Sunday, August 23, 2009

Congee Steamboat At Station 13

Update: Exactly a week later, I returned to Station 13 for dinner and it was an utter disappointment. First of all, I made the mistake of ordering the set steamboat for RM28 per person. For that, you get cheap items like pork skin and pork liver. But my biggest complain was the beef. It was trace paper-thin, so thin that I couldn't lift it off the plate so I had to scrape it into the pot where it disintegrated into the congee. I did complain about it to the management and if they don't improve on that, I won't be going there again. Hmmph!

My Documents1-3

There's a new kid in town called Station 13 and it is located in City Mall. City Mall is the most popular mall in KK right now, judging by the constant line of cars queuing to get into the mall area. The strangest thing is once you get into the shopping stores upstairs, there's hardly anyone strolling about. I think people go there to eat, and as far as I'm concerned, there's nothing worth eating there. But that has changed since Station 13 officially opened last week.

Station 13 offers the first of its kind, congee steamboat, found mainly in Hong Kong and Guangzhou. It is like regular steamboat/hot pot except the soup base is very thin congee. At Station 13, you can stick to your regular clear soup base or try the congee base. I've never had congee steamboat before, and now that I've tried it, I like it! Then again, I like steamboat of any kind. Not surprising, since I like cooking at the table.

When you order the congee steamboat at Station 13 for RM28/US$7.50, it comes with half a kampung chicken (which is really farmed kampung chicken, not the free-range type). You can order other ingredients, which range from RM5/US$1.40 for veg/mushrooms/tofu and so on, or meat such as beef, pork, fish for about RM15/US$4 to RM18/US$5. The portion is not big, but the congee is refillable so don't order too much in one go.

You start by choosing and mixing your own dips. I like the dried chili oil in the middle.

The chicken comes with the congee. The local beef was very tender and sweet. I highly recommend the sui jiao/dumplings too. It had lots of crunchy prawns. We didn't want the flour to mess up our congee so the sui jiao was sent into the kitchen to be boiled before we added them to our congee. Soaked dried squid is tasteless so unless you just want the crunch, order something else.

The staff in Station 13 are mostly the owners, and so are very friendly. I found out the next day that one of the owners is my friend Annie. Anyway, I like that the owners themselves scurry around taking orders and tending to the customers. There's no dumb look and inability to answer questions as in most of our restaurants where the staff are migrant workers. They did have two migrant (I assume) workers, one of whom accidentally dumped all the bones from my friend's plate onto my plate while changing the plates for me, and the same girl splashed congee on P's arms while cleaning up. But we were nice, we let her off.

Very fresh plate of complimentary prawns.

Maybe because we looked like nice ladies, or maybe because V jokingly told one of the owners that I'm a 'big blogger', we got this big, beautifully arranged plate of prawns for free. But it came at the end, and only V and I could continue eating. We only finished half the plate of prawns which was about 4 big prawns each, proving again that V and I were, are and always will be, gluttons. P had stopped eating while R doesn't like prawns.

Our meal was about RM80/US$22, including Chinese tea and a last order of enoki mushrooms, which was what we call "okay okay" meaning it is neither cheap nor expensive.

The next day, I brought Hub back for lunch. We both had the sui jiao and wonton with soy sauce-tossed noodles, which took 40 minutes to arrive. It was quite ordinary and didn't taste anything like Hong Kong's wonton noodles. I doggy-bagged cha sao rice for Wey and it didn't look appetizing because the cha sao was reddish (I don't eat artificially colored cha sao), cut very thin and looked dry.

Wonton sui jiao on tossed noodles, RM5.50/US$1.50

Maybe because they just started business, many ingredients were out of stock even though we were there at 7.30 pm. As with all new restaurants in KK, you must make a booking or risk standing outside looking in at the diners. Or end up eating at The Hut (woe to you then), which is two doors away.

Station 13
No S-0-13 Ground Floor
Block C, City Mall
Jalan Lintas
012 802 5551 Wong Wui Yung


TripleJin said...

;) That's sweet of them, to give such a HUGE plate of prawns.

..and yes, you are a BIG blogger!


Big Boys Oven said...

you believe me, I had been counting the prawns! lol! I would be so satisfied! :)

Precious Pea said...

Congee based steamboat is pretty common in KL. I once saw a family put yee mee into the congee which is ermm...pretty odd combination hor? You can try making this at home too, just cook some diluted congee and buy whatever ingredients you fancy. My fav is frogs and white pomfret and ooo...crabs!

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

haha big blogger must have caught the attention..

prawns with congee? can only imagine how sweet it can be..

gerrie said...

Looks very interesting! Must remember to book!City Mall is madness now...we were hoping to grab a quick dinner at Hana on Saturday, and ended up at Old Town cos there was a queue to dine in Hana! There is NO recession in KK, as far as eating out is concerned.

ganache-ganache said...

40 mins of waiting for a wantan noodle, better don't bring hubby yet ! I want to try the steamboat congee, the beef looks fresh & the prawns of course !

Agnes said...

goood!!! I'm going to check this place out!! :D

Do you know the Korean Restaurant in Warisan Square? It was closed down because no business liscence :/~

terri@adailyobsession said...

3jin:no i am not, just a small fry :) very sweet boys u have.

bbo: ha, so was i

pp: i did, i made congee steamboat last sunday n it was a failure. i used a steamboat pot with a funnel in the middle instead of a claypot n the congee burnt around the funnel bc tt's the hottest part of the pot. then the beef i got was harder than hub's shoe so i told my family we hav to go to station 13 soon:)

frog congee sounds good altho i've never gotten the courage to eat them :D

joe: with a camera n snapping away using flash, i was really asking for attention:D

gerrie: then again there was never an economy boom either. tt's kk.

ganache: yeah, i won't go there for lunch

agnes: ai ya! how can they do tt. i was hoping to eat there soon.

Anonymous said...

Wish I knew about your latest update on Station 13. We too made the same mistake ordering the congee set for 4. I am afraid to tell you they have not improved at all because we just went there last Sat (31st Oct) We were served the same sort of food you mentioned in your post and probably worse. What really cheesed me off most is because it was actually recommended by one of their staff. Uggghh..what a big mistake!!! I sat there watching all the other tables served nice food with plates of fresh prawns, crabs and also nicely sliced meat. Actually, I was doubtful when I glanced through the list of food served in the set list. I wanted to choose from the alacarte list but this guy told us it will cost the same. Hummphh..yes he made us pay good money for such mediocre food. I managed to change some of the items in the list i.e don't want liver, we were given mushrooms, don't want meat balls, was given vegetables. Yes, the beef was horrible just like how you described it. It was'nt fresh at all and yes, it was paper thin and was stuck to the plate.

I have this feeling they are trying very hard to sell their set orders and probably make more profit from it. We had to fish out a whole plate of pork skin which smelled so horribly rancid from our pot of porridge. They did not apologise or change the porridge but offer us a plate of intestine. We totally lost our appetite by then. What a complete waste of time and money. It will take a long while to forget that horrible experience. Uugghhh....!!! Anyway, thank you for sharing your views and also updates. Have a nice weekend!

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