Thursday, August 29, 2013

Le French Wrap at Publika (Beside BIG Supermarket)

People who frequent Publika, and especially those who do their groceries at BIG Supermarket will have noticed the little black-and-white place that popped up (near the shop selling greens and flowers). The little place is called Le French Wrap -- basically a place where you can get all sorts of crepes. 

Having a French hubby meant I had authentic crepes at home whenever I want. Though with this new place, I admit, we were still curious if it was authentic and good, so we gave it a try.

The French owner was there when we tried it on a weekend. He was very friendly and definitely knows customer service. 

We tried out the Romance en Provence (hubby comes from Provence!) and this was one of the priciest on the menu, due to the truffle content. We were not disappointed with the food... it was tasty and I think the size will satisfy the typical Malaysian (because it is not too small). The crepe came with 3 different sauces which the owner kindly provided for me to taste. Loved all three ... one of it is wasabi mayo, the other is aioli and the last one mustard-y kind of taste.

For those who want a taste of authentic French crepe at a reasonable price, then Le French Wrap is a good place for you. Very casual seating and you can even eat it while walking if you are really in a rush. Crepes are very dynamic and easy to handle so you can eat it like a burrito if you are on the go.

Will probably go back to try their Sweet Crepes one of these days.

Worth visiting when in Publika!

Le French Wrap - a little piece of France in Publika
Le French Wrap - mix of modern and traditional French design
Romance en Provence
Taste test -- the French wrap which had truffles inside, together with some veggies and chicken pieces
RM18 for the Romance en Provence
The inside of the crepe - some greens, tomato, chicken pieces and truffles
Le French Wrap
Kiosk, Upper Ground , same level at BIG Supermarket
Publika Shopping Mall

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Eco Green TTDI Vegetarian Fare and Ice Cream Treat at Haagen Dazs

As I am riding on this vegetarian and health wave, we decided to check out what they have for lunch at Eco Green in TTDI. The other day I came to visit the restaurant since they have an attached small grocery that sells organic stuff. I mentally noted that I will come back and try their food -- and here we are!

Hubby was still in his juice fasting stage (day 7) and he ordered a Green Juice to start off the meal. It wasn't too bad, but much smaller quantity than what I would usually make.

I tried the Fruit Tea that they were having on specials, and it was nice, a bit on the too sweet side, so I diluted it with some water.

Green Juice
Fruit Tea, cute served with a little martini-kind of glass
We ordered 3 sets of meals plus another salad. The Lemongrass salad was different and tasty. However it was a bit disappointing to see salad leaves which had a bit of brownish stuff on it... was hoping their produce would be superior to other salads I have had in other places.

Lemongrass Salad - nice but wish the salad leaves were more fresh!

I ordered a sandwich, thinking my daughter might enjoy the mushroom and cheese melt. I was so wrong as she didn't touch it and I ended up tasting it. Not bad, but kind of overpriced for a sandwich. I guess it's due to the fact that everything is organic, hence the hefty price tag.

A bit overpriced sandwich - Mushroom and Cheese Melt
We asked the waiter before ordering this dish, and he assured us that it was not spicy. However, it proved to be false as we found this dish too spicy to our taste. My husband started having hiccups right after a few spoonfuls. And he suffered more hiccups and gassy stomach the whole Sunday afternoon due to this dish. 

Masala Tofu - too spicy for our taste!
I ordered this roasted chicken meal, which is supposed to be some kind of clean chicken (which they sell at their grocery as well). The soup accompanied it was so small but tasty, I am wondering what powder they added to that broth which made it a bit sweet. My daughter liked it. 

The chicken was not too tasty-- just okay. I asked if they have tomato sauce, the waiter said no. So I had to enjoy in "au naturel" without any additional seasoning.

Roasted Chicken

Overall, our bill came out to RM115.10 for the 3 dishes plus a salad and 2 drinks. The price is mainly due to some of the organic ingredients they use, though I am not sure if this place is fully organic. 

