Thursday, July 04, 2013

MyDulang @ OldTown White Coffee

With Puasa month coming and in Malaysia, the Buka Puasa is a big thing, sometimes it is bigger than the religious obligation of fasting. Many would spend a lot of money buying food to break fast. From the like of Pasar Ramadhan where food hygiene is often (for me) a question mark to the upscale hotel buffet that can cost a family of four hundreds of ringgit. Such opulence is unseen and unknown until as recent as 8 years ago. With more disposable income and parents of family working, the pattern has shifted from buying instead of cooking at home.
So what do we do?
Once in a while i get invited for food testing and restaurant opening. I often look forward to this opportunity as I seldom eat out because of my eating habit. I see these invites as a chance to see what is normally served out there and their value for money.
Old Town White Coffee was founded in 1999 and started off as a 3-in-1 drink manufacturer. In 2005, the cafe-style or "kopitiam" style chain took off and to date, there are no less than 200 outlets throughout Malaysia and the region.
Starting from July 8, 2013 and in conjunction with the Muslim fasting month of Ramadhan, Old Town White Coffee has prepared a set menu for those that will be breaking fast starting next week (expected to be July 10, 2013).
My approach to this food review, apart from introducing what Old Town White Coffee has, is to look from the health perspective and perhaps, offer some changes or improvement to us as consumers.
How it all started for OldTown
MyDulang
The concept of a wooden platter or tray used for dining purpose, filled with dishes and shared among family member is the concept of MyDulang @ OldTown. It is designed and inspired by the old home feel of Buka Puasa back in the Kampung for some of the folks growing up with this concept. 
MyDulang - The Concept
Presented in two choices of Individual Dulang or Family Dulang, it is priced rather well at RM16.90 and RM39.90 respectively. 
Image from Old Town White Coffee - The above is the Family Dulang
How consistent is the photo above to what was shown to us blogger? I would say it was almost spot on (apart from the Ice Kacang shown below that has melted as i arrived late after work)
What was shared with the bloggers - the Family Dulang
For RM39.90, you will get all that is shown above which consist of:
·         Rendang Chicken/ Rendang Beef
·         Curry chicken with potato
·         Chicken Satay with Satay Sauce
·         Fried Lekor
·         Cucumber strips
·         Egg Skin strips
·         Cooked Long Bean
·         Kangkung Sambal Hae bee (dried shrimp)
·         Nasi Kunyit
·         Sambal Sotong
·         Lekor Chilli Sauce
·         Belacan Chilli
·         4 Beverages: 2x Rose Nata Selasih + 2x OldTown White Coffee/ OldTown Teh Tarik
·         2 Desserts: 2x OldTown Ice Kacang with Rose Syrup/ 2x OldTown Ice Kacang with Gula Melaka (Add a scoop 
of ice cream for RM 1)
The choices of Rendang, Drinks (Coffee or Tea) and Ice Kacang
The Individual Dulang were consistent between what was shown in the promotional photo below and what was shown to us blogger.
Indivdual Dulang
Again, short of the melted Ais Kacang and the bigger Dulang that was used, the content and consistency was there on what was presented to us.
What was shown
The Individual Dulang is at RM16.90 and it consists of:
·         Rendang Chicken/ Rendang Beef
·         Chicken Satay with Satay Sauce
·         Fried Lekor
·         Cucumber strips
·         Egg Skin strips
·         Cooked Long Bean
·         Kangkung Sambal Hae bee
·         Nasi Kunyit
·         Lekor Chili Sauce
·         Belacan Chilli
·         1 Beverage: Rose Nata Selasih/ OldTown White Coffee/ OldTown Teh Tarik
·         1 Dessert: OldTown Ice Kacang with Rose Syrup/ Ice Kacang with Gula Melaka (Add a scoop of ice cream for RM 1)
Offers the same mechanism as Family Dulang. You get to choose your drinks and dessert
Now, why am i stressing so much about consistency? As OldTown is a huge franchise, the challenge here is consistency for all the outlet. So far it was good!
The Tasting
Contrary to popular beliefs, I do eat. While my eating habit has changed dramatically and drastically, I still have to eat to survive. What really changed is being selective of my food and this is where my review of MyDulang will set it apart compared to how other foodies may approach it. So, bear with me. To start with, I ordered the Individual Dulang with Beef Rendang and Ais Kacang served with Gula Melaka. I did not had the chance to change my drink to Coffee black as it was already served when I arrived. No issues about that as I ordered a cup of cold water. 
MyDulang
I decided to eat with my hands - not because I was trying to impress others that were present, but it was to feel if the food were oily. Things I do for health!
Digging in
The Nasi Kunyit was really fragrant. I can see that they take pride in preparing this and it was not as oily as I thought it will be. Often, it is easy to overdo the rice with butter or margarine, but this one was really subtle. There were minimal residue of oil on my fingers on first impression.
Nasi Kunyit
Luckily my fingernails were clean (and short) ;)
I observed Rebecca and noticed that she finished the rice. This is something rare as she is not a fan of carb. This goes to show how good the Nasi Kunyit was, even to the pickiest foodie.
Hmmm...
