Agua restaurant – a Mediterranean journey

agua restaurant straits quay

Agua restaurant is located at the new Straits Quay in Penang. It specializes in Mediterranean cuisine and the name doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue that well since it sounds like something else in Hokkien. Heh.

aqua restaurant straits quay

I remember the first authentic Mediterranean restaurant I’ve been to – Dion in Melbourne, a Greek establishment where we went to celebrate an ex-classmate’s birthday way back in early 2003. That’s some classic food review action going on there. ;)

agua hb cheryl

I was in Penang over the weekend and made plans to meet up with Cheryl. Straits Quay is a relatively upmarket place by the marina housing designer labels like Versace, but according to Cheryl most people go there for the food. We perused the F&B restaurants listed in the directory and decided to check out Agua.

agua interior

The interior of Agua is decked out really nicely – there are vintage looking paintings on the wall and a long bar to one side. You would expect prices to be exorbitant in a place like this but it’s really quite reasonable – they have express lunch sets starting from RM 22++ and more lavish three course meals for RM 45++.

Starters

pumpkin orange soup
Pumpkin and Orange Soup (RM 14.90)
This is an interesting interplay of flavors – you can literally taste both the sweet pumpkin and the tart citrus in the soup. I love the croutons as well – it’s crunchy and goes very well with the soup.

tomato soup
Spicy Sweet Pepper and Tomato (RM 14.90)
Cheryl opted for this soup so we can share the dishes we have. It’s very spicy and perfect as an appetizer!

hummus
Hummus (RM 14.90)
How can you go to a Mediterranean restaurant and not order hummus? Lainey had this one – it’s off the a la carte menu and the bread tastes very fresh. I like the hummus too – you can just see a sheen of olive oil on it but it’s really healthy stuff.

Mains

fish st tropez
Fish St. Tropez
I reckon this would go perfectly with the red wine I ordered. It’s poached fish in a white wine, cream and mushroom sauce. The fish is soft and a squeeze of lemon does wonders to the taste. I liked the sauce and the sprinkling of herbs on top of the fillets.

mediterranean pasta
Mediterranean pasta
Lainey opted for this one. I didn’t quite like the taste but I’ve never liked tomato based sauces anyway, I’m more of an alfredo kinda guy. It tastes pretty authentic though with just a pure and clean-on-the-palate mixture of tomatoes, onions and peppers.

mustard marinated beef
Mustard marinated roast beef
It is listed as marinated beef roasted and sliced thinly with salad and rosemary potatoes. Cheryl had this for her main dish and I was surprised when I tried it coz I didn’t expect much from the description. The thin slices of beef is very flavorful and slightly juicy. It’s served cold and I think I ended up eating a lot of Cheryl’s marinated roast beef. Tasty!

Dessert

agua desserts
Single scoop ice cream
The girls had a scoop of chocolate and strawberry ice cream. The serving sundae cups are frozen before the ice cream is put in – you don’t put hot food on a cold plate and you don’t put cold desserts in a room temperature cup. Agua understands that and it’s this attention to detail that I like.

figs brandy sauce
Figs in Brandy Syrup (RM 16.90)
I thought they served me the wrong dessert at first – I expected dry figs instead but this concoction topped with vanilla ice cream just hits the spot. The brandy syrup goes very well with the figs.

agua us

The bill came up to RM 156.50 for three and that’s pretty reasonable considering I had wine with my lunch. Agua gets a thumbs up from me – the service is impeccable and attentive and we were there for quite a while, just catching up, and you never feel like you’re obliged to leave. It was great meeting up with you again Cheryl! :)

Agua also has Iberico ham on the menu and their signature dish is the Valencia paella with seafood, chicken and pork. It takes too long to prepare though and we had to drive down to KL after, so we reluctantly opted out of that. However, Cheryl is coming down to KL soon and she was talking about eating at Sanbanto coz she’s heard so much about it.

sanbanto
RM23 instead of RM38.50 for a Double Decker Bacon Cheese Burger + Ice Lemon Tea at Sanbanto Cafe, Redeemable at 3 Locations. Limited Vouchers Available! NON HALAL [40% OFF]

Sanbanto has achieved almost a cult status among porcine lovers in KL. They have their own butchery and their menu is filled with pork delights. I was surfing MilkADeal and I came across this promotion for a Double Decker Bacon Cheese Burger. Sanbanto makes their own patties and it’s a coincidence that the redemption period for this is when Cheryl is coming down so I got one of the vouchers.

