Friday, January 15, 2016

My Views On Instacom

Instacom has been hogging the limelights since November last year. My feel is that if it was just a pump and dump, they would have dumped already. We have to be cognisant of the fact that it is no longer a telco tower kind of company, in fact profits from that industry alone will amount to less than 5% of this year's earnings.

So, where is Instacom going? Or should I refer to as Vivocom?

a)  Anyone who do not believe in their "china-play" story can sell, and would have already... looking at the shaky global developments in recent weeks (oil going below US$30; yuan devaluing; China sending troops to fight ISIS; etc...). No doubt about that, if you don't wish to part of the story, you can opt out anytime and many have done so. Which is a revealing tell for the price action / volume to see the shares still above 28 sen after all that.

b) Hence, despite all that has happened, the share price has settled very nicely above 27.5-28.5 sen. which is comfy above the small 5% new share issue levels. Even if those people wanted to get out, there is sufficient liquidity for them to exit.

c) Look at Edra, look at 1MDB, who has been buying??? Look at Penang under water tunnel, who had the better financing. Gemas??? etc... what else. Its not that Malaysia wants to get China's investments, but no one else seems to be looking or wanting to invest!!!. The Middle East has problems of their own, Japan as well... no one seems keen to provide long term FDI... except China. I do not need to go into why Vivocom has a good relationship with CCRC and possibly other China mega counters. Please read the CIMB report.

d) Either the entire thing is a scam, or its true... how to scam with CRCC?????, the projects are there already, it is one of the top 100 listed companies in China, they can see the news, they can read the blurbs. Yes, it may take some time for markets to give the stock a proper valuation - currently we are looking at less than 5x prospective earnings. I do believe if and when the quarterly figures come in in line or above valuations/expectations, we will see huge spurts then.

e) To be fair, you cannot ascribe a 10x earnings on a completely new RTO business, no matter how attractive it may be. It has to be gradual, as more confirmation on quarterly earnings and new projects being won. 

To that end, I have just come across a faed technical chartist and got his email on his view on Instacom. Our ways of interpreting data may be different, but I think we come to the same conclusion.


