The Black Market

Update: This business has ceased its operations.

The Black Market is located right next to Kitchen Chemistry in Hin Bus Depot. The shop sells coffee, tea, fruit juice, milkshake, ice cream float and bottled beer to diners at The Glass House (The Glenlivet Jun 2018).
What's more satisfying than an ice-cold glass of Root Beer Float (RM7.00)? The sweetness of vanilla ice cream complements well with the sharp taste of root beer.
Address: 125, Jalan Timah, 10150 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 019-560-8355
Business hours: 10:00am-9:00pm (Sunday), 11:30am-10:00pm (Tuesday-Saturday), closed on Mondays

Kitchen Chemistry

Update: This business has ceased its operations.

Kitchen Chemistry has a second outlet at The Glass House in Hin Bus Depot. Like the original restaurant, it specializes in Western cuisine with elements of local flavors.
Masala Lamb Chop (RM35.00) is one of my favorite dishes here. The pan-grilled lamb is marinated with spices from the Indian subcontinent, making its aroma mouthwatering indeed. In terms of taste, the lamb is succulent to the last morsel. However, I feel that the meat is slightly tougher than how I like it to be.
Masala Lamb Chop is served with black pepper sauce. The dish also comes with homemade mashed potatoes and small salad on the side.
The food at Kitchen Chemistry may appear pricey but at least the taste is fantastic. There are no drinks on its menu. Instead, beverages can be ordered from The Black Market.

Address: 125, Jalan Timah, 10150 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 012-430-6536
Business hours: 12:00pm-9:00pm, closed on Mondays


Special thanks to 4FINGERS Crispy Chicken for extending this food review invitation.

4FINGERS Crispy Chicken is a chain of quick service restaurants from Singapore. There are currently 6 outlets in Malaysia. All stores are located in Klang Valley except a sole one in Penang. This outlet in Gurney Paragon Mall occupies the former location of Caffé Bene at the Ground Floor.
The founders of 4FINGERS were inspired by Korean fried chicken in New York City. The recipe was subsequently modified with Asian-style seasonings to suit the local palate. The brand is called "4FINGERS" because the founders believe that everyone needs 4 fingers to tear their fried chicken apart.
4FINGERS uses the self-service model to save manpower. Each customer typically places an order at the front counter and is given a pager. When the pager beeps, the customer may collect food from the pick up counter. During my visit, food is served within 15 minutes upon ordering.
For starters, I opted for 1 Drumstick & 3 Wings (RM19.70 for combo meal). The chicken consists of 1 drumstick, 1 drumette and 2 wingettes. In addition, the combo meal also includes Skinny Fries and a soft drink. Skinny Fries can be served with seaweed or kimchi.
As for fried chicken, there are 2 seasoning choices: Soy Garlic and Hot & Spicy. Customers can also request for a combination of both. The Asian-inspired soy sauce is fermented for 5 months and does not contain any artificial flavoring. Meanwhile, the Hot & Spicy flavor packs a fiery punch of pungency; you have been warned!
Next, the Seafood Rice Box (RM16.90 for à la carte) contains battered calamari and shrimps that are fried to a scrumptious crisp. The rice box also includes kimslaw on the side. The word "kimslaw" is a portmanteau of "kimchi" and "coleslaw". At 4FINGERS, the kimslaw is fermented on-site every day.
The B.F.F. (RM15.00 for à la carte) is the bestselling chicken burger at 4FINGERS. The crispy chicken chop is sandwiched between halves of a sesame bun, and accompanied by fresh mushrooms and roasted garlic sauce. Like the fried chicken, the burger patty is available in either seasoning.
Moving on, the Chicken Katsu Sandwich (RM15.00 for à la carte) is prepared using fried Chinese buns (炸馒头). Inside each bun is 4FINGERS' signature chicken with a sizable portion of kimslaw and iceberg lettuce. Each serving comes in 2 pieces.
As for iced drinks, Signature Honey Yuzu (RM5.60) is prepared in a cocktail shaker. The drink's citrus tanginess makes it a perfect beverage to quench thirst.
All 4FINGERS outlets in Malaysia have halal certification. The franchise emphasizes on using fresh chicken and natural seasonings to prepare food. 4FINGERS does not use monosodium glutamate (MSG) or other artificial flavorings in its recipes.

Name: 4FINGERS Crispy Chicken
Address: L1.06, Gurney Paragon Mall, Persiaran Gurney, 10250 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-293-8741
Business hours: 10:00am-10:00pm
Coordinates: 5.43576 N, 100.31164 E
Directions: 4FINGERS is located at Level 1 of Gurney Paragon Mall. The restaurant is adjacent to Cho Dong Jib. Gurney Paragon has a multi-storey parking garage.


Special thanks to Iconic Hotel for extending this food review invitation.

