Thursday, August 30, 2012

Jalan-Jalan Melbourne: Lake Mountain

Let me come back to Day 1 of our Melbourne holiday later and dive straight into what we did on the 2nd day; main snow! : )

There are several alpine resort options around Melbourne, but we picked the nearest one, the Lake Mountain Alpine Resort, about 120km from the city.With the help of a borrowed GPS from my friend Raj, the journey was a smooth one. Well, after the initial stage at least where the GPS re-started and was giving us directions to Raj's friend's house instead!

Anyway, I had rented a Hyundai Getz and I must say that it's one piece of a sturdy and reliable machinery. In total, I must have driven more than 1,100kms during our stay and the car gave us no problems whatsoever. And to digress even further, driving in Melbourne in general was just a great pleasure. Apart from the good road conditions, we did not come across any Malaysian-style moronic motorists who would tailgate, speed irresponsibly or beam you for the slightest reason. And this is not a hasty verdict, seeing how I've also driven in different parts of Australia several times before.


OK, back to the main story. We left Melbourne early in the morning, so the weather was just fine and pretty. And I don't have to tell you how picturesque it was all the way up the mountain.

Going through the Yarra Valley, there were many different wineries and farms, as well as small quaint towns. And really, I love small quaint towns as it's always interesting to see what shops they have and how people live their lives.

Also memorable along the way was the Maroondah Reservoir, somewhere we just had to stop and snap a few pics.

Like I said, the road conditions were pretty good, BUT it can be quite a challenge for inexperienced drivers. It was very winding at some parts, and you're constantly driving by pretty steep cliffs. I mean, all may look fine and dandy, but kat sebelah tu, gaung ok??

We then got to the checkpoint/entrance and paid AUD40 to pass through. Already nearing the top, we still hadn't seen any signs of thick snow though, just some patches here and there on the road and on trees.

And that's how it looked like when we finally reached the very top as well. Lake Mountain is well-known for its ski trails, but it didn't look like there was enough snow to do just that.

No matter, the toboggan area looked good although the white stuff came from snow-making machines. It was damn cold then and we quite enjoyed the walk and our brief snowball fight. Hehe.

It got even colder then and since it was already lunch time as well, we retreated into the restaurant for some hot drinks and fish n' chips.

Then it started to rain... After which hale came. Suddenly things looked more promising. We went to the rental/souvenir area and rented the bodysuit and boots for Tia, who was already freezing. Then...

... snow started to fall. Woohoo!

We were ecstatic and promptly proceeded to tobogganing the afternoon away!

Then the snow fell even more. And more. And more... Best giler!

After a while though, we realised that we should be making our home before the snow got too thick and rendered our humble Getz immobile. But not before buying a new fleece for myself, as my jacket was totally soaked, and a couple of other souvenirs.

The drive down proved to be quite a challenge. Firstly, the car was covered in ice. Then we had to content with the mist and poor visibility. I had to drive really slowly and at some points it felt like I was one of those Ice Truckers on the History channel!

But the conditions got better as got further down, and the rest of the drive back to Melbourne was quite a breeze.

Overall, a fantabulous experience for the whole fam, including this 40-year-old who saw (real) snow for the first time in life!

For more info, click HERE

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Kunang2 September Issue

The September Issue of lifestyle magazine Kunang2 is out and it has an article featuring yours truly : )

Interestingly, the story was written by the assistant editor Raja Azuni, who was my classmate in uni. What a small world! Just click on the pics to read...

Monday, August 27, 2012


So, I was on-air for the first three days of Hari Raya on MHI, after which we flew over to Down Under... Melbourne, to be specific. And what a ball of a time we had! Just a teaser; we saw penguins land at Phillip Island, drove on the Great Ocean Road, experienced snow on top of Lake Mountain, and we even took a helicopter ride!

Look out for posts coming up soon, but before that, some pics for your viewing pleasure :)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Gold Medal For Kokopelli!

It's been a Ramadhan of wonderful homecooked meals for us this year, and for that I say, HURRAH! : ) And yes, I made a conscious decision to stay away from those decadent buka puasa buffets that have reached preposterous proportions. BUT I've also had some nice buka meals with friends and family at some choice locations. And one VERY memorable place is Kokopelli Travellers Bistro. (For location details click HERE)

So, where do I begin? OK, the restaurant is actually located at an old bungalow and was set up by an established and well-respected artiste couple. And by artiste, I mean they're in the arts and are not some washed-up Drama Minggu Ini actors. You actually get to admire some of their works hung up in the joint.

