Monday, July 10, 2017


Afternoon Tea At 1885
Guests can feast like kings and queens when they stay at the Eastern & Oriental Hotel (E&O Hotel). Five out of the six F&B dining outlets on premise are open to the public while the sixth - Planters Lounge - caters exclusively for guests of the E&O Hotel’s Victory Annexe.  
As tribute to the year the E& Hotel was established, 1885 serves classical dishes with modern inflections in a sophisticated setting that oozes posh exclusivity harking back to the colonial era of yesteryears.
We were hosted by the E&O Hotel's genial marcomm director Eileen Chong for a la-di-da English Afternoon Tea (RM65.30 nett per person) in the spacious Gold Room. Many VIPs including the current President of the US (you know who-lah) have dined in this posh space can you with a minimal spend of RM1K.
Gilt trims on white walls, plush floral carpet underfoot and French doors looking out to landscaped gardens accord plenty of privacy in the room. It was fun, slipping into tai tai mode for that afternoon, trying to decide on which of the 16 types of tea we should order.
Since I was intrigued by the idea of boozy nuances in my tea, I chose the Irish Whiskey Cream -- malty Assam autumn tea with faint smoky cocoa husk & aroma which was brewed for 4 minutes. Hubby's choice of Jasmine Gold had the scent of freshly plucked jasmine petals rounding off the fine Chinese tea, brewed for 3 minutes.

Special mention must be made of the savoury array of finger sandwiches. Here, the magnificent seven varieties include roast beef with grain mustard mayonnaise on village bread, cucumber with cream cheese & dill on white-brown bread, chicken breast with horseradish cream on white bread, Scottish smoked salmon with lemon butter on poppy seed bread, egg mayo with chopped shallot & alfalfa sprouts vol au vent, soft cheddar cheese & ripe tomato on whole wheat bread, and lemon chicken salad with celery in puff pastry. A good testament to their deliciousness is when both kids and adults reach out for second helpings.

Forget about canned whipped cream and run-of-the-mill jam as 1885 only proffered housemade strawberry jam and real clotted cream to accompany its warm, oven-fresh Raisin and Plain Scones. A decidedly sublime treat that went splendidly with our cuppa.

Despite their dainty portions, the selection of Cakes & Tea Pastries was ample tummy fillers. Depending on the chef's choice for the day, the luscious line-up may include mini fruit tartlets, brownies, macarons, cheesecake and a pudding of sorts. Decadent but hey, you only lived once so forget about the guilt trip and just enjoy!

Buffet Takes Centrestage at SARKIES

Buffet is a top draw at Sarkies, a charming colonial-style restaurant adorned with black & white floor tiles, rattan wrought cane chairs and marble topped tables. A popular culinary oasis with Penang folks especially for its expansive buffet spread, a meal here traverses tempting choices from east to west, local to international.

Unless you have a gargantuan appetite, it pays to be selective when you hit the food parade. Recommended specialities from reliable friends range from Roast Duck and Char Kway Teow to the a la minute Grilled Fish and assorted Curries.
Prowling around the different counters devoted to a myriad of cuisine, my top picks include a turmeric-yellow chicken curry (above), chilled seafood, mutton curry, the vast salad bar and roti canai made on the spot.
Kid-friendly options abound too. The maki sushi was a riot of colours and appetising flavours as are the pizzas and noodles available. Of course, reserve stomach space for the bewildering variety of dessert if you have a sweet tooth.
Opened from 6.30pm to 10.30pm daily, Sarkies serves buffet breakfast (6.30am -10.30am), buffet lunch (12noon - 2.30pm) and buffet dinner (7pm - 10.30pm). The restaurant is at the Victory Annexe and distinctly separate from Sarkies Corner which proffers a la carte specialities from 10am to 11pm.
For more information on 1885 or Sarkies, please visit:

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