Monday, April 13, 2015

This is D' Cuisine for Me

It is getting hard to find a good place to dine these days; or it is rather hard for a picky eater like me.
It sounds crazy I know, with the number of new eateries mushrooming all over, well, everywhere and yet here I am, lamenting on that lack of places which interest me in particular.
I know.
Enter the age of narcissism; we are just so self-obsessed these days, aren't we?
It is the age of technology, after all.

I am aware of all the new eateries, or maybe frankly, I was not really paying that much attention either because I was just too busy wondering about whether they are as good as my usual haunts (or just busy with my work).
You see, apart from being a pickyeater, I am also your regular skeptic and I raise my eyebrow (one side anyway) at any new possibility/place to try out.
I am not adventurous at all; frankly speaking which sums me up to be a pretty comfort zone type of eater as well.
So, there in a nutshell, you have a skeptical and conservative pickyeater surrounded by her own comfort zone here; i.e. Me.

It is really not easy, at all, and getting me to try a new place or even have me switch over to this new place (from the old) and including it in my list of places to eat is harder than actually making a donkey move from its spot; not that I am suggesting I am in any way similar to a stubborn mule.

Then there is that other thing; I don't like places which are too crowded.
Odd, and I am serious.
I see many restaurants, cafes, eateries, etc which are crowded and there could be probably be that few reasons; 1.) they must be really good, 2.) their prices are reasonable or just dirt cheap 3.) there are free stuffs/promotions 4.) they must be fairly new/opening day 5.) the crowds are made up of their own friends/relatives, which if you were to take into consideration the size of the shop (the usual shoplift size), is not too hard to fill up with just that few invitations.

It is absurd for while sometimes I do get drawn by these crowds to see for myself the reason for the attraction, I also tend to shy away from the same kind of crowd pullers at the same time.
For my very own list of reasons too.
1.) I don't like waiting, too long  2.) I can't stand too much noise, rowdy environment 3.) hailing for service or attention from the servers could be almost similar to hailing for a cab in the midst of New York city at peak hours 4.) food quality might be compromised with the pressure to serve the demands, and lastly, 5.) I don't believe in having to queue or wait for my food, it's about the dignity, folks.

If you are rolling your eyes, I am not judging, for I admit, it is weird.

Of course, I don't go for the total opposite either.
I am not taking my chances in back alleys, or places where they are practically swatting mosquitoes (which could be in higher count than the humans altogether) or in places where there is just not crowded at all, on any regular day or even peak hours.
Okay fine, don't judge.
It's not nice to judge others, anyway, even if it is really out of the ordinary.
Besides, I just really need that right fit and that vibe to enjoy my food.
I am already picky with my food, so when I really eat, I just really want it to be right; just like finding that soulmate or more precisely, that soul food.

Well, I don't pick that much when I am at work sometimes; yeah, sometimes.
It was actually at work, and thanks to my awesome colleague who is also my old buddy, that we stumbled upon this place for our late lunch.


This is just that glimpse of the counter and the staffs (really a nice bunch of people) in discussion and this is not really the real insight of the place; depicted like a bar in some sort of way in this photo.
Well, maybe sort of.

The place is not really crowded, and to be fair, it was really a little late for lunch anyway but I really loved the ambiance and that warm comfort in a way of an invisible embrace kind of welcome when I stepped into the place.
Dimly lit, neatly arranged and blends of soft earthy hues of tones cast a soothing sight to one's eyes upon entering with one's back against the blinding glares of the hot sun from the front of the building.
The whole place just beckons with that lovely warmth yet cool with the light breeze from the air-conditioning and just screams cozy; perfect for one to escape for an hour or two for lunch to take a much-needed breath or relaxation after a crazy time at the work desk.
(Of course, that's if you have work to get back to, or you could spend hours just enjoying the environment and talking to that favorite person or even, just write - it is that conducive).




Plush cushions adorn the sofa leaning against the wall, and simple fuss-free tables arranged neatly with that slightly downcast glow from the lampshades hovering above one's table just make that perfect formula for the harmonious combination of contemporary stylish yet appearing homey all in one.
It is just perfect to lay back and just relax while waiting for food, or after meals and just engaging in fun or deep conversations with your company.
I was quite tempted to grab one of those pillows and just lean back against the wall.
(Maybe I should just do that one of these days, I will put that on my to-do list to arrange with my girl friend).

D'Cuisine serves the Asian cuisine along with some delectable Peranakan dishes; with some marrying the two in that interesting fusion to tantalize that appetites, setting themselves apart from most of their eatery counterparts.
It pays to be more creative these days with the offerings and while D'Cuisine did not seem to differ much in their menu (or so it seems), the food was definitely good enough testament to their designed aspirations for their brand.


