Friday, July 02, 2010

Pla Dib, Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Actually, to be honest, I don't know why I thought it was a Punjabi restaurant. I guess we know of a few Pradeeb Singhs, and being chinky and all, with bad pronunciation, Pladeeb might have stuck in my head as a sikh. But ya, far from it, it is not Punjabi at all. In fact, unbeknownst to me, Pla Dib means raw fish in Thai, and the name embodies the concept of freedom of food. This little piece of information I garnered, without taking notes, whilst Sherlene, the PR Manager of Bluwater Estate (not related to Clearwater Sanctuary in Ipoh...one is Blue, one is Clear) briefed us.

Now, being a male and all, one of my greatest "pantangs" is calling for directions, and I pride myself on being able to map read with a photographic memory. I'd rather end up in Bukit Kayu Hitam than to ring the host for directions. Yeah, its called "Bodoh Sombong" in Malay. (proud and stupid). What I hadn't counted on, was my deteriorating memory, brought about by age-ing, and destruction of brain cells from the bad influences I've been hanging out with. So, when I read the directions, that said, "when you pass the Serdang KTM Station, do NOT take the right ramp up", what I did was take the right ramp up which almost led to another state, probably Pahang, resulting in me taking a different ingress into the Heritage Building, where Pladip is located.

The result was rather bizarre, a bit like the cartoon, Spirited Away. Having not followed the directions to the Tee, I found myself in a carpark, and area that no one else went to. I followed the passages of a meditation hall, espousing the concepts of karma, and found myself at an ornate wall with chinese carvings, and lo and behold, on the other side of the wall, were Nigel (the organiser) and gang...I could see them... so near yet so far..... (actually, I heard Nigel before I saw him). After a search and rescue mission, they managed to retrieve me from the hallowed halls of the Chung Hua Cultural Centre Canteen, so flustered as I was, is it any wonder I can't properly remember Sherlene's briefing?

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As I began my sojourn, I was this...is it dangerous to take pictures while driving? It always warms my heart to see a rainbow, for it is a reminder of God's promise to mankind.

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Salmon Labb, lovely slivers of raw salmon, as if for yee sang, but doused in a special thai fusiony sauce. Very tangy, a bit on the salty-soury side as well for me, but texture of the fish was great and fresh.

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Ah, nothing like a cold beer, in this case, Phuket Beer, to calm the nerves from taking a wrong turn. A light beer, that complemented the meal the way a good bordeaux would complement a meal in ...Bordeaux.

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Soft Shell Crab salad. I always love soft shell crab, and I love salad, so whats there not to like about this dish! Crisp green salads, a dash of mayo, very retro, hardly anyone uses mayo just like that these days, generous portions of yummy ebi ko, prawn roe, that burst like little bubble wrapped packages of goodness in the mouth.

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A platter of four different kinds of sashimi, new age, of course, with special sauces etc. Tuna, salmon, squid and shrimp. All the ingredients were very fresh, and I love the texture of the raw stuff. There is something deliciously primal about gnawing on raw stuff, brings out the caveman instinct in me.

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I am surprised a strapping lad like Hook, (BabeKL's other half) is squirmish about eating raw shrimp. Whilst not my favourite food, I can think of far worse things to put in the mouth, BUT I have to say, these raw babies were delightful. Springy, fresh, and sweet, and the sauce took away any fishiness that you might associate with raw marine life.

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Commercial break. Pla dib exists in quite a few places.

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Service was very good. After the dish is subjected to the paparazzi, it is then dished out to individual servings.

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Single Sun Beef. Now, had it been on the planet Tattooine, with two suns, it could've been named Double Sun beef, but since we are on boring old earth, its just Single Sun Beef. However, regardless of the number of fiery orbs that dehydrated this beef, it is a fabulous snack to have with a Phuket beer. Chewy without being tough, and a fabulously preserved bovine flavour.