For the ambience, the place is nice and clean. For a Sunday lunch, we were surprised that it had its regular customers... they started trickling in after 1230noon.
RM115.10 for 2 adults and 1 toddler

We decided to give our little girl a treat and went to Bangsar Village afterwards for some ice cream. Haagen Dazs in BV2 is spacious and nice seats, so we went there for a little R&R.

The menu book that they have is very interesting and colorful, definitely easy for a child to comprehend what is available. My daughter chose the Belgian Chocolate while I indulged on a milkshake. Last pregnancy, when I was still working at KLCC, I would succumb to the Coffee Milkshake of Haagen Dazs every now and then... so thinking of the old days, I took the Coffee Milkshake again. It was yummy, though it didn't give me the same satisfaction I thought it would. Maybe my milkshake standards have gone up? Was it because I was still thinking of that Once Upon A Milkshake I had earlier (see review of that HERE).

Anyway, we enjoyed our stay there as it was spacious and the seats were comfortable. They have babu high chair available, so that means my daughter fully enjoyed her scoop of chocolate ice cream. I find that the place is over-staffed and despite seeing so many staff around, it was a little challenging catching their attention (to get more water, the bill, etc). I guess I should be used to the Malaysian type of service by now... anyway we were not rushing for anything so it was okay.

Menu of Haagen Dazs - very colorful and nice pictures!
Haagen Dazs at Bangsar Village 2 (next to Zara)
Specious seats
My Coffee Milkshake
RM39.55 for a milkshake and 1 scoop of ice cream
Happy daughter loves Haagen Dazs
Haagen Dazs
Bangsar Village 2, Jalan Telawi Satu, Bangsar Baru
Tel 03-2287 1096

Eco Green Restaurant
125 Jalan Aminuddin Baki Taman Tun Dr Ismail, KL
Phone 03-77258388

Trial at FlyKidz Solaris

Due to the long break, I had to find some activities to keep my toddler busy. It was the chance for us to try FlyKidz, which I have heard from other parents (and saw their advertising as well at Bonda magazine).

We went on a weekday afternoon to do a trial class, which they charged me for. I noticed that many of the places in Malaysia charge for trial classes - be it music classes, etc. 

By the time they started, there were only 2 other young kids near my daughter's age, while there were other older kids who joined the warm up session. It was nice to see my daughter participating, and I was wondering if this will be something she would be interested in for the long term.

The teachers seem to be very engaged, which is good. Unlike my experience with Gymboree long ago (when my daughter was much younger, we went to the one in Bangsar). The teacher makes a difference in terms of engagement and quality of the activities.

Later on, they were split into two groups, the young ones and the older ones. My daughter went with the young group and they tried several things: small slide, crawling inside a tube, jumping on the trampoline, etc. 

Because there were only 3 students, I guess the attention per student was better than other places. For example when we went to Young Explorer (in One Mont Kiara), their summer camp was obviously over-subscribed and they didn't have enough staff to look over the kids (in my opinion). 

My daughter was dead tired that evening and slept through the night, which is I guess a very good incentive why parents bring their kids to FlyKidz, apart from learning some gymnastic skills. 

The location of the place is in Solaris, which is convenient for people who live in Mont Kiara. The only hassle was the parking (which is near Cold Storage) was a bit of a long walk for us especially in the heat. It is hard to chance upon a good parking slot on the roads of Solaris (in front of the shops). 

Overall we had a good time. The only downside was the small Japanese boy who did the activities with my daughter passed on his flu. My daughter had fever, sore throat and colds for the next few days because of him...I guess these are unavoidable things especially in a place like this where they are touching everything (and perhaps not sanitizing often enough).

Will probably consider bringing my daughter for a term next time, should she stop her ballerina classes.

