Main Street Cafe

This article is part of my Christmas 2017 compilation.

Special thanks to Cititel Penang for extending this food review invitation.

Cititel Penang is the sister hotel of The Wembley, which is also located nearby. Main Street Cafe is Cititel's 24-hour coffeehouse. This casual dining restaurant is right next to Zhonghua Gourmet (中华海鲜鱼翅).
To get into the yuletide spirit ahead of time, Main Street Cafe is decorated with homely Christmas ornaments. For example, the restaurant's entrance features a Christmas tree and a mock fireplace. In addition, Main Street Cafe is serving Christmas-themed buffet later this month.
The Roast Turkey stands out at the carving station. Cooked fairly well, the turkey's tender flesh works harmoniously with giblet and cranberry sauces. Also appealing are the Chestnut Stuffing and Yorkshire Pudding. Beef Wellington is made available too. The fillet steak is coated with duxelles (sautéed mushrooms) and then wrapped in puff pastry.
Steak Diane is a classic American dish that was popularized in New York during the 1940s. It consists of thin slices of beefsteak, sautéed in butter and served with creamy gravy. Steak Diane is traditionally flambéed tableside, but this is obviously not practical in a buffet setting. Grilled vegetables like squash, cucumber and tomatoes serve as counterbalance to this meaty dish. Diners who do not take beef can try other meat dishes like Lamb Navarin or Deep-Fried Fish Fillet With Almond Butter.
Poultry is represented by Chicken Chop With Oriental sauce. Chicken fillets are covered in bread crumbs, and then deep-fried to golden crisp. Other poultry dishes this evening are Chicken Fricassée and Chinese BBQ Duck.
As for seafood, Stir Fried Prawns are cooked with their shells intact. The large shrimps are served with the restaurant's signature Milanese sauce. Speaking of shellfish, another noteworthy delicacy is Oyster Casino.
Braised Red Cabbage With Apples steals the spotlight with its alluring color. The cabbage is also infused with a respectable degree of tartness from apples. The overall taste is similar to German rotkraut. If this dish is too sour for you, go for Broccoli With Chicken Ham instead.
The action stall does à la minute cooking. The most distinguished food of all is Oyster Omelette (蚝煎). Served on oyster shells, the omelette leans towards the moister end of the spectrum. On the other hand, I feel that omelette is seasoned too heavily, leading to excessive saltiness. Meanwhile, satay (skewered meat) is also available in beef and chicken versions. Spicy peanut sauce is provided.
Seafood on ice includes oysters, scallops, mussels, spanner crabs, crayfish and shrimps. A squeeze of lime is preferred especially for the oysters.
The sushi bar presents assorted sushi (寿司), mostly of maki (巻き), gunkan (軍艦) and nigiri (握り) varieties. Sashimi (刺身) fans can also indulge in fresh slices of salmon (サーモン), tuna (マグロ) and butterfish (イボダイ). Condiments that usually go well with sushi and sashimi are wasabi (山葵), soy sauce (醤油) and pickled ginger (ガリ).
The platter of gourmet cheese contains Cheddar Cheese, Swiss Cheese, Gouda Cheese and Blue Cheese. Crackers and cashew nuts are provided should diners prefer to tone down the strong taste of cheese. Besides fresh grapes, there are also preserved fruits like prunes, apricots and mango.
As for soups, Pumpkin Soup and Lobster Bisque are prepared this evening. The Pumpkin Soup too mild in my opinion, but Lobster Bisque is flavored just about right. At the side are brioche, baguette and bread rolls to go with soup or cheese.
A salad bar affords diners the opportunity to mix their own salads. Ingredients for garden salad are Romaine lettuce, red cabbage, bell peppers, carrots, cucumber, cherry tomatoes and sweet corn. Popular salad dressings are French dressing, Thousand Island dressing, Caesar salad dressing and vinaigrette. Garlic croutons and olive oil help to improve aroma. Alternatively, diners can also mix their own Penang Rojak using a variety of fruits available.
Gingerbread House is a common sight during Christmas season. Pastry chefs often take this opportunity to showcase their creative work. The house's walls and roof are constructed from gingerbread, while the appearance snow is created through icing sugar.
Another Christmas tradition is the Christmas Stollen, a German fruit bread strewn with candied fruit and nuts. The bread is sweetened with powdered sugar. I feel that the stollen is too sweet for comfort, so it is advisable to shake some sugar off before eating. Of course, one should also not be surprised to see Yule Log Cake during Christmas season.
Black Forest Cake is based on a German dessert called Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte. Made from chocolate sponge cake, the Black Forest Cake is topped with whipped cream, cherries, strawberries and chocolate shavings.
Tiramisu is an Italian dessert which means "pick me up". Made from ladyfingers (savoiardi) soaked with coffee, the cake is layered with a mixture of mascarpone cheese, cocoa, sugar and egg yolks. Fine cocoa powder is sprinkled on top. Other cakes on today's line-up are Red Velvet Cake and Carrot Cake.
Bread & Butter Pudding is a British comfort food that is essentially buttered bread baked with egg custard. Vanilla sauce is provided. Meanwhile, Christmas Pudding is loaded with small chunks of candied fruit. Speaking of candied fruit, one should also try some Christmas Fruit Cake.
Christmas cookies are kept in airtight jars to maintain their freshness. Popular varieties are gingerbread cookies, checkerboard cookies, walnut cookies and oatmeal raisin cookies.
Macarons are made available to satisfy one's sweet tooth. Unfortunately, I feel that the macarons are way too sweet for me. Other sweet confectionery this evening are Jaffa brownies, tartlets and jellies.
The chocolate fondue is particularly popular among children. Skewered food like marshmallow, strawberries, apricots, grapes, prunes and jelly candies are provided to be dipped into the molten chocolate. Should diners prefer something cooling, they can help themselves with endless round of ice kacang, cendol and ice cream.
As for drinks, Christmas Punch and Iced Lemon Tea contain fruity coolness that helps to quench thirst. Finally, espresso machines allow diners to get their caffeine shots.
Main Street Cafe will be serving 4 buffet sessions around Christmas and 3 more around New Year. Children and senior citizens are entitled to discounted prices.
Name: Main Street Cafe
Address: 66, Jalan Penang, 10000 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-291-1128
Business hours: 24 hours
Website: http://www.cititelpenang.com/dining-en.html
Coordinates: 5.42156 N, 100.33247 E
Directions: Cititel Penang is a 16-floor building at Penang Road (Jalan Penang). Main Street Cafe is located at the far end from the main entrance. To park, drive past the lobby and up the ramp to Level 2. Parking is charged at RM4.00 per entry.

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