of the night was Teppanyaki Chef Joseph who performed his professional skill by ‘throwing’ flames on to the stove. It was a breathtaking and spectacular moment.


Japanese Salad – Cold salad served in cherry tomatoes together with Japanese cucumber, shrimps, mushrooms, lettuce and purple cabbage. Each of it was topped with homemade Japanese salad dressing. This serving of salad was delicate and unique, it tasted appetizing too.


There were many varieties of freshly-made sushi which were hand-pressed instead of machine-pressed.

Chawanmushi – also known as “tea cup steam” in Japanese. This dish is an egg custard dish found in Japan. The custard consists of an egg mixture flavored with soy sauce, dashi, and mirin, with numerous ingredients such as shiitake mushrooms, kamaboko, yuri-ne (lily root) and ginkgo. This is a very regular and standard type of dish.


Yasai Itame – This is a stir-fried mix veggie. The most important ingredient of this dish is the cabbage, which was mixed and fried with bean sprouts, carrots and mushrooms. It was a very simple yet healthy dish.


Niniku Meshi – also known as garlic fried rice. The fried rice was cooked with spring onions, eggs and garlic. The “wok” aroma was so nice and it really brought out the flavor of the fried rice.


Yaki Tori – Also known as Japanese “Satay”. The preparation of Yakitori involves skewering the meat with kushi, a type of skewer typically made of bamboo. After marination, they are then grilled over a charcoal fire. During or after cooking, the meat is typically seasoned with tare sauce or salt. Tell me about this, I am going back for this mouth-watering Japanese “Satay”.


Shiromi Zakana Saikyoyaki – Saikyoyaki is a very popular traditional Japanese grilled fish marinated in Saikyo Miso (sweet white Miso) made in Kyoto. The sea bass fillet was marinated overnight to let the Miso soak thoroughly into the fish and tenderizes the fish to give it an absolutely delicious, sweet and rich flavor. This dish is perfect to go with white rice.


Miso Shiro – Commonly known as Miso Soup, is a traditional Japanese soup consisting of a stock called dashi into which softened miso paste is mixed. The additional ingredients such as Japanese Tofu and other top ups were placed just beside the soup.


Wanko Soba – Wanko in Japanese means bowl, is a style of Japanese soba noodles originating from Iwate Prefecture in Japan. It consists of a small serving of soba noodles in a small bowl. Is a cold type of noodle, usually served during summer. This dish is one of the signatures here in Kampachi. Once tried, you will sure come back for it again.


Additionally, there were some other delightful dishes as below:

  • Salmon Carpaccio
  • Tai Nigiri
  • BBQ Nigiri
  • California Rolls
  • Futo Maki
  • Soft Crab Maki


For those on a sodium watch out, Kampachi also provides Tosa (Japanese Soy Sauce) that is lower in salt level.


Overall, Kampachi serves one of the greatest authentic Japanese food in Penang. It is a great place for gathering and chilling out with family and friends. The food here is delicious and fresh, and the choices of Japanese food is aplenty. The only drawback is the hotel parking rate here is on the high side.

Buffet Lunch
Available: 12.00 noon – 2.30 pm
Price: RM98 nett per adult , RM49 nett per child

Buffet Dinner
Available: 6.30 pm – 10.00 pm
Price: RM128 nett per adult , RM64 nett per child

Prices are inclusive of 10% service charge and 6% GST

Editor’s Review (5 Stars Rank):

Price (more stars, more reasonable)
Food Presentation

Quick Facts:

Family Friendly
Pork Free
Credit Card
Private Room (Private Area)
WIFI Available

Operation hours: 12:00 noon – 2:30 pm (Mon – Sun);  6:00 pm – 10:00 pm (Sun – Fri), 6:30pm – 10:00 pm (Sat)
Contact: 04-632 7000
Address: 1 Jalan Bukit Jambul , Bayan Lepas , 11900 Penang, Malaysia
GPS: 5.3370286,100.2824649

Sitigun Cafe, Georgetown – A Bicycle Pit-Stop Cafe

Ever since Georgetown has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage City, the city has gained so much popularity for its heritage and the government has placed so much effort to promote and preserve its heritage image. For example, some areas in Georgetown has dedicated bicycle lanes for cyclists to take a ride in the city center and to admire the city’s heritage.


Sitigun is one of the places for cyclists to drop by for a break before proceeding to the next destination. The cafe has a traditional Malay/Indonesian feel with some Wau’s hanging from the ceiling which makes this cafe stands out on its own for its unique decoration.


The Slogan for Sitigun Cafe – A cup of coffee is A cup of culture, A cup of respect and A cup of love. It is a very meaningful quote for coffee lovers.


Cappuccino – RM9.80, serving with thick layer of white milk foam on top. By looking at it, people would have thought that this is a cup of plain frothed milk. However, the ‘goodness’ of the drink is at the bottom of the cup. The thick texture of espresso was ‘hidden’ beneath the frothed milk. If you prefer to enjoy a good ratio of milk and coffee, I recommend you to stir the cappuccino in order to enjoy the aroma of coffee from the first sip instead of towards the end of the drink  For cappuccino’s in other cafes, usually you are not required to stir.


Latte – RM8.80, although it did not have a coffee art, the frothed milk on top was good enough to judge the quality of this latte. The frothed milk in the middle was surrounded by a thin layer of coffee. The texture of the top layer was so smooth and fine which makes you feel like taking a sip immediately. Taste wise, it had a strong coffee taste and was good enough for caffeine lovers like myself.


Croissant, Scrambled Egg and Sausage – RM13.80, this set of breakfast came with croissant, chicken sausages, scrambled eggs, some jam and a cube of butter.


This is a typical type of breakfast. the fresh croissant can be sliced into half and stuffed with sausages and scrambled eggs which made a great combination.


Panini with Chicken Ham, Egg and Cheese – RM13.50, In Italy, panini means “small bread, bread rolls”. It is a grilled sandwich made from bread other than sliced bread. The bread was stuffed with ham, egg and cheese and then toasted and pressed to perfection. Serving together with this dish was some healthy greens.


The combination of ham, egg and cheese could never go wrong. This is a fulfilling and balanced meal that is suitable for young and old.


Overall, it was a nice pit-stop for breakfast. the serving of the food here is pork free while the ambiance here was cozy. The drawback was the difficulty to get parking and the pricing for the food here was slightly on the high side.

Editor’s Review (5 Stars Rank):

Price (more stars, more reasonable)
Food Presentation

Quick Facts:

Family Friendly
Pork Free
Credit Card
Private Room (Private Area)
WIFI Available

Operation hours: 8:00am – 7:00pm (Close on Monday)
Contact: 04-228 7108
Address: 30 Jalan Nagore, 10050 Pulau Pinang. Malaysia
GPS: 5.4212036,100.3239574

Thomas & Friends Making Tracks to Celebrate Children’s Day in Gurney Paragon Penang

Thomas Town, Puteri Harbour in collaboration with Mattel Southeast Asia and Gurney Paragon Mall, kicks off Malaysia Children’s Day early with the Thomas Town “Mini and Mighty” Malaysia Tour on 1 – 16 October 2016.


Mini & Mighty was officiated by YAB Lim Guan Eng who gave an opening speech about the establishments of Thomas Town.


Kick-off of the Thomas Town Mini & Mighty Malaysia Tour Penang (from left): Fong Jia-Li, Marketing Manager for Infant and Preschool Category of Mattel Southeast Asia; Khor Tze Ming, Group Executive Director, Hunza Group; YAB Tuan Lim Guan Eng, Chief Minister of Penang; William Edwards, CEO, Attractions, Themed Attractions Resorts & Hotels; Fahruddin Najumudeen, General Manager of Thomas Town, and Dato’  Khor Siang Gin, Group Managing Director, Hunza Group.


The tour of “Mini and Mighty” is ready and set to create a memorable experiences for the children of Penang with fun-filled family-friendly activities such as:

Thomas Town Track Challange


Thomas Train Ride


Story Telling Adventures


Thomas Maze Challenge.


Meet-and-Greet sessions with Thomas & Friends characters, Rusty & Dusty and Sir Topham Hatt.


During the launch my little bun had the honor to sit next to YAB Lim for a light lunch session at Urban Food Hall – Johnny Rockets.


For those that looking to visit Thomas Town at Puteri Harbour, Johor you can get the promotion price at RM99 for 2 tickets at the counter here (Normal price is 1 x ticket RM65).


