June heralds the arrival of the durian season, which Penang celebrates with a two-month-long Durian Festival starting on 1 June. During this time, you can expect vendors of the King of Fruits to pop up in areas like Burma Road, Macalister Road, Anson Road, Balik Pulau, and Bao Sheng Durian Farm to sell their picks of the bunch, including popular durian breeds like Ang Hae, D16, Ang Jin, Ang Bak, D700, and many more. Those seeking guided tours can visit YearOfTheDurian.com, a blog run by American durian enthusiast Lindsay Gasik, who organises durian tours that take participants to some of the best farms and vendors around the northern Malaysian island.
It may be winter in Australia, but the Good Food and Wine Shows keep on rolling in Melbourne (2-4 June) and Sydney (23-25 June). At the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, visitors will get a chance to see star chefs like Manu Fieldel (from My Kitchen Rules), Matt Moran, and Marion Grasby show off their skills at the Good Food Theatre, while cheese lovers won’t want to miss The Smelly Cheese Shop’s cheese appreciation journey. The Sydney leg of the GF&WS will be held at Darling Harbour, and will feature Luke Nguyen (chef-owner of Sydney’s Best Asian Restaurant, The Red Lantern) and MasterChef Australia judges Gary Mehigan and George Calombaris live on stage, while the Champagne Taittinger & Oyster Bar and Tuckers Natural Cheese Alley will keep visitors happily fed.
Lobster fans can get their fill, and more, at the Kowloon-based pentahotel Hong Kong, which has introduced a new seasonal Japanese and Korean Lobster Seafood Dinner Buffet. Available until 13 July, the buffet gives diners a chance to experience a wide array of seafood- and lobster-based dishes cooked in Japanese and Korean styles. For starters, highlights include the Lobster Salad with Bean Curd and Sesame Dressing, Lobster and Crab Roe Sushi Rolls and selected sashimi. For mains, don’t miss the Lobster and Minced Wagyu Beef Congee, Lobster Fried Rice with Crab Roe, and Spaghetti with Lobster in Pesto Cream Sauce.
IT’S A WRAP
Bangsar’s hip and happening APW dining area in Kuala Lumpur welcomes Makirito, the latest F&B establishment that specialises in making Japanese Burritos. Simply put, Japanese Burritos are rice wraps rolled up in nori (Japanese seaweed), with a variety of fillings that include salmon sashimi, jellyfish, and crispy greens, complemented with home-made sauces like spicy Sriracha mayo and shoyu citrus mayo. Priced from USD2.30 (RM10), these burrito babies are just what you need for a healthy, on-the-go lunch.
V E Hotel & Residence, Kuala Lumpur welcomes the Muslim holy month of Ramadhan with an assortment of Arabian and local favourites at its all-day dining restaurant, The Straits Estate. Start the ceremonial breaking of fast at dusk with hearty appetisers such as hummus, babaganoush and fattoush salad, before digging into the main courses of Lamb Shank Tagine, lamb ouzi and kebabs. Malaysian favourites such as kambing golek, Malacca-style kawah kari kepala ikan (fish head curry) and Terengganu-style ayam percik (roast chicken) are also on the menu. Over at the open kitchen, watch as chefs grill fresh seafood over a charcoal fire, before indulging in decadent treats of assorted Malay kuih, a chocolate fountain with condiments, and lychee crumble tart. The Ramadhan promotion is available from 28 May until 23 June.