Warm up session 

Trampoline time!
Waiting for their turn
Crossing the bridge...
Doing the final pose
Enjoying !!!
Summary shot of FLyKidz
FlyKidz Gymnastic
1-3 Jalan Solaris 3, Mont Kiara (above Coffee Bean)  
Take the lift to the 3rd floor
Phone: 03-62037939

  • Vegetarian Meal at Simple Life Solaris Mont Kiara

    Lately, we have been watching documentaries which are super informative and could convince a meat-eat person (like me) to start thinking vegetarian. That is why I have been on the hunt for good vegetarian food places. Near our place, I discovered that they have one of the branches of Simple Life. We went on a Saturday lunch time, arriving around 11am. I wasn't sure if they were open because when I got there, their signage said "closed", however I already saw a table with 2 people eating. I guess they forgot to put the "open" sign.

    We went in and ordered. The food took a while to come out, and we were very hungry. At this point, I think whatever they served out will taste good to us because of our hunger. You see, we have been doing "juice" breakfast for the past week, and hubby was on his 6th day of Juice Fast. I will write a separate article about the juice fasting (and the benefits of it) on a separate blog post.

    One main difference with Woods Microbiotics is that this place was more spacious, had more tables and more welcoming. In terms of food, foodies who are into pure organic will appreciate Woods more because they are fully organic, while Simple Life is more of vegetarian -- not really focusing much on organic. They do sell some organic stuff in the store, mostly finished goods, many vegetarian stuff from Taiwan.

    My set meal, which was a mushroom sweet and sour set, was pretty good. No regrets. 

    My set meal - sweet and sour mushroom, came with some rice and soup
    We also ordered some a la carte stuff, like this fried pumpkin. My daughter initially thought it was chicken nuggets and dug into one. However she didn't finish it. We did enjoy it though. Tasty, especially when I dipped it into my sweet and sour sauce (from the set meal). It came also with some basil leaf.

    Crispy Pumpkin Wedges
    My husband ordered a veggie fried rice which had basil leaves. It was tasty in itself and portion quite generous. It was topped with some shredded cabbage.

    Basil Leaves Fried Rice
    Then, I ordered a dish "Nasi Lemak", which is of course vegetarian. This one was for my maid and she couldn't finish the whole thing. Quite a generous portion. The "meat" part was composed of some tempe and some pumpkin, which had some nasi lemak sauce taste.
    Nasi Lemak vegetarian style

    The menu had many nice pictures which can help you choose your vegetarian meal. I noted that the prices are much lower than Woods Microbiotics, as well as compared to my recent trip to Eco Green (TTDI branch). This main difference the organic factor -- organic stuff cost higher, hence higher meal prices.

    Simple Life Menu
    The Nasi Lemak which I ordered for my maid
    The Sweet and Sour mushroom which I enjoyed
    Crispy Pumpkin Wedges were interesting
    For my daughter, we ordered the children set meal which came with a drink, some alphabet-looking fries and "chicken nuggets" which were in fact made of tofu. My daughter ate the rice and the nuggets, and a piece of the alphabet fries. Was quite surprised she also tried some of the raw cabbage!

    Children Set Meal - my daughter ate half of the dish

    The overall experience was not bad. The price is also very reasonable, especially if vegetarian people plan to eat there often. I did a take-away of a Mushroom Seasoning which is from Taiwan. This is something you can add when you cook vegetarian dishes, to enhance taste naturally.

    Total bill for 3 adults and 1 toddler was Rm92 inclusive of the take-away seasoning.

    Bill for 3 adults and 1 toddler
    The Simple Life experience at Solaris Mont Kiara
    Simple Life Restaurant (Vegetarian)
    11-G Jalan Solaris 4, Solaris Mont Kiara
    Tel: 03-6203 0528

    Sunday, August 11, 2013

    Once Upon a Milk Shake KLCC: Heavenly Milkshakes!

    Growing up, one of the things I loved was milkshakes. Although I didn't have a lot of that, it was always a special treat whenever I had one. When adulthood came, I tried to avoid it, and occasionally treated myself to one when I deserve it (e.g after a week of good exercise).

