Monday, May 23, 2011

That Little Gerai @ Gerai Kecil Itu

That Little Gerai (TLG) is the latest and hottest Western food joint in Klang is actually a little gerai in Taman Permata, Ulu Klang where New York dining experience (the food) is brought to the streets of Kuala Lumpur...and made available by US trained Malaysian chef , sold in Ringgit rather than US Dollar.

TLG is located in Taman Permata, Ulu Klang. If you're from Ampang on the MRR II, turn left to Taman Permata at the Melawati junction or turn right if you're from Gombak / Batu Caves. Once you're in Taman Permata (you can see Giant on your right), drive straight ahead (say 150m) until you see a junction to the right...take that route and you'll see Syed Bistro 50 m down the road on the right hand side and TLG is just a few meters away....tucked nicely at the corner of Thira Tomyam. Yes.....the place used to sell tomyam food but of late, the whole place is taken over by TLG operations....TLG is slowly becoming TNSLG (That Not So Little Gerai) and probably then on to TBLG (That Big Little Gerai)!!! Anyway, if you couldn't find it ......use the GPS or just ask!!

TLG serves excellent tasting, affordable and halal western food and the best part is that you can ask the chef to cook anything you fancy, but you'll have to bring the ingredient or you negotiate with him in advance....where to find like this!!! The chefs also love to interact with the you can talk to him or discuss about food....people kind of like that. Offers on the menu include rib eye or sirloin steak, lamb chops, grilled chicken or chic chop, burgers, pasta, lasagna, salmon, dory, salad....or even nasi goreng is available. The mashed potato is probably the best in town and the sauces are thick and tasty...yummy!! So its perfect for everyone, young or old, big or small, loaded or the very relaxing ambience (no particular dress code required...but don't come naked!).

TLG is opened every night except Monday night, normally after Maghrib and it goes on until everything is finished (can be as early as 10 PM) or as late as 2 AM. To maintain the quality of food, the chefs would normally do their own shopping after the gerai is closed for the night. Sometimes there is low turnout but most of the time the place is full of it it best that we come early or do a booking by calling the chef. Its a bit of a squeeze if it rains but we're sure the chef will think of something to make the customers happy. In addition, the place has a flat screen TV with the joint is normally full when there is LIVE football. The chefs are both inclined to Liverpool FC....but they welcome all LFC supporters and non supporters...even if you're MU's fan or Chelsea's fan or Arsenal's fan.....the chefs will still serve good quality food!!

TLG is run by 2 very experienced chefs.....Chef Aidy and Chef Ray....both of them learnt to become chef the hard way. Chef Aidy started the whole thing about a year ago after coming back from the US (he was there for 20 over years...surviving the New York city by being a chef and have served challenging & demanding customers).

The Chef had applied his trade in Malaysian context and was well accepted, evident by his involvement as chef at Starhill and even serving western dinner for the PM and the King!!! But he got fed up working with people and decided to open up his own brand and style of good western food for local Malaysians. Chef Aidy firts started as One Step KL in Setapak but it did not do well due to management issues and poor location...but the whole picture changed when he moved to Tmn and response from the local Malaysian were simply amazing....local Malaysians love good western food....and they seem to have found it here at TLG. Similar story on Chef Ray, he had experienced being chef in many parts of Asia and Europe serving demanding customers in hotels and cruise ships, and he is also good with local food. He crossed path with Chef Aidy sometime ago and they decided to team up and slog it out...they seem to have evolved into a very formidable team.

TLG now has many new and repeat customers and we ourselves normally have dinner once a week at TLG....and we know of a few people who makes TLG as their second kitchen!! Many new customers got to know of the place through the internet...many people have come here and wrote their comments and views about the food and the gerai...most of them were very good comments and that inspired the chefs to do better...of the course the 80:20 rule always applies.

Click on TLG's reviews by their customers @ bloggers:-;;;;;;

So, if you're nearby Tmn Permata or if you're dying for good western food, That Little Gerai (TLG) is the place to be...good food guaranteed, insyaAllah. Like TLG on facebook @ That Little Gerai in AU5 and Twitter @ThatLittleGerai. Chef Aidy can be contacted at 012-3320416.

Chef Ray in action!

TLG on full house!!!

