What matters most…

I’ve been to this place…

TheArk Sibu 1

once before, not including the time when it was run by other people and I quite enjoyed the food there.

Last Sunday, my missus and I dropped by for lunch and this time around, I decided to try their shrimp paste fried rice (RM15.00)…

TheArk shrimp paste fried rice

When it was served, we thought it was very fragrant with the smell of belacan (dried shrimp paste) but when we ate it, we were kind of disappointed as we could hardly taste it at all. It wasn’t too bad but they really should think seriously about reducing the amount of msg used…and my goodness! They could at least try to be less kasar (coarse) in slicing the omelette! Tsk! Tsk!

Actually, I was contemplating on ordering their pineapple fried rice but decided against it and I certainly would not order their pork sausage fried rice that the waiter said was very popular. Pork sausage? Lap chiang?  I can jolly well fry my own at home …no, thank you!

I also ordered this dish of ladies’ fingers with minced meat (RM15.00) to go with the rice…

TheArk ladies fingers with minced meat

Minced? Those were chunks…and shredded meat! I wouldn’t call them minced. It tasted like those canned stewed pork but I don’t think they used those that came out of a tin as the meat was not that soft and besides, those canned stuff aren’t that cheap these days. It tasted all right, nothing great…and again, there was this msg overdose and I would say that the one that I had once at their sister cafe was a whole lot nicer and value for money.

One thing about the food here is that their servings were HUGE, enough for at least 4 people! I do wish they would give an option whereby diners would be able to order the food in varying sizes, say small (for 1-2 persons) for RM10.00 and large (for 3-4 persons) for RM15.00.

A friend of mind shared her photo album on the place on Facebook a week or so ago and she too did not think the food was great and from what she said, I wouldn’t think she would ever bother going there again. She was very impressed by the decor though and I must say that I totally agree with her on that…

TheArk Sibu 2

It is very tastefully done and there are many sections for one to choose. This is one of the staircases to go upstairs…

TheArk Sibu 3

…where one would be able to sit and relax and enjoy the view of the river…

The Ark Sibu 4

I wonder if you noticed the very old huge trees right in the middle of the building beside the staircase going to the upper floor. The simple truth is that there were those huge trees in the area and instead of chopping them down to construct the building, they designed it as such that they would be able to accommodate those trees instead and let them grow through the roof like this…

The Ark Sibu 5

Thus, there is some kind of an island with the trees in the middle surrounded by a pond and stream with flowing water and Japanese koi swimming inside…

TheArk Sibu 6

This is the view of the place from another angle – you can see the tall trees above the roof…

TheArk Sibu 7

So as far as the design and decor as well as the ambiance are concerned, I certainly would give top marks to this place but I’m sure everyone would agree with me when I say that when it comes to such things, what matters most would be the food…

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27 thoughts on “What matters most…

  1. Laaa..for a moment I thought you’re gonna talk about Noah’s Ark. :D

    Ya, like those raiders of the lost ark – smallkucing and gang… They saw the name on the map I gave them and went searching for something that looked like a ship…and strayed into the outskirts of town. They saw the maritime school building, built in the shape of a ship…but that wasn’t the Ark I indicated in the map. This is the one. LOL!!!

    • Ahah! Now that you mentioned the raiders ot the lost ark… I know what to do today liao. Indiana Jones movie marathon! Yeeeehawwwwww! Wokay, mana my Fedora hat ah? I wan go turn on DVD liao! LOL!

      Hmmm…at least you have the chance to do that. Me? No lah…someone’s hogging the TV – but in a way good also. I’m not the one turning into a couch potato… ;)

  2. Eh? So pelik wan? How come today no one commented yet? o.O I thought after you change your publishing time… I’m never the first commenter anymore. What happened to others?

    I was wondering the same thing too. Public holiday today…so maybe they went out partying all night long and hit the sack as soon as they came home – no time to go online and comment. :(

    • LOL… me pulak terbalik… these days, after anak start std1…I can only curi curi time to blog hop and stuff during school hols and public holidays. LOL. Cannot tahan la… anak homework banyak… need to sit with him and coach him. I ended up no mood for anything else by the time it ends every day. These days, malas until dowan to turn on the pc… just surf from the phone. :(

      Hahahahahaha!!!! My missus last time – sampai ruler patah!!! And Melissa remembers it to this day – watch out! They remember EVERYTHING!!! LOL!!! :D

  3. Cleffairy,
    Your anak std 1 only kan? Still lots of homework? Apa mo jadi with the school system nowadays. Kesian all the kids…no time for play and time for just being kids. I was also once like you…sit down beside my son and coach him with homework and my homework. Start at 2pm and go to bed at 11pm with only an hour break in between. No life like that…serik I..hahaha.

    In NZ, school is so much fun – experiential learning, fun and play…not like here. No exams, no books, no homework…the kiasu parents march to the school or department to complain. Tarek telinga…get RM1 million law suit slapped on the teachers and school…. :(

  4. Hmmmm….the food don’t look that appetising lar…especially the bende.Look so rough like that. I think when we cook sendiri will look and taste so much better. I nearly fall off my seat when I saw the price. RM15 for bende..crazy!!!! But the belacan fried rice still mengoda..ahaks!