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Two of their specialty beverages, a mint soursop drink, and a pladib art, comprising peach, grenadine, (which a lot said tasted like cough mixture, but I likey), and some other stuff. The soursop concoction is delightfully refreshing, and whilst the pink drink looks very feminine, and I usually wouldn't be caught dead drinking something PINK, I thought it was rather palatable.

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Creamy Capellini Angel Hair pasta. Rich, and very filling, but I would prefer the angel hair more al dente. I do not think I could finish an entire plate of this myself. I find with creamy pastas, in my old age, the first mouthful is divine, but marginal utility plummets exponentially thereafter. Too rich. But if you like creamy, knock yourself out with this!

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Individually served twirl of capellini.

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Squid ink pasta. Now, I often wonder who on this earth had the foresight and guts to try squid ink in their food. Was it by accident? It falls into the same "GREAT FOOD MYSTERIES" category to me, like who thought of eating forced fed duck livers, or ox tongues, or chicken asses.
Having said that, just like all those other discoveries, (save for chicken butt), it was delicious. Now, this I could have a plate myself.

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Spinach Fettucine with Mentaiko. Gobules of unborn cod. What with the ebiko, and mentaiko, and more egg later on, it really did make for a rather eggshilarating meal.

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The interior of Pladip. Cosy surroundings.

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The open bar/kitchen.

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Squid ink fried rice. The raw egg is sploshed over the hot rice to cook. Actually, this dish surprised me the most, for despite its simplicity, it was excellent. Lovely thai fragrant rice in squid ink. Who'd have thought!

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Wasabi mashed potatoes. Can't go wrong with that comination!

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Grilled Lemon Grass Chicken with Roasted Rice. I love their innovative ways of presenting otherwise ordinary stuff. The rice is egged and roasted. The chicken, so simple, yet so effective. Moist, thigh meat. No breasts please.

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Rainbow trout. Not from the rainbow I had seen earlier. In Lime leaf, presumably Kaffir Lime. Fresh enough, but not my favourite way of eating rainbow trout. It's difficult to make fish look attractive, because they look so dead on the plate.

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My kinda pizza. Replace the salmon with pork bacon, throw some mushrooms on and we could have had an English Breakfast. But we were seriously STUFFED by the time this came along. That semi cooked egg really was an eggscellent idea.

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To further stuff us, (like ducks reared for their livers), Nigel brought a heavenly dense almond cake. You could feel the butter clogging your esophagus as you ingested this slice of heaven. Too much, too much!

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The Pladip version of Tup Tim Krob, which to Babekl's relief, had no nangka. Much to our disappointment. But the unique take on this is the way its prepared. Almost like as sorbet, so that the dish doesn't dilute when the ice melts. Ie, the whole coconut solution is frozen. Larverly.

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And to finish it all, DURIAN GELATO. What a happy ending.

Food reviews are always pleasurable when there's good food and most importantly good company, which with Nigel and Alan, Pure Glutton and Derek, BabeKL and Hook, my DEAR ALY of Red FM, our fabulous hostess, Sherlene, and Anna who called us in the first place, it was a great night, and worth the trip to the Mines. I hope to be back soon, incognito. That squid ink pasta and raw shrimp are calling my name. Oh, prices are exceedingly reasonable too, hardly anything exceeds RM 30 on the menu!


32 comments:

aly said...

Awesome! Laughing my head off in the studio! It was truly an 'eggshilarating' meal - was 'egg-static'!

CUMI & CIKI said...

they retrieved u from Chung Hua Cultural Centre Canteen..?! mwuahaha, must have been a funny sight 2behold:P

eh, so it is PLADIB not pladip rite? like the bangkok one la..

food looks great. but u cannot be as bad as me. i thot pladip was this week !!!

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

i was suppose to ask, is it pla dip or pla dib..

i m goin to take the gps despite it being so near my place..haha

same too, my ego is as big as my stomach when it comes to directions..

babe_kl said...

ciki, LOL it certainly was funny at that moment

i'm still eggstatic over this meal, one of the best in a while! btw it's B not P :p

KY said...

waaaa *kicks self*

UnkaLeong said...

