Monday, October 01, 2007

CHINESE DINNER @ THE BANQUET, 3½ ML. PENRISSEN RD., KUCHING


This is a fairly new halal Chinese restaurant, housed in an avant-garde sprawling commercial development. There are ample parking spaces, within walking distance of the restaurant.

On its advertising banner, it says: "Before you plan your wedding, come and see us." So there I was, sitting with there wedding planner, and asked:
When the moon is in the Seventh House
And Jupiter aligns with Mars
Is it a good time to elope?

G'nam! (Hokkien: In total agreement)

Actually, it's more like I drove all the way there one morning, and made arrangement for a dinner the next evening, with the food ordered. By the time I drove into my garage 10 minutes later, my phone buzzed. And on the other end: Hello, I'm sorry to inform you that we're fully booked on the evening you want. Care to change to the night before?

Nincompoop!!!

This dinner is a week after the fact - a walk-in one, and on a weekday. This place was packed. It seems the restaurant places its priority on bigger-table customers; for our party of 5, we were relegated to the bottom of the rung: no black coat maitre d' to attend to us, but waitress who was completely clueless on the food they serve. As the evening wore on, service was nowhere to be found, and the black coat maitre d's were doing the bussing. Our last 2 dishes were sitting pretty in the kitchen with no one delivering them out. Luckily for us, one of the owners was entertaining at the next table; when we saw him sashaying back to his table, we went: "Oi, what happened to our lamb cutlets like the ones you are having?" He dove into the kitchen, and immediately out came with our lamb, not very warm, nonetheless.

Deep-Fried Soft Shell Crabs With Chicken Floss

Spinach Fish Maw Soup

Cold Midin Kerabu

Yáng Zhōu Fried Rice

Steamed Tilapia Teochew Style

Mongolian Lamb Cutlets With Battered Eggplant

The food was as good as they looked. The best was the cold Midin (fern) salad - a bit like the Thai papaya salad dressing; a refreshing change from the normal sambal fried. The lamb is not your usual from a Chinese menu; but for a halal (kosher) restaurant, if no other meats are offered, soon options will run out. Overall, the pricing is not outrageous. The owners have a deep pocket to sustain a few misgivings.



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This is what I found on the car's bonnet (not mine) at the restaurant's car park.

4 comments:

William said...

Is it possible to publish a photo of you? I am wondering how big you are with all the goodies you have?

Kong-Kay said...

sure, when hell freezes over!

DeV|LisH said...

eat to enjoy ma my friend always eat also so skinny till i call her walking chopstick hehe and goodies can be enjoy at a moderate portion as well. But most of my fren been to The Banquet said their food not nice. Well i haven't tried just listen only.

Kong-Kay said...

well put DeV|LisH... you don't have to stuff yourself silly to appreciate your food, or order that many dishes to have a banquet. a piece of kiam-hu (salted fish) can be heavenly for some.

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