on the road with kurault-nosuke

Nov 16th, 2005, 04:29 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,120
on the road with kurault-nosuke

with all due respect to charles, its only me from singapore. thought i'd post a few items while i still remember them.

i've been here since nov. 6, and have been to genting, kl, and malacca. all in all, a good trip so far. singapore still hot in nov., no difference from oct., my usual time here.

tang dynasty, treasures from the deep.

went to the asian cultural museum and was lucky to see the exhibit of tang dynasty treasures recovered from a ship wreck off the island of belitung. divers for sea cucumbers uncovered these treasures a few years ago, and a small portion of the find is on exhibit at the museum until feb. 2006. it is well worth the admission of $5sd. they have free guided tours by engish speaking docents, i highly recommend this tour.

the raj

taking a respite from genting, i took a 90 min. bus ride down to kl, then took the mono to kl central, then the commuter train for a one stop trip to mid-valley megamall. this is a four story enclosed mall with hundreds of shops and restaurants. i think it will take you about two days to see all the shops in the mall. while walking around, i came across the britishindia store. while i would not normally visit a store such as this, guenmais endorsement of this store aroused my interest, so i entered the store.

it is a very nice shop with very nice items. i ended up buying two shirts that nearly wiped out my clothing budget for the year. very nice items, and looking forward to wearing them in bangkok. i compared the prices to the two bi stores in singapore, and the prices were about $10us cheaper in kl. the bi stores i went to in sing are located in the raffles city shopping mall, and the tanglin shopping mall.

when will i ever learn....when will i ever learn

during my visit to the mid-valley mall, i purchased two bottles of wine from carrefour. one was a s. blanc from new zealand, and the other was a non-oak chard from oz.(i was very interested in this wine).

last year when i went through customs at the jb-sing border, the eager young customs agent 'found' two bottles of wine that i had bought in kl and was taking back to sing. well, i was refered to the duty customs officer, who was a very nice chap, and after a few minutes of friedly chatter, allowed me to go on my way. no problem. piece of cake.

well, this time, i decided to be proactive, and i gave one bottle to dw to bring into sing, and i carried one bottle myself. i told dw to tell the customs agent that we had a bottle of wine apiece. since we were able to bring in one bottle of wine apiece when we arrived in sing, i reasoned that this rule would apply to crossing into sing from jb. wrong! again, a young customs agent(no doubt striving for general) again, 'found' the two bottles of wine(i was not trying to smuggle it in), and started the complicated process of assessing duty for the wines. while i didn't mind paying the duty, i was worried about the length of the process, as i did not want to hold up the bus because of my wine purchase.

after about 15 min, the agent gave us the forms and directed us into the cashiers office to pay the duty. inside the office was a very kindly looking chinese sgt officer, who immediately began a three step manual calculation of the tax we owed. after another 5min. he said, 'you owe $16.95, lah.'

i couldn't figure out how he came to the sum of $16.95, as never once did anyone ask me the purchase price of the wine.(i paid $15us each). so, the duty amounted to about $5us per bottle, almost a third the cost. not wanting to dispute his calculation, i said ok, and gave him two ten dollar bills. 'no, lah, must be exact $16.95'. 'but sir', i said, ' i just came from malaysia, why would i have singapore change'. 'no matter' he said. so i did the best i could, i gave him $17 and told him to keep the change.(oops, was this a bribe?) luckily, another customs officer came in and the sgt said something to him in chinese, and the guy gave me a nickle. i said thank you and left with my two bottles of wine.

'why do you do this' dw said. 'didn't you learn your lesson from last year' w said.
next time, pls don't buy any wine' the lady said.

btw, the wines were excellent, and worth the friendly advice from my female traveling companion.

sandman is coming, so will quit for now, tomorrow, a unique dining experience.
kuranosuke is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 04:56 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 11,334
Thanks for the report on your trip. Sounds like you are having a good time. The more I read about KL and Sin, the more I want to see both of them. Maybe I'll get there in '06 on one of my SEA trips.