    Now that I am on my 8th month of pregnancy, I found myself again craving for some milkshake. It doesn't help that I saw some of the reviews of this new milkshake place in KLCC. So during the Raya break, while lazying at home, I bugged hubby to drive us to KLCC to try out the new place. Thankfully he obliged and we were off to KLCC. I thought that the place will be less packed because of the Raya Break (maybe people are back in their kampung). However, I was so wrong. KLCC was full of people. It was crazy full!
    We made our way to the food court to find the Once Upon a Milkshake (which is right in front of Boost Juice). I was happy to see that they had 3 different sizes of milkshake, which means I could have a try without drinking too much quantity... especially as we know that milkshake is not too kind to our fats!

    I ordered the chocolate milkshake to do a true test of yummy-ness. And it didn't disappoint. The chocolate milkshake was very thick and rich... and tasty! I would have preferred less thick, though it was still yummy and slithering its way up the straw, every sip was heavenly!

    My daughter insisted on having the "blue" milkshake, which was bubble gum flavor. To my surprise, it cost almost double of the chocolate flavor... because the waiter said this is a "special" flavor. I requested them to make it more milky and liquid than my chocolate, because my daughter might find it too thick. They obliged and it was more liquid than mine. However, after tasting it, I don't see why someone should pay more for this flavor -- the chocolate one was superb. Perhaps just stick to the normal flavors -- they are more worth it.

    RM6.90 for the chocolate milkshake (small size).
    Worth it!

    Small chocolate milkshake -- heavenly!
    Side counter of Once Upon A Milkshake - you can see the staff preparing the shakes
    3 different sizes for you to choose from. Glad they have the small size, which is cute!
    Booth of Once Upon A Milkshake at KLCC Foodcourt
    My chocolate shake was finished, while we ordered the Bubble Gum flavor for my daughter.. RM6.90 vs RM10.90 because they said Bubblegum flavor is special. To me it was so-so. Stick to normal flavors.
    To me it was worth the drive to KLCC just for this!

    Once Upon A Milkshake
    Signatures Foodcourt of Suria KLCC

    Woods Bio Marche at SS2 Petaling Jaya: Organic Restaurant Review

    The past few days got me thinking about healthier food due to two films (documentaries) which I have watched. Both films were interesting and will get you really thinking, and I highly recommend that people check it out on their free time. One of the film is called "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead", which I found very entertaining and easy to watch. It ran for 1.5 hours and you could literally see the transformation of the people who went on the juice fast of fresh fruits and vegetables. The other film is called "Forks Over Knives" which will give you informative statistics that show vegetables and fruits are the way to go -- meaning becoming vegetarian should be the aim for a healthier life.

    After church on a Sunday, we headed to SS2 to find the vegetarian restaurant which was recommended by a friend of mine, as well as Google search results for KL's organic food scene came out with the same entry: Woods Bio Marche, an organic restaurant which used to have a branch in Bangsar (now closed down due to high rental increase). We went to SS2 Petaling Jaya and spent about 10 minutes in the car looking for the place. 

    Finally when we arrived, the place was packed, no seats available for the 4 of us (me, hubby, little Alex and my maid). We had to awkwardly stand around the middle, not knowing what else to do while trying to stare and check around if anyone was leaving since it was about 1:30pm already. Finally after the awkward scene, one of the waitress approached us to inform us perhaps we can wait outside with seats and she will call us when the table is available. We obliged and waited outside while checking out their menu (with our grumbling tummies).

    After 5 minutes, we finally got our table. The place was packed on a Sunday, an encouraging sign that this place must be good. We finally ordered our food and the waitress was knowledgable in suggesting some stuff when I asked questions. We were so hungry that I went to get a cinnamon bun (they were selling some organic bread) and shared it with my daughter while waiting for our meal.

    The owner herself was around, and she was helping out in getting orders and ensuring things are okay. The staff seem to be friendly, however not all of them speak very good English.

