Chicken Chop


Serving Size :2

Soy sauce
Worcestershire sauce

2 Chicken thighs (debone)
1 Tomatoes
1 Cucumber
3 cups of Peas and Carrots
White Vinegar
Black Pepper

1) Pound the chicken thighs (deboned) to a desired thickness.
2) Marinate with soy sauce, black pepper and Worcestershire sauce for a few hours or overnight.
3) Mix 3 cups of peas and carrots with mayonnaise, sugar, salt, white vinegar and black pepper. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
4) When ready to cook, pat dry the chicken thighs and coat with flour. Shake off excess flour and fry in hot oil. Brown both sides of the thighs and cook in low heat until they are done (when you can easily poke through the thickest part of the chicken thigh using a fork, the chicken should be ready)
4) Garnish the plate with sliced cucumber and tomatoes, serve the chilled peas and carrots salad and chicken thighs, and your meal is ready!

p/s: the chicken goes really well with ABC chili sauce, which you can get at most South East Asian grocery store.

Gyu-kaku 牛角 East Village


: 34 Cooper Square, New York

: 212-475-2989

Gan and I knew about Gyu-kaku before the yakiniku chain from Tokyo came to New York City. Yakiniku ("grilled meat") by the way, is Japanese adaptation of Korean BBQ. I first found out that about Gyu-kaku from reading US magazine long time ago; it was reported in the magazine that stars such as Leonardo DiCaprio and Gisele Bunchen (who were dating at that time) love eating at Gyukaku in Los Angeles. So we went to check out the restaurant when we were in Los Angeles. Gyu-kaku opened its first restaurant in New York City a couple years after that, we were actually one of the first few people invited for pre-opening. (Pre-opening is a common practice used by new restaurants to test its operation before opening to public)

Gyu-kaku is famous for its modern restaurant interior, smokeless braziers that are built into each table and the use of Bichotan charcoal made from oak. According to the restaurant, Bichotan charcoal is special because it can actually add flavors to the meat. The meat/fish for BBQ comes with three types of marinate - Shio (salt), Tare (flavored soy sauce) or Garlic, with Tsuke (Tare sweet soy) and Ponzu (Japanese citrus soy sauce) dipping sauces to choose from. These dipping sauces are also available at most Japanese supermarkets in the city.

What we like about this yakiniku place is its happy hour specials (MON-FRI: 5 - 6:30PM, MON-THU: 9:30PM - CLOSE), where selected BBQ meats/fish and beer are 50% off from the regular price. Gan and I also like the East Village location better than the midtown one since it's easier to get table here (and the Maitre 'd here is nicer too).

Spicy Kalbi soup

Assorted Vegetables

Harami Skirt Steak and kalbi

Premium Thin Sliced Beef Tongue. Absolutely delicious.

Brazier with Bichotan charcoal

The guys

Gyu-Kaku on Urbanspoon

Ed's Lobster Bar


: 222 Lafayette Street, New York

Phone: 212-343-3236

In case you haven't heard, Ed's lobster bar is opened by Ed McFarland, the former sous chef of the very famous Pearl Oyster Bar. The restaurant made headlines when the owner of Pearl Oyster bar, Rebecca Charles sued Ed McFarland for copying her recipes and concepts. It was rumored that Ed's Lobster Bar might have to close shop because of the pending lawsuit. But thankfully, the case was settled out of court, and seafood lovers like us still get to eat excellent lobster rolls and tasty oysters at Ed's.

I like Ed's better just because it's less crowded and the lobster roll there is really good. The oysters samplers and fried calamari are delicious as well. I would not recommend ordering seafood pasta dishes at Ed's, but everything else is good. The restaurant does not take reservation, but there are usually tables available if you arrive early for dinner.

Yaokuis from Malacca

New England Clam Chowder

Fried Calamari

Lobster Roll

* Totally forgotten to take a picture of the oyster sampler.

Ed's Lobster Bar on Urbanspoon

L'atelier de Joel Robuchon


Four Seasons Hotel New York, 57 East 57th St, New York


It’s a shame that Gan and I did not give Joel Robuchon a chance to impress us with his food for the longest time. We've skipped his restaurants in Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong for the past few years, since we thought they were too “commercialized”. But after hearing good reviews from some close friends, I decided to bring Gan to L'atelier de Joel Robuchon New York to celebrate his birthday this year, and it turned out to be one of the best dinners we have had for a long time! We should have known -- Joel Robuchon, who is one of the leaders in nouvelle cuisine, who mentored Gordon Ramsay -- his food should be amazing.

L'atelier de Joel Robuchon New York is located in the Four Seasons Hotel in midtown Manhattan. As usual, I requested the bar seating so that Gan and I can have a good view of the open kitchen and watch the chefs in action. The menu at L'atelier is slightly different from other fine dining restaurants we have been to - they offer regular tasting menu "Decouverte" ($190 per person for 9 courses including desserts and $125 per person for wine pairing), or the ala carte menu which consists or small tasting portions, hot and cold appetizers, and fish and meat entrees. We saw a few small tasting portion dishes that we really like but they were not on the tasting menu, so we decided go with ala carte. We ordered the crispy langoustine, sea urchin, seared foie gras, caramelized quail, and braised veal cheek. Later on, we noticed that many people were ordering the langoustine carpaccio and decided to get that as well. From the amuse-bouche to the small tasting portions/entrees to the desserts, every dish was amazing and totally exceeded our expectation. The langoustine carpaccio was refreshing, it reminded me of the fluke carpaccio dish at Le Bernardin and the braised veal cheek was very tender and delicious, and not at all heavy. However, the most memorable dish for me was definitely the sea urchin with a mousseline of earl grey infused carrots and for Gan it was the crispy langoustine. As you can imagine, we were both in gastronomic heaven during those two very short hours at the restaurant.

