Willow Tree

A stone throw away from Souled Out Hartamas is a gem that is now becoming our fave hangout. Plenty of parking, there some hearty food, bottled beers and most of all Shalom is welcomed! And come Fridays, there's live music to entertain too other than the very friendly and entertaining bunch of folks working at the Willow Tree.

A corner lot that one can easily opt to sit in or in our case sit out so the young one can be with us. Nice folks who actually offered the Diva some iced water after noting that she was kinda hot from her walk behind Willow Tree (plenty of parking behind Willow Tree too).
Shalom is a happy child since she is allowed to dine with us at Willow Tree. Gets to sit on the chair instead of some so called furkids friendly places who insist the furkids sit on the floor.
Kicked off our Friday evening with Jopen Jacobus Rye Pale Ale. Light caramel touch to it making it an easy drinking beer to unwind the week and to go with our hearty English pub noms. There is also the usual drafts including Tiger, Kilkenny and whites and drinks are not a problem!
Nicely chilled with a nice caramel touch to it, the Jopen Jacobus Rye Pale Ale is perfect on its own and definitely a perfect accompaniment to some awesome savouries.

Serving sizes are fair at Willow Tree so sharing a few dishes among friends will be a good idea.  In our case in view that it was just the two of us during our first visit, we were lucky to have some tasting portions as I was honestly eyeing quite a few other dishes. Do also check out the lunch menu if you are in the vicinity during lunch...they have some lovely roast pork served with chunky chips! While weekend breakfast includes happy meals of sausages, bacons, eggs B and more priced between RM8 and RM22.

Our dinner on Friday are as follows. No complains except I wished for more room in my tummy (and that I could drink more if not for a strict self imposed rule of only 1 serving of alcohol on the eve of my training days). Still it was a good experience...
Willow Tree 8oz beef burger with chunky fries, onion rings and a choice of mushrooms, cheddar or blue cheese RM25. My obvious choice was blue cheese and heck it is one good burger. Ask for it to be medium or medium rare. Don't waste too much time taking pics...Just dig in!
Willow Tree serves good onion rings...something that we hardly find these days. So simple yet so many places get it wrong! This is a lovely crisp thin batter and juicy onions.
I don't like fishcakes as a general rule but the Salmon Fishcakes served with tomato, onion and herb salsa RM12 / RM19 has me totally smitten.
A nice rich salmon, potato, onions, peas and more to make it a satisfying bite. So good I could eat it even without the salsa. A happy reminder of good ol fashion bergedil that my maid used to whip out for me the 'hate fish' kiddo when I was a child.
Grilled chicken kebabs RM12 / RM19 served with tangy tzatziki. Good starters to go with beer.
Fish and chips. Simple and satisfying for kids and adults alike. What matters most is the batter isn't overly thick and remains crisp till the last bite while the fish is all nice and juicy.
Classic Chicken Tikka Masala. have it with rice or potatoes...I prefer these old fashion thick cut chips. Its tender pieces of meat and a hearty spiced gravy will have you craving for more.

Willow Tree is not a new player in town but its certainly a well kept secret in Hartamas. So head on over folks for some good hearty meals that won't burn a hole in your pocket. And on Sundays, there's the must have Sunday Roasts of rib eye beef with Yorkshire puddings! 
Willow Tree Bistro
No 22 Wisma Rapid 
Jalan 30/70A
Desa Sri Hartamas
Kuala Lumpur.
T: +603 6201 2330

Full set of pics in the Facebook album Willow Tree.

This is the last post for 2013. THANX so much for reading the post and cheers to an awesome 2014! Do head on over to the following channels to stalk me (and show some love too)!

Sparkalite 4C's Sunday Brunch

Sunday brunches are now one of my faves. Its a day to play catch up with my sleep, long drives, runs and friends. And throw in good food and some bubblies, its a perfect start to a brand new week. One good spot in town is the Sparkalite 4C's Sunday Brunch at Intercontinental Kuala Lumpur.