    Let me give you the positives and improvement points of this organic restaurant:

    • Simple & clean interior, no pretenses and friendly staff
    • Some of the food came quickly, which was good because we were so hungry
    • You can get some organic produce for take-away eg. fruits, vegetables, etc
    • Highlights of the food we tasted, must order stuff are:
    1. Bento Sets - it came piping hot and a variety of veggie surprises inside. The Sunday bento lunch box was nice and tasty -- even for a meat eater like myself. Was very satisfied with the order. It came with soup of the day, which was okay and served piping hot as well. I ordered a second soup for my daughter, which came promptly.
    2. Lemon Grass Ginger Tea - hubby enjoyed this warm drink, we ordered two of those. Very smooth and tasty
    3. Cinnamon Fruit Bun - tasty and nice, not too soft or hard. Had some raisins inside. Either it was very good or we were very, very hungry
    4. Shitake Steak - this is one of the highlights -- must order this! I loved it. Wish I knew how to make it ... it was very tasty and delicious.
    5. Choco Chip Cookie - we took away one piece since my daughter didn't eat anything in the end. The food just wasn't toddler friendly (at least to my daughter). Surprisingly, it was good. Unfortunately, my daughter didn't eat much of it and I ended up finishing it.
    6. Braised momen tofu - this is a tasty tofu dish that you can order to accompany your rice. Had some nice sauce with it.
    • The tempura spring rolls came really late, although they did come and tell us it will follow. Wonder why something that looks like appetizers would come out last (when my bento box was already wiped out)
    • The Kale and Apple smoothie was okay however would have been nicer if served with some ice. We were so hungry we didn't bother asking anymore
    • The bill - they double charged me on the soup of the day ... one soup was supposed to be part of the bento set and I ordered another one ... instead, they charged for 2 soup of the day. 
    • They should at least inform me that if I wanted to take-away my unfinished food, that they willl charge me RM3.50 (plus additional tax) for the food container. This really came as a surprise to me... wow! I don't mind if they told me, however it just  dawned on me when I saw the bill breakdown when were in the car.
    • They ask you to pay for the total bill without seeing the bill. The indian-looking guy behind the counter was a pleasant guy, however he just asked me to pay RM161.40 without showing me anything. When I asked for the bill he just said "okay don't worry we will give you the bill"... and this happened after all the transaction has been done. Their bill is also not easy to understand, as each entry they have the service charge. See photo below.
    Would we go back? Maybe, we will. I guess the more we adapt into the organic, vegetarian lifestyle, we will be looking for places to go -- and maybe this is one of the better ones. I will be more careful with the bill before paying -- that's for sure.

    Ambience 7/10 - simple and clean ambience; seats are very close together though, so you may end up really near beside some stranger

    Food 8/10 - tasty organic food and filling. This was more satisfying that our meal at Living Food (see review HERE)

    Service 8/10 - friendly staff, not all can speak good English and be aware of bill before paying

    Interior of Woods Bio Marche in SS2
    Some of the stuff they were selling at the restaurant
    Organic veggies and other stuff
    Small piece of the Cinnamon Bun which was tasty
    Lemongrass Ginger Tea which my husband loved
    Open kitchen where you can see them in action
    Interior of the Woods Bio Marche in SS2
    Some of the food on display 
    Lemongrass Ginger Tea and the Kale-Apple Smoothie
    Soup of the day - cabbage soup
    Bento box for Sunday - I truly enjoyed this one and would highly recommend it!
    The very tasty mushroom Shitake Steak. The one on top is the Special Ramen - which was okay. I found the noodles
    a bit on the weird texture side, kind of hard compared to usual ramen
    Hijiki Fried Rice - my husband enjoyed this one, he said not bad
    Braised Momen Tofu - very tasty dish and would recommend this as a side dish to your rice
    Spring Rolls - nice and warm when it came out. Came with slightly spicy tomato sauce.
    Not cheap for a lunch meal for 3 adults and 1 toddler. RM 161.40
    Also take note of the charges -- I forgot to check thoroughly.
    They over charged me for the soup - one soup was part of the bento box and I ordered another one... and instead they charged me double. Also a surprise to me -- they charged RM3.50 (food packing container) plus taxes for the take-away container! The food is pricey enough to cover for it, in my opinion. 

    Woods Bio Marche Macrobiotics
    54 Jalan ss2/72, Petaling Jaya
    Tel 03-79600260

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