Saturday, April 24, 2010

Honeymoon Part 5

After leaving Pangkor Laut Resort, we drove further north to another island - Penang with 1 aim in our minds - food! More yummy food!! As a wedding gift from my best friend, we got to stay at a very modern hotel - G Hotel - located at the famous Gurney Drive close to many of the famous hawker centres. 
On the first night, straight away we went to the spot where I remember all the nice hawkers were (the last time I was at Gurney Drive was I think probably around 10 yrs ago). 
The 1 thing that we had to have was the Penang fried kuay teow. Unfortunately the standard of food at all these hawkers here had dropped. Either that or our expectation were too high from all the anticipation since months ago. This was oily, soggy, not what a good char kuay teow supposed to be. 

Another famous local Penang food that was ruined by the deteriorating hawkers - Oysters omelette. The oysters weren't fresh at all with very strong fishy smell. Together with the overly gooey starchy mix, it just wasn't pleasant at all. 

Thinking I should get something that can't really go wrong but still slightly different (which only 1 hawker was selling out of 30 or so of them) - a spicy wonton noodle. I totally forgot that I was in Malaysia. When they wrote spicy, it was SPICY INDEED - unlike Sydney where most of the 'spicy' stuff was around sweet chilli level of spiciness. From the photo it looks quite 'tame', but if you have a closer look, you'll see the orange 'fringe' at the side of the white polystyrene box - which was the chilli oil that was added to the gravy. This thing BURNS!! Robin had 1 mouthful and couldn't take it. I tried and had a few mouthful, but still couldn't finish it. So just ate the deep fried wonton and the vege. So nope, didn't leave a good impression either. Even though none of these was as good as we were expecting them to, we were still full (or rather appetite was ruined). So just got ourselves some drinks and went back to hotel. 

The next morning we decided that we won't try anything that's not on our "Penang good food directory". We didn't use the directory the day before because from memory the Gurney Drive hawker centre was really good + we were tired from driving so thought we would just have something nearby. So, the first thing we wanted to get is the best Penang char kuay teow. We managed to find the stall, but it was VERY HARD to find a parking in that area. We had to go round the block like 3 times for a street parking. It was worth it though. The stall was inside a coffee shop and while waiting for our char kuay teow we also ordered some yam cake from a different stall. This yam cake is so good with the deep fried shallot and dried prawns. 
Knowing that the servings were going to be small, we also ordered a prawn noodle to share. Luckily the chilli was served separately in the spoon instead of mixing it in the soup. So Robin actually managed to eat this as well. 
Now here's the famous Sisters Char Kuay Teow. This was sooooo much better than the other we had the night before!!! Tasted better, looked better, we were much happier with this. (For those who might want to know, this is Sisters at Jalan Macalister - near junction of Jalan Macalister/Jalan Perak.) 1 thing that I miss in char kuay teow is the cockles. They don't seem to fry kuay teow with cockles anymore. Prawns were used instead. 
As for the best part of this Penang trip, the asam laksa!! A friend took me there years ago, which I had absolutely no idea how to get back there again. The only thing I remember was that it was near Kek Lok Si Temple. We didn't really have anything to do after our breakfast, so we decided to go do some sight seeing since it's Robin's first time at Penang. Guess what we found on our way?? This AWESOME asam laksa stall!! Thanks to the section of my brain that's keeping 'unimportant information', I was surprised that I could actually recognise the stall - at the side of the road with the sugarcane juice stall next to it. Both stalls were still there, just like how I remembered from a few years ago. The laksa wasn't as hot as it looked. We just had to pick the chilli out :p The soup was sour from the asam (tamarind) with lots of shredded fish. The black patch was the sweet prawn paste that was added on top. The noodle was very smooth and slippery (fun to slurp loudly :p). Together with some mint leaves, pineapple and onion, this was quite an appetizing dish which wouldn't leave you feeling bloated and queasy. 

So conclusion, Gurney Drive was a disappointment to us. Luckily we stumbled upon this laksa stall and many thanks to Elaine for the food directory. Also many thanks to CH for the nice stay at G Hotel which served us ice-cream on arrival kekeke :) 

1 comment:

  1. i agree, hawker stalls at gurney drive is jus for tourist...da food quality has dropped & very pricey too...