Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Melaka Delicacy - Asam Pedas | #ICYDKMelaka

This is indeed very rare, hence I shall make it short, sweet and simple (probably 1 para with pics and I call it done. Hahhahhahahaa…. Giler pemalas)

A trip to Melaka ain’t complete until you try their famous dish – asam pedas. And I was waiting patiently for a trip to an asam pedas warung, I learnt that we get to eat the famous asam pedas and kari kambing. The kari kambing was new, I never knew that Melaka is famous for kari kambing, well…. Now I know. And it was rather delicious, if I may say so myself.

Sungai Tambak Merlang is popular and famous for its asam pedas and kari kambing power warungs. Along the wrong, you’ll find a few of the asam pedas and kari kambing warungs (stalls), all you need to do is pick one to try. The Asam Pedas set is usually paired with ulam (salad), sambal belacan (chilli shrimp paste) and boiled salted egg. Located probably 30mins to Asahan in Jasin, one can make a short and quick detour at lunch to feast their growling tummy.

Having been operating for 20 years, Yusri Nadin; the proud onwer of Warung Kari Kambing Power & Asam Pedas Claypot shows no sign of stopping, a signature dish that one must try is the asam pedas ikan pari (spicy and sour stingray and mutton spicy curry). According to Yusri, 2 goats per day for his special kari kambing and it is sold out as early as 9am in the morning despite the fact that the warung actual calls it a day at 3pm. For those interested to try this famous dish, you know what time you need to head here.

Aside from the asam pedas and kari kambing, lontong Kering is one of the popular delicacy in Warung Kari Kambing Power & Asam Pedas Claypot. Being located in the meeting point of Melaka, Johor and Negeri Sembilan, it comes as no surprise that Lontong Kering is also famous is the district of Jasin. The serunding (coconut floss) and kuah kacang (peanut sauce) is simply superb. Do try it as well.

The origin of Asam Pedas
Asam Pedas can be traced as far as Pekanbaru in Sumatera, just across Melaka; devided by Straits of Melaka and also the Riau Islands Province. Some said that as the Minangkabau suku (where asam pedas originally came from – the Minangkabau clan of Sumatera) who roamed across Asia has made their ways to Peninsular Malaysia few hundred years ago along with their customs, culture and culinary; settling in Negeri Sembilan (an adat Pepatih state just next to Melaka). Assimilation of lifestyle formed, as well as the famed localized delicacy that is now popular in Melaka – Asam Pedas. Strangely, being a descendant of Minangkabau from Padang, my family has never claimed nor cook this dish in any occasion. Perhaps the localized Melaka version is more famous I guess.

For those who is traveling to Melaka and looking forward to sample Melaka Asam Pedas and Kari Kambing, well, you know where to go to *wink*.

Warung Kari Kambing Power & Asam Pedas Claypot
Add: Km 42, Jalan Tambak Merlang 1
Kg. Simpang Bekoh, 77100
Asahan, Melaka

Tel: +6012-7775006 / +6013-6822800
Business hours: 6am – 3pm (Mondays to Fridays)

#ICYDKMelaka is made possible and is in collaboration with Tourism Melaka, Asia Urban Youth Assembly (AUYA) and all the sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.

Friday, April 14, 2017

The Story behind Tangga Melaka (Melaka Staircase) | #ICYDKMelaka

A symbol of status, wealth and power has made Melaka house one of its kind. Reflected in their fancy and colourful staircase, aside from the fact that Melaka was the Malay trading center in the East; it is only natural that the beautiful 3D tiles is imported from China, Portuguese, Netherland and England, inspired by respective country motives. However. If you pay close attention, you’ll notice that most of the colours being used are red and green despite that most houses are colourful in nature. According to the locals, usually the these fancy staircase houses are owned by the village chief or Datuk Penghulu, or Datuk Sidang as what the locals call them.

Melaka staircase is often built with odd number steps; 3, 5 and 7 steps, with the highest steps found in Melaka houses are 9. Having said that, usually a normal house steps is no higher that 9 steps. The favourite number of steps is 7, as found in many Melaka houses. Reason being, number 7 is significance in Islam; 7 means 7 layer of sky, 7 layer of earth, 7 days, 7 ambulations- to move around Ka’aba for ‘tawaaf’ among others.

Aside from the staircase, the architecture of a Melaka house is also significant versus other states in Malaysia, one will noticed that there are Bugis, Jambi, Riau and Kalimantan elements in terms of roof architecture, a verandah located at the front of the house are used for guest to sit on while waiting for their turns to meet the village chief. This is called as balai (open air living room/hall area) with benches. This balai is also used for kenduri (gathering) and family get-together. It is paired with the famous Melaka colourful tiled staircase. It is wide in nature to give a sense of host’s warmness in welcoming guest to their home.

The birth of local-foreign assimilation
The Strait of Malacca strategically located between Europe and China serves as the gateway and natural channel for trade to and from Asia, to the western world.

During the period 0f 17th -19th centuries many of the port-towns along the Indian Ocean–Southeast Asia–South China Sea route came under European control, Melaka included. Thus, since Dutch occupation of Melaka in 1641, the Dutch has established and marked Melaka as their base in order to tap into the India-Straits-China route.