The Individual Dulang is really sufficient for two person if you are not a big eater. Ladies might want to take note and share the portion out. There is enough of cucumbers, boiled long beans and sambal kangkung hae bee (or dried shrimp) to feed two person. I finished off these three vegetable dishes as there were good as they are. 
Jemput Makan
The beef rendang was of expected quality typical of OldTown. If you have been eating here, you will notice that the sambal served at the restaurant is on the sweet side. It is also not as spicy which is suitable for most Malaysians. I must commend that the portion of Beef Rendang served to me were all lean beef and it was not fat.
Did someone tell them I am coming?
The coconut smell and taste of the rendang was unmistakeably there. If you like the wetter variety of Rendang, this could be for you. The serving was sufficient for me. It was not as oily as some rendang I've encountered that literally swim in fats. This is good from my personal point of view.
Next up was the Sate. It is served only in Chicken variant and most of us that has eaten sate outside would be very wary of how the sate is made. Many out there, unless you eat from specific sate restaurant, has a section of skin or fat in the middle - that is how they skim on the lean meat and gives you something you wouldn't want. Obviously, I took the more careful approach and instead of ONE bite, I took two bites off the sate to verify the middle section.
OK! Pass!
PHEW! No fats! The sate sauce (peanut base) were sweet and not as spicy as you would had expected. There is minimal oil (or unseen oil layer) on the gravy. Perhaps the whole concept of reduced oil is also an operational decision, as it takes more effort to wash off oily dishes and it will also overload the existing grease/oil trap in the F&B outlet. Perhaps?
For me, it is all good. I can eat this without feeling very guilty (I skipped my run for this). Lastly the Ice Kacang. You see, I (used to) have sweet tooth. I took a bite (or two) of this and I must say that the Gula Melaka used were real (because some melts brown sugar and call it Gula Melaka) but a bit diluted. Palm Sugar is actually good sugar as it contains other minerals in it, which explained the darker color. I would say to go easy on desert like these and really, share them out like I did. But of course, if you really want to eat it, go ahead, after all, once in a while is ok, I guess.
The Fight To Resist
Value For Money?
Some might argue that the price for the served sets were on the high-side. It could be if you are comparing to the typical Pasar Ramadhan where an usual serving of anything is about RM5. However, how many of you, honestly, stop at buying ONE item for breaking of fast? Typically, someone would spend close to RM15/outing and that is considering the food were prepared hours before breaking fast and most looked better than it actually taste. 
MyDulang @ OldTown White Coffee (this is not hard sell) is priced correctly in my opinion. The amount of food served commensurate with the price. Shared between two person, it is actually pretty affordable for a meal in an air-conditioned restaurant with free Wi-fi. 
The Family Dulang comes with more servings (both chicken and beef) and with extra drinks. While it is recommended for 2 to 3 person, I see a fourth person sitting down and share the servings. They key to breaking fast, again, is moderation. A body that has been deprived of food and liquid deserves to be treated with respect and do so by eating sensibly. Smaller portion shared between friends and family brings more joy that sitting down gorging down and regretting later. 
Calorie wise, I estimated the Individual Dulang to run up close to 1,200kcal. This is due to the drink and dessert (estimated at 180kcal and 250kcal each, with balance calories from the main dishes). If you can find ways to share this, it will be a less guilty option. 
The biggest challenge, in my opinion is the ability of OldTown to churn these out consistently. Nothing is more crucial than this as many of us know and experienced that photos are often decieving and can be a let-down when the real food were served. Let's hope the QA and QC will be good!
Lastly...
OLDTOWN White Coffee will be giving away complimentary RM5 voucher with each MyDulang set and an exclusive OLDTWON Duit Sampul (Green Pack) for every customer who spends RM20 and above on a single receipt from 1st July 2013 to 31st July 2013.
RM5 Voucher and Raya Green Packet awaits you
MyDulang @OLDTOWN will be served from 11AM daily at all OLDTOWN outlets and priced at RM16.90 for the Individual Dulang Set and RM39.90 for the Family Dulang Set.

8 comments:

  1. "Did someone tell them I am coming?" Hahaaaaa :P
    Price wise, I think it's very2 reasonable. I too avoid going to pasar ramadhan, but I do go once in a while. Everything looks good there but not really after you start to eat...
    Your review makes me actually want to try this out :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amilita - I agree. As these are fanchisess and the challenges stand for them to make each set consistent.

      Don't take my words for it. GO try them out starting July 8 and see if it agree with what I just noted. :)

      And post it here.

      Delete
    2. Selamat berbuka puasa. ;-)

      Delete
  2. Nice seeing u after so long! :)
    I enjoyed my meal that evening and I'll be meeting a clients here soon too. Can try the MyDulang set again! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ;-) take the family MyDulang and see if consistent

      Delete
  3. You are really serba boleh, bro. :)

    ReplyDelete

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