Pleasant surprise…

I was just going through the motions, caught in the rut of my everyday routine and I did not expect it at all when Kongkay contacted me on Sunday night to invite me and my missus out for dinner the following evening – the eve of National Day. It certainly was a pleasant surprise!

Well, it turned out that he was in town along with some blogger-friends of his from Kuching – the husband & wife food bloggers,Β Nate and Annie,Β and he was entertaining them and a few other family members and friends to dinner at the MingZiang Court, the Chinese restaurant at one of the big hotels in town…

Kingwood's MingZiang Court

The dinner started with this dish of hot treasures…

MingZiang Court's Hot Treasures

…that included some abalone. slices of ham, beef tendon and so on.

Then came the soup…

MingZiang Court's black chicken soup

…and thankfully, Kongkay had graciously omitted that not-to-be-named delicacy and replaced it with black chicken soup instead. Black chicken? Ugh!!! But one sip of it changed my tune completely! It was really very nice…and so very sweet – I think I saw some dried scallops in it. Hmmm….I must KIV that for the next time I steam some chicken.

The fish that night must have cost a fortune as it was one of the three most expensive freshwater fish from the upper reaches of the Rejang River, worth their weight in gold. Those would be the empurau, semah…and this one, the tangadak

MingZiang Court's steamed tangadak

For one thing, these fish have a lot of bones, so extra caution would be required when eating them. Nevertheless, the flesh is really sweet and smooth and never fails to satisfy.

Next, we had the stuffed duck…

MingZiang Court's stuffed duck 1

…stuffed with glutinous rice and what-have-you…

MingZiang Court's stuffed duck 2

…but even though the duck was nice, I thought the rice inside was not sticky enough. I think I’ve had better stuffed duck elsewhere.

But the prawns were really delicious…

MingZiang Court's prawn combo

Done in two different styles, each had its own flavour or special taste. I think the one in the mihun basket was cooked with salted egg, both were a bit spicy…like there was wasabi added…and when Kongkay or somebody asked me which was better, I just did not have an answer. I felt both were equally great! That would be one dish I would definitely order, should I happen to drop by there for dinner again.

The fried mee sua

MingZiang Court's fried mee sua

…was excellent and could beat Ruby’s hands down but for a place like this, I guess the price would also be something to reckon with.

The dinner ended with the fruit platter…and it certainly was a delightful evening spent with friends, old and new.

Thanks a lot, Kongkay. Too bad you will not be around in Kuching when I go over in a couple of weeks’ time…but we’ll catch up with one another some other time. We always do…

Author: suituapui

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

33 thoughts on “Pleasant surprise…”

  1. good morning STP.. what a beautiful sumptuous dinner Kongkay gave to u and your missus.. must be pricey as u said.. the abalones, dried scallops, fish, stuffed duck.. wow.. all expensive items.. feeling so hungry now looking at these food..

    Indeed, it was a lovely dinner and obviously, quite expensive. Really privileged to be invited… But if you come to Sibu, I can also host one like that just for you…and Elin…and Mandy and…whoever. Come! Come! Muahahahaha!!! πŸ˜‰

    1. waaallau… in that case, must fast fast check air asia tickets.. hahahaa.. thanks in advance!

      Quick! Quick!…I’ll be right here waiting…for all of you! πŸ˜‰

  2. Good morning my friend, first of all i like that name KongKay, sounds very the siam….and indeed it was a pleasant surprise for you and your missus that you were treated to such a sumptious meal.. wish i were there…hahahaha…

    It’s Hokkien – meaning talk extra (also no use…kong kay liao! LOL!!!) Come, come with Claire and the rest and we can have a dinner like that too – my treat! πŸ˜‰

  3. Hi STP,

    I’m thankful that whoever ordered the soup omitted the shark’s fin. We’re trying to teach our kids that, for the sake of the shark population, it’s not something we want to eat. Even though the soup *is* tasty.

    Pleasure meeting with you the other night. Do contact us on our House of Annie blog – we’d love to meet up again when you get to Kuching.

    Aloha, Nate

    LOL!!! I would leave it out too. After all, it’s tasteless…AND expensive. What’s delicious is the soup – with or without it or with other things like sea cucumber, fish maw. My pleasure too meeting you and your family. This coming trip, I guess I would be tied up with the wedding in the family…but hopefully, we’ll get to meet again sometime. Aloha…

    1. I was hoping we could go together to visit Greg and Nee’s new cafe. Let us know when you’re available!

      Will try. The last time I went over for a wedding, Mike tried to meet up…but unfortunately we just could not slot in a suitable time. You can go to Nee’s first…and post on it. I hear everything’s nice…but they do not come cheap. πŸ˜‰

  4. oooh…. tengadak. Very hor liaw. Lucky u.

    Ya, lucky indeed… Dunno how much a kg, the current price…and most of the time, it’s not available here – exported to Singapore or KL already. Can fetch much better prices there.

  5. yeah dried scallops definitely make the soup much tastier! I love it too πŸ™‚

    Ya…made the soup really sweet and so very nice. I’m not a fan of black chicken (Ugh again!) and usually it is steamed with ginger and not much else. This one’s really good!

  6. What a feast! You didn’t mention the name of the hotel. For a moment I thought it was the restaurant on the fifth floor of Wisma Sanyan, but obviously wrong, no hotel there. Anyway, A, greetings from the Texas Gulf Coast. Just got back two days ago.