Gan and I really love nouvelle cuisine (modern style French cuisine that emphasizes on the use of fresh/quality ingredients and inventive techniques to create simple/lighter dishes) and we thought that Joel Robuchon is truly a master in nouvelle cuisine. From the food, you can tell that the chef(s) put a lot of thoughts when crafting the menu and his creations are simple yet complex. It’s also amazing how Joel Robuchon is able to achieve such perfection in his food/restaurant, when he has an empire of top rated restaurants all over the world. Perhaps that is why Joel Robuchon was named “Chef of the Century” by Gault Millau and why he has been awarded a total of 17 Michelin stars for his restaurants worldwide.

Domaine Zind-Humbrecht Riesling "Herrenweg de Turckheim"

Yummy bread & butter

Is this the executive chef - Yosuke Suga??

Amuse-bouche #1 - with foie gras. VERY VERY DELICIOUS!

Sea urchin with mousseline of Earl Grey infused carrots

Crispy langoustine papillote with basil pesto

Fresh langoustine carpaccio with toasted poppy seeds

Seared foie gras with gratinated grapefruit

Free-range caramelised quail stuffed with foie gras, served with potato purée and summer truffle

Veal cheeks braised in red wine and cumin scented carrots

Amuse-bouche #2 - with passion fruit and lemongrass puree

Le Baba - cake soaked with rum served with caramel ice cream

Poached pears served with a souffle and bitter almond ice cream

Gan's birthday cake!

Birthday boy


L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon on Urbanspoon

Casa Manila


: 665 Newark Ave # 1, Jersey City, New Jersey

Phone: 201-386-8900

Gan and I finally found a Filipino turo-turo style restaurant (we call it "economy rice" in Malaysia) in downtown Jersey City that we really like. The restaurant is new, clean and the food is delicious. They have the usual Filipino dishes such as Chicken Adobo, Bistek, Friend Tilapia, Ginatang Sitaw, Pancit Bihun, Filipino sweet sausage and more. The menu changes from day to day, and they usually have soups like those we have back home. The restaurant closes early so try to drop by early if you are going for dinner.



Address: 149 Broadway, Brooklyn, New York

Phone: 718- 384-6343

We first heard about Dressler from the Michelin Guide in 2008, when it was awarded a one Michelin star that year. I was initially interested in the restaurant because I thought with its location in Brooklyn, it could be a good value Michelin star restaurant. But Dressler's very simple, not-very-creative and pricey menu put us off for about a year, before we actually ate there last month. I guess we managed to convince ourself that the food must be really good/fresh/seasonal, if the menu is so limited.

We ordered the pan roasted diver scallops, veal ragout and peeky toe crab cake for appetizers and the Long Island duck and bacon wrapped monk fish for entrees. We were both very impressed with the appetizers. The pan roasted diver scallops dish was delicious and the scallops were cooked perfectly. The veal ragout was also out of this world; the veal was so tender that it practically melted in my mouth. The peeky toe crab cake was not bad as well.

Gan and I were pretty much in cloud nine after the appetizers, but when duck and monk fish entrees came, we felt disappointed. To be fair, the entrees were still decent, but just not what we expected, especially from a one star Michelin restaurant and definitely not after such impressive appetizers. The seared duck breast and braised duck leg, although perfectly tender, was uninspiring. They might as well just serve me the duck without anything else because the sauce, potatoes and roasted cippolinis did nothing for the duck dish. And something about the bacon and monk fish combination just didn't taste delicious, perhaps the bacon was oversmoked and the fish was overcooked. The fat of the bacon just didn't do it in enhancing the flavor of the fish. We didn't have much appetite after the entrees, but really needed a dessert to cheer us up. Since the warm banana tart tatin with rhum ice cream dessert looked promising, we went with that, and it was good indeed.

Eating at Dressler was not cheap at all and next time, we rather go across the street to the good old Peter Luger and get totally satisfied with some juicy steak and bacon.

Pan Roasted Diver Scallops with Cauliflower, Salsify & Wild Mushrooms

Veal Ragout with Hand Rolled Pasta & Fresh Herbed Ricotta

Peekytoe Crab Cake with Remoulade

Long Island Duck with Yukon Gold Potato, Spinach & Roasted Cippolinis

Bacon Wrapped Monkfish with Shrimp Risotto & Broccoli Rabe - although we were not crazy about the fish, the risotto was one of the better risottos we have tasted in the city

Warm Banana Tart Tatin with Rhum Ice Cream, Macadamia Nut Brittle

Dressler on Urbanspoon

Curry Leaf Malaysian Restaurant


Address: 13531 40th Rd, Flushing, New York

Phone: 718- 762-9313

Sure, this may not be the best Malaysian restaurant in NYC area, but I bet it's the ONLY Malaysian restaurant which opens at 4am in the morning during the weekends. This is the perfect place to get a bowl of spicy laksa curry noodles or nasi lemak or pan mee etc, after a long night of partying. Also an excellent place to cure hangover at 4am in the morning! Since the restaurant is located in Flushing, it's not as convenient for people to get there, unless you live in Flushing or you drive. But it is definitely worth a visit.

notice the time on the clock? It's amazing that the restaurant has so many delicious food this early in the morning!