D' House

Special thanks to D' House for extending this food review invitation.

Update: This business has ceased its operations.

My previous visit to Restoran D' House (烧鸭轩餐饮连锁店) has been generally favorable. Located in Taman Kheng Tian Business Center (卿田花园商业中心), the Chinese name of this restaurant is parody of Taiwanese diva Elva Hsiao (萧亚轩).
D' House is operated by a couple whose respective parents are life-long hawkers. Mr. Soon's parents used to peddle meat rolls (肉卷), a tradition which Mr. Soon continued in D' House as well as several night markets. Meanwhile, the roast duck (烤鸭) recipe was inherited from his mother-in-law, who is still operating a popular stall at Lebuh Noordin (二条路).
The interior decor of D' House is noticeably upscale compared to other shops in the vicinity. There is also a dedicated section for photo opportunities, something which Mr. Soon encourages customers to take.
As for the food, the main specialty at D' House is obviously roast duck (烤鸭). Like most roast meat (烧腊) businesses, there are also alternatives like roast chicken (烤鸡), roast pork (烧肉) and char siew (叉烧).
To sample some of each type, we started our meal with a plate of Duck, Chicken & Char Siew Rice (烤鸭烤鸡叉烧饭, RM9.00).
The roast duck (烤鸭) does not fail to impress. Its tenderness and savoriness are commendable beyond measure. The chewy skin also gives an unparalleled sense of enjoyment.

Next up, I find that the char siew (叉烧) is reasonably flavored. However, I would prefer the savory flavor to be made stronger.
As for roasted chicken (烤鸡), it is not D' House's strongest suit. Nevertheless, the overall texture and taste is still acceptable.

A key point in the roast meat business is the sauce recipe. At D' House, the sauce is sourced from the Lebuh Noordin stall, ensuring that customers can enjoy the time-tested secret formula. This sauce is particularly important when consuming rice; otherwise the white rice feels too plain.
Other condiments to enjoy with the roast meat are garlic chili sauce and chili ketchup.
Next, we sampled a small serving of Fung Lobak Five Spices Fresh Meat Roll (芬卤肉之五香鲜肉卷, RM1.80). Unlike meat rolls (卤肉) from other regions, the ones in Penang usually use sliced pork instead of minced pork. D' House's meat roll is no exception.
Compared to other meat roll recipes, the one served in D' House is more heavily-flavored. This is because the same meat roll also caters to housewives who want to complement a family meal but without getting too involved in sauces.

Next on the table is Steamed Manila Clams With Fermented Bean Sauce (酱蒸鲜花甲, RM9.90). In this dish, fresh Manila clams are stir-fried with doubanjiang (豆瓣酱), giving a pleasantly salty, savory and sweet kind of flavor. This dish is highly recommended if you fancy shellfish.
Previously, this dish have used the common clam (蛤蜊), but its freshness was inconsistent and difficult to monitor. Therefore, D' House decided to use the Manila clam (花甲) instead, even though the cost is nearly twice as much.

Another newly introduced dish is the Steamed Chicken With Mushroom And Edible Fungus (香菇木耳蒸滑鸡, RM9.90). Here, we have heavily-marinated chicken chunks served with shiitake mushrooms (香菇) and black fungus (木耳).
Not to forget the broth which the chicken and mushrooms are served in! It is rich in savory flavors especially from rice wine and goji (枸杞). I think this can easily be D' House's mainstream signature dish.

For something lighter, there is also a bowl of Soup Of The Day (每日咧汤, RM3.00), which contains cabbage and carrots. I think the overall taste is too plain. I recommend that D' House prepares the soup using unused duck bones, in order to impart some meaty goodness into the soup.
As for drinks, we originally had Herbal Tea (草药凉茶, RM2.00) and Chinese Tea (唐茶, RM1.50).
Afterwards, Mr. Soon insisted that we try the new drink called Ugly Duckling (丑小鸭, RM4.50). Despite its name, the drink is quite appealing. Made from coffee and chocolate powder, this is D' House own interpretation of iced mocha.
In conclusion, D' House is far more than just roast duck. Don't get me wrong: the roast duck is still good. But D' House also has other "side dishes" which may strike a chord with your palate.
Name: Restoran D' House (烧鸭轩餐饮连锁店)
Address: 9-1-30, Jalan Tapah, Taman Kheng Tian, 11600 Jelutong, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-281-3568
Business hours: 11:00am-10:00pm
Website: https://www.facebook.com/shaoyaxuan
Coordinates: 5.39614 N, 100.31399 E
Directions: From Jalan Perak (Perak Road), turn into Jalan Tapah. The intersection is near OldTown White Coffee. D' House is one of the shops on the right, at the ground floor of an apartment complex. Street parking may be limited during certain hours. Customers to D' House (with minimum spending of RM10.00) are allowed to park at a car wash center just across the road. The parking fee will be reimbursed by D' House during bill payment.

