Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Taman Serasi Food Garden, Botanic Gardens

This not so hidden gem of a food court located near the Napier Road entrance of the Botanic Gardens reminds me of King Albert Park. And it's actually quite a pleasant place at the spacious outdoors from the serenity during the quieter week evenings. I hear that it gets really crowded in the weekends and holidays. Food courts generally are boring pretty boring with almost the same configurations everywhere since they are currently monopolised (mostly) by the food court conglomerates that inject little variables into individual outlets. With the exception of a few like the Food Republic at Wisma. The generally impression that was left in me was that they are costly and do not taste very good. Once in a while, exceptions happen.

The stalls in Taman Serasi Food Garden (1 Cluny Road) are named after the food types which they sell, so it's pretty easy to figure out what you want from the huge labels hanging overhead at the stall fronts. There's the usual nasi padang, fish soup, chinese mixed rice, roasted meats, dessert and drink stall. The drink store here actually has Erdinger. Wow. A unique vendor in this place that doesn't go by the regular labels is Yummy Crab. Yummy Crab does a variety of food items with crab ( e.g. noodles & rice). And they whip up a mean fried rice with crab meat!

Apart from the regular diced roasted pork (larger chunks here!), egg and shrimps (larger shrimps too!), you get a generous amount of crab meat with the roe in their fried rice. This fried rice does come at a fairly hefty cost. This portion which feeds one hungry big eater or two smaller ones for $18.

For a week night, the crowd was sparse. I was told that it does get horrendously long during the weekends and crab noodles (which seem to be a trend nowadays) are also one of their specialty. I don't like do deal with shells and bones normally, so this fried rice works for me.

There also a roasted meat stall which serves excellent char siew. They to have the usual roast pork belly and duck which was unexceptional though they came in rather generous portions.

There is a combo murtabak which is available in the Indian food store. I was told that this used to be a stall back in the old hawker centre (gone a long time ago) with leaky roofs during the rain. Which I fondly remember for the Roti John and teh tarik.

What makes the combo murtabak was the use of variety in the fillings instead of a single meat option. We got one with shredded chicken and ground mutton. There is the addition of sliced fresh green chilli which gives the prata more kick. I certainly appreciated that. There seens to be a crab murtabak on menu as well and I'm speculatiing is that it's might something to do with Yummy Crab.

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