(I'll remember the tips about buying wine and carrying it thru customs)

Carol
simpsonc510 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 06:32 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 28,929
keep it coming...hope to meet up with you in a mall
rhkkmk is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 07:01 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 12,863
Kuranosuke....Glad you're having a great time. Have you been to Sabai Restaurant yet? And I'm glad you dropped in at the British India store. I absolutely adore those stores and most of my summer wardrobe comes from British India...that is when I can find pieces for my height as many times the skirts are cut for short people. So, I usually buy their tops and then go to my Singaporean friend's store in Tanglin Shopping CENTRE....the antique one...not the MALL...and buy her cotton vintage batik sarong pieces to use as a skirt.Oh, there's also a British India in the basement of Ngee Ann City when you're walking underground to go to the MRT(subway) station. Have you gotten over to do lunch at True Blue out around 117 East Coast in Katong? Remember, that's my kebaya maker's Paranakan restaurant. Do drop in. The food is very good. Oh, and have you dropped in on the redone Clarke's Quay yet? The architectual style of the Indochine restaurant there is very interesting. Remember, I usually go to the Indochine on Club Street. Oh, what area is this mega mall in Kuala Lumpur in? I might have to drop down there. I wonder how long a train ride from Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur would take. Take care and have a great trip. Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 08:02 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 6,342
kuranosuke:
Glad to hear your having a good time...am taking notes as we might be in sing next year. Anxiously awaiting your next installment.
In case you didn't catch it the Warriors covered last week.
Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 01:06 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,101
kuranosuke, glad you're having a good time but sorry about having to pay for the wine. so what is this, you're not allowed even one bottle each?
laurieco is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 02:00 PM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,120
carol, do visit kl and sing when you have a chance. sing will provide such a contrast to bangkok.

bob, we gotta stop meeting in malls, and find a decent and proper drinking pub. ok, we can skip decent.

guenmai, haven't gone to sabai nor true blue yet. will try to do at least one before i leave. i did go to thaying express, but sadly, it is no longer in business. it took me nearly 15min of going in circles to realize the location was now occupied by another restaurant.

i will going to clarke quay tonite.

ht, yes, you must plan a visit here. you will love it. went to malacca looking for good portugese food, and will report on that experienc later.

btw, any change of plans for xmas eve day?

laurie, you cannot bring any wine into sing from the causeway in jb duty free. if you came from kl via chiangi airport, the normal customs restrictions apply, ie one bottle of wine duty free, but overland, none. so you can bring in wine, but be prepared to pay the duty, so don't buy cheap wine or else, your duty may cost more than the wine, and yes, bring coins and lots of different denominations so you can pay your duty with exact amount.(i guess the sing gov. don't trust the agents with a change fund, lol).
kuranosuke is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 02:20 PM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,120
the russians are coming...the russians are coming...

one of the few notable places i ate at was at kalinka-malinka at 143 tanglin rd, in the tudor court next to the tanglin mall(tel. 67388993).

this is a russian restaurant, i think the only one in sing. the unique thing about this restaurant, is that they have a special room called the igloo. its a small room where the temperature is kept at -15 celsius. you don a parka(unless you think you are chinook of the north) and go into the igloo to sip vodka. they have about 15 different vodkas inside, so you sit, or stand in the igloo, sip vodka, and have a good time.

dw lasted three minutes, and resigned to the dining room. i was there for about 15min., sipping two stoli elite and chatting with the waitress. the waitress mentioned that a couple nites ago, a group of four ozzies spent two hours in the igloo, having fun and drinking vodka.

i was ready to try another vodka, made with potato, but decided against it, as it was going down way too smooth.

we dined on four appetizers, potato salad with ham, piroshki(like baked rolls with different suffings) pelmini, a siberian version of wantons, and a smoked salmon stuffed pancake dish.(almost like a crepe). all of them were excellent.