by G.M. Teoh

INSTACOM GROUP BHD – Quantitative Algorithm Analysis
Instacom Group Bhd has transformed into the biggest Ace company in Malaysia and remained the market volume leader for the past several weeks, a phenomena seldom seen in Malaysian stocks.  
Traders and investors expressed their confidence and views on its exciting future growth prospects and bright potentials by buying heavily into this stock.
Let us look at the reality and try to forecast the price outlook of this stock utilizing  Quantitative Technical Algorithm Analysis -- a number-based methodology characterized by the use of trading algorithms –with insight from human psychology and mass behavior that form the foundation of behavioural finance. In its simplest form, technical analysis is the study of supply and demand as expressed in a stock’s price.
Despite a rocky relationship with the financial establishment, technicians are nonetheless a big part of it. There is not a single portfolio manager, trader, speculator or analyst who doesn’t look at charts every day.
I think every investor can benefit from a rudimentary understanding of technical analysis. Fundamentals of a stock tell us why, while technicals tell us the when and how far it can go. Fundamentals without Technical is lame, Technicals without Fundamental is blind.
Chart Analysis: The 11-week bullish price rally of INSTACOM started at 8 sens in late-September and peaked at 34 sens in late-November. Two buy-signals and two price-correctional sell-signals or bear-traps were successfully captured by   the G.M.TEOH Trend-Tracker, a computer programmed trading algorithm that has no choice but to tune out market noise and just listen to the strength of the price trend.
The bulls and bears in the above chart represent the buy and sell-signals of INSTACOM when the GMT Trend-Tracker algorithm-lines crossed over. The underlying strength of the price surge was evident when the stock price entered into a correctional or profit-taking phase in the last week of October and early-December 2015. In those two bear-traps, the long-liquidation selling volumes were well absorbed by the smart-money and the stock price rallied again subsequently.  At that juncture, any intermittent price weakness were bargain-hunting buying opportunities.  
Trading over the last six-and–a-half weeks was largely range-bound with prices meandering like a snake within a narrow water pipe. Is this stock now facing overhead resistance or is this a price-support level? These questions would be adequately answered in days and weeks to come. (pls see chart)
Let us take a close look. An upper level price hurdle now stands at the 31.0 sen and support is currently pegged at 26.0 sen. This chart supports  appears to be solidly intact. The fact that prices are able to congest on high volume near the upper-end of a major bullish-rally confirmed that the price momentum and underlying technical strength of INSTACOM is constructive. The next big- move which would determine the direction of this stock for the future is more likely to be up than down.
Perhaps, the normal positive trading environment ahead of the Chinese New Year of the Monkey may provide the setting for an upward spurt!
Markets always trade on what that is not priced into markets. Fresh fundamental news in days ahead could fuel the bullish impetus and lift prices higher to establish new rally-highs.
What’s s next? Market intelligence analysis suggests that in the event of a successful upward price breakout at the upper-ceiling of this horizontal band trading resistance level of 31.0 sen, this stock could be transformed into a screaming-buy!  
Price Outlook: Based on the algorithm GMTeoh Trend-Tracker and the predictive model of symmetry of second reflection, INSTACOM price would firstly be expected to trend higher in the immediate future to the 35 sen level and consolidate before gathering fresh momentum and track higher on renewed buying to test it near-term price-target at 43 sen. Technical price adjustments are anticipated here on account of another round of healthy profit-taking. Price volatility would emerge from this point on with the daily and weekly trading range widening dramatically.
Continuation of the constructive technical development and bullish sentiment surrounding INSTACOM is expected to intensify towards the second quarter of 2016 and generate further renewed buying interests and help lift prices higher into the 68-70 sen  level  in the longer term.
The price chart tells no lies. They are the graphic representation of the psychology of the marketplace. Mathematics never lie and neither does price.
Price and Volume Analysis: A two dimensional approach to stock analysis.
INSTACOM had displayed high volume and remarkable sustainable liquidity in its earlier bull-run and also in the consolidation trading over the last six weeks. Liquidity was fluid and with minimum spread differential between the bid and ask prices, enabled short-term traders to jump in and out easily. Low slippage brings down the cost of trading. The rally we witness was a powerful volume-driven rally.
What does the two dimensional approach say about the past and future expectation for this stock?   Information known and or anticipated shows up in the price immediately. Price is the only thing that tells you what is. Everything else is what one thinks it should be.
Volume measures the intensity or pressure behind a price trend. The greater the volume, the more we can expect the existing trend to continue rather than to reverse.
Volume precedes price movements – meaning volume would first surge above  normal levels to be followed by price advances.
In the case of INSTACOM, the upward rally from 8 sen to 34 sen resulted in a hefty volume of 3.05 billion shares changing hands. This very significant technical development  showed that buyers were simply the aggressors as they chased sellers higher and bought huge volume  during the course of the rally. This was a classical case of “volume precedes price movements”.
Volume over the last six over weeks totalled 1.43 billion shares.  In this price current congestion and accumulation phase, weekly volume has tapered off. Volume basically measures the flow of money (positive or negative cash flow) into and out of a stock.
By monitoring the price trend and volume, traders are better able to gauge the buying and selling pressure behind the impending moves of INSTACOM. The resumption of the upward cycle from here has to be accompanied by a sudden sharp rise in daily or weekly volume to be sustainable. Any substantial increases in volume along with an increase in price is said to confirm the start an upward trend.
In conclusion: If you want to know the past, look at the present which is the result of it. If you want to know the future, look at the present which is the cause of it!
Strictly from a Quantitative Technical Algorithm Analysis perspective, INSTACO has the making of a shining star in the Year of the Monkey. It is amazing to see how prices managed to hold with such impressive volumes, just marginally lower from its earlier bull-run peaks.  This also solid evidence that this is not a boom and bust speculative-play. The strong technical setting points to a strong possibility of the emergence of a fresh and charging-bull in days ahead.
Be invested. We continue to look forward!
Happy Chinese New Year!  Profitably Yours, G.M.Teoh

G.M.Teoh is an independent market analyst who has successfully defied the conventional wisdom of trading.
His analytical research work on stock market were published by Star Publications weekly under the column name  “The Stock Market Signals” from 1986 to 2009. He is currently the chief coach of the Master Trader Tutorial (MTT) conducted in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.  

