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Join the Coffee Club on a whim

 | September 18, 2011

With a catchy name, many customers became 'members' to taste some of the value-for-money meal.

FOOD REVIEW

The walk from Imbi Road to Changkat Tong Shin seemed to be a long way off. I didn’t want to make my way to the road behind Jalan Alor without first “fuelling up”.

I have an inclination to cancel all appointments until I have taken the second most important meal of the day – lunch.

An air-conditioned environment became a priority, so Low Yat Plaza’s lower ground food section came to mind.

Since I have already tried Hong Kong’s Food Culture about three weeks ago, it was commonsense to find another “hot” lunch spot.

There were a few places that enjoyed bigger crowds than normal. One of these that arrested my attention was Kopi Club. It was a catchy name – Coffee Club.

A cursory glance at its menu created a silent satisfaction. I wanted a promotion item because it was more often than not, value for money.

A waiter flashed a big smile as he walked towards me. This young Chinese man whom I shall identify as “CK” was most accommodating.

I immediately pointed to the big poster and he knew I came for the “ayam berempah rice plus one free drink”. It was Kopi Club’s lunch special for RM11.90.

He asked if I preferred coffee or tea. I accepted his suggestion after he revealed that the coffee was better. It wasn’t white coffee because that option would cost more.

My lunch partner decided not to pile on the carbohydrates and just ordered cheese and chicken sandwich.

When my order came, the big roasted chicken drumstick quickly caught my eye. It was very well roasted. There were two slices of cucumber and a few pieces of cabbage.

They were certainly not very generous with the greens. Even the rice portion was rather small. On top of that, there was no gravy. I wanted to raise my hand and kick up a fuss but I refrained due to fear of attracting the attention of the security guards and what they might do to me.

Culinary choices

Ten minutes into the meal, waiter CK brought a tiny bowl of curry. Apparently, he had forgotten about it. It pleased me that the meal did have some kind of soup.

But it didn’t taste very much like curry. It tasted like a little like an unidentifiable curry-powdered soup. However, I was just glad I had something to add to the rice.

It was “too dry” for a roast chicken dish. The cheese chicken sandwich was a disappointment. It was much smaller than the ordinary sandwiches one gets from coffee houses.

All that for RM5? I wanted to ask CK. Again, I decided to let it slide. This place was turning out to be full of surprises.

I had to remind myself that this was the Bukit Bintang area where Starhill, Lot 10, Pavilion and JWW Marriot were located. Working people like me should be glad that I am allowed to mix with the crowd.

But I couldn’t help asking: was it just I or everybody else around here eats small portions. I finally rationalised that perhaps the shop rentals are pretty high in this highly acclaimed shopping zone.

People from small towns are always hankering after value-for-money items. We will never get used to the fact that in the big cities, customers just accept what they are given, even if the portions are only big enough for children.

That is why, I was told some time ago by a seasoned city slicker, that waiters always welcome multiple orders. By the time I had finished my meal, I vowed to stick to where I belong, and that is the nearby food court where the masses congregate.

When I had accomplished my mission in that part of Bukit Bintang, I proceeded straight to Chinatown and prowled the inner city back-lanes for more interesting culinary choices.


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