Let’s go and try all the legendary pork dishes in Sanbanto Cheryl! :D

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20 thoughts on “Agua restaurant – a Mediterranean journey

    • OMG why???

      I used to hate Brussels sprout too – but that’s just coz I was cooking it wrong.

      I love alfalfa – I used to get boxes of it from the fresh produce area, to put in sandwiches, but I end up eating it just from the box. It’s awesome stuff.

      Hummus too. I think I started eating it in university, coz there was a place on campus selling it and I loved it.

      I’m surprised, I thought you eat a lot of veggies Diana. ;)

  1. Did you go upstairs? Penang also has the first Snoopy restaurant in Malaysia there. A lot of people go. I went once because my girlfriend wanted to go. Nothing special, don’t know why people like it so much.

    • Yeah we did! My friend Cheryl brought us there and told us about it too. :)

      I kinda like the Charlie Brown Cafe. We didn’t have time to actually order anything but I would love to.

      They have nice cappuccino art – I wanted to have drinks but we didn’t have time.

      • Yay! I like the place.

        Gotta have the cappuccino art featuring Snoopy and the tiramisu next time.

        I didn’t realize so much time had passed while we were having lunch. We only got back to KL at 8 pm, left at 4 pm and there were jams throughout the PLUS highway. I drove on the emergency lane on some stretches.

        Time flies when you’re having fun, it was good to catch up Cheryl. :)

  2. No price tags? Food looks good but prices a bit too steep for the likes of me. :(
    Agua’s in English or what? If it is, I would think it should be Aqua, to do with water = seafood = mediterranean.

    • Yes, there are, wait lemme dig it out.

      I had the three course set lunch for RM 45++ with starter, main and dessert. I also had a glass of Astica Merlot Melbec for RM 16++.

      The girls had the express lunch set with main, free flow house drink and ice cream for RM 22++. They also ordered one a la carte soup and hummus from the menu.

      Agua is apparently Spanish for water, you’re right! :)

      The food is pretty good, prices reasonable for the place. It’s at the marina at Straits Quay.

    • Heh! Ya I remember you mentioning Sanbanto during lunch and I saw the MilkADeal promo so that’s why I asked just now. :D

      The voucher is valid till September, I’m good on the 31st. 30th maybe, let me check on that.

      Let’s go and have a pork feast. I got the double patty bacon cheeseburger so we can order other stuff when we go there.

      See ya in KL, Cheryl. I’ll check which night and get back to you ya. :)

        • It’s valid for all 3 branches. SS2 included. I got the one at SS2 – one voucher only though coz I reckon it’s better to order more dishes and share instead of everyone eating cheeseburgers. :)

          Let’s go to the SS2 branch!

    • Heh! Yeah, I Googled it and it’s Spanish for water.

      I keep on typing it as Aqua while writing this just now. It’s Agua Mediterranean Cuisine. :)

      I’m not really keen on the pasta but the thinly sliced mustard beef is great!

  3. HB, that interesting fish had white wine in sauce so a red wine but a rose French wine is good between red and wine in taste. Do not par with spicy seafood for you end up with a metaillic taste for sure bad in red wine.

    • Heh! Well, I have problems with conventional food pairing coz I don’t drink a lot of white wine.

      I like red wine and rose wines but most white wines is too acidic for me – it aggravates my stomach ulcers so I tend to drink more red wines. :)

  4. LoL ~ Never fancy Mediterranean food .

    I suggest you try Healy Macs in Straits Quay too , Irish pub/restaurant owned by Irish as well.

    Their Pork Knuckles is awesome .

    • Heh! Yeah, it takes some getting used to but it’s great stuff. Mediterranean food covers a large region. :)

      Yeah, I’ve heard about that from Cheryl!

      I’ll be sure to try it next time. :D

    • Well, it literally means “Best Friends Forever” but it’s so cheesy and overused by teenage girls that I just write bff. :)

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