Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Art Cafe

The Art Cafe's concept is simple: Malaysian artist Christian Lai welcomes strangers into the living room of his home & cooks for them.

Call or text Chris to make a reservation at least one day in advance, then show up at this SS2 venue & select your food from what's available on his blackboard. After that, sit back & relax or browse through Chris' collection of paintings.

Chris' signature recipe seems to be grilled pork cutlets with spicy chocolate sauce, pumpkin, mushrooms & almonds. He's not a trained chef, but his food is well-prepared _ heartier & more wholesome than what some formal restaurants serve.

Pasta alla Norma, a Sicilian favorite that features a topping of tomatoes, eggplant & cheese, with Chris supplying slices of pork bacon for a meatier bite. Everything is cooked on order, so a little patience is essential (though it really won't take too long).

Pork Diablo, a classic recipe with mustard sauce that we rarely see in KL. Prices are fair; a two-course meal without alcohol won't cost much more than RM50.

Wine is available on request. Or bring your own (corkage is RM20, if we recall right).

A collage of photos, depicting Chris' East Asian travels. Housekeeping notes: cat haters might want to steer clear of this place, since Chris keeps a few friendly felines. They're usually locked up when customers come, but some can sometimes get loose.

The Art Cafe,
97, Jalan SS2/74, Petaling Jaya.
Tel: 010-2045-295
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  1. SS2. Perfect :)
    no desserts?

  2. rebecca: got fruit pies! but have to order in advance, since he needs a few hours to bake them, heheh :D

  3. Hmmm...d food looks interesting indeed :)

    I assume tat d menu is written on d blackboard :D

  4. It looks like somebody's house. U sure they're not going to slice you up and make dinner out of you? :P

  5. Ulric: yups, it's a relatively small selection on the blackboard. maybe one or two salads, 5-8 main courses (mostly pork dishes) & three pastas! :D
    Qwazymonkey: it was kinda scary coming here actually! the house & this street is quite dark at night. and Christian is a man of few words, so there can be some awkward silence :D

  6. Ahhh...luckily u din experience a Hannibal Lecter moment...nom nom nom :p

  7. see, such a Hannibal Lecter moment!

  8. So is this like a private kitchen sort of concept?

  9. I would like to go, but Mr. LFB might not want to, since there are cats! LOL

  10. @qwazymonkey: Sounds like the owner may out-Hannibal-Lecter Mr. Yoong here, eh? Hehe.

    @ckiong: You can bring the Diva - she's all about the cats!

    @Sean: His art is sweet! Nice. :)

  11. cheap! i like! This grilled pork cutlets with spicy chocolate sauce, pumpkin, mushrooms etc sounds like a tasty concoction:) btw.. i owe u a date elsewhere.. remember! i will email:)

  12. Why's everyone afraid that you'd be sliced up and eaten? I'd expect Christian to be more afraid of you....

  13. Were you the only customer that night?

  14. Well Sean, have the pigs stop oinking? Hahahaha...

    How many does the place seat? Looking for a venue to throw a dinner party soon :P

  15. Wah looks like this concept of restaurant in a home is getting more and more popular yes? Looks like a cosy and homey place too! Wonder how many ppl it can cater to at a time?

  16. ulric: actually i'm also a budding cannibal, since i wouldn't mind tasting human flesh =)
    qwazymonkey: heheh, but at least the host spoke in a normal fashion. no ominous "hello, clarice" voice :D
    michelle: yeps, kinda similar in concept to huck's cafe in bangsar! =)

  17. CK: bring Mr. LFB here and force him to hug a cat! :D
    kenny: yeah, i wouldn't mind being able to draw and paint like that! i never had any talent with a paintbrush, heh :D
    ciki: will await your email! yeps, it's been a very, very long time! =)

  18. lemongrass: heheh, what he didn't know couldn't hurt him! and i looked like just a regular friendly customer :D
    baby sumo: yep, there were just two of us dining here. it was a thursday night, i believe =)
    unkaleong: the pigs will stop oinking when the cows come home, heheh. i think a dozen people could fit here, but there might be trouble with the owner preparing all the food on his own. honestly, i think huck's cafe in bangsar is better equipped for dinner parties :D
    iamthewitch: yeah, eating here definitely feels refreshingly different from eating at a commercial cafe. i think it only handles small groups though, since only one person does all the cooking and serving! :D

  19. Oh man, we just went to icook last night and now you're giving us another ss2 eatery! You're spoiling us silly! =D

  20. Wow the private dining concept is certainly gaining popularity here. Looks like a nice place.

  21. dropsofcontentment: hope you guys enjoyed icook! but ss2 is such a hub for eateries. i think i've barely explored five percent of the neighborhood! :D
    eiling: yeah, i wonder whether these private kitchens might be more profitable because of lower rental costs and other expenditure =)