I have always been a big fan of dates. Both dates. From the one that involves cute guys to the one that's edible. Before I got to know Bateel (no, that's not his name), I usually go for loose dates sold in supermarkets but it's kind of hard to find them unless it's near Ramadhan (fasting month for Muslims). When I was living in Jakarta and lead sort of, almost tai-tai-dom life which involves lots of malls strolling, I discovered Bateel, a gourmet dates store which sells varieties of premium dates. The store might not sell all types at once (listed here in their catalog) but here are some personal favorites that I can vouch for.
Agwa is probably the most expensive one sold in the store because it's called kurma Nabi. If you like semi-sweet ones, go for Khidri or Safawy. Silaj and Sifri have slightly sweeter tastes. If you like a more exotic taste, go for lemon or orange peel ones. I find that the taste of orange peel is a tad too strong since I prefer the original taste of dates. Khidri, when paired with caramelised nuts can be too sweet for those who doesn't have a sweet tooth. But Khidri with roasted almond is ... just perfect!
With the word premium tagged to the dates carry by Bateel, you can expect the price to be quite expensive. E.g. The Khidri with Caramelised Almond or Pecan is sold at RM23.40 per 100g. That's about 7 to 8 pieces of dates.
Although Bateel stores can be found in 15 countries, unfortunately there's only one available in Malaysia and two in Indonesia.
The Bangsar Shopping Centre (BSC)
Lot G3, Ground Floor
Jalan Maarof, Bukit Bandaraya
Bangsar 59000 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: + 603 2093 0478http://www.bateelasia.com
Jl. M.H. Thamrin Kav. 28-30
Tel: +62 21 3199 0765
Lower Ground L-55
Jl. Asia Afrika Lot 19
Tel: +62 21 7278 1293