    The omelette!!!! I’m sure the chef’s a man – women are more halus…wouldn’t slice so thick like that!!!

    Both dishes enough for 4 persons…so prices quite reasonable – just that, I don’t know why they must do that – force people to order at such prices and give so much that people cannot finish. Is this some kind of new business tactic or what? Or following countries overseas like NZ, servings soooo huge (American size, they used to call that at places like Hard Rock!), prices pun tak kalah!

  5. Hmm, intrigued to know where this place actually is. Too green to be in the city, yet impossible to be too far off the river. Food looks surprisingly inviting.

    It is in the town centre – at the Esplanade, by the riverside…across the road from Li Hua Hotel. Nope, not at those prices – can have much better stuff elsewhere.

  6. nice decor and ambiance really, and the food i have no comment.. but then i would rather say what matter most is not the food but the company you are having dinner with.. :)

    I wouldn’t agree with that. Good food with good company would be ideal…but if the food’s not good, everyone would be grumbling and complaining and the mood would be spoilt. Both must go hand in hand…and the good food will taste a whole lot nicer!

  7. gosh…that place has issues with slicing or chopping things finely.

    the ambience is superb though…but what is the point of a good ambience when food sucks? hehehe

    …and so expensive some more! :(

  8. how to describe this heavenly place with nice food and ambience. That fried rice with sambal belacan paste looks very very good.

    Too bad it did not taste as good as it looked…and the mere sight of those omelette slices put me off already! :(

  9. I don’t think ladies fingers go well with shredded meat or those canned stew pork. Just stir fry with belacan and I think they taste a whole lot better. The ambience and decor looks nice though.

    That brought me back to me 1st few years as a teacher in Kanowit and I had to cook my own meals – veg fried with canned stewed pork plus rice = a balanced meal…and I quite liked it then. But for a place like this and at those prices, I would expect something more than a bachelor’s one dish meal. :(

  10. If their business is an inn or a hotel then the design of the building, with the trees and river, will give them two thumbs up. But their business is a restaurant. I prefer to eat at ugly-designed restaurant that have delicious food than in this restaurant if what they will give me are MSG-filled food.

    Ya…like those not very attractive coffee shops that have disappeared from the scene or are gradually disappearing – not very comfortable, not pleasant to look at but the food is out of this world and a lot more affordable. I would very much prefer going to those.

  11. I guess trying to distract you from the bad food with the fancy decor didn’t work :)

    Nope… Food’s always my priority, everything else is secondary.

  12. I guess whoever prepared the first dish, thought thicker slices of omelette was appealing? I have no idea why though… I’m guessing some have liked that presentation. I wouldn’t. Heh

    I love how they included the trees into the restaurants design, and you’re correct the decor is lovely… still if the food isn’t that appealing, chances a person will keep going back is slim to none.

    Yeah! I was quite put off by it! Rather coarse, no elegance at all…definitely does not match the impressive place. The building design was the work of the former owner who was running the restaurant – great idea, I would say…but the business did not do too well so he has handed it over to these new guys. If the rest of the fare on the menu is more or less like this, I really wonder how long they will last…. :(

  13. So, we din miss anything here then? True, lousy food brings down good companion… Jadi paiseh if it turned out bad. So, when u coming to kl?

    What I had on my previous visit was quite good – two out of the four at least…. Dunno if there is anything else that’s good. Yet to hear any good reviews from people around here. No plans to go to KL as yet… TOTO tak kena bah!!! :(

  14. I don’t fancy the food in the ark. I usually go there just for their honeydew sago which usually runs out very fast. :)

    Is it that good? Must try that next time… I looked at the dessert section but I did not see anything that I would fancy… :(

    • It is quite good. Something different from the usual sui kuo ping we get in Muhibah :) Whatever you do.. don’t try their green tea drink (i forgotten the name) and mocha ice?. You will probably get a sugar overdose. It was terribly sweet!

      LOL!!! Ok…warning noted! ;)

  15. it’s true that it’s very disappointing if the interior and ambiance is so good but the food doesn’t live up to its name. Sigh..

    Yup! Too bad about the food. Would have been a great place to dine. But what I had on my previous visit was quite good…and there are many other things that I haven’t tried. There is hope still… LOL!!! ;)

  16. Hmmm…deco & ambiance is welcoming..but food no good, will not want to go.

    Two days here only – can strike it off the list. Hmmmm….I have yet to plan the itinerary for this coming trip… ;)

  17. lucky we didnt eat here else we would have been too full to go and makan other food. Portion big

    Or 6 persons, order one or two dishes…

  18. The ambiance and decor are very nice, but like you said, food and taste are the matter most! :p

    Yup. I wouldn’t wanna pay for the decor… Whatever for? :(

  19. Nice place, love the decor, maybe can go there for some “light” or finger food.

    Last trip back i saw this place, but didn’t go in, maybe should go this time.

    Yup! I think young people like to go there for drinks at night…and chat. They usually go to the upper floor, I think… Nice river view, nice breeze.

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