Dec 30, 2014

Best of 2014: Spicy Sharon's Top 10 New Places To Eat

Twenty-Fourteen is coming to an end.

It has been amazing food journey for me this year, that has also inevitably kept this blog alive. Special thanks to the sponsors as well as my full time job for supplementing my huge appetite, and not forgetting my body for withstanding the overindulgence as well.

The number of new eateries that sprouted - and some flourished - has multifold this year. There's just so much talent going around that it never ceased to amaze me. I've always wanted to try everything, though I know for a fact that its near impossible. So really, its all about word of mouth, picking or stumbling onto the right ones.

Now, in this write up, I will not be talking about restaurants that only deserves that special visit on that special occasion, rather some mainstream ones, in which anyone can visit at any one point in time.

The list that you're about to see below, consist mainly of newly opened restaurant in 2014, as well as some not-so-new-but-not-so-old ones, of which I recently attempted and fell in love with.

Not to drag my words any further, in no particular order, here we go.

1. Naughty Babe Dirty Duck, Desa Sri Hartamas KL

Best Pork Ribs - Naughty Babe Dirty Duck
Opened earlier this year, Naughty Babe Dirty Duck decks up some pretty impressive American inspired dishes with grilled pork ribs being their crowned specialty. Apart from that, there are some pretty interesting eats in their menu as well as an extensive wine list. They say, this place serves one of the biggest slab of pork ribs in town! Read more about Naughty Babe Dirty Duck Here.

2. Ohla Tapas & Cocktails, The Intermark KL

Best Spanish Fine Dining - Ohla Tapas & Cocktails
At Ohla Tapas and Cocktails, expect to see an array of exquisite Spanish cuisine, fine dining style, creatively crafted by their In-House chef, Toni Valero, who hails from Barcelona and has quite a reputation behind him, including stints at several Michelin star restaurants. High credentials calls for high expectations right? Read more about Ohla Tapas and Cocktails Here.

3. Fahrenheit 600, Publika Solaris Dutamas KL

Best Casual Italian Restaurant - Fahrenheit 600
Fahrenheit 600 opened in Publika sometime late last year and the pizzas here - fascinates me. The place doesn't have a specific theme - some American; some Italian; some others. But what I do know, they serve an addictive fusion of gourmet pizzas. Imagine handmade dough, spread thickly with traditional Italian tomato sauce, sprinkled with mozzarella cheese, then chuck into a wood burning brick oven, fired up to 600F - that's how the name came about. Read more about Fahrenheit 600 Here.

4. Hammam Tearoom, Publika Solaris Dutamas KL

Best Moroccan Experience - Hammam Tearoom
With the success of Hammam Spa, the first Moroccan Turkish bath in the region, Hammam Tearoom finally made its debut in Publika earlier this year, serving a unique spread of authentic Moroccan cuisine, including an impressive list of exotic Moroccan tea. What made my visit particularly memorable - the alluring Moroccan ornaments and - I belly danced, somewhat. Read more about Hammam Tearoom Here.

5. Miam Miam (Now known as Franco Malaysia), 1 Utama Shopping Mall PJ

Best French-Japanese Cafe - Miam Miam (Now known as Franco Malaysia)
Many would associate French food with fine-dining and Franco is a laidback metaphor of that, combining bold flavors of French cuisine with a Japanese twist. I love the food here - the squid ink pasta, the souffles and the french toast. Though I've encountered some less than stellar experiences when it comes to customer service. Are you willing to wait? Read more about Miam Miam / Franco Here.

6. Bariuma Ramen, Jaya Shopping Center PJ

Best Japanese Ramen - Bariuma Ramen
Ramen devotees are constantly on the lookout for the best ramen in town. And as for me, PJ is in dire need to fill the Ramen-gap. My essential guide to Ramen is really simple - flavorful but not-too-oily broth, bouncy and well done noodles, with a thick cut of deliciously simmered chashu to add. Bariuma Ramen definitely ticks all of it off the list. Do you have a ramen guide? Read More about Bariuma Ramen Here.

7. Palsaik BBQ Korean Restaurant, Solaris Mont Kiara KL

Best Korean BBQ Experience - Palsaik BBQ Korean Restaurant
I didn't exactly headlined this as the best Korean BBQ restaurant, rather the best Korean BBQ Experience. Though I can't deny that they do have a unique selling point here, distinguished by its 8 flavored pork bellies. For me, the place win hands down as one of the most over-hyped Korean restaurant for this year. It's different, it's not too bad, and it's exciting! Read More about Palsaik BBQ Korean Restaurant Here.

8. Metal Box, Empire Damansara PJ

Best Breakfast Cafe - Metal Box Restaurant & Cafe
The cafe scene in Malaysia are mostly built based on hype, where social media plays a vital role especially when it comes to catering for the target age group of under 35's. In an overcrowded market in town, it has to have at least one-thing, that distinguish itself apart from the rest. But its not everyday in the cafe scene that we hear a swarm of avid cafe hoppers, following a Chef from a well-known cafe, to a newly opened one. Read more about Metal Box Cafe Here.

9. Strangers at 47, Section 17 PJ

Best Crepes - Strangers at 47
There are not many new independent cafes, handled by a bunch of really young chaps, serving crepes in an unconventional way - and made me want to tell everyone about them. Strangers at 47 specializes in crepes, with a Malaysian twist to add, and have been working it incredibly well. An excellent find in my humble opinion. Read more about Strangers at 47 Here.

10. A Pie Thing, Damansara Uptown PJ

Best Gourmet Pies - A Pie Thing
While I was waiting for a creme de la creme to kick start the pie trend - A Pie Thing jumped in. This cafe decks up a bounteous selection of sweet and savory pies, made indestructible with The Mashacre. Very important to note: A Pie Thing only open from 4pm onwards. Read more about A Pie Thing Here.

While flipping through my archives, attempting my hardest to remember as much as possible from each dining experience, it occurred to me that most of it weren't as popping as the ones I've listed here today. Like I've always said - a meal is not merely about the food and the environment, but the company that we're dining with that would make a whole world of difference.

My food-trend prediction for 2015: Experimental menus - the ambitious concoctions of fusion ingredients that you'd never thought would possibly work well together. Strange but interesting at the same time. Creative plating would definitely score extra brownie points too. We are a visually intrigued bunch after all, so being instagram worthy would clearly be a selling point.

I had fun compiling my favorites for this year. I hoped you had fun reading it too.

Do you have any treasured finds that you'd like to add to the list? Let me know.

Yours Truly,


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