Better this time…

It used to be the hotel’s coffee house that doubled as a music pub after 9.00 pm every night with skimpily-clad Pinays wriggling away whilst singing terribly out of pitch at an ear-shattering volume and everybody seemed too stoned to care. I would go there quite often for lunch or dinner (before 9.00 pm) as the food was very good…and cheap too even though one could detect the stench of the smoke and in bright light, the place was not a very pleasant sight. For one thing, even at lunch hour, the coffee house would be quite packed – with the nocturnal regulars…and despite the sign stating; “No smoking till after 9.00 pm”, they would be puffing away like choo-choo trains.

All that has changed since and it is definitely a lot better this time.

Garden Hotel 1

They’ve given the whole place a face-lift and got rid of the Filipino band…but unfortunately, the prices of the food and drinks have somewhat been inflated too. The food is still very nice…and it is now a quiet and comfy place to hang out especially on scorchingly hot afternoons to sit around as long as you like and go online – you can get the password at the reception counter. There are not so many customers now, so you can have the whole place to yourself to chat with friends and catch up with the latest gossips.

I’ve posted on the food there MANY times, for instance here and here…but of course, in those days when I used to take photographs using my old handphone, the dishes did not look really nice. This time, perhaps they will look much better than before – like this plate of fish and chips (RM12.00) that my daughter had for lunch the other day…

Garden Hotel Cafe 2

…or the tomato kway teow with crispy seafood (RM10.00) that I had…

Garden Hotel cafe 3

Well, I did say that the food is no longer cheap but considering that it’s a hotel café with a somewhat classy ambience, it is still relatively cheaper than the other bigger hotels around.

And what’s more important is that my daughter likes going there…though I wonder whether that will change once she has gone to NZ where they have fish and chips in abundance – wrapped in newsprint paper and eaten with vinegar, the traditional way. But actually, she does not like her fish fillet fried with batter and prefers it coated with breadcrumbs, so probably when she comes home in the future, she’ll probably want to drop by the Garden Hotel’s café again…

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

24 thoughts on “Better this time…”

  1. Walao… Cikgu… u wake up so early… like Sembahyang Subuh liddat! So early lerrrrr….everyday I see your entries like becoming earlier and earlier.

    =.= Fish n Chips… reminds me that i haven’t been cooking this for a while. Feel like very hard to cook when hubby not at home. Cuz my son tends to go into the kitchen to see what i do. I so takut wanna cook when he’s playing in the kitchen. Wait til the oil kena him… 😦 Sometimes, i just wish he could stay out of the kitchen. Liddat I dun have to end up making salads or those stupid sandwich spread to eat when I’m hungry!

    Ya…no telling what the child can do! Overseas, can always tapao…and here too, very nice fish fillet from from Sugar Bun. No Sugar Bun there, I’m afraid…but there are hawker stalls selling fish and chips, I guess.

    1. =.= I damn kelian wan. Eat hot meals only during dinner. Day in, day out, eat stupid sandwich and cold, easy to make stuff. Why? Cuz afraid the boy do funny stuff til get injured. *sigh* used to cook food beforehand and microwaved em later, but stopped d, cuz the food tastes awful after reheating em in the microwave.

      Even if he’s not in the kitchen when I cook, dono wud he quietly do elsewhere. have to keep an eye on him ah. The boy cannot sit still, so worried.

      You shouldn’t worry about your girl lerr… when she’s in NZ… I think there’s so many thing to eat. And, summore… you must remember ohh… NZ produce milk. LOL… if she take milk and diary products, confirm wun stay skinny lerr!

      You need a really good maid…but they’re not easy to find. Consider every trial and tribulation as a blessing from God and penance for our sins – “Blessed are those who suffer now, theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven”…and it can be somewhat consoling. Ya…SP also has a lot of things to eat and cheap too but she has transport problems…and the most accessible places would be the dirty eating stalls across the road from the institute. Worse still, when bogged down with exams and assignments, she would say she had no appetite to eat – not hungry! I googled and it seems there’s a supermarket across the road from her apartment in Wellington…so if she does not eat, at least she can drink milk or fruit juices. She loves fruit juices!