Sparkalite 4C's Sunday Brunch is lots of fun, lots of good laughs and definitely lots of good bites (and drinks too). Expect plenty of Crustaceans, Carvery, Chocolate And Candies to put a smile to everyone's face. 

Bring the kids and let them have fun under the watchful eyes of Intercontinental KL's friendly team. Its lots of candies (of course), children friendly food and activities in stored for them while parents immerse themselves with the good selection of brunch that Chef Darrel O'Neill and his teams whip out.

For the adults...the 3Cs for us are crustaceans, carvery and chocolate (though I will confess that candies aren't just for children as far as my tummy is concerned:P). 

Crustacean lovers will shout for joy. Take your pick from a whole buffet line of crustaceans including Alaskan King Crab, cray fish, slippery lobster and tiger prawns other than the usual works of salmon, butterfish or tuna sashimi, There's lots of oysters, mussels and scallops too!

Lost count of the refills I tool for the Alaskan King Crab, cray fish and oysters. Absolutely fresh!!!

Carvery goodness for carnivorous folks includes roast beef, peking duck and roast chicken. And if you want a good old fashion Sunday grill then step out and choose your own cuts and allow the chefs to cook it to your choice of perfection.

No meal is complete without desserts, Take your pick of chocolates and cakes. Special recommendations given for the brownies...they are awesome with your cup of coffee or tea.

Hmmm...if C is for candies and they are for kids, then the 4th C for adults could be cheese!!! Cheese galore happens during Sparkalite 4C's Sunday Brunch. Have it with the wines, bubblies or even cocktails. Or make them your dessert like how the hubster did:D

The meal doesn't end there. There's plenty of local food too if you fancy something local. Piping hot Malay, Chinese and Indian await you in claypots. You can also opt for some noodles from the live station.

Priced at RM 120++ per person or RM 198++ which includes free flow sparkling, white and red wine plus beer its definitely value for money for the delightful spread that is offered. Children aged 6 to12 pay RM 60++ each.
Bubblies joy include Australian Seppelt Stony Peak Brut NV, Italian Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore and a French Arthur Metz Cremant D'Alsace Bru, white and red wines, beers and DIY cocktails with fizz including Mimosa, Kir Royale and Bellini.

For an amazing Sunday...I will happily recommend you Sparkalite 4C's Sunday Brunch at Intercontinental Kuala Lumpur. With the new year coming in 2 days, why not make a resolution to spend Sundays with your loved ones...kicking start with the very first Sunday 5th January 2014 with a Sparkalite 4C's Sunday Brunch?
Serena Brasserie
InterContinental Hotel Kuala Lumpur
165 Jalan Ampang
Kuala Lumpur 
T:  +603 2782 6228

Full set of pics in the Facebook album Sparkalite 4C's Sunday Brunch. For more updates head on over to the following channels to stalk me (and show some love too)!

Party with HedKandi @ Maibar

Calling out to party people!!! Bid farewell to 2013 and welcome 2013 with a party. And its not just another party but its a party with HedKandi! 

The New Year’s Eve 2013 party on 31st December 2013 at Mai Bar, Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral. will be a party like no other. Set at the rooftop bar right next to Splash pool overlooking Kuala Lumupur skyline, groove to the beats Producer/DJ Sarah Louise and Dax on Sax. 
Sarah Louise hails from UK. Shehas been part of the resident DJ team for HedKandi for the fourth year and has been part of so many high profile, career defining gigs
Dax on Sax started at the early age of 7 in intense classical training and wide ranging experience. Recognised by Jamie Cullum as one of the most exciting prospects of our generation, Dax compliments the work of any DJ by creating instant connection with his audience.

A snippit of the fun Hedkandi party at Aloft earlier this year.

Cover charge is RM75nett per person, inclusive of first drink. Party starts at 8pm till late. Make your reservations to welcome 2014 with a blast! For more information or reservations:
• 1800 80 6575 

THANX for reading this post! Do also head on over to the following channels to stalk me (and show some love too)!


Have you used a condom and why did you use it?
Safe sex reduces sexual pleasure?
Would you have sex on a first date. Would you have sex with a stranger?