    Hahahaha!!! Don’t want to give them free advertisement – not unless they pay me to eat there. It’s the one by the river, right now undergoing some massive conctruction and extension. Glad you’re back… Your sis got in touch with me via Facebook and I did mention to her that I had not heard from you for a while, and hoped that you’re doing ok…

    1. Yes, was traveling for a while and had only intermittent internet. I can only think of three hotels by the river, one by Kpg Datu, two by the Esplanade initials LH and KW, but I don’t recall seeing any construction anywhere.

      Oh? You’re not very observant then… It’s the latter. HUGE construction going on. This hotel is partially ON the river…not the former too.

  7. Hahahahha… poor duck… have been sodomized by a lot or rice. Wahh… all the food looks expensive…neway, i jakun… never know about empurau, tangadak and semah. *pengsan*

    Freshwater fish, exclusively from the upper parts of the Rajang…and not affordable to the likes of me – can go up to RM200 a kg…or more, I hear, in Singapore and KL. I saw in somebody’s blog (Eiling’s, I think) – they had one of the three for a Chinese dinner in KL. Bet that dinner must have cost a bomb! Ya…the duck certainly looked well-stuffed… Hahahahaha!!!

    1. Food for thought… I wonder…since these expensive fishes are edible… I wonder if flower horns and arowana can be eaten too? Boleh makan kah?

      Dunno… But if it’s kept in an aquarium in the house, sure not nice one…

      1. Yea… the meat sure not nice if keep in aquarium… but really wonder lorr…fish oso… must be can eat lah!

        Can… Anything that moves – edible! LOL!!!

  8. Looks sumptuous! Expensive? LOL at ‘not-to-be-named’ dish!!!
    Also the duck with glutinous rice looked special.. never had it before over here…

    Dunno, didn’t pay…and didn’t ask! Must be… No? That dish is quite popular here – stuffed with glutinous rice with shitake mushrooms, chestnuts and what not – something like lor mai kai! Very nice…

    1. Lor mai kai! Cikgu… when you come KL next time… Kat’s Lor Mai Kai is a must. Must bodek her make for u… very nice wan!

      Oh? Can send poslaju or not? Muahahahaha!!!

  9. how come not to be named!? hahaha eh i never try stuffed duck before owh. 😦 look nice here.

    Haiya…endangered lah and cruelty! Donwan to encourage people to eat it… You post in your blog lah…enjoying one big bowl, post lots of photographs and you will get all those NGO people and naturalists coming in to slam you! Nice, the stuffed duck was good but I felt the stuffing could be nicer… You should try…if you’re not like my missus. She does not touch duck… 😦

  10. WOW…expensive and yummy dinner!! I love the tangadak fish but minus the bone.

    This is at Kingwood Hotel? Very unique chinese restaurant name.

    Yup, the Chinese restaurant there. Ya…must eat slowly and carefully, and pay attention to the eating – cannot talk so much. LOL!!! πŸ˜€

  11. so delicious – I know which hotel – end of Dec I will have a wedding dinner there – hope the food as good…

    Big banquets, usually ok…but of course, it will depend on how much per table…but I’ve often heard people say that this place, if small gathering, one or two tables – the food is much better.

  12. wah the stuffed duck look manyak “sui” . Must have been very tasty…hmm..stuffed duck…can experiement…sumbat to the fairy lol

    It was nice…but I would prefer the rice to be stickier… The duck was good, just the rice could be better. You’re making one for Cleff… Ooooo….some people have all the luck in the world! 😦

    1. *horrified* wud duck? later ur duck terbakar!

      Then negro duck…like ur negro chicken lor! Daffy Duck! LOL!!! πŸ˜€

      1. Hahahhaa… at least, hers if become black, have a better name for it… Daffy Duck! LOL… Loved that duck when I was a kid… along with Bugs Bunny and all. LOL… but den, I’m like a bottomless pit… black or not black, all hentam.

        By the way, i never tried the black chicken before… umm… looks soooo weird. The real negro chicken! *pengsan* Taste nice kah? Like regular ayam? Or the taste different? eee… strange thing!

        It’s the same, or maybe sweeter, a bit nicer and more nutritious – just that the skin is black and that puts a lot of people off. No wonder you two get along so well together – negro chicken and daffy duck, what a pair! Hahahahahaha!!!

  13. hi arthur,

    firstly…i am very sorry for my late reply and my late disappearance as i am away for my holiday and tied up with my work.

    yeah, i love that stuffed duck …. is it herbal taste? the rice i mean…

    No problem at all, welcome back!!! Ya…I think it has five spice powder in it – something like lor mai kai… I love duck!!! And I do not get to eat duck at home as my missus does not like it! Sobs!!!! 😦

  14. wah looks like you had a hearty feast! Eating to celebrate merdeka? haha… cheers!

    That was the first question I asked my friend when he invited me… πŸ˜‰

  15. i would love to eat the steamed fish. yum3..
    p/s: 4 new post, mean i am missing for four days already because internet down. hahaha

    Typically Chinese eh? Steamed fish with ginger… Oh? Which ares? Gosh…no internet for four days. That must have been hell. Was wondering where you’ve gone to…LOL!!!

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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