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Bobo - For Magical Nights

There is a new place in town and its possibly the best new place to be. Judging from the concept and the people behind it, I believe this will be around for  a very long time as their concept is hitting all the right spots.

Its situated along the now famous Jalan Bangkung @ Bangsar. Strangely but fittingly, Bobo occupies the 1st and 2nd floors only. The small entry door next to Lucky Bo reminds you of possibly of an old jazz club back in the swinging 30s in New York.

The first floor is the dining area with a beautiful couch area, and another partially more intimate dining area separated by sheer curtains. The ambience is inviting, modern yet clean lines in design. Love the many art pieces, cleverly chosen to exude a visually pleasing environment.  

The Food

Modern European, nothing too complicated but most were pretty good. My favourite by a proverbial mile is the divine polenta truffle fries, light crunch on the outside, soft and creamy in the middle with truffles aroma lingering all over.

The prices are decent as well.

The 2nd Floor - Performance Hall

OK, NO SMOKING!!! Even though I smoke cigars, I think its very important and more conducive in an intimate performance arena to be totally smoke free. The ladies love it, I like it.

To go to the second floor, you have open a very heavy sound-proofing door. You won't hear a bleep of the performances when you are dining.

It opens to a snazzy tiny bar where people can mingle prior to the show starting, and its basically to serve drinks to patrons inside the hall.

There will only be performers from Tuesdays to Sundays. Only Fridays and Saturdays will feature special performers which you will usually have to pay a RM40-60pp cover charge (well worth it).

As for other days, you could just head along there, grab a drink and listen to the quite brilliant resident pianist, David Gomes.

When you dine there on Fridays and Saturdays, you get the privilege of booking a "reserved table" for performances at discounted rates.

Knowing that they are catering to the 30-70 crowds and being in a suburb, the performances usually start at 9.30pm sharp and the second set will end way before midnight thus allowing all to get home earlier.

The Acoustics

Designed by a expert, the sound proofing and acoustics are fantastic. It creates warm notes and resonating tones. The open-thatched roof is a sight to behold.


The invited performances are curated by the ever popular, our own Broadway star, Malaysia's Buble ... Sean Ghazi - who will somehow jump onto the stage every now and then to surprise audiences.

Things To Improve

Double your wine selections, more good single malts and a more extensive "gastrobar" please.


Good food, great music or comedy, in a classy setting ... what a magical night out!!!

On the left is the balcony on first floor for smokers to take a break, its very very nice ... and when its raining outside, I can think of no better place to be than here smoking a cigar and getting a G&T, it really is quiet, just watching the world drifts by. On the right is the amazing polenta truffle fries.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Bowie - Not Of This World, Has Left Earth

I am glad I did a tribute to David Bowie back last September. His demise was sudden as his fight with cancer was kept well hidden from the media. Sad.

The Big Short ***** (5 Stars)

Just saw the movie. If you are in the investment industry for the past 10-30 years, it's flicking brilliant. As good as the book by my fav writer. Which is why I only have time to read nonfiction... If you are not, this might be a hit n miss. Danger being lost with the terminologies but they have tried very hard to explain everything. 

The director did a smart thing by getting a few "guests" as themselves explaining various investing concepts and terminologies to movie goers - that was a hoot. Especially with Margo Robbie in bath explaining investing terminologies ... then we had Anthony Bourdain and even Selena Gomez.

The Big Short will be a frontrunner for Oscars ... the overwhelming stupidity, criminality, conspiracy and institutionalised depravity of the financial system will ensure that this movie will At Least get nominated as Best Picture this year. The Academy likes to give out honours to very old people or to make a statement ...The Big Short falls under the latter category. The voting members are filled with liberal minded, mainly Democrats or socialistic leaning members.

Even I am very mad with the debacle, we can see the carnage, the devastation ... and we have more than sufficient information on who the culprits were ... and at the end of the day, ONE person goes to jail.