Some of your were probably wondering what was it that I have been up to asking things about condoms, sex and more. What actually happened is that I was one of the many around the world who were part of Durex' s #SOMEBODYLIKEME World AIDS Day Campaign.

Saucy as some questions were but it certainly got some minds thinking about safe sex. No doubt we had some good laughs too when pals thought my accounts were being hacked or some replied with their own style of humour. 

My personal thoughts? I absolutely loved the campaign. It isn't the conventional campaign of portraying frightening stats and ads. Its something 'radical' that gets our minds thinking and each of us are allowed our own style of questioning our own audience. Am certainly looking forward to more of such styled campaigns. Bravo Durex, Reckitt Benckiser Malaysia and Social Grooves!

AIDS is perhaps a topic that many Malaysians still find it a taboo to stalk about. Rather similar to the topic sex. Even having lost a relative and a few friends to AIDS, the folks around me are quite shy to talk about it. However, its time that everyone steps up on AIDS and sexually transmitted infections awareness. And why not start with myself talking about it? 

Since we are on it,  do note that AIDS does not kill. Its only when the body gives in to lethal infections that death may happen. And these days medication is possible to keep folks infected with the HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) to be alive and pretty much leading a normal life.

Though, why wait till one is infected with HIV or diagnosed with AIDS to be aware of it? It should start so that we minimise the number of infections and fatalities. In Malaysia itself, the stats are rather (my personal opinion) worrying with a rising number of cases in the age group of 13 and 29! Ensuring continuing  HIV/AIDS awareness is crucial as many run around with the misconception that HIV/AIDS can only happen to ‘other people’ or the ‘not-me-syndrome’.

Reality is AIDS does not discriminate. You won't get it from kissing or touching an AIDS patient. Neither will you get AIDS from mosquito bites. One can get infected:
• Sexual contact with a HIV infected person. Anal, oral or vaginal sex with an infected partner means the virus into your bloodstream through microscopic breaks or rips in the delicate linings of your vagina, vulva, penis, rectum or mouth. HIV can also enter through open sores, like those caused by herpes or syphilis, if infected body fluids get in them.
• Babies can get HIV from drinking infected breast milk. During pregnancy, the ifected mother may also transmit HIV to the baby.
• Drug addicts often contract HIV via needles that are contaminated with HIV-infected blood.
• Its rare these days that people contract AIDS via infected blood or an organ transplant from an infected donor as screening requirements these says are strict.

To learn more about the #SOMEBODYLIKEME and HIV/AIDS:
Pic taken at Sydney's City Town Hall building recently when I visited during World Aids Day

THANX for reading this post! Do also head on over to the following channels to stalk me (and show some love too)!

PS: THANX Reckitt Benckiser Malaysia for the Christmas pressie of DETTOL body wash! 

guEST’s "Wine Casino"

I don’t quite bother with casinos simply because the gambling rules and know hows just seem to be too mind boggling for me. However, I could not resist guEST’s "Wine Casino". A casino experience with a difference as its actually Moet Hennessy’s twist to the wine tasting format with a new monthly "Wine Casino" at guEST.

Beginning 26th December 2013 until 28th November 2014, the last Thursday of every month, its “bets” of a different kind as guests will be taken through four levels of blind tasting with a qualified sommelier who will act as a “croupier” for the night. 

For RM150++ guests can participate in this blind tasting that will test both knowledge and sense. RM80 in “Vine Chips” will be distributed to each participant, who will then be required at each level to decide on
The Variety – For example: Sauvignon or Chardonnay,
The Origin – For example: New Zealand or Australia,
Taste & Scent – Describing the wine bouquet and taste
The Brand – Guessing the wine label

