Saturday, August 25, 2007

Red Ginger, Mid Valley North Point

1.

Red GingerI first stepped foot into Red Ginger at the Plaza Damansara outlet in May 2007 when my dear friend from cyberspace, Msiagirl, and I met for the very first time. It was a friendship that was headed in the right direction, and when we met up, there was only a very comfortable familiarity and a lot of excited twitters between two very old birds!

"Metaphorically, my life was rich with new experience like reading poetry in Malaysia, a country I had exiled myself from for so long. I was attending with my new blogger friends, another rich and rewarding experience: new kindred is a rare and valuable thing, and here it was in abundance where I never knew it could be found." From Msiagirl: Let Me Eat Cake

I should have blogged about this experience then, but somehow, I got caught up in my day-to-day affairs and only now have time to kick back my shoes, push back the stray hairs that fall on my face, turn off the music and enjoy the silence in which such memories permeate.

"Tucked in my chair at Marmalade - light and open to the sun - Kenny and Spiffy before me and Lyrical Lemongrass at my side, where she had been all day; well, we ate cake. I finally and truly felt at home. Eating cake that evening was the perfect experience. A coming together. An alchemy. We picked up the threads of our blogs and we smoothly turned them into real and very truthful people. We laughed and told each other lots of truthful things and all it made was a good difference. Kenny was burning bright with adrenalin, tired from his move and working so much, he still made some time to come out. Spiffy had a sore throat and felt ill with flu and I said have honey, have honey and we all worried about her getting home to rest. Lyrical Lemongrass had ferried me everywhere, gone to blogger's breakfasts and lunches with openminded aplomb, for she is a formidable writer and reader too. Here I was among them, drunk on cake and companionship." From Msiagirl: Let Me Eat Cake II

We had started the day together by being late for the Breakfast Club (true to my style), followed by lunch at Red Ginger (with Xeus, Eric and Spiffy), desserts at Just Heavenly Pleasures, Readings at Seksans, tea at Marmalade and finally dinner at Umai-ya. A lot of food was consumed, but that is how Malaysians are. Our lives are intertwined with...no...hinge on food. When a special visitor announces his intention to visit, we immediately think of the best restaurant to entertain our friend. Get the food organised first, we say, and everything else falls into place.

nasi lemak prawn fritters sang har curry noodles


And that was how I first discover Red Ginger.

"I will take this day and store it in my jewel box." From Msiagirl: Kenny, Reads, Leaves

As I have.
Y

2.


Red Ginger Red Ginger


Elizabeth ChenI am glad for that first experience at Red Ginger, because it gave me a basis for comparison. Elizabeth Chen, the proprietor of Red Ginger, had invited several food bloggers to sample her menu at the recently opened outlet at Mid Valley North Point. I noticed that the menu was identical to the one at Plaza Damansara, but Elizabeth was quick to point out that she had just introduced several new dishes, not on the previous menu, which were to be enjoyed with rice.


stirfried beef chicken cooked in wine


The beef, stir-fried with black pepper, were cut into thin slices and quickly blanched in oil before being stirfried, thus retaining its juiciness. Being a fan of chinese herbal preparations, I enjoyed the steamed chicken cooked with wine, dates and wolfberry. Despite the saltiness of the sauce, I couldn't resist helping myself to several more pieces of chicken as I found that the flesh had fully absorbed the flavours of the ingredients, resulting in a natural sweetness of the flesh while still remaining firm to the touch.


pomelo salad
chicken lobak stuffed yau char koay


Of all the starters, I enjoyed the fruit rojak (RM7.80) the most. What made it special was the sauce which had the right amount of prawn paste and a very nice consistency. The dish also had a generous amount of chopped peanuts thrown in. The stuffed yau char kwai (chinese crullers) (RM5.50) was special. It contained an aromatic fish paste filling and was drizzled with mayonnaise. I found the chicken lobak (RM8.90) rather salty and was unable to enjoy more than one piece, while the pomelo salad (RM8.80) tossed with fried shallots, chopped peanuts and fried grated coconut was refreshing, albeit a little mild in flavour (probably lacking in sweetness?). The otak-otak (steamed fish paste in banana leaf) (RM9.50) made with dory fish was surprisingly firm in texture and very tasty too.


hor fun soup
curry noodles hor fun soup


One would think that at this point, Elizabeth would have stopped serving us, but as it turned out, we weren't even halfway through our meal yet. The generous lady brought out the mains next. My personal favourite was the Ipoh hor fun (RM13.80). The noodles were very smooth and complemented the soup stock, wonderful in its multitude of flavours. The laksa lemak (RM11.80) won top marks for the generous portion of cockles (and what is laksa without cockles anyway!), which still retained its juiciness (translated: bloodiness) despite being dunked into the hot curry. Some may find the curry a little too creamy (and it certainly was very thick), but I say, to each his own.


fried rice Sang har dry curry noodles


The Red Ginger fried rice (RM14.90) contained raisins and salted fish, and I can see how these two ingredients complemented the entire dish as the combination of sweet and salty and spicy came together very well. Eating the dry curry sang har noodles (RM23.90) was a treat. I had tried it before, and I can vouch that the taste is the same, whether or not one pays or gets the food for free! The fried koay teow (RM13.90) in Red Ginger is no ordinary fried koay teow. This one is fried kam heong style with a certain amount of spiciness together with curry leaves, bell peppers and bean sprouts.

kasturi pomelo drinkWe downed the food with lots of very refreshing, tangy kasturi pomelo (RM7.50) drinks.