The owners Ariff and Soraya are also well-travelled people and this is evident in the tastefully European decor of Kokopelli. You don't get a sense of trying-too-hard, although the music was switched on a tad too loud for my liking the both times I was there.

OK, now for the food... And instantly I'm smiling just thinking about it. I mean, sincerely speaking, it was just THAT memorable. I was there with a few colleagues on the first visit and we ordered quite a few things on the menu and tried them all. I must say there was not a single misstep. The portions were generous, the twists in the dishes simply genius and it was all prepared with loads of tlc (trust me, I will know the difference).

We started things off with the french onion soup, a brilliant concoction of, er, stuff, and also a pizza. They were right on the money.

We were already in "sedap siot!" mode when the mains arrived. We had the club burger, sirloin steak sandwich, lamb shank and chili short ribs. I know, meat overload! But be prepared to drool...

The club burger

The sirloin steak sandwich

Lamb shank

Chili short ribs
The piece de resistance for me was the chili short ribs, cooked to tender perfection and slightly spicy to make it a surefire repeat order. Meanwhile, the burger was simply juicy and exteremly satisfying, as was the steak sandwich. I wouldn't change a single thing about these dishes. At least for now :)

The joint also serves local food and one of its more famous dishes is the good 'ol kuew teow. Which we ordered after everything else on the table was completely wiped out. The verdict? "Sedap siot!" as most of us put it eloquently. Seriously, it's really good, although it might be a tad spicy for some.

But I'm not done yet! Sorry I don't have a picture to show, but you MUST try the creme brule for dessert.  This just totally sealed the deal for me. Overall, a gold-medal of a meal it was with the perfect ambiance and great company. And yes, I will definitely be back...

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Selamat Hari Raya!

Just a few more days to go before Hari Raya arrives and I just wanna wish everyone Selamat Hari Raya, Maaf Zahir Batin! It'll be a different Raya for me this year; new crib, but won't be going back to JB at all. In fact, I'll be on-air the first three days of Raya before flying off to somewhere nice with the fam.

So don't forget to watch Malaysia Hari Ini this Sunday for something extra special!

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Friday, August 03, 2012

Las Vacas @ Jalan Yap Kwan Seng

Those who know me, know that I have this ongoing love affair with Las Vacas. Yes, the steakhouse lah. Where got senorita named Las Vacas one? Hehe.

So if you wanna know how much I adore their steaks, just click HERE . As such, I won't be repeating myself here and go straight to the point of introducing you folks to their new outlet at Jalan Yap Kwan Seng (previously Tony Roma's).

Las Vacas started as a butchery in Kelana Jaya, that's why their outlet there and in Mont Kiara are far from being fancy schmancy. You don't really go there for the ambience, although I do love the homey feel of the KJ outlet. BUT the new place at Jalan Yap Kwan Seng is a proper restaurant with better decor and lighting : )

And the best part? The menu here is also more extensive. If everything is rather basic and simple and the other two outlets, there's a lot more stuff for appetisers, mains, desserts and drinks here. We tried out the mozzarella sticks to whet our appetite and it was pretty good. We're told that the head chef is an experienced chap with a love for all things Italian.

Then we moved to the steaks and ordered our usuals (I know I know, need to break out of the rib-eyes and striploins, hehe). No disappointments there, either.

Although we were quite full by then, we decided to try out a couple of the desserts; the tiramisu (with no alcohol, of course) and panna cotta. Both were pretty delicious although we didn't like how the panna cotta (not pictured) was served in a normal plastic cup!

Overall, a good first experience. Great food with better ambience, and as co-owner Freddy pointed out, at the same prices. Can imagine myself spending a LOT of time here. : )

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Gerobok TV Has Arrived!

Yes, remember the name: Gerobok TV! It's a brand new youtube channel that falls under my care and you can look forward to plenty of irreverent and fresh new content here.

But before we launch this officially, do enjoy the channel's first original series, "Aku Budak Intern". Hit me up with comments, and the best ones might just win something special. Enjoy!


Blog Widget by LinkWithin