I am pleasantly surprised and honestly, enchanted with this bowl of Grouper Fish Noodles (MYR22), for what I expected to be a usual bowl of fish head noodles cooked with that light hint of milk in the soup with a few pieces of grouper fish fillets (fairly modest in size and portion), you know the usual, turned out to be more than meets the eye.
Or my expectations.


For a first, the size of the bowl was definitely startling for me for there were only two of us.
Thankfully we were both really conservative and minimalist when it comes to ordering.

For a regular bowl of noodles, we were surprised to be presented with a soup ladle.
Since it only came in one size, it could not have been prepared for two's portion and therefore, the conclusion must be, it was all the way meant for sharing.
Or they just could read that the two of us are not going to be able to finish this bowl.
(I returned the second time with my other half, and it still came with a ladle).


Shifting through the noodles and the soup answered that question, almost immediately.
Large and more than your usual average chunky sized of juicy grouper fillets filled the bowl, amassed with the alternating strings of thick rice noodles further crowded with the generous handfuls of fried shallots, pickled vegetables and lengthy short stalks of spring onion garnishing.
The overall combination owed its tastes, harmoniously in the company of the mild tasting and light in milky tone of broth sweetened by the large pulps of tomatoes at the bottom.


These are not your average "float-on-the-top" bites of fillets, but chunks which sink to the bottom of the bowl evidently seen in the first photo where one could not even catch sight of what was in the soup. It was definitely worth its weight (and price).


I am a fan of grouper (a huge one I may say), and I need not say anymore at the risk of sounding biased; but my love for grouper still needs to be justified by the way it pleases my taste buds and I think this version has absolutely nailed it on the head with its flesh-filled portions of the grouper lightly fried to give it that crispy edge.
I love that it was not overly fried, for that is one of the most important criterion for me to enjoy a good taste of the freshness (and sweetness) of the grouper fish, and I am sure, is a winning element for soup-based fish noodles like this too.
I am officially hooked.


The white rice noodles were soft, and not too overwhelming in its load. Just slightly thicker than the usual rice vermicelli, this is usually the preferred version when it comes to fish/fish head noodles.


The legendary Grouper Fish Noodles just did it, for me.

I thought I was done with the fish noodles, which literally had my heart already.
Then this came.

Seabass with XO Sauce (MYR38) with its harmless brownish tones appeared to be your usual deep fried fish trickled with that hint of XO sauce as the source to enhance the thick flesh of seabass.


It was of course stylishly presented ala gourmet mode, and pass more than flying colors for that usual Chinese styled fried fish, but that, turned out to be major understatement.

For a first, the size of the fish fillet (fully deboned, well, almost, mind you) again was a stunner and it was generously sized, even for its single regular size for the dish.


Thick flesh-packed fillet sat elegantly; poised in the shallow pool of slightly saltish soy sauce topped with that crown of garnishing leaves, shreds of shallots and the main mass of rich mashed ingredients for that enriching complement of taste to the juicy fillet of seabass.
Generally I was not a really huge fan of seabass; though it's still on my list of one of my fish preferences but this had me reforming my perspective of this fish altogether.
The fresh taste of the fillet and the clever play with the moderate tasting sauce dramatized by the special ingredients of XO made up for the naturally bland tastes of the thick seabass flesh and is one move that I truly applaud.
I hereby declare my newfound love for seabass, more than before.

(This had me craving for seabass ever since, good job, and a haunting one at that. But you truly had me)


We decided to go traditional Chinese, with a well brewed pot of Chinese tea; Cha Wang (literally means King of Tea) for MYR4.50 per pax (minimum 2 pax per pot)



I have found a new place for lunch, not only on weekdays but even weekends.
Maybe I should say, I have found myself a new place to add to my favorites.
Yes, D' Cuisine, I am proud to announce that you are now one of my new favorites!

I am definitely returning for more, and to say that I may come back does not sound right.

Keep it up, and this is definitely the cuisine (D'Cuisine) for me, with every pun intended.


I thought you had me at your cozy concept, but you had me at the Seabass, oh, and grouper.

Hold the door no longer, you definitely had me at Hello.


D' Cuisine has a sister patisserie right across its location in Plaza 33; known as D'Italiane which prides in serving fine breads and pastries and also brunch options.
Their ingredients are sourced from Europe and even their tea are from India.
D'Cuisine is located at the ground floor of Plaza 33; next to Barn Thai restaurant, and yes, Plaza 33 is where Kampachi and Coliseum PJ outlets are located.
They do serve wine too and have a fine collection of wine for the wine lovers out there.

All the experiences are based on my personal tastes and are in no way representing the general.
This is not a sponsored post by the restaurant, and is purely based on my personal opinions.

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