[Review] 13 Stages Malaysia

Photo of 13 Stages' versions of coffee from Johor and Terengganu

So, in the forever quest for dinner places, the Bear and I hit Paradigm Mall last night. We ended up at a place called 13 Stages, which turned out to be a Singaporean-based brand.

What pulled us into 13 Stages were their claims of serving coffee from all 13 Malaysian states. However, when we went there for dinner, not everything on the menu was available – there were quite a few items that were listed as coming soon (including mini buttered mantou).

Tasting the food

image of a steamed chicken thigh with drumstick covered in a layer of ginger
I had the Imperial Chicken Rice (I think, forgot to take the name down properly). The rice is well-cooked and fragrant. It goes well with the sauce from the chicken. The chicken thigh was very soft and tender – I could tear it apart easily with my fork and spoon.

Despite its looks though, it was a little bland for my taste. I was actually expecting the smell and taste of the ginger to be stronger. However, this turned out to be a plus for me – for the first time I was actively mixing ginger into the chicken and rice and the flavours were very filling. It’s not as spicy as Bentong-style ginger chicken but it’s good enough.

Grilled tomyam chicken rice

This was an interestingly-flavoured dish. The chicken was crispy and served warm but the rice was a little cold. Despite its name though, the tomyam flavour was… missing. It was a bit spicy yes, but it lacked the tang and kick you would expect out of tomyam. The Bear found it so-so only.

Coffee verdict – Terengganu vs Johor

This was a very interesting matchup. The Terengganu coffee ended up being stronger in taste without the smoothness of milk that the Johor coffee had. Johor coffee, despite looking extremely milky, was actually very smooth and easy to drink, like a far better quality of the canned Nescafe coffee I usually have. Maybe the next time I’ll try the Perak coffee.

With that said, I ended up falling asleep easier than I expected so I’m not sure if the caffeine was too mild or is it my body acting weird… (I tend to stay awake far too late if I take coffee anywhere remotely near bedtime).

The menu in Malaysia and Singapore are named slightly differently. I noticed when researching that the Malaysian kitchen offers fried chicken, which isn’t talked about in Singapore, so I assume they don’t have it. 13 Stages Malaysia is also a full-service restaurant (somewhat) compared to the self-service places in Singapore. You sit down, write your orders on a piece of paper and then give it to a server (basically the same as every other HK-styled restaurant).

For the price and location, it’s actually pretty decent. Would I go again? Sure, it’s near me and it’ll fulfil the chicken rice craving when I don’t want to slog through the traffic to get to the Jalan Gasing chicken rice shops.

Would I recommend you coming out of your way to try this? Not right now. While the coffee is great, it’s not something you’d battle crazy traffic for. If you’ve got a few hours to kill or if you just wanna hang out with friends it’s a pretty good option though.

One great thing about the bill though: No service charge or tax (for now!).

As 13 Stages has only been open for a few days since I wrote this, I will probably check back again to see if they’ve improved. They have a lot of potential, but will definitely need to tweak the flavours to appeal to the Malaysian market, especially in a competitive foodie mall like Paradigm (can’t believe I just wrote that).

Mid-October update

Winner everywhere KL Concert

It’s been a while. Life has been fairly routine in the last six months or so, but when I look back at the photos I’ve either uploaded to Google Photos or Instagram, it’s been a pretty interesting trip. Some of the highlights include:

First Kpop concert!

I love Winner and I stan Jinu. Sunday night was unreal though and the concert was such a visual feast that my brain still has issues putting memory to the songs they sang. It was absolutely epic. Rin got Tuna and me great seats and it was quite awesome.

Fave sets have to be the remix of Really Really, Love Me Love Me, and the boys’ individual sets. Also Hoony’s skin is epic flawless. He barely showed any sweat at all what is this!

From an event organiser point of view, I was very impressed. The entire thing was run pretty well – most people started going in after 5pm (concert was scheduled to start at 630pm) and entry was smooth. There were enough ushers who knew where to put people. Concertgoers were really polite and those who had to go past others to their seats were apologetic (Tuna and me got front row seats at the corner so we needed to get up and let people through but that was fine!).

The other interesting thing was that the concert started early and ended on time – it was about 2.5 hours and we were all out of the stadium by about 845pm, though we only left the area much later because hello post-concert traffic.

KL night view

Took photos and started Inktober

So I have started doing Inktober though I’m currently behind. Using LordofNowhere’s prompt to draft a probable story for Nanowrimo. I may not attempt it this year, but I have kind of two possible story ideas I want to explore so there’s that.

Inktober planning has mostly gone out the window but one of the things I’ve observed about myself is that I like doing inking that require me to avoid filling in the blanks, aka using a black background instead of a white. It makes the work seem more conscious somehow – that I’m learning what to leave out rather than sketching in the details.

Photos wise I’ve been able to grab some really gorgeous photos and made use of the selfie stick I finally bought after weeks of deliberation. Completely happy with my purchase though now I need to find new excuses to carry and use it frequently. Bonus: Selfie stick came with a set of lenses that made taking pics a trip!

Cut off my hair!

After about 3 years I think I finally cut off my hair. Was planning to donate it but I could not find the opportunity (I couldn’t make it to the saloon or they couldn’t accommodate me etc) so in the end I went elsewhere and got it all chopped off.

My only regret is that I may have timed this wrongly – it’s the rainy season now and the office is stupid cold.

Attended a Music of Hans Zimmer concert

Suffice to say that this was incredible and holy crap I have missed listening to instrumentals that tell a story without needing words.

Travelled to Bangkok

Went there for a company trip. It was amazing and interesting. Also said goodbye to some people. That was a bit depressing. Played with some AR.

Slide numbers and caps changing

Office 365 quick post

Removing slide numbers from Powerpoint Office 365

  1. Click on the Insert tab.
  2. Select the Header and Footer option (towards the right of the screen).
  3. Uncheck the Slide Number option
    • If you’re just changing the title slide then click on “Don’t show on title slide” at the bottom
  4. Click “Apply to All” and close the tab.

The information on the official MS Office page seems to have completely forgotten the menu is hidden by default.

Sentence case to ALL CAPS and Title Case

Shortcuts for changing caps in MS Word, Powerpoint and Excel:

  • Word and Powerpoint
    Select and press Shift + F3 till you get the desired caps.
  • Excel
    1. Insert temporary column next next to the column you want to change caps.
    2. Use a formula to change the caps, i.e.
      =Proper(click on the cell you want to change the caps of)
      =lower(click on the cell you want to change the caps of)
      =UPPER(click on the cell you want to change the caps of)
    3. Copy the values in the temporary column.
    4. Right click anywhere else and Paste as Values.
    5. Delete temporary column.

Putting this here mainly for my own convenience. I suppose there is a reason why Excel’s a special case but really Microsoft, the fact that I had to write this entry in the first place says a lot about the total failure of your SEO.