Penang Trip 2013 P4 – Noordin Mews & Soi On Woh Soy Sauce

August 13, 2013 at 11:04 pm

Continues from here.

♥June 4th♥

Day 4 of our trip was spent enjoying the morning at Noordin Mews.

For the girls, they could spend the whole day in the pool!

For us, the whole place is so pretty, we could just laze about and enjoy it.

The place is small enough where we could still keep an eye or listen to the girls’ voices wherever they were in the public area. That’s what I like best about small hotels. We could sit at the courtyard, and watched them swim, or watched them walk back the room to shower. For bigger hotels, no way I would allow them to walk back to the room alone.

When we checked out, the girls wrote their feedback on the hotel. Time to get their own Tripadvisor account maybe. 😛

Here is another bonus point. We found this really old soy sauce factory (100 years old?) at the end of Lebuh Noordin. It’s a corner shop lot with a very big piece of land, where urns and urns and soy sauce were being brewed.

Look at their signage. The phone number they had was only 3 digits!

We asked what the ginger was used for, and the brewery owner (3rd generation) told us it was to make their black vinegar.

Super old and dusty bamboo sieves lined one side of the wall (not sure what they were used for).

A helper gluing the brewery labels on cleaned/recycled bottles by hand.

And this is the signage of the shop.

We of course bought a few bottles of soy sauce to try, but alas, none of them had a label stuck on. So I can’t really tell what the name of the brewery is in English, but in Chinese it’s 瑞安和醬園醬油, I don’t have the address as well, but it’s along Lebuh Noordin if you want to look for it.

What’s the verdict of the soy sauce? Kwong Heng Loong’s soy sauce at Pulau Tikus is sweeter and darker, with thicker soy flavour. Soi On Wor(瑞安和 in Cantonese, since the brewery is owned by Cantonese) is saltier and lighter in colour (which probably suit Cantonese more) with a mild soy flavour. Both are good. Even at home, we have mixed reviews. Zara likes Kwong Heng Loong, Minerva likes Soi On Wor, I like them both, especially when mixed!

You go on and get a bottle next time you visit Penang and try it out yourself!

Penang Trip 2013 P3 – Spice Garden, Ah Chui Terubong Seafood

August 2, 2013 at 11:35 pm

Continues from here.

♥June 3rd♥

Woke up to a good day to enjoy breakfast outdoor.

Noordin Mews have little decorations here and there which make the place beautiful. I especially like the glass ornaments dangling from a tree in the court yard.

We spent the morning in the hotel, and then at noon time headed to Pulau Tikus to stock up on the flavourful Kwong Heng Loong Soy Sauce which we like a lot (only available at their shop located outside Pulau Tikus market).

And we found putu mayam being steamed (usually in KL, they are being stored in a metal case loaded at the backseat of the motorcycle of the vendor, and we don’t get to see them being steamed) with water laced with pandan leaves by a road side vendor.

Yums.

Besides putu mayam, the curry puff sold outside a coffee shop next to the market, the soy bean and taufu fa sold at a shop next to the market were also really good (no photos though). Filled with these snacks, we still went to Kedai Kopi Sin Hwa to have our asam laksa and char kuey teow fix.

The Asam Laksa was good, with a strong fragrant of bunga kantan.

The char keuy teow… hmmmm.. wasn’t as good as the last time were were here; not sure if it was because he just started his business for the day when we arrived.

(Kedai Kopi Sin Hwa is located at 329 Jalan Burma, 10350 Penang, Malaysia. Which is opposite the Pulau Tikus Police Station)

After all these eating, we chanced upon a kitchenware shop, and I bought a couple of antiques kitchenware, a 60s enamel bien marrie, a teapot and some teacups.

We then took the long drive to Teluk Bahang to visit the Tropical Spice Garden.

From Tripadvisor:
Tropical Spice Garden is an eco-attraction tucked within a natural valley fronting the Straits of Malacca. The showcase garden houses over 500 species of herb, spice and tropical plants. Explore and discover the fabulous diversity of nature as you through trails and pathways that meander through undulating hills, jungles terraces and natural streams.

Again, the girls have a good time exploring the place with a map each. It’s not really a big place, but with the different terraces, trails and paths leading to different vegetation/plants to explore, we spent the whole afternoon there.

Some of the spices were hard to spot, probably not the season to see them. Can’t recall what these were, but these were easily spotted (they were all labeled, just that I couldn’t remember their names).

Hmmm… Saw this sign, which indicated Ceylon cinnamon, but what was showing in the picture was cassia.

The girls favourite spot was where they left big stone mortar and pastel / grinders and spices for people to try out spice grinding. They tried to pound and mix the different spices to make their ‘magic potion’

My favourite spot? The hammock.

We were glad to find the Tree Monkey Restaurant which were tucked at the far end (or another side of the entrance) of the garden. The cool iced drinks were really refreshing.

The restaurant were named so, probably because of these little cute fellas which were on the trees around the restaurant.

The girls before leaving, did pebble tossing at the pond at the entrance. As the ticketing counter was already closed, nobody was there to reprimand them. o.O

(Tropical Spice Garden, Lone Crag Villa, Lot 595 Mukim 2, Jalan Teluk Bahang, 11100 Penang, Malaysia. Telephone: 604 – 881 1797. Admission for family of 2 adults and 2 children is RM45 for Mykad holders.)

After the Tropical Spice Garden, we have a tough time deciding where to have dinner. I then recalled a recommendation from my colleague, an sms to him and he pointed us to Ah Chui Seafood at Paya Terubong (sometimes called Terubong Seafood too).