I will take the odds n bet that it stands a great chance. Btw Christian Bale and Steve Carrell were awesome, but Bale has his nose in front for Best Actor. ***** 5 stars.

In many ways The Big Short being a reality tale, is but a reflection or copy of the same shit in politics. The great thing about financial crisis is that we get a lot more transparency and a lot more information from reams of data and opinions from experts. Something we do not always get from the dastard "industry" that is politics. A place where almost everyone has an agenda that is selfish and egotistical, and lies and empty promises or silly sales speeches dominate the vernacular. Whenever shit hits the fan, there will be the blame game, everyone on a first out best dressed ... the mocking of the truth and what is truth... the belittling of goodness of the human spirit.

I think we need to study the book, the movie a lot more because we can learn more on how to behave better as human, and a lot better as investors. There is always repercussions to gains and losses, its not just the money, investing in assets or losing always has a real effect on lives, whether you are winning or losing. So, if you are on the right side, you may not be totally "right". Making money is good, we cannot distill all the repercussions or collateral damage on the losing side ... which is why we should do our best to give back, to balance the scales of justice where we can.

Before you go to watch the movie, you may like to re-read a blog posting (cum printed article) back in June 2008 - it was my take on who should be blamed for the subprime crisis. Pretty accurate methinks.

Back in JUNE 2008, I wrote an assessment of the blame game for the sub prime crisis. It was also published in StarBiz when I had my weekly column Investing Scents. Looking back, it was a very good assessment and I still stick by it. In fact, Michael Lewis' book just confirms most of what I opined back then.

The Bald, The Beard & The Ugly

I was watching the uncomfortable grilling by the US lawmakers on Bernanke and Paulson. I pity those two guys. They are trying to fix a problem which was inherited but had to suffer the embarrassment of trying to persuade them to approve the funds. We all must be wondering who actually are the culprits that brought about such a calamity. I shall try to ascribe blame to the relevant parties. Its a highly subjective exercise, and everyone will have a different opinion, but that's ok. Here's my two cents worth (and rapidly diminishing two cents in value): 

 Management of Investment Banks & Mortgage Lenders - They were greedy. They had thrown risk management out the window. They were overpaid for the work they do. When the going is good, they all pocket more than their share of the chips on the table. The worst punishment they got was to walk out the door with nary an apology. The vast amount of liquidity in the system and the thirst for mortgages prompted them to "invent" new fangled instruments to package these loans and resell them, with little regard to the leverage effect. Lenders kept pushing adjustable-rate and subprime mortgages, while investment banks bundled millions of risky loans and reselling them to investors. It was when these investment banks started to buy these same instruments themselves that really decimated their capital.

 Alan Greenspan - He will continue to deny it was his doing, but since 2001 he advocated a lowering of interest rates and continued a strong money supply growth policy. That prompted the public to buy properties and even speculate in them. Greenspan was well known for lowering rates aggressively to counter any crisis – the query was that by doing that markets were never allowed to adequately correct the imbalances. This led to the credit explosion. Alan did see deterioration in the credit market back in 2003 and 2004 or was he blind, but didn't warn lenders off using the "non traditional mortgages" now seen as precursors of what is now a credit crisis until December of 2005, shortly before Greenspan resigned. The excessive liquidity in the system was not just by the Fed, in fact major central banks were guilty of pumping vast amount of money supply into the system. Back in 2004 Greenspan opposed tougher regulation of financial derivatives, and actually praised adjustable-rate mortgages and refinancing for homeowners. 

 Ratings Agencies (S&P, Moody's, Fitch) - They are the unwitting culprits, and I am being nice here. They rated loans and bonds based on these mortgages AAA status, which caused many buyers to believe in their assurance that they were buying solid AAA papers. The ratings agencies again were too late to downgrade these papers, long after the damage is done. Its their stupid ratings and analysis which gave fuel to these instrument to be hawked to unsuspecting investors. Its their stupid ratings and analysis that gave the investment banks the bravery to keep piling up these instruments to the market. What kind of value added analysis are the issuers paying these rating agencies for?  Its obvious that the analysts knew much of the packaged loans consisted of subprime. Were the fees too enticing? Were the ratings agencies trying to curry favor with the banks? Maybe the analysts and managers were interested in going to work for the banks, where they can earn a lot more money. If these ratings agencies cannot do their jobs without fear or favour, how are investors to rely on these ratings anymore? Maybe the US should empower the government to rate bonds, especially if the government requires certain kinds of fund managers to own only officially-rated bonds.