i rec. going there for dinner instead of lunch, as walking into the hot humid sing weather after consuming two shots of stoli(and yes, a glass of wine) is the perfect combination for going down for the count, in other words, siesta time. at least in the evening, you won't be blasted with the heat as much.

yes, we have no portugese bean soup today.

took a 2d/1n trip to malacca. malacca is a sleepy town, not much to see except the touris places. sort of reminded me how penang was back in the mid-sixties.

for dinner, we went to the portugese settlement, near the museum, and had a great seafood dinner. take a taxi(btw, they don't have meters, so just bargin abit, but you really don't know if thats the right amount, as all the cab drives have a weekly meeting to set the price for farangs.lol.

the cab dropped us off in front of the lisboa cafe, a building with two other restaurants located inside. it was empty, and we were wondering why nobody was dinig there.

we then decided to walk around the building, and found a complex of about 8 stalls, all touting the freshest seafood available there. as we walked around, we then found all the diners seated on tables along the shore. so we took a table close to the ocean, and ordered ong choi with squid, red snapper with a local bar-b-que sauce wrapped in banana leaf and tin foil and baked, garlic crab, devils chicken curry, and a large plate of rice. everything was delicious, especially the red snapper. we were all trying to figure out the spices in the dish so we could replicate the dish at home, but we couldn't decipher the ingredients. we also had a large beer, two iced lemon tea, and a hot tea. total tab was $86rm. such a bargin.

the odd thing about this place was that the tables were set up on a parking lot, just like in old time sing., and they provided you with recorded music, country music. nothing like eating ong choi listening to buck owens. my bil is a country music aficionado, and he requested they turn up the volume. thankfully they ignored his reqeust.

btw, one of the waiters sure looked a little like ht.
kuranosuke is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 03:00 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 6,342
kurano:
I would have stayed at least 1/2 hr in the igloo...great story! No plans for Xmas eve as they are now out of the picture. Must be good looking waiters in malacca.lol
Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 04:44 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,199
Oishi-san thanks for the great report, hope you keep it coming. The $15 plus $5 duty plus the "advice" is a pretty high price. Coulda just chugged the bottles right there.
mrwunrfl is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 04:52 PM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,120
ht, lets plan on being there together one day in the future, and do the lolo challenge, who can last longer.

mrw, yes, my exact sentiments, all future wine purchases in malaysia will be consumed in same. hows la?
kuranosuke is offline  
Nov 16th, 2005, 05:27 PM
  #12  
emd
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 6,267
kuranosuke, I am falling out of my chair laughing over you in the igloo w/the parka and the vodka and a big frozen grin on your face. Next time you come to D.C. we will have to go to Serbian Crown, good Russian Restaurant in Great Falls, but no igloo there.

Being a wino myself, I understand the bottles of vino. So much easier to get them when you can instead of having to run out and find decent wine in a strange place. And at least the wine was good.

The country music awards were on TV last night, live from New York. Your bil would have liked it. Except some idiot decided it would be a great marketing tool to pair Elton John and Dolly Parton in a few duets together. Talk about your bizarre combination. Elton (who I like, btw) is a bit on the hefty side and Dolly, well, she's just Dolly and her chest was at least as big as Everest and K2 combined w/that barbie waist and perpetual Stepford smile. It was an odd paring visually, even w/Elton sitting at the piano, and vocally, well, it was just plain surreal. But the rest of the show was very entertaining, like your trip report.