Laila, the Sous Chef :-)

TLG @ Jalan Au5D

Chef Aidy @ his open kitchen

The charbroiling beef patty

Seafood Aglio Olio

Special Salmon Olio

The famous Chix Chop

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Khan Baba Restaurant...Our New Discovery!

We have been quite adventurous lately, eating out of the box and no longer at the same old place. We decided to explore new eating places around our area and this time it is located behind Ong Tai Kim (OTK) at Medan Idaman. Adik told us that his friend has experienced the food there and recommended him to try. Kids nowadays, they talked about all kinda stuff including where to eat good food.

Khan Baba serves a combination of Arabic, Pakistani, Western and BBQ cuisine. The menu offers a huge spread of dishes you can choose from. You just need to consult the waiter/waitress before you make your selection because some of the items listed in the menu can be tough to comprehend such as Mutton Yakhni Pulou, Zeera Pulou, Alu Muttur, Soluna, White Lobia or Alu Anda!!!

Their signature dish and recommended by the chef include briyani and mandy rice with either lamb, chicken or beef. We ordered Mandy Rice with Lamb, Garlic Nan Bread and the mix BBQ. The food was excellent and it was a good choice. The price is reasonable since they are quite generous with the portion that they serve.

The restaurant itself is nice and cozy and it is a good place for family gathering and events. If the place is full, they have a sitting area for you to wait. You can also relax outside the restaurant after the heavy meal for tea or smoking. However, it is always recommended to pre-order your food since preparation can take a bit of time. Good food takes time...If you wish to try, they are located at No. 16-18, Jalan Jernai, Medan Idaman, Gombak, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A visit to Bakun Dam

I recently went to visit the Bakun dam due to work assignments, after having not been there for quite sometime. The last time was about 3 years ago, when the construction activities were at its heights.

To go to Bakun, we have to fly from KL to Bintulu, then on we’ll have to travel by land using 4WD from Bintulu towards Miri. At Semilajau, 50 km north of Bintulu, we’ll have to turn right towards Belaga and Bakun, which is another 180 km away, through partly surfaced road. After Tubau, the road got worst, damaged due to rain and the heavy weights of the logging trucks. It took between 2.5 to 3 hours to reach the Bakun dam site from Bintulu.

Fast facts about Bakun Dam:
• The Bakun Hydroelectric Dam is the second highest concrete faced rockfill dam (CFRFD) in the world
• Bakun dam is located on Balui River in the upper Rejang River basin, 37km upstream from Belaga.
• Bakun dam is 207 metres high with a reservoir surface area of nearly 70,000 hectares, about the size of Singapore.
• The main civil works began in 2002 by Malaysia-China Hydro Joint Venture.
• A workforce of just over 3000 are on site at the peak of construction activity.
• Experts, engineers, specialists and consultants worldwide are involved in this mega-project.
• Upon completion, the Bakun Dam will generate 2400MW of clean electricity (300 MW x 8 turbines)
• Bakun is now owned and developed by Sarawak Hidro, a fully-owned unit of the Minister of Finance Inc (MOF Inc). It will continue to develop it until full commissioning of the generating units.
• The dam is expected to be completed by December 2011. The overall cost of Bakun has been put at RM7.3 billion, but due to cost overruns, compensation for delays and interests, the final cost is said to have escalated.
• Bakun Dam is emission-free and has a 0% impact on global warming.

Simple history of Bakun Dam
The Bakun Dam was originally proposed in the early 1960s and its long history includes:

Early 1960s Initial physical survey of the hydroelectric potential of Sarawak.
1970s to 80s Detailed examination of the Bakun site, and preparation of development proposals.
1986 Decision by the Malaysian government to build the project.
1990 Postponement of the project.
1993 Revival of the project.
1994 Awarding of project to Ekran Berhad.
1996 Construction begins.
1997 Asian Economic crisis and second postponement of project.
2002 Awarding of project to Malaysia-China Hydro Joint Venture.
2011 Project completion and delivery.

Impoundment of the Bakun Dam
The impoundment of Bakun dam started on Wednesday morning, October 13, 2011 after closure of the diversion tunnel gates and the flooding would take about seven months to reach the minimum operation elevation of 195 meters (above sea level) to run the wet-test of the turbine.