Sorganic

Special thanks to Sorganic and TourDirections Penang for extending this product review invitation.

Planning your Penang food tour? TourDirections Penang helps you discover Penang cafes and restaurants, Penang hawker food, Penang budget hotel and Penang homestay. Sign up now to enjoy exclusive deals and access to more privileges from our partners!

Have you ever wondered what goes into each bag of Sorganic's organic soybean powder?

Wonder no more! Sorganic has graciously revealed the secret! It's actually no secret. The only secret is what corners that other brands cut in order to maximize profits. This is often done to detrimental consequences to consumers' health.

Sorganic's manufacturing is tightly-controlled under the most cutting-edge manufacturing technology. Utmost quality is what differentiates Sorganic from the lesser brands.

The manufacturing process goes through the following steps. This diagram is meant to be illustrative; this is by no means the complete detail.
Why are Sorganic's soybeans deskinned? Soybean skin causes more foaming during the production process. By using decorticated beans, the finished product has better flavor and texture.

Why are does Sorganic remove soybean sprouts? Sprouts contain high levels of purine, which manifests in human body as uric acid. Excessive amount of uric acid causes joint pains, kidney stones or gout.

Why does Sorganic deactivate soybean enzymes? Soy contains over 30 types of enzymes, many of which are harmful and need to be deactivated. This is achieved by treating the soybeans to high temperature.

With Sorganic's Cereal Soy Powder (RM36.90) and Natural Soy Powder (RM36.90), one is rest assured that only the finest ingredients and best food processing technologies are used.
To purchase Sorganic's quality products, visit one of its retail partners or the concept store at Jalan Dato Keramat.

Name: Sorganic Boutique
Address: 721, Jalan Dato Keramat, 10460 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-227-8625
Business hours: 9:00am-6:00pm, closed on Sundays
Website: https://www.facebook.com/sorganicboutique
Coordinates: 5.41344 N, 100.31279 E
Directions: Driving westward along Jalan Dato Keramat, Sorganic is approximately 200 meters after Shell, occupying half the ground floor of a two-storey shop. The shop is exactly at the intersection between Jalan Dato Keramat and Jalan Utama.

Rasa Sayang

Special thanks to Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa for extending this event invitation.

Shangri-La's Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa held its Media Appreciation Night on 26 November 2014. The purpose of this event was threefold: to introduce the newly built FIP Lounge, to provide a guided-tour of the newly renovated hotel rooms, and to treat the guests for dinner at the Spice Market Café.

This new FIP Lounge is has a laid-back atmosphere with cozy couches, bean bags and warm lighting. This is complemented with illuminated coffee tables for a sense of modern touch. Sit back and relax in this perfect hangout spot.
The FIP Lounge was extensively renovated from the original lounge. Almost beyond recognition, I may say. "FIP" stands for "Fun Interactive Play", but my guess was correct: it is informally meant to say "first in Penang", as it pioneers several interesting concepts.
But if slouching back is not your cup of tea, get your camera and creative brain out! On one side of the lounge, catch a photo opportunity which seems to defy gravity.
Or you can also meet the gorilla climbing out of the wall. Is the gorilla friendly or hostile? I really don't know.
Cameras aside, challenge your friends to a game of electronics darts. Alternatively, up the ante with a round of pool billiards.
Whether you are trying to best your buddies in a round of Jenga, or beat them in a round of congkak, FIP Lounge has the right game for you.
The beverage bar is situated between the indoor and outdoor section. If you prefer natural air, there are bar stools along the outer rim of the bar.
One of the most anticipated novelty in FIP Lounge is Beer In Ice Mug (RM23.00). Instead of using ice cubes, beer is served in a solid block of ice!
If you need to stay awake all night, the bar is happy to prepare a strong dose of espresso to fire your neurons on all cylinders.
This cup of Café Latte (RM11.00) is meticulously handcrafted, thanks to the skillful hands of the barista. In this case, the coffee foam is in the shape of two bears.
Non-alcoholic and non-caffeinated beverages are also available, such as orange fruit punch.
Hungry and lusting for power? Challenge your friend in a round of checkers with the Checker Board (RM36.00). The playing pieces are made from crab cakes and chicken boudin. How many playing pieces are there in checkers?
For a shorter game, there is also Tic-Tac-Toe (RM35.00) which uses macarons as playing pieces. Ten pieces to be exact; five for each color.
Guests who love chocolate will be delighted to know that the Dark Chocolate Fondue (RM45.00) is available. Sliced bananas, strawberries, marshmallows and dried apricots are provided as dips.
Rasa Sayang is the first place to serve Churros (RM25.00) in Penang, so it is keeping up this tradition. Dipping sauces are salted caramel and dark chocolate.
Next, we are given a guided tour of the newly renovated hotel rooms. There are 189 rooms of varying sizes, spread across the two wings: Rasa Wing and Garden Wing. The room are built with eco-friendliness in mind. For example, the air-conditioning stops when one opens the sliding door to the balcony. The appearance of ceiling fan breaks the traditional concept of hotel rooms, for a good cause. Instead of carpet flooring, the floor is now tiled.

