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Category Archives: Kuala Lumpur

Gorgeous Gavi

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Malaysia has been enjoying a recent festive season; Hari Raya (the end of Ramadan) and Merdeka Day (Independence from the British Empire in 1957).  In two weeks’ time it’s Malaysia Day (birth of the Malaysian Federation in 1963).  Families and companies give over whole days to celebrate.  For Hari Raya in particular the month is dedicated to traditional foods at ‘open houses’.  If you like your food, now is a time of plenty.

The feasting is amazing  – except if you get food poisoning, which isn’t uncommon – but the events, being Malaysian, are obviously dry.  The atmosphere feels a little like Christmas – apart from the arguments about Brussels sprouts and which James Bond film to watch – with lots of gift giving, colourful decorations and the sluggishness brought about from eating too much.

Trying to save money on account of some poor financial planning this month, we’ve hardly had anything to drink recently.  Poverty-related abstinence and tee-total partying can only be tolerated for so long.  The booze we bought in M&S a few weeks ago tempts us from the wine fridge (being free as we’d already shelled out for it) and last night it was cracked open at record speed. Read the rest of this entry

When even bad wine is good

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One of the things about moving to a completely new country is that it totally shifts your perceptions, expectations, tolerance levels and subjectivity. It’s a strange feeling, especially when you have high standards. For a wine lover living in KL this presents a conundrum.

Having moved into our amazing new apartment, a sort of Xanadu-come-Avatar condo development in trendy Bangsar (sorry, Bukit Bandaraya to give it its posh name) we are slowly settling into a sort of alternate universe.

Ok, so some things don’t change….. cue head banging on the table at internet speeds and the feeling of stress as you hit traffic on the way to a meeting….but other things, things that you actually care about, do. Read the rest of this entry

Malaylinglish

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My wife and I were reflecting on KL and Malaysians tonight over a drink. The bar next to where we are staying, Taps, has what is quite possibly the best beer menu I have ever seen. Craft ales and beers from across the world run from page to page to page. Brit beer is well represented – most impressively, what seems to be virtually the entire Brewdog portfolio…. Read the rest of this entry

Selamat datang Sozzl’d

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As the better half sleeps off the jet lag, and with the twin towers of Petronas gleaming outside the bedroom window like two enormous silver bullets, getting thoughts down for my first post (no wait, second, thanks to Charles Saunders’s Quaffable blog) seems to make sense. Kuala Lumpur, where we’re now laying our hats thanks to landing a new job, is as I remember it from a visit a few years back.

Roasting peanuts, sweet Char Kuay Teow and the warming stench of durians waft across you every now and then, reminding you that KL is a truly mashed-up city, each of the Indians, Malays and Chinese taking the best of their cuisine and creating their own concoctions. For a foodie, you can’t really get better than Willy Wonka-style living every single day.

A culinary farewell tour in the UK took us from Marlow to Padstow and back to London, our stomachs straining by the time we boarded the plane. I was hoping for some gluttonous respite although in my mind I knew half the decision to move here was about the food…. as a KL emigre said to me on a recent Asian cooking course: “I’m so jealous you’re going, but you’ll come back 3 stone heavier – just look at me!” Read the rest of this entry

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