 The Regulators – The financial markets and the various instruments have their respective regulatory units. You may include the Fed, the CFTC, the SEC, FDIC, even the FASB into the fold. They are supposed to regulate and oversee the markets and the financial instruments. Where was the voice of reason? The last six years' housing and subprime mortgage bubble and bust had little to do with excessive government intervention. Instead they had all to do with the lack of any basic sensible government regulation of the mortgage market, regulation in practice rather than in theory. They should have instituted new guidelines and rules to govern these CDOs, credit default swaps, and the leverage aspect of financial firms and their capital at risk. Even till now, they are mainly silent. 

 Paulson & Bernanke - They could have tried to reverse the damage in their early days as Treasury head and Fed chairman respectively, but they basically inherited a huge problem.

Now they talk about having to properly regulate derivatives and new instruments properly - sigh, there were institutions and people already appointed to do those jobs, its just that they did not do their jobs properly. I am still waiting for some of the above to be prosecuted for what they did and didn't do. At the end of it all, it appears that what some of them didn't do would be more punishable.

What about the American borrowers, the homeowners themselves should shoulder some of the blame, right? I left them out of the above equation for a few reasons: 

a) I do think there should be an element of "personal responsibility" for your actions, but it seems to me that they are already paying the cost for their foibles. Many had their homes foreclosed already. They have lost their deposits and the payments made towards these loans. It seems to me, they are THE ONLY group that has actually "really lost" materially and is already being punished for that. It is very hard not to be drawn into easy money, uptrending markets without need for deposits or proof of employment ... just join the party and the fees are shared gleefully all the way down.

b) The bailouts do not really bailout the end borrowers, they extend the life of the companies. Maybe the bailouts will allow the companies more time to foreclose these properties in an orderly manner. Very few of those will be able to renegotiate their existing loans on decent terms to allow them to continue to fund their mortgages. Most of the loans are priced at a time when property values are at least 30%-40% higher than now - better to declare bankruptcy than to continue to reconfigure the loan, isn't it?

c) The public are not equipped to regulate themselves. That is why there are agencies created with "capable people" to regulate and monitor the markets. You cannot expect the majority of borrowers to understand in detail CDOs, credit default swaps, or whether the brokers are leveraging themselves to the hilt. You can only have assurance in relying on top ratings agencies branding certain papers as AAA. Which person is able to go and read the 500 page report and examine for themselves that these AAA bonds consist of thousands of small mortgages spread out over the country, how to value the price trends and affordability ratios of these borrowers?

d) The public will often act in herd like mentality. They are driven by greed just like most people. They see people making 50% in 2 years from speculating in properties, they want to be part of it. They try to apply for loans, and were probably even more shocked that these mortgage lenders were more than willing to lend to them. The markets are often characterised by bouts of insanity, if you stir them up with enough incentives and carrots, people will act irresponsibly. The regulating agencies are there to ensure for an orderly market and to quell excesses. The people cannot do it themselves. 

The ones who got out early will think they are very smart. The ones who got hit will think they were unfortunate victims. Both are wrong in their perception of their actions, financial decision making and brainpower. Both groups are closer to each other in every aspect than they would like to think. Its financial musical chairs, winners and losers depend on when the music stops, not whether you were smart.

In case you haven't figured the headline out: The Bald, The Beard & The Ugly – Paulson, Bernanke & Greenspan.

