If you are familiar with the ancient China’s timekeeping system, you might thought that 二更 from 9.00pm to 11.00pm. Instead of the 12-hour or the 24-hour clock system that we use today, traditionally the Chinese used the Gēng-diǎn system to keep track of the time at night.
Each gēng is 1/10 of a day, if converted to the clock system that we use today, it is 2 hours and 24 minutes. The first gēng starts at sundown, which is at 7.12pm. To be exact, the second gēng, 二更 starts from 9.36pm to 12.00 midnight.
Put all those history aside, the restaurant that we visited, Clock Eleven 二更 actually opens from 11.30am – 3.00pm and 6.00pm – 10.30pm. They were just using the name because people normally have dessert around the time of 二更.
Clock Eleven 二更 is a restaurant serving Japanese- Chinese fusion food. It focuses on rice dishes, which is commonly known as Donburi (abbreviated to “don”). Instead of the traditional Japanese rice bowl dish, one of the co-founders, Mr Yeap, decided to incorporate Chinese style and taste into this Japanese Don.
“Our initial plan was to open a dessert shop, with the name 二更. This is because people usually have dessert around 9pm to 11pm. But, who knows MCO happened due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”Co-founder of Clock Eleven, Mr Yeap
The recent pandemic and MCO have changed many eateries’ future. With courage and adaptability, Clock Eleven alternated their direction and concept. Taking advantage of the time, the co-founders of Clock Eleven conceived the ideas in the midst of the Movement Control Order (MCO). When people are facing a crisis, desserts is only a second option and not a necessity.
That’s why they came to a consensus that rice is a necessity. Hence, instead of selling desserts, Clock Eleven decided to focus on staple foods.
“This shop has been rented since last year. Renovation works were started before MCO too. Since it’s already halfway there, I still have to carry on.”
Clock Eleven is located in a typical Penang heritage shophouse which is long and narrow with a five-foot walkway at the storefront. With the inputs from local interior designer and co-founders themselves, the shop is designed in a Japanese-Chinese fusion style which matches its menu. Besides, the brick’s wall and yellow-warm lights provide a cozy ambience. Moreover, the wooden furnitures are also very comfortable. Diners are able to enjoy their own private space with proper distancing between the seats.
For food, the fusion menu covers rice dishes, a special dish and some sides. Homemade Chicken Luncheon Meat & Sausage (chicken luncheon meat, chicken sausage, soft scramble omega-3 egg, Japanese butter rice), Sichuan Pepper Shrimp (zanthoxylum, shrimp, chicken minced meat, fried omega-3 egg, Japanese butter rice), Garlic Butter Pepper Crab (crab meat, garlic, pepper, omega-3 egg yolk, Japanese butter rice) and Truffle Garlic Capellini (black truffle, garlic, angel hair) are some of their signatures.
You may be wrong if you think the customers are only there for their food. They blend good vibes into their environment with nice selection of playlists and detailed creation of the menu. 二更 is a shop with a soul that customers enjoy food with a nice atmosphere.
With good quality of ingredients, the price ranges between RM9.90 to RM27.90 is considered reasonable. If you love the concept, you just got to keep updated with their next progress. They are in the midst of expanding the layout of their shop and also to make their concept fully oriental by fusing in a series of Korean dish, bibimbap.