Red Ginger (Mid Valley)
Block A, Mezzanine Floor, Northpoint Offices
Mid Valley City, KL

Tel: 03-2287 0890

Red Ginger (Plaza Damansara)
Medan Setia 2, Plaza Damansara
Bukit Damansara, KL

Tel: 03-2095 3118

Closed Sundays.

18 comments:

msiagirl said...

Wow honey, fitting I get to this comment box first, huh? I just can't get over your amazing pictures, girl. I was there (the first time) and my own eyes don't do them justice! V.flattered to be in your post about an amazing day, I'm glad you know how much that day meant to me.

I love it how you always put a picture of a drink at the end. That must be a unique signature touch for you. It makes it really memorable to me - I especially remember on the HSS post you had a cup of kopi at the end - it was just perfect.

xx

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Msiagirl, I felt very nostalgic writing the first part coz it was really a very beautiful day. I'm glad I've finally put it down in words, even if half the words are yours. :-)

I didn't realise that I had a "signature". hehe. *scrolls to past posts* Maybe I'm just a creature of habit. :-)

Big Boys Oven said...

Happy Bithday "A Whiff of Lemongrass".

Great to have meet you at Red Ginger. A great place, nyonya atmosphere, so cool and so warm welcoming. Love this place such a fantastic setting and lovely food.

k.t.x said...

heard that the fares were inspired by the delights in the kinta valley remininscene(how do u spelll ar..lol) where CHEN senior grew up, so very near to my hometown. would love to try halia merah one day, but juz could not bear to splurge too much on food readily available back home(town) in bigger and even more authentic portions minus the beautiful chinas and cutleries....lol. trust it's an exciting outlet to satisfy my timmy on a dont-know-where-to-go-day, meantime, i love my hometown...lol.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

BBO:

Thanks for the birthday wishes. :-)

Yes, it was lovely meeting you too. :-)

k.t.x:

At least this place is only 15km away from your house. :-P That should count for something.

daphne said...

it's 11:22pm and I'm hungry! I'm intrigued by the dory otak otak and smooth ipoh horfun that u described.
nice post! AND lovely pictures!

Cynthia said...

I enjoyed all the food in this post and spent the better part of the last 1/2 hour scolling through your blog. I love your style and flair of writing and the pics - big, bold and beautiful. Really love your blog.

Have added you to my roll and feeds. Can't wait to come back to eat :)

Cynthia
www.tasteslikehome.org

boo_licious said...

Ah, such a lovely spread of food. I have fond memories of their Ipoh Hor Fun as it came with a wonderful soup broth which I drank almost everything. Time to revisit this place again.

mama bok said...

A very nice spread indeed..! now why would they close on sunday..?? bummer..!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

daphne:

oh, if you tried the hor fun, you'd be singing all the way home. It is really good!

cynthia:

Thanks for dropping by! I'm glad you enjoyed my posts. You have a great blog too. There seem to be a lot of similarities between our two cuisines.

boo:

the soup's great, isn't it? I would go back there again just for the hor fun. call me when u go. ;-)

mama bok:

yeah, i had the same question too. I suppose they have their reasons.

Timothy Low said...

Nice pics ! And I love the way you describe them food ! Well ... I really don't have the inspiration to write after such a long break hence I am settling by just letting the photos do the talking.

tigerfish said...

The Red Ginger Fried Rice looks like some kind of fried rice I just did. The looks. Taste, I think professional restaurant is sure better :)

There are so many colors of ginger restaurants ard the world - there's a yellow ginger near where I'm staying, then blue ginger..(I think) back in Sg, then blue/bleu ginger nearby my place too, and now red ginger "P

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

tim:

thanks. you have nice pics too!

tigerfish:

oh, i'm sure your cooking is comparable with the finest restaurants!! Ginger...I wonder if a fuschia ginger will ever sell. :-P

Kenny Mah said...

Ahh... nostalgia... nothing quite like it. Betcha the two of you will be thick as thieves when you get to Bath later next month. I expect plenty of photographic evidence of this LL/MG mayhem... ;)

jason said...

It was a nice spread of good food. Thanks to Tim and Elizabeth again!

Kusahi_Keat said...

Happy Birthday To U!
Happy Birthday To U!
Happy Belated Birthday To U!
Those beautiful pictures and your ..mmmm

Bernsy said...

Yes, their Ipoh Hor Fun is one of the best in KL, and their Curry Laksa, it has to be top 3 in KL also.

Hey, aren't they open on sundays at the Plaza Damansara branch ?

Jackson said...

what a great write up!! i miss their curry laksa with the raw "si hum"