Friday, January 08, 2016

Star Wars vs Pahang

credit Yusri Amir

What Is Wrong With China (Markets)

What caused the calamity:

a) the Chinese stock exchanges have grown terribly big over the past 7-10 years

b) the regulatory side had been lacking in many areas - no strict imposition of margin lending; wishy washy rules on shorting, so much so that some foreign funds have been able to short the China shares pretty easily(thanks also to Citic Securities); the silly rule that allows companies to suspend themselves indefinitely for no reason, etc...

c) the impostion of circuit breakers is good, just like they had in American exchanges, but again when the regulatory side fails to understand the essence of their own markets, the circuit breakers only encourage more selling to queue up .. why is that, the regulatory body did not realise that the largest participants in their markets are private/retail and not institutional or foreign ... what I am trying to get at is the markets there may be BIG but they are NOT DEEP ENOUGH ... depth is measured by number of participants, the kind of participants, the different types of funds ... so that in any situation there are long funds willing to buy when they see deep value ... right now, when a crisis becomes panic, it mushrooms into calamity BECAUSE almost everyone thinks alike ... so circuit breakers are a no no for now until the market is deeper and more mature

d) the stupid imposition of no selling by substantial company owners ... its like the T+4 phenom here ... Jan 8 was the day they could sell, so guess who is selling ahead of them, if you want ti impose some sort of selling restrictions - do it gradually (e.g. can sell only 5% of their total shares every 3 months till further notice)

e) the lack of maturity and coordination by their central bank and the exchange regulatory body ... left hand does not know what the right hand is doing ... either they did not know or they knew and did not foresee the subsequent effects... how can you suddenly drop the currency and intervene to make it weaker in a substantive manner, didn't you realise that as the second biggest in almost everything, what you decide for monetary policies have significant effects ... obviously NO consultation was made to ECB or Fed ... as they would have advised to do it in steps and gradual basis, and certainly not when your stock exchanges are in crisis mode...

So what now, they have remove the circuit breakers ... now the company owners can sell as well ... you are right at the lowest point of the previous scary correction a few months back ... I would change the rules for company owners to limit their selling by staggering them (as mentioned above) ... intervention is likely to be more aggressive  by Beijing and they can marshal almost unthinkable resources... following 2 days of 7% = more than 15% ... another 7% would really put it in ridiculous territory which should see some genuine buying coming in.

The currency realignment does not hit Malaysia that much as the industries and SMEs no longer compete on the same stuff as China. Yes there will be repercussions but a weaker yuan is mild compared to what the USD did to us. Buying power may be reduced from China but the weak ringgit to almost every other has already shifted our clients elsewhere.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Best New Restaurant 2015 - Dewakan

For a restaurant, located away from city centre ... amidst industrial offices and a plethora of half occupied condos ... to garner full bookings for dinner almost every night for the past couple of months (after opening for less than a year) ... is nothing short of amazing.

Mostly just by the powerful word of mouth. Its an amazing feat by Darren Teoh and the team led by Mohd Hafriz.

Darren Teoh, a molecular gastronomy lecturer at KDU’s School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts, this restaurant was two years in the planning. Well-known in culinary circles, Teoh has an impressive background that includes staging (culinary apprenticeships) at restaurants like two Michelin star Noma in Copenhagen and the three Michelin star Restaurant Amador in Germany. Teoh first showcased an imaginative and progressive type of cooking coined as modern Malaysian cuisine in his 2010 book Re-definition: Molecular Cuisine: Traditional Recipes through a Modern Kaleidoscope.


    Cured Mackerel, Ulam Raja, Pomelo, Local Flowers 

 easily the best dish of the night ... just like the signature "salmon/seaweed" dish by Tetsuya... this should be Dewakan's signature dish ... the cured mackerel retains sufficient saltiness/bite and raw fish freshness elevating it to a spectacular sashimi standard experience  ... the local flowers worked very well with the fish and the acidity of the lime juice added a lasting impression ... mackerel's taste enhanced and elevated ... I could have ten of this ... 10/10

    King Oyster Mushrooms, Green Curry Paste, Yoghurt, Dried Mackerel Flakes

the mushrooms were raw on the right side, to slightly grilled in the middles and cooked well to the left ... each had its own sauces ... the green curry paste worked so well with the raw ones without detracting from the freshness of the mushrooms ... remember the flakes ... the mushrooms all tasted like 3 dishes but coming together to one very satisfying dish where the star was the mushrooms  9.5/10