Paya Terubong was quite a distant away from Teluk Bahang, but we were glad we went anyway. Oh boy, it was one of the best meal we’d had in Penang.

Zara asked how come the vegetable tasted so nice.

The hubs and I found the stingray to be so fresh and juicy with a spicy sauce which was not too overpowering.

The fried shrimp was soooo good, we ordered another plate.

Of all the dishes, this was the least nice, but Zaria had all the fish paste.

The fried rice which was just fried with egg was very nice too.

At the end of the meal, Zara asked if she could move to Penang to study, so that she can have food like these all the time. o.O

So, of all the restaurant meals we’d eaten in all our trips to Penang, I think Ah Chui Seafood is the best! Penang never seized to amaze us and we always discover something new in each of our annual visit.

Don’t give this place a miss if you ever went to Penang.

(Ah Chui Seafood Restaurant 阿水海鮮, 1238-T Jalan Paya Terubong, 11060 Penang. Tel : 04-8660903 / 012-4103303)

Continues here.

Penang Trip 2013 P2 – Georgetown, Street Art By Ernest Zachas

July 25, 2013 at 11:28 am

Continues from here.

♥June 2nd♥

The last 3 years when we were at Penang, we stayed in Traders Hotel, but decided we would try a smaller hotel this time. Hence we chose Noordin Mews, a small hotel converted from a corner prewar shop lot, which is near Traders.

It was a rainy morning and we took it slow. Breakfast at Noordin Mew is ordered from a menu (not buffet). This is Zara’s.

And I have poached eggs on toasts.

Not deterred by the rain, we walked over to Jalan Kuala Kangsar, where my favourite dry grocer Fook Weng and kitchenware shop are located. Then it was time for lunch, which we had in Nonya Breeze, another must stop every time we went to Penang (even the girls would insist dropping there for at least 1 meal).

As always, the meal was good.

The girls’ favourite is the Inchi Kabin, and the fried mushroom. Zara almost licked the plate clean.

(Nyonya Breze, 50, Lorong Abu Siti, Georgetown, 10400 Penang, Malaysia. Tel: 04-227 9646)

Before we went to Penang, the hubs had already done some research and picked a few places for dessert. One of them was La Vanille, which serves one of the best macarons in Penang.

The price is not cheap though.

Girls have a tough time choosing the flavour, because we only allowed them to order one each initially.

They sell cake toppers too.

The macarons in fact were very good, instead of 1 each, we ended up having 3 each!

(La Vanille, 122 A Hutton Lane, 10050 Penang, Malaysia. Tel: 04-226 4024)

After our macaron fixed, we just thought of walking around Georgetown. The girls were attracted by the exterior of a toy museum, and wanted to enter.

Ben’s Vintage Toy Museum is just a small set up, but with lots of vintage toys.

Some of the items are still in working condition. The girls, after exploring the whole place in 5 minutes, spent most of their time playing this Tomy pinball machine which was made in 198x.

(Ben’s Vintage Toy Museum, 55, Lebuh Acheh, Georgetown, Penang Island 10200, Malaysia. Tel : 014 308 6657)

And by chance, we came across this bicycle shop. The friendly shop owner was distributing Georgetown Street Art map.

Click on the pix to get the full size map

We were wondering how to get around to see all those street art. The girls although can cycle a 2 wheeler, we were not comfortable they ride around the busy town. The shop owner took us to another section of his shop and recommended us Japanese style bicycle with a basket as back seat, and suggested we take 2, so we adult can paddle while the girls sit in the basket. Zara was a bit reluctant, worried someone she knew would spot her in one of these *roll eyes*; but soon she was enjoying herself too.

The price for these? RM16 per bicycle, we took the bicycle at 5pm, the owner said we can return anytime before 7:30pm, and that’s the price!

(Chin Seng Leong Bike Shop, 84, Armenian Street, 10200 Penang. Tel : 0125533553)

So the girls each held a map and navigated, while we did the paddling. It was quite fun, and the girls felt it was like a treasure hunt they were going on, hunting down all Ernest Zachas‘ streetart. And these were what we saw.

For every street art, there’s an unwritten protocol, people just stood away from the art and waited for their turn to photograph or to be photographed.

This is not by Zachas, but still it’s worth a photo. The Chinese writing said, “If I couldn’t fall asleep, the shop will remain opened. If I overslept, shop will be opened late.” 😛

As for this at the Chew Jetty, it’s already faded and almost all gone.

The girls enjoyed hunting down all these street art, as much as we did. In fact, they wanted to do it again the following day, but we didn’t, as hubs thought a Monday traffic in Georgetown would be more difficult to navigate than a Sunday’s traffic.

For dinner, we had heard so much about Tek Sen Restaurant, and it was nearby, so off to Tek Sen we went.

Well, the food is good, but wasn’t like really THAAAT good. Maybe they do better pork dishes.

(Tek Sen Restaurant, 18, lebuh carnarvon, 10100 Penang, Malaysia. Tel: 012-981 5117)

Back to Noordin Mews, girls were eager to see what the house keeping folks did with Fifi. There she was, placed in the middle of our bed.

This is the room we got, with a King bed + 1 day bed which converted to another single bed. I slept with the girls on the king bed, while the hubs slept on the single bed.

As with all holidays, the girls have to write in their journal before they are allowed to watch TV or use the iPad. So they wrote about their ‘adventure’ hunting down Zachas’ street art today.

Continues here.

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