In 2010, my missus and I were stranded in KL on Chinese New Year’s Eve, after sending off Melissa when she left for New Zealand. This year, Melissa and I ended up in KL on Chap Goh Meh, the 15th night of the Chinese Lunar New Year. ..when families would get together for another reunion dinner to mark the end of the festive celebrations.
Being her last night in Malaysia before returning to New Zealand for another year, I thought I would make it extra special for her and arrange a family gathering in KL and what better “family” do I have around than my radio family from the days of “Pat and Mag in the afternoon” on TraxxFm…
We certainly miss all those terrific afternoons we spent over the airwaves with the two DJs when all of us would commune via smses and phone calls and have a whole lot of fun together. The bonding over the years today has remained ever since and through good or bad times, we would always be there for one another.
I contacted Zul to arrange for a place for dinner and eventually, we settled for the Chinese restaurant at Novotel, KL…
This was the Chinese New Year special menu which did not come cheap – RM888 (Fatt…Fatt…Fatt…triple prosperity) but I told Zul to go ahead and make the booking as it would be sponsored by Vincent Tan, anyway (LOL!!!) and which father wouldn’t want the best for his daughter?
Dinner started off with the yee sang…
…followed by the sharks’ fins soup…
There was also the very nice steamed fish…
…but the fried prawns, though very tastily done, were not that great as I could not detect the sweetness and the freshness of the crustaceans…
Then, we had the roast chicken…
…followed by the broccoli plus mushrooms that I liked a lot…
…but sadly, the fried rice wrapped in lotus leaf was a disappointment.
Ah well! It’s a known fact that I haven’t had any fried rice outside that is better than my own. Wink! Wink!
Finally we had the desserts – some lotus seed in soy bean plus deep fried kuih bakul (the traditional Chinese New Year sticky cake) slices which of course, came nowhere near the festive cupcakes that Mag brought for everybody…
I had the one with the lantern…
…and later another one – the one with the mandarin orange.
It certainly was a wonderful evening of a whole lot of fun and laughter…and when I went to pay, Zul and Mandy came running and insisted on chipping in to foot the bill as they said it was way too much for me to treat everybody on my own…and sweet Mag even gave Melissa an ang pao, though not a Chinese herself.
There has been a lot of hoo-haa about the 1Malaysia thingy but talk is cheap. Here in my radio family, one can see the whole concept personified in all of us – Chinese, Malay, Indian, Portuguese/Eurasian as one… Together, we are beautiful.
My sincere thanks to one and all for everything. As Pat would always say everytime he ended the show, “Keep the peace and spread the love!”
36 thoughts on “Family…”
faint the food really expensive wor..for rm888, thats all ka>?
Well, if you want to have dinner on a special occasion at an exclusive place, you will just have to be ready to pay for it – like going out on Valentine’s Day…over RM100 per couple in Sibu, dunno KL. Period.
rm100 for a couple in kl is normal wor, if valentine’s day be prepared to fork out close to rm200. That’s why i prefer to spend it at home. Hehehe
Eeee…kiam siap. So unromantic – once a year only bah! Muahahahaha!!!! This year, of course, you celebrated it in style – you got married at the ROM! Now you have to celebrate Valentine’s Day EVERY year in style – the special day plus your anniversary!
eating at home also STYLO ma! Hehe
But must be special lah…prepare something special, cook together, eat together, and ummmm…everything together lah! LOL!!! 😉
Alamakkkkk… the fish looks really, reallly, really scary. Man, I’m gonna have nightmare later!
I normally would not go for those red fishes…but they’re VERY popular in Sabah and VERY expensive too. But looks aside, it tasted really great – one of the best dishes on the menu.
The fish looks really scary lo… I dunno why… if u put fishes that looks like this in front of me, sure I wun touch wan. Looks scary… the other day Cyn came to drop off some cookies, so I took her out to eat… I saja order bawal fish for her to eat… the look on her face… omg, priceless… she probably thought I was out of my mind! Hahahaha.
You hop over to my friend’s blog and see the fish and you tell me scary or not:
Now THAT is what I call scary but it was so delicious…that every time I eat at that restaurant, I would order that same fish…cooked in that same way…
Eeee… if ppl order that when they have dinner with me, I sure sit far far from that fish! So scary…summore sure got alot of bones! Walao!
Which one? The one in the link? No lah…both fish, no little bones – very nice! Just ugly…but being ugly does not mean not nice mah…like me! 😉
Nice post today, Arthur. Very melancholic. Food looks good, ambiance nice with a group of good friends to share with..RM 888 – I would say priceless!