    Aubergine braised in Mushroom Stock, Jackfruit Seeds, Black Bean Sauce and Garlic Emulsion
    Steamed Ming Prawns, Brined Radish, Dried Vegetables, Cold Prawn Broth
    Smoked Pike Conger, Custard, Fermented Long Beans Relish, Roasted Okra, Clams Foam

the first of the "main courses" ... like a porridge and a very eggy tasting steamed egg in the middle ... very good dish but may be a tad too big a serving, making us feel a bit full after just the fifth course .. 9/10

  • DUCK
    Roast Duck Breast, Duck Leg Rillette, Beetroots, "Blood" Sauce

like a marriage of Chinese and Western style of duck roasting, crispy skin ... almost pink duck breast, juicy and condensed flavour of duck with every bite ... wanted more  9.5/10

    Confit of Lamb Breast, Spring Onions, Marsala and Onion Puree

not your usual grilled or oven baked lamb ... its more like it has been cooked in its own fat in slowly, hence no charring with a consistency like a "more tender waxed duck" ... the spices used make me think of Middle Eastern flavour, very very satisfying, esp if you like lamb  9/10

    Mulberry Jam, Cardamom Ganache, Cashew Brittles, Pucuk Gajus, Mulberry Snow
    Gula Melaka Marquise, Sour Meringue, Pulut Ice Cream

looks nothing like gula melaka or pulut ... more like a Monet painting, beautiful to look at, easily the TOP dessert ... its almost heavenly ... pulut ice cream was like taking in the essence without the calories ...but the gula melaka, meringue and cookie kinda like drew out the best aspects of cendol/ondeh-ondeh and elevated the taste to a higher level ... 10/10

    Warm Chocolate Tart, Caramelised Jackfruit and Gandum Ice Cream

Thankfully, at Dewakan, Darren exercised utmost restraint in his molecular cuisine approach, which I think helps diners to focus on his brilliant cooking abilities, and less on the hype and bells& whistles of molecular gastronomy.

The pleasant surprise at the end of the meal ... fresh, organic ice cream potongs with local flavours ... the assamboi one did not gel but the pomelo and pineapple ones were great. Very local, very Malaysian, very nicely done ...

Why Dewakan was the best new restaurant in 2015 for me:

- A definitive strategy to use ONLY LOCAL ingredients ... for far too long whenever we say fine dining, its always the "Western model" of exotic or hard to get ingredients. Malaysians tend to too easily favour anything foreign and too fast to pooh-pooh anything local. At Dewakan, we continued to be marvelled at the amazing variety of produce, condiments and plants that are all around us... being presented on plates worthy of any Michelin starred place.

- There is a strong sense of sincerity and integrity in the food cooked, the way they are presented, to allow for an enhanced appreciation of each and every ingredient used.

- PLUS, the food tasted bloody good. While not all dishes were home runs, the majority were ... and even the lesser ones were more than decent.

Do book way ahead of time for dinner. Corkage for wine is RM50 per bottle. They do have a limited wine list. Get there before they start raising prices.

For me, Dewakan easily bulldozes its way to being among the top 3 best fine dining places in the country. Darren changes almost half his menu every 3 months I think. If he keeps hitting home runs with new dishes in 2016 ... Dewakan may even reign as the best fine dining restaurant in the country in 2016. Its creative, innovative, immerses the diner with the pleasures of the ingredients ... its just bloody well done.

Dewakan will be taking a break from the 1st to the 17th January 2015. During this time, reservations will be closed and will resume on the 15th January. The restaurant will be opened on the 18th January.
Lunch: Mon to Fri – 12 Noon to 2:30pm
Dinner: Thur to Sat – 7pm to 9pm
Closed on Sundays and certain public holidays.
For Phone Reservations:
Monday to Friday only @
10am to 12pm, and 3pm to 5pm only.
Directions to the restaurant at KDU UC
Lower Ground Floor
KDU University College, Utropolis Glenmarie
Jalan Kontraktor U1/14, Seksyen U1,
40150 Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia