Sunday, February 08, 2009

Overeating during Lunar New Year 2009 #1

This year, John and I decided not to celebrate the Chinese Lunar Year 2009, the Year of the Ox at Genting Highlands, which we'd normally do. Reason being I had my cataract surgery early January and preferred to take it easy, not at all enticed by that vibrant City of Entertainment that will definitely draw huge crowds of people which I'd rather avoid in such a circumstance.

Instead we painted our town, Kuala Lumpur red, so to speak! Not partying, drinking or dancing but on an eating spree since the eve of Chinese New Year, January 25th.

For the Chinese, this Spring Festival which began on January 26th will be celebrated for 15 days, with much emphasis on reunions/gatherings amongst family members, relatives and friends, with an overindulgence in eating mainly, though some will include bouts of drinking too. Can you imagine how expanded our waistline will be at the end of it all? Such eating extravagance frequently seen sometimes makes one wonder where are the poor, especially among Kuala Lumpur's urbanites?

We decided to have our Chinese New Year's Eve reunion dinner at Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, a gigantic world-class shopping mall located at Jalan Bukit Bintang. Travelling there from our home was a breeze, no traffic jam as most city dwellers have 'balik kampung' (returned to their hometown outstation) to celebrate and cash in on the long weekend followed by 2 public holidays.

Even at this usually bustling metropolitan region, the crowd was very small, comprised mostly of tourists. We weren't at all surprised as most of the shops were closed for the festive season.

Sculpture of the Golden Bull at Pavilion KL during the Lunar New Year of the Ox Cherry Blossoms at Pavilion KL during the Lunar New Year of The Ox

Seen at the main entrance to Pavilion was a huge fascinating sculpture of the Golden Bull, a symbol of prosperity and much blessings to depict The Lunar Year of The Ox. And, box planters with fabulous Cherry Blossom trees towering 20-25 ft in height, were randomly placed around to decorate the vicinity of the main entrance.

Changeable colored-lights inside Crystal Jade Meal 3, Pavilion KL We chose to have our dinner at Crystal Jade Meal 3, a cozy place with lovely lighting that changes colors intermittently. It is located along the same row with Carlos and Coffee Bean, I think. As expected, it was quite empty when we went in before 7pm though the crowd did increase gradually. No prior dining reservations were made, our younger son and his spouse chanced upon it as they scouted for an ideal eatery that is pork-free as required by their Islamic laws.

Food served is a mix of western and eastern cuisine including local fare. Prices are not too pricey except for the drinks. Food portions are smaller, so I'd say they aren't really value for money. Food presentation is not impressive at all...have a look at the photos below and you'd know what I mean! Same buttered veggie for all the main dishes, predictable and unexciting! Delicious? Just so-so! Service was also passable, probably by untrained part-timers relieving the full-timers on vacation leave.

These were some of the orders we made, besides yee-sang, wantan noodle soup and others. Bill totaled about RM320/=, reasonably cheap when compared to chinese-styled meal offered elsewhere as Chinese Set Menu for 10 pax.

Nevertheless, I am not complaining, just sharing my observations and thoughts. To be able to enjoy such luxuries, I am most thankful, contented and feel blessed indeed! I praise and thank God for His abundant blessings daily.

Continuing at next post #2.

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