It was a Friday. Friday as in TGIF. The day when most of you happening people go out after work to have a good time chilling out and do whatever it is that you cool people do. Me?
My Friday routine is dinner and then Tesco for groceries. And then back home for a bath and sleep. Totally auntie, right? But not that Friday. I was going to have a happening evening just like you happening people. Or so I thought.
A friend of my partner's flew in for a night. We were to meet him in KL for dinner. I made reservations at EL Cerdo for 7:30pm.
The God honest truth is, I'm not a happening person. I sleep early. I don't do the night scene. All I want to do after work is go home and sleep. But you know how it is. When your other half plans a night out, you follow.
So there I was, in the car, braving the Friday evening traffic like lamb to the slaughter. We started off from Damansara Utama at slightly after 6pm. It's been ages since we ventured out to the city center.
As to be expected, traffic was bad. But my partner did not expect it to be that bad. I sat in the car with nothing better to do, so I snapped some pics.
|At Jalan Tun Perak.|
I wondered if we would make it to El Cerdo on time. We had to pick the friend up from a hotel in Jalan Pudu. So near and yet so far.
After picking up the friend, we proceeded to make our way to Changkat Bukit Bintang. And that's when the fun began. KL has changed so much. New buildings, new traffic flow, so much so I felt like a country bumpkin going to town for the first time.
My partner, who is far superior to me in terms of navigational skills, lost his bearing. "Where are we?" he kept asking. Beats me, I'm totally kampung, I only know Kota Raya. I know that these days people use GPS and Waze and whatnot but the man is old school. So he took us on a spin.
|Berjaya Times Square. Our beacon of hope.|
"If only I see a familiar building, I will know where we are" said he. "There! There! Berjaya Times Square!" I squealed. As we drove on, I took more pics.
|We may have to end up at one of these if we can't make it to El Cerdo.|
After some tembak tembak driving, we managed to get to Changkat Bukit Bintang or somewhere near there. Now where is El Cerdo? We parked outside a hotel and made it by foot to the restaurant. By the time we got there it was 8:00pm. I thought we had already lost our table.
But no. Our table was still available. Phew! So we got ourselves settled down and it was time to decide what to eat. The waiter suggested white asparagus as it was on promotion. The friend whipped out his iPad and flashed a photo of the white asparagus he harvested at his home in Germany. Cool!
But no. We were not having asparagus. I did not come to El Cerdo to eat vegetables. We ordered some mains and also from the (limited) tapas menu and of course we had to have a paella.
The starter was bread with some sort of pate (I think). The bread was very fresh and it was wonderful. It's refillable too because the second one came soon after we polished this off.
|Second round of bread. But no extra pate?|
For drinks, we opted for plain water. The server asked me "Sparkling or still water?" Huh? That's something I never thought of. To me, water is water. Still waters run deep.....might have crocodiles......sorry I digress. To look cool and unfazed, I calmly said "still water" as I reckon sparkling would be more expensive, no?
At El Cerdo you don't expect them to serve plain old water. Aqua Panna Toscana. Natural mineral water bottled at source somewhere in Italy. That thing comes at RM20.00 a pop.
This is the Calamares A La Romana (Calamari aka squid, RM20.00). Battered and deep fried to perfection and served with a dollop of mayonnaise. This is from the tapas menu and chosen by the friend.
This Gambas Con Beacon (Bacon Prawn, RM26.00) is also from the tapas menu. Four prawns skewered and wrapped in bacon. This was lovely, bacon+prawn, how could it not be?
My partner's Marinated Pork Shoulder Steak (RM58.00). I ordered this for him but I was afraid that the meat might be dry. But no. They do this very well at El Cerdo. The meat was very tender and juicy. It was incredibly tasty. I would KIV this one for my next visit.
This was my order. Spicy Baby Back Ribs (RM78.00). I tell you, I can easily finish this all on my own but since sharing was the order of the day, I gladly did.
The spicy part came from this chili sauce and not from the dry rub.
And you know what? It tasted strangely like chicken rice chili sauce. Serious. Or maybe my tongue was defective.
Next up was the Paella Mixta (RM98.00). I actually picked the Mountain Paella because I have tried the Paella Mixta before. But the server suggested Paella Mixta because it has prawns (it's the same price as the Mountain Paella). So, OK, I reckon our guest would love prawns.
The paella did not disappoint. I don't know if this is the best paella but it's the only one I have tried and it's good enough for me.
I ended the evening with a dessert, The Werner's Special (RM26.00). The pretty server suggested to split the dessert into two for sharing, but no, Madam wants it all to herself. We did ask our guest if he wanted dessert but he declined.
I couldn't take a better shot of the dessert because there was a bunch of Japanese gentlemen sitting opposite. After my partner settled the bill, this came. One each.
|It was fruity and the alcohol content was quite high.|
I don't tolerate alcohol very well. There was a time when I could down 4 cans of beer or half a bottle of red wine to no ill effects, but not anymore. But it's tiny. And complimentary. Seems such a shame to say no. My partner, who hardly drinks, took his. The friend declined. So. I did a double.
|Hic! My partner would have a hard time tonight.|
Like persuading me to come down from the cupboard.
As we made our way out, I was already feeling light headed and jolly. God forbid should I break into song in the middle of the streets.
There were bright lights outside and many people. My partner wanted to take a walk to show his friend Jalan Alor (whatever for?). But it was way past Madam's bedtime. Besides, I don't like crowds. Yeah, I'm a party pooper, drunk or sober.
After we dropped off the friend at his hotel, we made our way home. By then traffic had cleared somewhat. And I got giggly in the car. Haiz....