Hopefully, we will fatt…fatt…fatt, like they say and nor fart…fart…fart! LOL!!! It was a really wonderful evening – perfect setting, great friends all around and good food, fun and laughter. Looking forward to more occasions like this.
My evening will start with opening your early morning post… RM888 wow!!! They should prepare all the food using only fresh ingredients…Are you a DJ last time???
Nope, just regulars in the radio show… Fans or as we were called during my younger days via snail mail, request fans. LOL!!
♫We Are Family…Get up everybody and *eat*…
Huat ahhhhhhhhhhh!!!!888..love the prawns..Lovely cupcakes, Bananaz will go for the ‘rabbit’ hehe. Whoa truly 1Malaysia spirit. Very well said “Keep the peace and spread the love!”
LOL!!! Well, you met two from my radio family yesterday – Zee & Cash. Terrific people, aren’t they not? Next time I go to KL and we have another get-together, I’ll get you to join us. I’m sure you will have a great time!
Annie asked me to join her meet you the other day… but i couldn’t make it… was already booked with in laws… kenot cabut… 😦 Glad you had great time with them.
Sure…had better things in store with in-laws. Muahahahaha!!!!
Nice gathering STP! Really 1 Malaysia.
Steamed fish are the norm here, but out of all the dishes there, I could not see any that really stood out. You’re right, chinese restaurants dishes would taste much better, and for much less!
Btw, this is halal right? What’s the difference in taste between halal chinese food versus non halal? I mean for the chicken and all, of course not the pork cause we know there isn’t any!
No pork and they use halal (raw) meat – that which have been slaughtered following the required procedure…and their kitchen utensils, crockery and cutlery and everything would have to be “clean”.
I always observe these very strictly (especially when I entertain at home). We must respect other people’s religion as much as we would want them to respect ours.
Generally, big hotels are required to be certified and serve only halal food – dunno why Federal KL isn’t… The food was o.k. but nothing like what we can get at the Chinese restaurants here at less than half the price… Try Fatt-fatt-fatt here and you’ll close shop first – wouldn’t even get to smell the fart! LOL!!!
Thanks for the detailed explanation! I actually wanted to know the difference in taste XD coz i think without some pork in some of the chinese dishes, it does taste different no?
In many dishes, the pork may be substituted with other meat and may still be nice – like chicken porridge or chick-kut-teh and chicken char siew…and on the other hand, things like pork curry or pork satay can also taste great. The same with vegetarian dishes, no meat at all…and yet they can be very nice.
Really muhibbah style!! This is really Malaysia, I love the mixture of all races… this post should go up to the nation papers…
As for dinner, rm888 is really high rise, but as u said, anything for the love of your girl, it is already justified…
Yeah…this is the real thing, not just a put-on show only. Yup…very expensive but I did read about other KL restaurants offering dinner packages at that price. Never mind – sponsored by Sports TOTO…but not much of that left, I guess. Still, it does not change the fact that it was money well spent – on family and such wonderful friends who deserve only the best! 🙂
RM888 wah lau eh….manyak mahal oh…CNY price. The cupcakes is really so cute
It’s only money… One can never put a price on friendship and I’m so thankful that I have such great friends. Wouldn’t mind doing it all over again…if I hit the lottery one more time and can afford it. LOL!!! Ya…everybody loved the cupcakes – I had two! 😉
lovely dishes! but rm888 divided 11 people is okay lah 🙂
Yup…supposed to be 12, but one couldn’t make it – pulled out at the last minute. RM148 per couple – cheaper than Valentine’s Day dinner at most places…and we got to eat a lot more…and had a lot more fun together!😉
yeah in KL most of the hotels and restaurants are running the RM888 set menu. I’ll say, instead of making us prosper with that number, they are prospering first!
Not really…if all of them’s the same as this one. 4 private rooms, all full – one table each…and we were in the restaurant proper and had the whole place to ourselves – nobody else. 5 tables the whole night… Food was ok, place was really nice…and service was excellent.
spending time with family is priceless 🙂
i am easy to please when it comes to food, so i like all the food based on pictures 🙂
That is true, very true… 🙂
Was that a grouper? It looked delicious and colourful. 🙂
I have yet to eat shark fins for a long, long time already.