As an added treat, the “Mini and Mighty” Tour will also allow young Thomas enthusiasts the chance to stand with 70 one-meter-tall Thomas & Friends engines in Penang. Replicated from the popular Thomas & Friends television series, visitor will able to spot familiar engines such as Thomas, Percy, James and Gordon, as well as some surprise engines decorated in special themes like Dino, Heroes, Spooky, Racers, Neon, Robo, Chillin’ and Metallic.

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For shoppers who would like to win Thomas & Friends MINIS Collector’s Playwheel, Gurney Paragon Mall’s shopping voucher or All Park Pass to Puteri Harbour attractions, they can log on to Gurney Paragon Mall’s Facebook fanpage and join a photo contest by submitting their photos taken with the Thomas & Friends MINIS engines along with a creative caption. In addition, the first daily 10 new Gurney Paragon Card sign-ups will be entitled to receive a Thomas Town pass worth RM85. All these are happening from now until 16 October 2016.

Orient Fitness D’ Home Fund Raising 2016

Most people know Steven Goh as the food blogger, the one who always hunts for good food. However, for those who knows me well will also know that I am a gym rat. To me, my motto of life is “Balance”. Everything needs to have a good balance. Having good food is a great enjoyment of life. On the other hand, working out at the gym gives me a healthy life. This is what I called a balanced “Wellness”. I used to be an unhealthy overweight guy with a lot of urban sickness until I got myself into gym and fitness.


After looking at my own transformation and improvement in my health, I told myself that I will not go back to the old me. Now, fitness is almost my daily routine. To encourage Penangites moving towards a healthier and fitter lifestyle, Orient Fitness is organizing some fund raising activities for D’ Home (The Mental Health Association which is a non-governmental organization set up in late 2004. Their mission is to provide support, guidance and education for caregivers and families who have loved ones suffering from persistent mental illness). This program is endorsed by the Penang state government.


  • Event Date:  5th – 6th November 2016 (Saturday and Sunday)
  • Time           :   9:30am – 5:30pm


  • Boxing
  • Muay Thai
  • Arm Wrestling
  • Indoor Rowing


  • Zumba
  • Yoga
  • Tai Chi
  • Children Coloring Contest
  • Blood Donation

For the Children Coloring Contest, the form and details are shown below. You can click on the form to enlarge it and print it out to bring to the counter for faster processing.


For those who would like to donate for this charity event, you can even download the form below to submit to the counter on that day.


It is very important to live a balanced lifestyle. Wellness is an essential part of urban lifestyle these days. Let’s eat healthily and stay healthily.

Sai Toh Lim, Raja Uda – The Famous Sai Toh Koay Teow Thng

Sai Toh Fish Ball (Yellow Tail Snapper) is one of the most selected fish for making good fish balls which is an essential ingredient for Koay Teow Thng. Fish balls made from the yellow tail snapper are springy and bouncy in texture, that is the reason why it is a popular choice for preparing Koay Teow Thng.


Sai Toh Lim, the name itself already shows they are specializing in Sai Toh Fish Ball. This is also indirectly implies that they are selling Koay Teow Thng as well.


This shop is always packed with people even during office hours.


Koay Teow Thng – (S) RM4.30, (B) RM5.30. The taste of the broth was refreshing. The pork bones that had been cooked for long hours contributed to the richness of the soup, making it naturally sweet and delicious. Served with flat rice noodles (koay teow), minced pork meat, fish cake slices and sai toh fish balls, it was a complete and satisfying meal on its own.


Sai Toh Fish Ball with Soup – (S) RM2.20, (B) RM5.30, the selling point of this place is none other than the Sai Toh Fish Balls. The bouncy and the smooth texture of the fish balls were making a name for themselves.


Soup Ramen – (S) RM4.30, (B) RM5.30, the homemade ramen was served with fish cake slices, deep fried fish fillets, minced meat and some cauliflowers. The noodles were springy and were homemade. It would serve as a great alternative to the regular flat rice noodles.


Fried Dumpling – RM2.70, crunchy and delicious fried dumplings stuffed with minced meat, spring onions, carrot and water chestnut.


For those who love the excitement of spiciness, the dumpling chili sauce is the excellent combination to pair with the dumpling.


Overall, the koay teow thng here was delicious and the bouncy sai toh fish balls were the highlight of this place. The price was reasonable while parking was not a concern here.