The Portuguese, who were the earliest of the Europeans to set foot in many of these port-towns such as Melaka, Penang, Singapore and such, they were confronted by the Spanish, Dutch, English and French. The main commodities traded were spices, rice, cotton textiles  silks, ornaments such as porcelain and glass aside from medicinal herbs and forest products. As a Malay trading center and the main shipping route for west-east continent hence the ornamentation found in old Melaka house were either imported from eastern or western countries, this can be seen in the tiles decoration.

This has created fusion or cross culture of east meets west; local wooden home with three dimensional tiles from China in the east and fancy colourful tiles from Portuguese, Belgium, Netherland and England from the west. Due the cost of these tiles, one has to be of an influential family background or a successful merchant to be able to afford them, due to this reason a Melaka staircase is often associated with wealth and status.

It is always intriguing to find how one culture interfuse with another especially between 2 large continents with different heritage, custom and culture.

#ICYDKMelaka is made possible and is in collaboration with Tourism Melaka, Asia Urban Youth Assembly (AUYA) and all the sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Kuala Lumpur Helicopter Ride - Ecstatic!!!

I always thought that my first heli ride will be somewhere very far and away. Very unique. Very different from the rides I’ve taken. But guess what? My ride happens to be at my own backyard, right here in Malaysia, the heartbeat of Malaysia to be more specific - Kuala Lumpur. A mere 10 minutes’ drive from my home. Great things happen to those who are patient and oh boy, I was very patient.

My one and only advise to those (1) haven’t seen KL from aerial view, (2) doubted KL skyline view (simply mesmerizing from up there hokkay) and (3) feel KL has nothing much to offer (oh boy! Aren’t you gonna be surprise) is that DO NOT underestimate Kuala Lumpur cause you’ll be shocked, surprised and impressed, all at the same time. That much I can tell you.

I have basically checked all the type of rides I ever wanted to take and am glad the heli ride is done here in KL. Achievement unlocks.

Here is basically how I felt before, during and after the trip. And obviously I highly recommend everyone to try. Once, at least.

The Before
I was super thrill (obviously lah kan) and since I saw Olive took the ride a day earlier plus the fact that I saw a couple of my friends experiencing this, I kinda formulate and strategize what I want to do and all. I even have an imaginary storyboard (that was how ecstatic I was a day earlier and that morning itself).

I have to make sure is my attire is office smart casual (as I have to come to office first prior to taking the ride), heli friendly (nothing dramatic and overly dress whatnot kan) and last but not least, it has to be comfortable and not over the top and yet look like some spoilt rich kid taking a heli ride instead of car during KL rush hour (sampai begitu skali my storyboard). The outcome… so-so only lah my style. Hehhehee…

You think that’s it? Nehhhh…. I even imagine the pose and angle (1) running in or out of the heli (just like those you see in a movie), (2) pic of me looking nonchalant of the ride as I have taken it so many times, the transport to go in the future – GrabHeli gitew (drama sangat) and  finally (3) me fiddling with the dashboard as if I was piloting it (this didn’t happen as I forgot to request for a front seat. Duh…).

As you guessed it, nothing of the above materialized BUT I did look good though (terubat jugak jiwa).

I have no running to heli pic - storyboardfail. Duh!
And this is NOT in a car hokkay (dalam kereta orang tak pakai earset besar gajah camni).

The During
Since all of the above failed, my expectation kinda diminished as well. I was supposed to do a couple videos from certain angle for me to show-off on my IG and I forgotten all about it (I did get a few footage lah, bukannya takde langsung). Dang!

Video aside, the view is breathtaking. What surprises me was that, you can see a lot of greenery from aerial view. Places that you didn’t know existed ie golf course right smack in the city (here I thought it was KDE but boy was I wrong), KLCC seems so near yet far, so small yet standing tall – huge, and the best was all our link road, highways looks beautiful from above. Seriously.

How to selfie on air - pout your lips!

This is the height. 

Ni tang mana pulak!?!?! I don't remember there's greenery in KL city. Hemmm...

The After
Upon getting down, we took a few more pics with the heli as backdrop. And you think it ends here? Nehhhhhh….

I have Heli-Ride-Hang-Over syndrome. HAHAHHAHAAA…. Every other day if not hour, I be rerunning the videos, or looking at the pics. Kept feeling that I should be posting all pics taken on IG, FB, Twitter etc. (Show-off itu penting). No, that is not enough. I forced my family and colleagues to check my pics out, insisting they should experience the same.

Worried that people might doubt I took a heli ride. That's me with KL Tower in teh background y'oulls.

Me all smiling (dah macam orang sewel dah).

Here is what I did in specific (1) encourage every Tom, Dick and Harry I met to try it, at least once in their life, (2) Shared the pics, vids and cost with marketing team, influencing them that high level event (eg. CxO level) should incorporate this into their GTM plan. I even passed some Ascend Sky Tour biz card to marketing team. A unique selling proposition. And (3) Push it to all my Social Media platform - semua orang wajib tau and cuba.

What are you waiting for?
Go try NOW!

Group pic with heli pilot (Hwas an after thought hence he was still in the heli. Storyboard fail. Yet again).

#JomTerbang Helicopter Ride is made possible and is in collaboration with Ascend Sky Tour and About KL with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.
#AscendSkyTour #AboutKL #GayaTravel

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