      1. LOL… I bet my daddy would say the same thing if he knew that I’m half crazy running the household. Becoz my son is a hyperactive child, we constantly need to watch him, leaving us not much time to do our own things. Pretty tiring. But good maid are hard to find. And I doubt my mind will be at ease too if there’s a maid in the house. I dun trust people easily. Especially if it’s regarding the boy. I dunno if other mums feels the way that I do, but that’s how I feel. I ended up switching from a full time journalist to a freelance editor, cuz I dun trust others to care for him. 😦 Overprotective? I think not. Even when my MIL helped to take care of the boy, he got a huge bump on his head. If MIL oredi liddat, I doubt maids would be any better.

        😦 My relationship with MIL not good, simply because she thought she can handle the boy and would never listen to my tips and advice regarding the boy. I know she’s the grandmother, but then again, I’m the mother. I know my son more than anyone else does. *sigh* Every time she screwed up with the boy, she’d blame me. Even when it’s not even my fault to begin with. Since then I never asked anyone to help me with the boy, even when I desperately need a break, cuz I know if ask other to help, if anything happen, I’ll end up more stressed up. I only trust my husband with the boy. No one else.

        *sigh* Neway, even if I get a maid, MIL will condemn me. She thought I I did nothing but shake my damn legs at home. Dun think I can afford a maid oso… cuz every month need to give allowance to MIL oso. 😦 i wun mind so much if she’s more appreciative of it. I dun expect anything from her. Not even a thank you. But I do hope she can stop going around telling people that I’m a bad mum! Feel so down each time see her face. *sigh* My parents knows nothing about my troubles. I always put a smile on my face and tell them everything is all right each time they see me. I don’t have the heart to let my parents worry for me.

        LOL… I dunno why I feel comfotable telling you this, Cikgu. You never even see me before. LOL…maybe I see how affectionate you are for your daughter…made me wistful. Wish that my dad blogged about his daughters as well. LMAO… but my dad can’t write to save his life. He’s all maths and science!

        Neway…. I think you should go makan marathon with your girl before she go NZ. And pack up some of those instant curries and rendang and stuff for her to bring to NZ. Meat floss and whatnot. That way when she feels like eating M’sian food, she wun have to search high and low for in NZ.

        Luckily I’ve got good ILs…but my missus had this dislike for maids and helpers. Dunno why! Had one very good one for a number of years…but she kept picking on her till the poor girl could not stand it anymore and quitted. Left my daughter with my MIL but she was babysitting other people’s kids and one of the boys would bite the others. My daughter would come home blue black with teeth marks all over her body. What to do – sometimes just have to close one eye or look the other way. But yours would be a handful to take care!

        I’m afraid my daughter cannot bring in any food – no animal products, no agricultural products…so, no meat, no eggs…not even egg noodles! They are very very strict in NZ!

  2. life with food is jz so amazing…. I made dumplings today and gonna cook nasi lemak tomorrow. wahahahaha… Fish and chips nice o nt really depend on d fish and chips. I once had a fish and chips in brussels and it is so nice…. The best i ever had in my life!!! D fish texture is so nice…. and those chips cant b found in place other than there…

    Ya….the fish I had at Red Carrot wasn’t great…and the one I had at The Ark was horrible. Dunno what fish they used. The fish fillet at Sugar Bun is nice…and so are the ones at this hotel cafe. Wow!!! You can make dumplings? Come, take some pics and post on Facebook! Big fat ones like the maker! Hahahahaha!!!!

  3. hey nice post and i also like your blog design…bookmarked your site and looking for more updates.

    Thank you. Glad you like what you see. Do drop by often…

  4. sudah lama tak makan fish and chip….rindu juga!! serving quite big hor!!

    tomato Koay teow..?? how’s the taste?? like char hor fun?? looks yummy la…. never heard the name before?? the crispy seafood looks lagi yummy !!

    p/s: I know what u will say later…”come la come to sibu…i bring u there”…LOL!!! honestly i really wanted to go there…now im planning..maybe next year…. see how many machines i able to sell la… 🙂

    Tomato kway teow, I think, is a Kuching specialty…but we have it here too…but I do not find any really good ones. This one at Garden is very nice…but very expensive, of course. LOL!!! You can check next year’s calendar to see when the long weekends are…and if you book now, it should be very, very cheap (e.g. Flying to Kuching from here can be cheaper than taking a bus)…even by MAS but it should not be during the school holidays as they always jack up the prices then…and you can plan a trip to Kuching and let me know so I can plan to fly over from here to take you around!!

