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Amin Cafe Centre (KK FoodieVenture #33)

A friend of mine (who's also an ex-student of SM All Saints, KK) swore by this dish since his school days. And he's also the one responsible for me and my partner visiting this place at least once every time we're in town. So what is this popular dish that we can't seem to get enough of? To my fellow Tawaurians and other people outside of Sabah, I present to you... Nasi Mbak (sorry, I have no idea how they came up with that name)!

I've done some 'research' through the internet (and by that I mean the ever useful Google) and found out that this dish is particularly popular within the Likas area, with several eateries selling them like hot cakes. But we usually have ours at Amin Cafe Centre, a 'kedai kopi' on a row of shops, right in front of SM All Saints. The dish is fairly simple, which consist of plain rice and 2 pieces of fried chickens, coupled with some chili sauces. So what is so special about this very common looking dish? Well it's probably the way they'd cooked those lovely chickens, which almost always turns out to be crispy and all around delicious. My partner even ordered an extra helping of those yummy chickens for his Nasi Mbak during our recent visit. And you can't argue with the fairly cheap pricing as well. But don't worry if you want something other than their Nasi Mbak, as the eatery also provides other dishes such as Nasi Campur and soupy dishes like Mee Hoon Sup and Bakso.

Now let us look at their scores...

Food - 4/5 (really, there's something special about the dish)
Price - 4/5 (really affordable - no problems here)
Service - 3/5 (pretty quick, except that they got our orders wrong the first time)
Decor - 3/5 (pretty standard 'kedai kopi' setting)
Location - 3/5 (it's actually quite hidden from view but you'll definitely find it in no time)





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Outward Vacay: Promenade Hotel Kota Kinabalu

I'll admit that I've once vowed never to come back to this hotel, due to a very bad experience with the front desk staff, several years ago. Suffice to say, I've avoided this hotel soon afterwards like a plague. So when my partner persuaded me to give it another chance after seeing that the price was reasonably cheap for our third and final hotel hopping adventure, I relented. And this time around, I got a much, much better experience than before.

We were there right before the New Years so it's a festive atmosphere all around the lobby area. The front desk this time around were friendlier and most importantly, more professional and attentive. It's either they'd retrained their staff over the years (which they really should) or I just got lucky this time around. So checking in was a positive experience and we're given a refurbished Junior Suite room at the right wing of the hotel. The view was spectacular, with a full view of both the sea and the new Oceanus Waterfront mall near the hotel. The room itself was very modern looking, with a comfortable sitting area (with its own TV) and an even better separate bedroom (although the bed was a bit short in terms of height). Now I have stayed at the hotel (in the same room before it was refurbished) before my little 'incident' so all I can say is that the hotel has done a great job at updating the previously very dated room. What I loved most about the room was the touch screen feature within the entire room, which was pretty impressive for a hotel in KK. The bathroom was huge in size and the showers were just perfect with its high water pressure. The room also had another separate section for the dressing table right next to the bedroom which I (mostly) used throughout our stay. While we were resting in our room, a staff came to personally deliver a complimentary fruit platter, which I think was a good touch by the hotel. The only thing that I think they should improved on was their parkings. If you're willing to pay a certain amount of money per hour, then there should be no problem for you to park your car right in front of the hotel's main entrance. But do not worry if you're not willing to do so (like us) since they also had basement parkings, but that also did not come free (as it should since you're staying there right?) as they'll ask you to pay RM2.00 per entry.

So all in all I'd say...

Type - Junior Suite
Room - 4/5 (the hotel's decision to refurbished its rooms definitely paid off)
Price - 3/5 (try looking through hotel booking sites for a cheaper rate)
Service - 4/5 (a much improved service especially from the front desk)
Decor - 4/5 (classic looking on the outside, modern on the inside)
Facilities - 4/5 (there's also a pool and banquet hall that seems to be popular for weddings)
Location - 4/5 (right in front of the new Oceanus Waterfront mall and right next to Wawasan Plaza)















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Mango Snack Bar (KK FoodieVenture #32)

I know I might get the name of the stall wrong here (since I can't remember the actual name of the stall) so any corrections are much appreciated. Until then, I'm still going to give you guys a brief review on my favourite fruit stall in KK. The fruit stall can easily be spotted on the ground floor of Wisma Merdeka, KK and right in front of Tong Seng Watch shop, as well as directly facing an escalator.

The much beloved fruit/ titbits stall was almost always surrounded by customers, mainly because of their wide selection of fruits. These fruits were chopped into bite sizes and in the spirit of 'self-service', customers can take as many fruits as they can possibly fit into a plastic container before weighting them to determined the pricing of the fruits. Yup, a creative way of pricing indeed! The fruits were always very juicy and fresh so it can be a bit addictive, especially during a hot day. Another plus point? It's a healthier choice than say.. an ice-cream of course!

And now we're moving on...

Food - 4/5 (a must try especially during a hot day)
Price - 4/5 (you'll definitely get what you've paid for)
Service - 4/5 (the 'auntie' at the counter moves swiftly to entertain all customers)
Decor - 3/5 (your average stall setting - nothing much to comment)
Location - 4/5 (it's right by one of the main escalators so it'll be easy for you to spot them)




Updated on 25/05/2017 - So I've finally figured out the name of this particular snack bar & has made amends. So now I present to you... the Mango Snack Bar of Wisma Merdeka! 

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Dunkin' Donuts 1Borneo (KK FoodieVenture #31)

Another entry to my light snacks reviews is this internationally famous joint called Dunkin Donuts. Sure, we do have their closest rival opening its doors in Tawau but my eyes and tummy still yearns for the worldwide phenomenon (yes, I'm exaggerating something I love). The joint has only arrived at our shores (and by that I mean KK only - sob sob) as recent as 2, 3 years ago and has since spawned branches at several places like the Kota Kinabalu International Airport (which houses 3 of those branches), 1Borneo Hypermall and Jesselton Point.

The one that we've frequented was their branch at 1Borneo Hypermall, which was located on the ground floor, right beside the main entrance to the mall. Now I can't recall all of the names of the donuts that I've picked out, but I do love their Crunchy Choc and Nutty Choc variety as well as their delicious filled donuts. They're all very yummy to eat, not too greasy and most importantly, not overbearingly sweet which was just right for me. Now I do wish that they decided to open up a store in Tawau in the near future. Fingers crossed Tawaurians!

So while waiting for that to happen...

Food - 4/5 (definitely my favourite donuts of all time)
Price - 4/5 (still considerably affordable)
Service - 4/5 (you take your own donuts from the shelves so no problems here)
Decor - 4/5 (really cute and eye catching)
Location - 4/5 (just look to the left when entering the main entrance to the mall)





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