Modern amenities are not out of reach either: flat screen LED television, high-speed Internet connection, in-room safe, mini-bar etc.

The first room is the Garden Wing Deluxe Garden View Room, which covers 42 square meters (452 square feet). As the name implies, the balcony faces the landscaped tropical garden.
This room is meant for two guests, so either a king-sized bed or two single beds are provided. The room rate is approximately RM700 per night, but varies by season. It is best call Rasa Sayang to enquire the room rate on specific dates.

The next room is the Garden Wing Superior Family Seaview Room. This room is slightly bigger - 50 square meters (538 square feet). The balcony provides excellent view of the Andaman Sea.
Besides the king-sized bed or two single beds, there is a nice couch which doubles as a cozy bed for an extra guest. The room rate is approximately RM900 per night.
Last but not least, we are given a tour of the Garden Wing Junior Terrace Suite. This room measures a whopping 100 square meters (1077 square feet)! There are only two such units in the hotel.
Besides the bedroom with a king-sized bed, there is a separate living room section. There is even an open balcony which provides spectacular views during sunrise. So spacious is the room that there is hardly any reason to step outside anymore!
There are two bathrooms in the Garden Wing Junior Terrace Suite. Each one is elegantly marble-tiled and has a separate bathtub and glass-enclosed shower cubicle.
One of the bathroom even has a bathtub which overlooks a private garden.
The room rate is approximately RM2,000 per night. What a way to splurge on your honeymoon!

Rasa Sayang provides two complimentary bottles of purified water in each hotel room. In the pursuit of eco-friendliness, Rasa Sayang has its in-house water purification and bottling facility.
After the amazing tour, we are treated with the highly acclaimed buffet dinner at the Spice Market Café.
The first thing which attracted my attention is the Baked Salmon With Mustard And Tarragon at the grilling station. The flesh of salmon is simply irresistible!
This time, the Western counter features French cuisine. French delicacies on the counter are Chicken Stew With Apricot And Tomatoes and Baked Macaroni With Cheese.
As a Mediterranean country, France also enjoys culinary influence from northern Africa. Vegetable Cous Cous is one such example. Couscous is a staple dish in northern Africa, where macaroni wheat is rolled into small pellets.
The Chinese counter offers a number of traditional Nyonya dishes. Examples are Asam Curry Prawns and Nyonya Mixed Vegetables With Bean Curd Skin.
There is also Five Spiced Chicken Roll In Bean Curd Skin and Mixed Vegetable Curry. The former is what locals commonly call "lor bak" (卤肉).
This week, the Indonesian cuisine is the highlight at the Malay counter. Guests can enjoy lovely dishes such as Ayam Penyet and Ikan Bakar.
The Indian subcontinent occurs a balanced variety of curry dishes to tantalize your taste buds.
There are also various kinds of skewered meat. The choices have expanded since Chef Shantanu's guest appearance.
At the seafood section, there are cold seafood such as scallops, mussels, shrimps and clams. A good combination of dipping sauces are available to suit your individual palate.
As for cold cuts, there are beef salami, smoked salmon and chicken.
I personally enjoy the exquisite selection of gourmet cheese. Various bread is provided to complement the cheese.
Confectionery is Spice Market's strength, so do not be surprised by the mouth-watering choices of cakes and pies. The Chocolate Mud Cake, Apple Flan and Tiramisu some of the many choices available.
Name: Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa
Address: Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa, 11100 Batu Ferringhi, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-888-8888
Business hours: 11:00am-12:00am (Sunday-Thursday), 11:00am-1:00am (Friday-Saturday) for FIP Lounge; 6:30am-11:00pm, daily for Spice Market Café
Website: 
http://www.shangri-la.com/penang/rasasayangresort for hotel;
https://www.facebook.com/fiploungersr for FIP Lounge;
http://www.shangri-la.com/penang/rasasayangresort/dining/restaurants/spice-market-cafe for Spice Market Café
Coordinates: Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa, 11100 Batu Ferringhi, Pulau Pinang
Directions: From Tanjung Bungah, travel west towards Batu Ferringhi. Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa is approximately 4.2 kilometers from Tanjung Bungah's floating mosque, located on the right.