Thursday, April 23, 2009

Penang Trip - Day 4

Today is our last day in Penang. We didn't have our usual breakfast at the Hotel. Instead, we chose to dine outside as we want to try something different.

Zim Sum @ Anson Road

Zim Sum Restaurant is one of the famous Dim Sum spot (which looks like a market place to me) recommended by the locals in George Town. It is located slightly opposite KDU Penang in Anson Road.

Zim Sum Restaurant looks like those favourite shop of those grandpa where they will meet their breakfast kakis and they would chat over hot brewed Chinese tea and Dim Sum till the cows come home.

The serving is typical Dim Sum style where trolleys are pushed along the isles with all sorts of appetizing mixture. The selection offered here is really wide. No wonder it's also known as the house of Dim Sum.

However, they don't have a food note to record whatever customers have taken. Their practice is to bill based on how many plates of food on the customer's table. Obviously, they are still using the old system.

The Dim Sum didn't look good by its outlook. The overall food quality here is below average, same goes to the service. A decent Dim Sum restaurant in SS2 Petaling Jaya is better than this.

Ghee Hiang Biscuit @ Anson Road

I've always loved traditional Chinese biscuits. We went to the famous Ghee Hiang since we were just around the corner literally.

Ghee Hiang has a beautiful bungalow as their shop at the junction of Anson Road and Macalister Road. We did took some photos at their store front. Ghee Hiang also has another older shop located in Beach Street.

Ghee Hiang biscuits are still much sought after despite being around for the past 150 years using recipes that originated from Fujian Province, China. They still uses lard for their dough, something not very healthy but it lend an excellent texture and taste to the pastry.

They have also expanded their product line over the years to include white coffee and moon cakes. I do hope to try their moon cakes one day.

Ghee Hiang Oriental Almond Cookies, Him Heang Qing Tang Bing (which was bought the day before) & Ghee Hiang Beh Teh Saw.

Ghee Hiang Pure White Coffee.

I bought 2 boxes of Beh Teh Saw, 1 box of Oriental Almond Cookies and 1 box of Pure White Coffee.

The Beh Teh Saw is flavourful. The skin is crispy and thick. The interior is made of molasses (mak tong gou) combined with sesame seeds with its flaky skin achieved by kneading the dough in many layers. On the other hand, the Oriental Almond Cookies is made of crispy pastry with ground almonds. It's the crispiest almond cookies i've ever had. Tasty!

The Chocolate Boutique @ Leith Street

This mansion-turned-Chocolate Boutique offers a wide variety of chocolates. One will find the renovated rooms with interesting themes of Tiramisu, Fruits, Health, Sweetheart, Coffee, Panned Chocolate and Malaysian Collection.

We were shown around by a woman who explained all of the different chocolates and kept giving us samples whilst walking round. The service is top notch.

I just thought that the Malaysian Collection was interesting. This special range of chocolates are made of real fruits in Malaysia, such as mango, durian, potato chips and chilli. The range of chocolates promote our local fruit well.

Beside chocolates, the Boutique also sells coffee. It ranges from traditional white coffee to espresso coffee using roasted beans coated with chocolate that makes a great drink.

Milk Chocolate & Espresso Coffee Delight Chocolate.

Koon Kee White Coffee.

I bought Milk Chocolate, Espresso Coffee Delight Chocolate and Koon Kee White Coffee. The Espresso Coffee Delight is a panned chocolate. This coffee bean coated chocolate tasted sweet and bitter at the same time. I'm loving it.

Frankly, this Boutique sells generic mass production chocolates at a high price. The prices of the chocolates are way too expensive if you ask me.

Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi @ Cannon Street

Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi is a UNESCO World Heritage site. A "kongsi" is a clanhouse for Chinese of the same clan or surname.

With its long history and beautiful architecture, the Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi is an icon of Heritage Conservation. Known as the Heritage Jewel of Penang, the Khoo Kongsi comprises of the majestic clanhouse, opera stage, the courtyard and 24 heritage units.

A Penang's Hokkien clanhouse perpetuating Confucian practices, the craftsmanship and artisan work on this building is unparalleled anywhere in Malaysia. One must realised that time and money has been spent to restore this enormous Chinese clanhouse of over 100 years of history.

Reason why Khoo Kongsi is worth a mention:-

1) This historical place was a filming location for the Hollywood movie "Anna and the King", starring Chow Yun-Fatt and Jodie Foster.

2) We need to pay RM5.00 as admission fee to the temple square and clanhouse museum.

Goh Thew Chik Chicken Rice @ Chulia Street

We had our lunch at Goh Thew Chik Chicken Rice Restaurant in Chulia Street.

It was packed with lunch crowd when we were there but we managed to get a table. This time, the rice served is typical (oily) chicken rice. The portion is quite substantial. The rice is fragrant, the slices of chicken is smooth and the soup is flavourful.

Above all, it's cheap! Chicken Rice with Soup for 2 pax only costs us RM10.00 (inclusive of 2 glasses of lime juice). This shop is just a stone's throw away from Wai Kee Char Siew Restaurant, but the former is better in terms of price and environment.

We left Penang at 4pm. I had a wonderful trip, accompanied by wonderful friends. Traveling is the best way to recharge oneself. Hopefully there is more to come.

[Disclaimer: The opinion expressed here are based entirely on personal taste buds, view and preference and may vary from others.]

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