It was a short trip this time, I did not even make it into JB proper. All my meals took place at the Johor Premium Outlet (JPO) and AEON Mall Kulaijaya.
Slowly slowly har… today I show you my meals at JPO first… don’t rush, don’t rush…
There are four proper restaurants in JPO. One of them is called Absolute Thai, a perpetually overcrowded place with less than desirable level of service that serves expensive and slightly above average Thai food. Nah…
The other three, well…
George and Dragon
The outlet here is just a branch, their main restaurant is somewhere inside JB city center. I came here for lunch on the first day, because it was the most empty.
Some (many) say this is the most expensive Western cuisine restaurant in the entire state of Johor. I would agree… only if we do not count all the hotels in the state. I don’t find the food here to be more expensive than the restaurants in those nice hotels.
But I guess that misplaced reputation really did a good chunk of dent to this place’s business. I think this was my third time coming here during lunch hour (from my many trips down south), it was the first time the restaurant was entirely deserted.
They even do set lunch now. Basically RM 35++ for a soup, main course and drink (coffee/tea). I don’t know if the menu changes, but the menu I got offered two choices of main courses: chicken in orange sauce, and stewed lamb shoulder.
The old me would completely ignore the set lunch menu, but this time I somehow didn’t feel like having a heavily expensive lunch. So I went with the set lunch. Lamb shoulder.
I know, looks like a pile of mess but… yeah, the taste was pretty good. The lamb bits were de-boned which means it was… perfect for me.
汤师傅 Souper Tang
I want to clarify something first. I have no idea why they call themselves Souper Tang. This is not a good English rendition of the Chinese name. In fact, I think it is a weird-ass rendition. “Tang” is the “Soup”. So what now? Souper Soup? What does Souper mean anyway? It doesn’t exist as a legit word.
This was a restaurant that I visit on every trip. I probably swiped my card in this restaurant more than 10 times combined.
Anyway, I came here for my… third lunch. I had lunch here on the day I was driving back to KL after work.
The old me would go immediately for the 佛跳墙 Buddha Jump Over The Wall (soup) and another fish dish of some sort and push the bill to over RM 100.
The new me… I don’t know, will it sound conceited if I say I am tired of all these expensive sh*t? This time I closely scrutinized the menu and picked something with the picture that appealed to me the most. This was what I ordered:
It is called 五子登科养生煲. I don’t even know how to translate it literally. 五子登科 is a Chinese idiom (five sons all becoming scholars), it kind of means… like… all rounded? 养生煲 means… vitality pot. So I guess you can call it Supremely Awesome Vitality Pot?
Their website calls it Five Spices Seafood Pot. Meh… 🙄
There’s a bunch of decent ingredients in this pot. Fish maw, sea cucumber, mushrooms, baby abalones, bean curd puffs, fish fillets, broccoli, meat balls, and… some other things. The gravy tasted as rich as those from their more expensive dishes. It was pretty darn good.
The thing is, this was RM 45.90. With rice and drink and GST the bill came up to about RM 60. Nowhere even near RM 100…
I know and have been to Kampachi in Equatorial Hotel, Penang… and I know this is a properly expensive Japanese place.
But this was my first time dining in the JPO outlet, so I guess this is kind of new… I came here for dinner on my second night, I guess sort of to make up for the rather underwhelming first dinner at the hotel.
First thing I saw was the promotional item…
I was tempted, the price was on the high side but still borderline within budget. But I felt the picture was not very appetizing. It felt kind of stupid to pay that price for a plate with a bit of fish, a bit of mushrooms, a bit of tofu and a bit of some greens. What the f**k is Fugu & Tarabagani anyway?
So I didn’t. I ordered something from the main menu. Something relatively cheaper.
I still got served a proper few courses though…
Okay, here’s the main dish…
This was RM 78++ (or was it RM 74++?). Still somewhat expensive, yes? It was roughly the same price as my dinner on the previous day, but I was infinitely happier seeing this platter.
Some individual close ups…
I don’t remember why I even bothered with taking a picture of the lemon wedge and leafy thing. I vaguely remember having a funny way to present it in the blog, but I don’t remember what it is now. Sorry…
Anyway, it was a great choice for me. Everything was nice and fresh and delicious. I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed that promotional item as much as I enjoyed this platter. The actual bill came up to about RM 90.
This was the most expensive meal throughout my trip. Strangely, I think it was the first time I have not had even a single meal that exceeded RM 100 in a working trip. I think it probably won’t be the last… I seem to have had my priorities changed these days… 🙄