Goong Dten! Should have ditched the company to join you guys man :P

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

i don't think that even a gps will help me find this place. you'll have to take me there, tangechi.

Life for Beginners said...

Well, now that you know where it is, you can also be my GPS, rite? :D

CUMI & CIKI said...

babeKL - why didn't u record ahpa's face for me :P hah

J said...

LOL. Love the Star Wars reference - the geek in me says "Yay! :)"

PureGlutton said...

Had a most lovely evening that day, we did! Trust you to provide us with the laughs, getting caught in that hall and having to be rescued!

Myhorng said...

looks delicious yo...

thenomadGourmand said...

Squid ink fried rice, the salmon pizza, a durian gelato & the Wasabi mashed potatoes, Grilled Lemon Grass Chicken with Roasted Rice & Salmon Labb - yup, that's waht i will go for.
Refreshing that they don't do the normal Thai kinda food, so boring.

Now, this calls fr a trip to this god-knws whre plc...

Paprika said...

What a very random menu! Everything does sound lovely but I still have no idea where you guys were. ???

vialentino said...

the raw shrimp looks interesting...my fav...

qwazymonkey said...

Wah, that's one heck of a meal. Even the menu looks long! I'm most intrigued by the squid ink rice with raw egg. Sounds yums

On the side, thank heavens that I've not inherited the bodoh sombong genes.

Guess what my word verfication is? PATIN! Like the fish in Pla Dip

J said...

Yay! Star Wars reference! :)

fatboybakes said...

J, why? big star wars fan ah?

monkey, just got the sombong only issit?

babe_kl said...

i'm still thinking of the black rice!

qwazymonkey said...

me? sombong? never!

fatboybakes said...

sorry guys, blogspot wonky, lost all the comments yesterday. fortunately they're back.

babekl, yalor, so good right.

vialentino, and these shrimp were nice and juicy and firm,.

fatboybakes said...

TNG, actually its not that hard to find la. i think the directions were written by a woman. too many details.

myhorng, twas delicious yo!

fatboybakes said...

pure glutton, yalar, it was fun. not fun getting lost in the halls of chung hua cultural centre though.

ciki, yalar, they all hor, should have recorded.

fatboybakes said...

LFB and thamby, i can bring you there, no probs. its actually quite easy to find.

unkaleong, i am surprised that we're even a choice at all, chis. you should know, where we are, its ALWAYS good company.

fatboybakes said...

KY, that's TWO good venues u missed. hope you've recovered.

babekl, initially i was wondering why i so duhh, then i realised, ITS NIGELS FAULT!!! check all his emails.... from day one, we were brainwashed to think it was pladiP!!!!CHIS!

fatboybakes said...

nipples and ciki, ya ya, pla DIBBBBBBBBBBB! see explanation to babe kl as to WHY the error.

aly dahlink, so nice to see you as always.

babe_kl said...

muahaha now tai chi to Nigel pulak, how typical, like our politicians! LOL

eatbitemunch said...

I'm really attracted to the squid ink fried rice for some reason. It looks like an interesting mix of Thai food and Italian.

funkbanana said...

get a better camera la.. you need more lighting in your pictures

fatboybakes said...

funkbanana, alas, it requires skill, regardless of the camera, so since i am lacking in skill that department, no point wasting money on expensive equipment. at least i can blame the camera for now. but thank you for your astute observation and feedback.

eatbitemunch, yeah, such an interesting combo hor.

babekl, sure ma... must tai chi...some more i went thru the chung hua cultural centre.

funkbanana said...

bro,
just a tad more lighting will really bring ur food to life la. those point and shoot pun boley already. As most of these eateries have scant lighting, u need to put some extra light into these pics.
hope that works out somehow. nice writing btw (that one got enough illumination haha) .take care.

gfad said...

All I could think of was, "Plardy-fu.."

Yes, pls take me when you take thamby. Thank Q.