Iconic Hotel is a 4-star hotel at Icon City. It is the closest hotel to Bukit Minyak Industrial Park. Located at the Mezzanine Level, Mezza9 is one of the two eateries that are directly managed by the hotel. This evening, the restaurant debuts its Seafood Buffet.
Whenever it comes to seafood buffet, the main highlight typically revolves around seafood on ice. Presented on a wooden canoe are exquisite marine delicacies like flower crabs, scallops and prawns. Condiments such as Tabasco sauce, chili sauce, spicy soy sauce and lemon wedges are provided.
Each customer is entitled to half of a Baked Slipper Lobster. Gratinéed with cheese and garlic, the slipper lobster comes with fries and salad on the side.
Meanwhile, Cheesy Oysters are presented over a dulang (rattan tray) of rice. The oysters are gratinéed with cheese on their shells. Also served today is Crab Claw Custard Steamed Egg. Although the egg custard is meant to resemble chawanmushi (茶碗蒸し), I feel that it is too firm.
Curry Salmon Head is one of the more appetizing hot dishes. The delectable curry blends well with the salmon's tasty flesh. For restaurants that serve sashimi, this dish is an elegant solution to minimize wastage in the kitchen.
Diners can also enjoy unlimited helpings of flower crabs, razor clams and shishamo (柳葉魚) from the grilling station. Several condiments are prepared to go with seafood but I think the variety can be improved.
As for sashimi (刺身), the choices are salmon (サーモン), tuna (マグロ), butterfish (イボダイ) and octopus (タコ). Several types of sushi (寿司) are available too.
There are also several non-seafood dishes like Stir-Fried Beef With XO Sauce. I enjoy the delightful savoriness of beef in my mouth. The beef is also remarkably tender.
At the cold cuts section, notable choices are beef salami and smoked salmon. The buffet also serves cocktail salads like Chicken Salad, German Potato Salad (kartoffelsalat) and Japanese Baby Octopus Salad (中華イイダコ).
On the other hand, diners who prefer to mix their own salads can take advantage of fresh vegetables and dressings at the salad bar. Popular salad dressings include Thousand Island, French and pesto dressings.
Moving on to the pastry section, macarons are meringue-based cookies from Italy and France. These confections come in multiple colors; some are even filled with buttercream. In general, I feel that macarons are too sweet for my palate.
Other sweet treats at the desserts counter are cheesecake, mousse cakes, opera cake, tiramisu, panna cotta, fruit jellies and tartlets.
The chocolate fountain is particularly appealing to cocoa lovers. Mezza9 has prepared skewered items to be dipped into molten chocolate. Examples are savoiardi (ladyfingers), brownies, marshmallows, strawberries and grapes.
In addition, I am fascinated to see churros too. This Spanish fried snack is often dipped in a sweet sauce before being eaten. This is where the chocolate fountain comes in handy.
Last but not least, Ais Kacang and Leng Chee Kang (莲子汤) are included in today's buffet. A large variety of ingredients are made available to go with these two sweet treats.
Iconic Hotel's Seafood Buffet is served from 7:00pm to 10:00pm every Friday and Saturday. Live music is performed during the meal. The buffet is priced at RM128.00 net per adult. Unlike typical buffets, there is no charge for children aged 12 years and below - as long as each non-paying child is accompanied by a paying adult.
Name: Mezza9
Address: Iconic Hotel, 71, Jalan Icon City, 14000 Bukit Mertajam, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-505-9988
Business hours: 6:00am-11:00pm
Coordinates: 5.34206 N, 100.43287 E
Directions: From the North-South Expressway, take the Bukit Mertajam exit and head east. Turn left just before Petron gas station, then turn right to the front entrance of the 15-floor Iconic Hotel. Mezza9 is located on the Mezzanine Level of the hotel. The hotel provides multistorey parking.

Tokyo Kitchen

Update: This business has ceased its operations.

Tokyo Kitchen (東京厨房) is a chain of Japanese restaurants from Klang Valley. The dishes here are inspired by Tokyo cuisine. The sole outlet in Penang is located at Icon City, right next to Ittan Izakaya.
The dining area is elegantly decorated with Japanese ornaments. There is even a small pond with live koi (鯉). To enhance the ambience, Japanese pop songs are played in the background.
Tori Karaage Don (鶏から揚げ丼, RM19.80) is a rice dish with a fried chicken cutlet on top. Dressed with mayonnaise (マヨネーズ), the cutlet is crispy but is a bit salty. The meal also comes with a bowl of miso soup (味噌汁) that contains seaweed (ワカメ) and tofu (豆腐).
Una Cheese Roll (うなチーズロール, RM26.80) is a maki sushi (巻き寿司) with freshwater eel (鰻) on top. The rice is rolled with crab stick (カニカマ), daikon (大根), cucumber and seaweed (海苔). Besides unagi, toppings also include tare sauce (たれ), torched cheese and shrimp roe (えびこ).
Tokyo Kitchen Green Tea Latte (ラテ東京キッチン緑茶, RM9.80) is an ice-blended drink using matcha. Unfortunately, the ice is not blended thoroughly, so there are still chunks of solid ice in the drink.
While the restaurant's ambience and table service are commendable, I think the food taste deserves some improvement. Note that Tokyo Kitchen does not serve pork.
Address: 45, Jalan Icon City, 14000 Bukit Mertajam, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-505-7282
Business hours: 12:00pm-3:00pm, 5:00pm-10:30pm