Editor’s Review (5 Stars Rank):

Price (more stars, more reasonable)
Food Presentation

Quick Facts:

Family Friendly
Pork Free
Credit Card
Private Room (Private Area)
WIFI Available

Operation hours: 6:00am – 5:00pm (Close on Monday)
Contact: 04-228 3888
Address: 15 & 17, Lorong Ceri 6, Taman Ceri, Butterworth, Pulau Pinang, 12300, Malaysia
GPS: 5.4215755,100.3782911


Macalister Mansion, Georgetown – Much Ado About Shrooms

Macalister Mansion is one of the prestigious and prominent places for fine dining. Every now and then, the chef of Macalister Mansion will come out with a new menu to suit the request and taste from all walks of life. This round, Macalister Mansion’s Head Chef Johnson Wong is bringing his creativity to the next level, which is by utilising different types of mushroom as the theme of his new 5-Course dinner.


This new 5-course dinner is named as “Much Ado About Shrooms”, priced at RM228 nett per pax, with additional RM100 for wine pairing.

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Hong Kee Wan Thun Mee, Campbell Street – Classical Bamboo Making Wan Thun Mee

Wan Tan Mee or Wan Thun Mee is one of the Top 5 “must-try” hawker food in Penang. Hong Kee Wan Thun Mee is one of the famous wantan mee in Penang. The first time I tried “Gou Low”(高佬)’s wantan mee which is the owner of Hong Kee back in 2012, please read Koh Low Wan Tan Mee, Yi Garden Cafe (怡园茶室) – Classical Wan Tan Mee.

During that time, Hong Kee was still located at Yi Garden Cafe and they operated in a very humble noodle stall.

After 4 years of consistency in preparing wantan mee, Hong Kee is now having their own shop at Campbell Street.


One of the selling points of Hong Kee Wan Thun Mee is the homemade traditional bamboo pressed noodle. Instead of using the machine to process the noodle, the traditional bamboo press method will produce more springy and smooth noodle.


Although Hong Kee had moved to its own independent shop, the traditional way of preparing the noddle by using bamboo press is still being maintained. Further more, customers can now “witness” the bamboo press noodle making process through a see-through room in the shop.


Located at the bustling central of Georgetown, this place is always packed with people especially during weekends and public holidays. It is advisable to be there during on a weekday or even off breakfast and lunch hour.


The owner of Hong Kee is still running the show as of today to ensure the standard and quality of the wantan noodle.


The crowd of this shop will not get any lesser on weekends and public holidays.


There are many varieties of wantan mee here and they come in 3 portions: Wan Tan Mee (Small) – RM5.50, (Medium) – RM6.00, (Large) – RM6.50. Besides wantan mee, there are also Yee Foo mee, Fried Hor Fun and such in the shop.

Dried Wantan Mee (with 3 wantans)


Soup Based Wantan Mee (with 3 wantans)


The soup was cooked using pork broth which was naturally sweet and packed with flavor. The noodles were thin and springy and along with it were slices of char siew (barbeque pork), 3 big wantans and some veggie. This bowl of wantan mee soup tasted simple but delicious.


For myself, I always prefer the dried version of wantan mee as the flavoring of soy sauce and dark soy sauce completes the springy wantan noodle. The wantan itself also tasted great which did not have strong pork odor and it is larger in size than other regular wantan mee stalls. I personally love the wantan here compared to another Hong Kee located at Kampung Malabar.


Overall, the bite feel and taste of the wan tan noodle here is one of the top ones in Penang. The taste of the wan tan was chewy and tasty. The price for a bowl of wantan mee in RM5.50 which is on the higher end. However, with their unique and traditional way of preparing the noodle and the larger wantans served together with the noodle, it is value for money. The waiting time here will be long if you are here during weekends and public holidays. As always, looking for a place to park in Georgetown area is a concern.

Editor’s Review (5 Stars Rank):

Food Presentation

Quick Facts:

Family Friendly
Pork Free
Corkage Charge (RM200 per bottle)
Credit Card
Smoking (available outdoor)
Private Room

Operation hours: 8:30am – 10:00pm (Close Wednesday)
Contact: 04-2619875
Address: 37, Campbell Street, George Town, Penang
GPS: 5.4172543,100.3330603