During the impoundment, the flow downstream of the dam would be maintained through a mechanism to release between 150 and 260 cu-m per second of water depending on the reservoir level from the water release outlet to maintain the minimum base flow in the river downstream, including Sungai Rajang which meets the sea at Sibu.

Information on Bakun Dam
The story of Bakun Dam is filled with controversies and I don’t intend to go into all those issues but rather more on my personal experience in dealing with the project and visiting the magnificient dam site. To those interested to find out more, you can visit (although as of today, it has not been uploaded with latest information).

The latest news was puiblished by the Borneo Post dated 5th May 2011 (copied below):

Commercial power by July by Peter Sibon. Posted on May 5, 2011, Thursday

KUCHING: Trial run of Bakun Dam turbines likely to start next month as water level more than enough. The water level at Bakun hydro-electric dam reached the required 195-metre level on April 28. This means that trial run of the first of eight turbines can start as early as next month.

Sarawak Hidro chief executive officer/managing director Zulkifle Osman said as of yesterday the water level had risen to 198.25 metres. He explained that his team had to monitor the situation carefully before deciding on the date for the trial run to prevent any misjudgment which could adversely affect the RM7.2 billion project. “We have to look at all aspects of the safety of the dam before we can start trial run of the first turbine, probably by next month,” Zulkifle told The Borneo Post here yesterday. He added that Sesco was assisting Sarawak Hidro to monitor the situation in terms of safety. Zulkifle added that if the trial run proceeded smoothly, it would mean that the first turbine could produce commercial power by July, with an initial capacity of 300 megawatts.

Bakun dam has a total of eight turbines which could produce a total of 2,400 megawatt of electricity once it is fully operational next year. Zulkifle said among the major aspects of the trial runs is the ‘wet test’ of the turbine. On another matter, he said the water level in Batang Rajang had almost returned to its original state. The water level had nosedived when impoundment of the dam began on Oct 13 last year. He said he believed that once the impoundment exercise was over, the water level would be back to normal.

Batang Rajang, the main mode of transportation for some 30,000 residents living above Kapit town, has been badly affected by the impoundment exercise. Asked about the strength of the dam, Zilkifle stressed that it was “built to last”. “The dam has been approved by qualified consultants appointed by the state government. The dam is built to last. What matter most is the depth of the dam that can withstand the pressure for long term.”

The power intake

Near spillway

The public jetty


View from power intake

The lake

The spillway

Will soon dissapear

Monday, May 16, 2011

IQKL - Perasmian Perpustakaan Bustanul Ariffin

Kami meluangkan masa pada hujung minggu yang lalu untuk menghadiri Mesyuarat PIBG IQKL yang ke-4 pada tanggal 14 Mei 2011. Kehadiran ibubapa pada mesyuarat kali ini amat memberangsangkan mungkin kerana kesedaran dan prihatin terhadap pembelajaran dan kehidupan anak2 di IQKL. Mesyuarat kali ini dirasmikan oleh YB Dato' Dr Hassan Ali, EXCO Kerajaan Negeri Selangor dan pengasas IQKL.

Sebelum mesyuarat dirasmikan, pihak sekolah menjemput YDP PIBG, Pengetua, Pengerusi IQKL Sdn Bhd dan YB Dato' Dr Hassan Ali bagi memberi sepatah dua kata. Dato' Dr Hassan Ali sempat bercerita mengenai niatnya menubuhkan sekolah tahfiz 15 tahun yang lalu dan segala impian beliau telah menjadi kenyataan dan IQKL bukan sahaja sebuah sekolah tahfiz, tetapi sekolah yang menjalankan sistem integrasi tahfiz dan akedemik. Bermula dengan beberapa orang pelajar, sekarang jumlah pelajar mencapai 200 orang sehingga banyak permohonan terpaksa ditolak kerana kekurangan tempat. Kami diberitahu mengenai rancangan membesarkan lagi IQKL di kawasan sekitar dan sudah ada yang sudi menyumbang bagi pembinaan bangunan sekolah tersebut yang meliputi kawasan seluas 2 ekar. Semoga Allah swt sahajalah yang dapat membalas mereka2 yang menginfakkan harta mereka ke jalan Allah swt.