No idea. I don’t really know the names of fish…but it was nice. Dunno where in KL, I hear, you can get the soup – individual servings…over RM10 a little bowl.
ahh, lovely gathering, huh. The food look reasonably good and price is like that, la…hotel standard, ma. Anyway, you said the steamed red coral trout was delicious? Not very often the restaurants serve it. And the last dish was fried rice wrapped in lotus leaf?? Normally glutinuous rice is used, I thought? Glutinuous rice with waxed duck and chinese sausages wrapped in lotus leaf is one of my all-time favourite…yummy 🙂
Yes, I would love it if it had been glutinous rice in lotus leaf – something like lor ma kai. Yup…the fish was nice – I did not mind the face…but I’m not used to eating fish that red. Was quite delighted when it turned out great – no fishy smell, nothing.
Wa a darling papa no doubt…anyway, great dishes…the fish looks great….and Vincent Tan paid for it so it is okay !!! well spent for Melissa…at least she had a good chinese style dinner before taking off to NZ 🙂
That was the whole idea – to let her enjoy a really nice Chinese dinner before flying back to NZ…and I’m glad she enjoyed both the dinner and the company.
Every dish is my favourite…drooling! Must be so fun to be with close friends. Melissa must be having fun getting to know daddy’s friends 😀
Yes, it was a whole lot of fun and Melissa had a wonderful time. She loves my friends – all gila-gila like the father and all talk non-stop…even though she’snot like that herself.
those were the days when we used to mix well among other races.
Why not now? We still do… We’re such close friends regardless of our creed or colour, no problem at all…and some of us are so very nice, nicer than even family.
I like this combination! It is really a good team for Malaysia.
If everyone’s thinking like you, it is peaceful in Malaysia.
If everyone’s acting like you, Malaysia’s economic growth healthy.
When this will happen to all malaysian?
p/s: the prawn look nice 🙂
It’s all in the mind. The prawns look really good, the ingredients used, the way of cooking were all good…but though they were nice and firm, I thought that deep inside, they lack the sweetness that I would expect from fresh seafood. On the other hand, the fish looked ugly, the colour was kind of shockingly red but when we ate it, we found that it was very delicious – really good. People are also like that, don’t you think?
Look beyond what’s outside and find the beauty within…and as Michael Jackson says in his song, if you want things to change, you will have to start with the “Man in the Mirror”. There is also something like this in the Bible – about removing the speck of dust in your brother’s eye…
no big meals for me on chap goh meh, just had dinner at home with some extra dishes lah, haha.. wow, novotel hotel and somemore got shark’s fin, that’s really a big CGM dinner huh?? 🙂
Well, at least you have something on. I reckoned that all or most Chinese would have their own family thingy going on at home that night…
Wah, RM888, eat liao buy Toto 8888, sure kena lorr! LOL!
Unfortunately, only 6666 came out…but starter, RM250… 😉
i think most restaurant or hotel, during chinese new year, their package usually start with 688, 888, 1888.
Like the other night i went back to hotel to have gathering with my old friends, we also choose the RM889 package..total bill come out RM1k+, lucky we get someone we know who work there to sign the bill for us..25% disc..not bad ya?
Yup…inclusive of drinks and taxes, sure to go over RM1K. Never mind, it’s once a year…and in our case, dunno when we will be able to gather like this again. Between such wonderful friends, it was definitely worth it!
Wow! Lovely cupcakes as extra dessert.
Sounded like fun! And the foods look delish!!!
Hope to meet the Family too one day…so far, only met Arthur & Pat, once each. LOL.
It certainly was and I can’t wait to do something like this again. Oh? You met Pat before? That’s nice… 🙂
Sad to have missed out this time but times are hard and marie and I cannot afford to come over this year. I really loved getting up at 5am for the lunchtime show and calling in from the UK. Distance meant nothing but the friendship over the airwaves was unbelievable. Having had the renunion in 2009 hopefully next year we can get over and see all you guys and East malaysia must be on the cards this time.
Looking forward to that…and who knows the whole gang may just go over to visit you someday. Everyone can fly… 😉
We are miss you and Marie too…hope to see you again when you are here…
…and in the meantime, we’ll probably get together again…on our own…without you! Muahahahaha!!!! 😀
This comment is long overdue but you know why it’s come so late. As usual, the piece was beautifully written (I don’t expect anything less from you anyway) and that night was indeed a wonderful night of good food and great company. We all have you to thank for making it happen so Thank You!
Do that to me one more time! It was great, can’t wait to do it all over again. 😉