emd is offline  
Nov 17th, 2005, 11:59 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 12,863
Kuranosuke...I needed a good laugh for today. You in an igloo and without the sake to keep you toasty! Anyway....no more Thanying Express????What are we going to do???This is SO depressing. I guess the owner of the Thanying connection has just fazed them out and has moved on to other things...like Sabai...which is absolutely great, but Thanying is less expensive and a great place to drop into for a bite between shopping. Oh, where is that mega mall located in Kuala Lumpur? I might fly down there and check it out while on vacation, for three weeks, in Bangkok next month. I'll have time to do it then. I'm going to check out the flight prices from BK to KL. I haven't been in KL for a few years now. Keep the reports coming and keep having a great time! And when you get to Sabai and order the dish with the peppercorns in it...the rattlesnake-looking things...and as hot as...you know what...have one for me and wash it down with a stiff drink! Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Nov 17th, 2005, 12:33 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 6,342
kuranosuke:
I will win that challenge...you forget I'm Portugese...or maybe you didn't forget
lol
Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Nov 17th, 2005, 03:54 PM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,120
hi emd, and yes, my grin was just about frozen. are you keeping your me on the yen? its had a pretty good ride the past two months, and nearly pierced the 120 mark a few days ago. i think its a good buy now at around 118, but i still think it will go higher around 120-125. maybe you should buy your yen in increments, and see how it goes. when i go back, i will buy my yen from the money changer across from the duty free shop in waikiki.i've found they have the best rates.

ht, no matter who wins, we shall have fun. might get w next week against w.

guenmai, since the mall is named the mid-valley megamall, i assume it must be in some valley. the best way to get there, is to take the monorail to kl central, and switch to the communter train, which is in the same terminal, and its only one stop from there. very easy to get to.

no cab, nor duke, went nude.

went to lunch at appolo banana leaf yesterday in little india. its just about a 5 min. walk from the little india mrt station. i've been there many times before for dinner and enjoyed it. this time i went for lunch and it was great as usual. we had the fishhead curry, and a side of bar-b-q prawns, delicious. if you just have the fishhead curry, it is seved on a large banana leaf. you have a choice of yellow or plain white rice, along with two different vegetables, and chicken curry over the rice. purist prefer plain white rice, and only using the fishhead curry as gravy.

the restaurant is very clean, and bright, and i rec. it for lunch or dinner.

went nude

i thought nude was a restaurant, but it is actually the lounge/bar next to the indochine restaurant in the wisma atria shopping complex on orchard rd. very chic interior, and they have a large fish tank with various good eating fish swimming without a care. the food was good, and the service was just ok. i did not post what i ordered, as i think you might do better dining elsewhere, but if anyone is curious, i will post it.

we went into nude around 10pm, it had loud music, and empty, so we left and went to the york hotel to listen to the thunderbirds, a four piece band that has been there for over 13yrs. they play bob's era music, plus a few updated ones. this might be a good spot for you fodorites, as the music is good, friendly local crowd, a/c, and they have dancing. i saw many women dancing together, only because most of the guys i saw dancing needed remedial arthur murrary classes.

last day here, and need to start planning my strategy to avoid the black hole of excess baggage fees.
kuranosuke is offline  
Nov 17th, 2005, 05:01 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 12,863
Thanks Kuranosuke. I think I'll be able to find it now. KL has changed since I was there in 2001. I hear there's even some kind of rail service from the airport into KL. Take care and have a safe trip home. Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Nov 17th, 2005, 08:29 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 834
Guenmai - unfortunately the train from Bangkok to KL takes quite a long time - leaves Bkk mid-afternoon, overnight to Butterworth and then a different train overnight to KL arriving early morning. About 39/40 hours all up.
MaryW is offline  
Nov 18th, 2005, 01:44 AM
  #18  
emd
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 6,267
Why is it called "nude"?
emd is offline  
Nov 18th, 2005, 04:56 AM
  #19  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,120
emd, when i walked in, and saw that it was just an ordinary lounge, i was very disappointed(lol), and complained bitterly to the manager of false advertisement-) .

nah... just joking, i don't know why it was called nude. probably to get old coots like me into the place and spend a few bucks.
kuranosuke is offline  
Nov 18th, 2005, 05:16 AM
  #20  
emd
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 6,267
What is it with these names of restaurants I read about on this board - Face, Bed, Nude....I guess it's a trend.
emd is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:58 PM.