  5. I love eating fish and chips with lemon. Never tried it with vinegar yet.. Sounds interesting though. I like my fish coated with breadcrumbs too 😀

    That’s how they eat it overseas – the fish and chips wrapped in newsprint paper and they sprinkle salt and vinegar all over it and eat. I never acquired the taste, no thank you! Don’t they give you vinegar at Manhattan Fish Market or Fish & Co? Ya, I prefer it with breadcrumbs too – the batter gets soggy sometimes…and may be too oily.

  6. When I was back in the UK…i never appreciate this Brits’ proud delicacy…i thought it is just another deep fried anyway. I used to complain how boring English cuisine is. Now back home in Malaysia, i only realize how hard it is to get fish & chips of that quality here. Over here, i will be a weirdo to enjoy it with salt & malt vinegar just like the Brits. LoL !!

    Ya…the typical Malaysian will drown it with chilli sauce…or at best, tomato ketchup. They give tartar sauce at the hotels…or mayo. Nobody takes it with vinegar, I think. Over your side, I think Fish & Co is nice…and Manhattan Fish Market but sometimes, a bit too oily and soggy! Poor quality control at some outlets e.g. once when I had it at Queensbay in Penang!

    1. haha yeah…personally i will prefer Manhattan more over fish & co. But like u said, it very much depends on which outlet u go…gosh it does make a big difference really. But just nothing similar to the authentic version. I will take the Malaysian version as a different version of cooking..and enjoy

      Very wise. As they say, when in Rome, do as the Romans do! LOL!!! I wonder why these franchised outlets may vary from one place to another. I went to Pizza Hut in Sg Petani and it was a real big disappointment. The one we have here is VERY nice…consistently nice. I would think that they would have some kind of quality control to protect their reputation.

      1. Yeah…i would expect them to have some sort of quality control. But u will be surprised that KFC & Kenny Rogers @ tourist centric places like KL Sentral serve rather tiny portion of their chicken as compare to the others. How annoying that is ? I’m sure we don’t want an American to complain that our chicken is much smaller than the breed in US.

        But hey! Our chickens are getting smaller!!! Maybe they are big and fat from all the hormone injections…and after roasting or frying, all the fat have melted away…and the birds have shrunk to the size of quails!!! That’s what I’ve noticed at the chicken rice stalls – very small chickens!

    2. =.= I take it with vinegar….somehow felt that it tasted better than other seasoning…but in M’sia, they dun give us vinegar! Every time oso gv mayo or tartar sauce!

      My friend loved it with vinegar too. Studied in Birmingham…and when we went, he had already acquired the taste and seemed to enjoy it a lot, but not me…

  7. HEY STP!!! i tot my eyes were playing a trick on me.. did i really see virtual snow flakes in yr blog? yes.. i did… hahhaa.. nice one.. got christmas atmosphere over here.. goood!
    As for the food, as long as your daughter loves it, that is all that counts.. we as parents just need to “ikut” them…. u know what? my girl who used to love japanese food told me that she will not be taking them for at least a year! YEEEHHH!!!

    Yes, it’s snowing in Malaysia too!!! 😀 You don’t like Japanese food either? Or have you two grown sick and tired of it after your trip to Japan? I really do not care for it…but what to do? My daughter loves it! So what to do? Have to take her to eat sometimes…

    P.S. Your girl’s PMR or SPM? PMR results will be released on 24th December – Christmas present! Ho ho ho ho ho!!!

  8. I preferred my Fish in breadcrumbs too.

    Many a times, when I have my Fish (in batter) delivered, I thought I had a big fish until I cut through all that batter and realised it is only a small fillet.

    Hahahahahaha!!! You should try the prawn fritter at one restaurant here in Sibu. Only the tail is prawn… A real rip-off, if you ask me!

  9. cant belif u ate fishnchips with sliced cili…

    pssstt…don intro too much tomato keh tiao as west malaysian tink its not a human food… :O

    now we nid not brain storming to meet liao lorrr… 😉

    The sliced chillies for the tomato kway teow lah! Took photo, want to show photography skill sikit mah! 😀 Why, they dunno how to eat tomato kway teow meh? Last time, Palm Road stall one best lah! Also the Batu Lintang one… So long, didn’t eat liao!!!

All opinions expressed in my blog are solely my own, that is my prerogative - you may or may not agree, that is yours. To each his/her own. For food and other reviews, you may email me at

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