It was an interesting journey of the different award winning eds and whites from renowned wine producers within Moet Hennessy’s Wine Division. Wasn’t right for all my “bets” so saw some wins and loss but its all fun and good with wines from Cloudy Bay (New Zealand), Terrazas de los Andes (Argentina), Cape Mentelle and Chandon (Australia). 
Taste, smell, see...
Place our bets 
And we win more chips!
The night ends on an adrenaline high. Armed with our winnings (assuming one has won enough), guests will be able to bid for limited edition bottles and other amazing prizes! And if you don;t have enough chips...well gang up with your pals so you guys have enough chips to bid for the bottles:D
Dang! Didn't have enough chips to bid for this bottle of Chandon. Been eyeing the colourful glasses the longest while!
But managed to go home with the Chandon Shiraz 2010 after combining our winning chips with other pals:D

For more information and reservations: 
Ground Floor
The Intermark
182 Jalan Tun Razak,
50450 Kuala Lumpur
T: +603 2163 5732 
T: +6012 969 8544 (Benoit Sommerlad)

Full set of pics in guEST's "Wine casino". Do head on over to the following channels to stalk me (and show some love too)!

Wines from the our "Wine Casino" session: 
Bright yellow with greenish highlights. Prevailing citrus notes reminiscent of limes, and white fruits like pears. Coupled by subtle toasted almonds and hazelnuts notes, with herbal aromas that enhance its freshness. Balanced and robust. Round and creamy wine. Lingering and elegant finish.

Deep purple colour with dark red hues. Ripe fruits as fig and raspberry melt on its violet floral notes. Coconut and spices aromas magnify its complexity. Deep, with a growing mouthfeel finish. Pleasant tannins and marmalade aftertaste.
The 2011 pinot noir captures your senses with immense florals including violets, boronia and flowering wild thyme. Oaky raspberry licorish entices further along with wild strawberry, chocolate and spice. The palate is juicy but balanced by rich forest floor, clove and savoury flavours. Good tension between acid and fine tannins offers a well rounded palate with appealing length.
Widely regarded as the quintessential expression of the acclaimed Marlborough wine region, Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc is an international benchmark wine noted for its vibrant aromatics, layers of pure fruit flavours and fine structure. Zesty lime and grapefruit aromas are the first to emerge from the nose of the 2013 sauvignon blanc, followed by nectarine and lemongrass tones. The palate is fresh and focused with ripe citrus, stonefruit, fennel and mineral notes lingering on the persistent finish. 
This wine combines traditional methods with fantastic natural fruit intensity for aromatic complexity and a fine, textured palate. An elegant and complex chardonnay with flavours of grapefruit, citrus and nutmeg on a long fine palate with subtle mineral hints. Traditional winemaking techniques including hand picking and barrel fermentation produce a wine of great pedigree with outstanding balance and refinement.
The Cabernet Merlot blend takes inspiration from the classic red wines of Bordeaux. Cape Mentelle has developed an international reputation for outstanding Bordeaux varietal and blended wines which are perfectly suited to the climate and soils of Margaret River. This blend seeks to capture the depth and structure of cabernet with the dark fruit and plush flavours of merlot, which when blended create a well- rounded, full and rich style. This classic blend is beautifully balanced wine with the flavour, structure and length of cabernet enhanced by soft, rich merlot. Traditional winemaking including basket pressing and maturation in French oak has resulted in a concentrated and luxurious wine of great integrity. 
A classic Yarra Valley Chardonnay with aromas of citrus and stone fruits. White peach and nectarine characters are layered with hints of apricot  and vanilla on the nose. The palate is focused and bright, with nutmeg and cashew flavours adding further layers. Barrel fermentation, ageing and lees stirring play a subtle role, building texture and complexity. Delicate acidity builds length supporting the vibrant fruit characters.
Victoria’s Heathcote region is blessed with rich, red Cambrian soils renowned for producing shiraz grapes with remarkable concentration of flavour. The resulting wines are intense and vibrant. Primary fruit aromas of warm berries, damson plum and dark cherry aromas all lead into a nose complex with mixed spice. Shiraz from these ancient red soils has lively cinnamon, sandalwood and cardamom aromatics which lift the nose and add interesting complexity. This Shiraz has wonderful length of flavour and is spicy to the finish. Bright, youthful tannins build structure on the palate which will reward cellaring up to ten years.