Kami juga berpuas hati dengan komitmen dan dedikasi pihak sekolah dan PIBG yang bertungkus lumus melakukan segala yang terdaya demi anak2 kami yang belajar di sini. Maklum sahajalah, IQKL adalah sebuah sekolah swasta yang bergantung sepenuhnya kepada yuran sekolah dan sumbangan dari mereka yang sudi membantu. Banyak kemudahan yang disediakan dan diperbaiki supaya anak2 kami dapat belajar di dalam situasi pembelajaran yang kondusif. Terimakasih kami ucapkan kepada mereka. InsyaAllah, kami akan sentiasa menyokong dan membantu usaha mereka memartabatkan IQKL sebagai sebuah institusi tahfiz integrasi yang unggul di Malaysia.

Setelah selesai perasmian, YB Dato' Dr Hassan Ali dibawa melawat perpustakaan yang baru siap melalui sumbangan berbagai pihak seperti Perbadanan Perpustakaan Negeri Selangor dan ibubapa pelajar. IQKL masih memerlukan buku2 bacaan ilmiah untuk perpustakaan Bustanul Ariffin. Bagi sesiapa yang ingin mendermakan bahan2 bacaan yang sesuai untuk pelajar tingkatan satu hingga lima, sumbangan anda sangat2 dialukan. Semoga perpustakaan ini akan menjadi lubuk ilmu pelajar2 IQKL.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Long Weekend Break!

Since we love long distance driving regardless the destination, we always eye on the long weekends in the calendar. Last weekend, we took leave on Friday and plus the Labour Day on Tuesday, we had a super long weekend to go back home to Kuala Krai. We started our journey around 8.30pm on Thursday after work. Abah was already on medical leave since he was not feeling well that week so he had enough rest before we start our night journey.

The whole journey was smooth since there were not many cars travelling at night except for lorries and buses. We stopped at Bayu Lenang, an R&R before reaching Gua Musang for solat and finally reached Kuala Krai almost 2pm. Dini was already there waiting for us.

The next day, after having breakfast we sent Dini for her Chemistry tuition at SMK Sultan Yahya Petra 2 (SYP2). This year she utilises her monthly break to have extra tuitions on her "weak" subjects such as Add Maths, Physics and Chemistry. She was lucky to have this young lady teacher to teach her. She taught her for 3 hours for 2 days and refuse to accept any payment. Although she suffered from cervical cancer, she was in high spirit and was so enthusiatic. We were so touched with her determination to fight her illness and to continue living normally. May Allah swt reward her for all her good deeds and grant her long life and prosperity.

While she was having her tuition, Ibu, Abah and Adik made a brief trip to Pengkalan Kubor. It was quite a journey from Kuala Krai which took almost 2 hours. We went there to look for some culinary stuff for That Little Gerai. The duty free area offers a lot of stuff from clothes to kitchen wares. Adik took the chance to visit his favourite store to buy the new Kelantan Happy Jersey. We rushed home and arrived just in time for the Royal Wedding ceremony and stuck in front of the tv until maghrib. That night, everyone had dinner outside except for Ibu who was stuck at home for her regular massage.

The next day, saturday morning we had our routine visit to Pasar Pagi to buy our stocks and rations after we sent Dini for her tuition class. We have been visiting the market everytime we were in Kuala Krai for the last 17 years! The dried stuff are different from KL and the prices are cheaper. The fresh veges are in abundance and came all the way from Thailand. A huge cabbage is only RM3 and the cauliflower is around RM4. The siamese ladies selling the veges are so generous and will always give you extras. After we had our lunch and solat jama', we were off to KB.

Our first stop was at Kg Dewan Besar, Labok to visit a new member to the family, Mohamad Irfan Haziq. We wrote a posting before on his parents wedding. The next stop was to visit another cute baby, Mohamed Shaamel Adha in KB. The family was expecting us since they knew are coming back. So, we were lucky to be served with Meehoon Sup and Nasi Dagang. Alhamdulillah. Then, we were off to town to Stadium Sultan Muhammad ke IV for the match between Kelantan Vs Kuala Lumpur. This is Adik's first experience to watch the match with the rest of the Red Warriors including Abah and Pak Su. As for us, we just wondering around KB town shopping and eating while waiting for the match to end. It was such a long day for us and all of us doze off on the way back to Kuala Krai.

The next day, we just relax at home and after sending Dini back to MTS after lunch, we started our journey back to KL. The traffic was clear and smooth alhamdulillah.

Like TLG facebook @That Little Gerai in AU5