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Monday, March 10, 2014

Sensational Sakura @ Swez Brasserie, Eastin Hotel Penang

What a month it will be this March 2014 at Swez Brasserie of Eastin Hotel as they are bringing in HAPA Masterchef (Asian) - Chef Ricky Hui Eng Keong all the way from Eastin Hotel Petaling Jaya to showcase some fine Japanese cuisine, for their Sensational Sakura theme this month.
Chef Ricky Hui is a multiple award winner and has a host of experience serving many important people and dignitaries from around the world. Based at Eyuzu Japanese Cuisine Restaurant located at Eastin PJ, its not everyday such a high calibre chef makes his way up North for a month to showcase his delicacies. Thus, for those Japanese cuisine fans, head over to Eastin Penang now! Do check out the mouth watering sampling that was prepared, and I have to say, some I find it really yummilicous!

As always, there are some perks to using a credit card and getting a discount is what counts.
The lucky users of Maybank, Standard Chartered, CIMB, Citibank and Mastercard Worldwide credit card members are entitled to a 15% discount as well! So check it out.

Lunch: Monday-Friday
RM50++ Adult, RM25++ Child

Hi Tea: Saturday-Sunday 
RM68++ Adult, RM34++ Child

Semi Buffet Dinner: Sunday-Tuesday, Thursday 
From RM50++ per person 

When I saw these dolls, it really reminded me of some authentic Japanese music

 For awhile I thought those spikes on the bamboo were of Uni or sea urchin shell! Hahah!
 The thing about this review was that there were quite a few surprises. Good surprises I would say as it all pertains to having extra items to sample and the first one was this very crispy and crunchy fried salmon skin. Frankly I wish I knew the secret of how salmon skin can become like salmon "keropok"! It was so porous and light, but still very salmon! Excellent indeed. I'm just wondering when this goes on the buffet line, how quickly it will be snapped up and if the chef can keep production up.
 To start off, for appetizers, we have the Kaki Motayaki (Gratinated Oyster). The oysters were well flavored and the use of butter and cheese was well mixed and it really got the palate going. Good start to the meals.
For mains, we started off with Chef Ricky's Zuke Kajiki (Marinated white tuna with wasabi mayo sauce) and on the side Ika marinated with ebiko (Squid marinated with flying fish roe)
Frankly for me, I like to treat this as a starter as well as its the tuna, with its slightly zesty sauce, makes it very appetizing. I like the fact that the wasabi is not overpowering and just adds a hint of flavor to the tuna fish.
As for the marinated squid, this was utter delight as the squid just melts in your mouth and the fish roe gives it additional saltiness and texture (it pops).

Its so nicely plated I can't help taking pictures from differing angles
Then comes the assorted sashimi. Sashimi really tests a chef cutting skills and I find the salmon nicely cut with smooth bites for the pieces. There was also a seared tuna which I found made just nice as the outside is seared just enough to seal in the juices. The octopus was also very juicy indeed.

Teppenyaki Gyu Maki is a rolled teppenyaki striploin with enoki mushrooms and green onions in the middle. As I did not take beef, I got some comments from my friends and they found that the beef was probably not wrap as per the grain direction, and thus, it was very chewy.
And I'm thankful for the chef to prepare a non beef version and he created one using chicken! I found the chicken to be very moist and and the use of garlic really enhanced the flavors. Well, I am a garlic lover thus maybe thats why I like it.
The Eyuzu Make is a soft shell crab maki where I found this to be a rather timid affair. I mean, this version of maki can be found in almost every sushi place and there wasn't something that made it stand out from the rest. Its good but its not really special!
This is a Cawan Mushi (sorry Im not sure if I got the spelling right) and it was smooth as silk. The use of chicken with skin on definitely adds flavor to this very delicate steamed egg custard!
Ninniku Yaki Meshi is a garlic fried rice and I have to say it was loaded with garlic! The quality of the short grains used was good and the rice did not clump together 
And finally, dessert. This is Oshiroko which is a red bean stew. I found the taste very Cantonese like and was wondering if the Japanese takes their red been stew this way too! But it was very nicely made (I'm a big fan of red bean stew) and the added dumpling gives the stew an additional item to bite on too! I would have had a second serving if I was not in a rush that day!
I quick overview of the sampling spread
Finally a picture of Chef Ricky and his creations! I hope Eastin Penang will be hosting more of such invited chefs in the months to come!

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