Spice Brasserie

This article is part of my Chinese New Year 2019 compilation.

Special thanks to The Light Hotel for extending this food review invitation.

This evening, The Light Hotel is giving a sneak peek of its upcoming Good Fortune CNY Reunion Buffet Dinner. The preview event is held at Spice Brasserie, while the actual dinner will be held in The Light Grand Ballroom. Erected in the lobby is the hotel's Lunar New Year centerpiece: Garden of Cherry Blossom. This festive backdrop is decorated with charming Chinese lanterns.
Diners are first greeted by an elaborate presentation of appetizers. Chicken salad and smoked duck salad start the meal off on the right foot. Meanwhile, fried finger foods include money bags (福袋), squid balls and crab claws. The top tray has a sign that spells "The Light Hotel" in Chinese characters (莱特酒店).
Pun Choy (盆菜) is a Cantonese delicacy that is traditionally served in a large wooden basin. Since Pun Choy is typically reserved for major celebrations, the dish comprises of premium ingredients such as oysters, abalones, razor clams, sea cucumber, prawns, roast duck and shiitake mushrooms. An auspicious ingredient, fat choy (发菜), is also included.
Roasted Lamb Leg and Beef Tenderloin are sliced at the carvery station. The red meats are served with orange, mushroom and rosemary sauces. As for poultry, Crispy Roasted Chicken and Thai-Style Roasted Duck are available. The accompanying chili sauce is particularly spicy.
Chicken Shawarma is cooked on a rotating vertical spit. In the spirit of Chinese New Year, the rotisserie chicken comes in three different flavors: cheese, mint and tandoori. When combined, the chicken's taste is pretty pungent.
H'ng Chili Crabs are named after Chinese Sous Chef H'ng, who is responsible for crafting many of the Chinese dishes this evening. While this dish is obviously inspired by Singapore Chili Crabs, Chef H'ng also takes some creative license to present it in his own style.
The wok-fried Chili Prawns are well received too. The plump shrimps present a feeling of crunchiness that is truly satisfying. The prawns are seasoned with sweet chili sauce.
Still in the realm of seafood, Steamed Sea Bass is one of the more popular dishes this evening. The fish's exquisite texture is complemented by flavorful Nyonya sauce.
Braised Pak Choy is cooked with egg white sauce. The combination of bok choy (小白菜) and wood ear fungus (黑木耳) is garnished with ginger slivers and wolfberries (枸杞).
Spice Brasserie is famous for its nasi kandar fare. Around 6 dishes are served this evening. For Nasi Briyani, diners have a choice of either chicken or vegetarian versions. In both cases, rice is cooked with ghee and spices, and then garnished with raisins and cashew nuts.
Other nasi kandar dishes are Mutton Curry, Onion Chicken, Fish Kurma and Egg Dalcha. Most of these dishes come with gravies. A popular style of serving nasi kandar is "banjir", in which rice is flooded with a mixture of curries.
As for diners who enjoy chilled seafood, today's fresh choices include slipper lobsters, prawns, flower crabs, scallops and green-lipped mussels.
The salad bar prepares fresh vegetables and dressings for diners to assemble their own salad plates. However, I prefer to go for exquisite delicacies like smoked salmon, seasoned jellyfish and seasoned baby octopus.
Next, the confectionery section presents a plethora of Western pastries and festive cookies. Popular Chinese New Year cookies are peanut cookies (花生饼), beehive cookies (蜂窝饼) and bahulu (鸡蛋糕).
Tangyuan (汤圆) is a warm dessert of glutinous rice balls in ginger-flavored syrup. The glutinous rice balls come in several colors. The larger ones have fillings like peanut paste and black sesame paste.
Tiger Skin Sponge Cake is the pastry chef's signature recipe. This unusual Swiss roll has wavy patterns that resemble tiger stripes. I like the sweet kaya (coconut jam) inside the cake.
Another highlight at the pastry counter is Homemade Milk Pudding. This specialty from Taiwan has a rather soft and fluffy texture. Meanwhile, the outer surface of Milk Pudding is coated with grated coconut.
Good Fortune CNY Reunion Buffet Dinner will be held at The Light Grand Ballroom on 4 February 2019 from 6:30pm to 10:00pm. Throughout the evening, diners are entertained by a dramatic performance by a 3-piece Chinese band. The band uses traditional Chinese musical instruments, namely guzheng (古筝), erhu (二胡) and dizi (笛子).
As for people who are unable to visit on that day, Spice Brasserie serves high tea and dinner in buffet settings for the next 2 days.
Meanwhile, diners who prefer a more formal setting can opt for the 8-course dinner at Flavour@3. The course dinner is available daily from 3 January 2019 to 21 February 2019.
Yee sang (鱼生) can be ordered à la carte. The Light Hotel offers 3 versions: Sliced Abalone Yee Sang (RM168.00+), Salmon Fillet Yee Sang (RM128.00+) and Fresh Fruits Yee Sang (RM108.00+). Each set is meant for 10 persons.
Name: Spice Brasserie
Address: The Light Hotel, Lebuh Tenggiri 2, Pusat Bandar Seberang Jaya, 13700 Seberang Jaya, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 04-382-1111
Business hours: 6:00am-11:00pm (Sunday-Thursday), 6:00am-1:00am (Friday-Saturday)
Website: http://thelighthotelpg.com/dining
Coordinates: 5.39422 N, 100.39872 E
Directions: From Lebuhraya Utara-Selatan (North-South Expressway), take the Seberang Jaya exit and head west. Turn left just before the pedestrian bridge and drive all the way to the end. When the road splits, keep right. The Light Hotel is the first building on the left. Spice Brasserie is located next to the lobby. There are parking spaces within the hotel's compound. The parking fee is RM4.00 per entry.

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