Monday, October 24, 2011

Urban Spoon

It's fusion cooking that's fearless & flamboyant: Urban Spoon scoops up forkfuls of Asian & European ingredients, then jackknifes on unexpected tangents from what might as well be a parallel-universe kitchen.

Make mine Malaysian: Poached salmon is a culinary cliche, but splatter it with sambal ikan bilis & it's like a salty breath of fresh air for anyone drowning in an ocean of ordinariness. This plate's embarrassment of riches also includes grilled taro, shallot confit & watercress pesto.

Chinese chow: Emperor Tang's Duck Confit, with accoutrements of soy & calamansi reduction, maltose, braised cabbage & roast potatoes. What grade should we give meat that's this tender & therapeutically tasty? Something better than an Asian F, for sure.

Impressively Indian: Lamb Keema Pizza, topped with spicy minced lamb & tomato chutney, covered completely with boiled egg & Italian balsamic dressing. The worlds of Gujarat & Gallipoli collide in one big bang, evolving into a farrago of full-bodied flavors.

Let's call it a Thai: Mussels in a broth of coconut milk, galangal & lime, accompanied by French fries & aioli. A tangy twist to the recipe of "tom kar gai," heavy enough to make customers want to crawl upstairs to Urban Spoon's first-floor lounge for a post-meal nap.

Turning in, I'm turning round, I'm turning Japanese: Chicken roll with enoki mushrooms, carrots in sweet vinegar & tomato salsa. Wish they would use thigh meat instead of breast; this could be so shamelessly succulent, you wouldn't need a samurai's sword to slice through it.

Desserts fail to display the same East-meets-West razzmatazz, though the chocolate caramel cake with sea salt & peanut butter banana cake are nonetheless as virtuosic as anything else on the menu. But why do both look so familiar? A clue might reside with the boy who baked them.

Morande Pinoero Chardonnay, available by the carafe.

Morande Pionero Merlot.


UrbanSpoon Bistro & Lounge,
63, Jalan Sri Hartamas 1 (opposite Hartamas Shopping Center),
Taman Sri Hartamas, Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-6201-2108
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27 comments:

  1. Wow! a pretty impressive repertoire! Fusion done right it seems?
    Haha can guess where the cakes came from ..

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  2. rebecca: yep, it's fusion with flair, all right! oooo, and this isn't even the long-term menu yet, it's just the temporary introductory menu :D

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  3. sambal with salmon... now i'm curious!

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  4. Michelle: u could try making it in your kitchen. The sambal complements the fish quite well, punching up the flavor with some sweet-salty spiciness :D

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  5. Ooo...Lamb Keema Pizza looks quite hearty :)

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  6. The lamb keema pizza and duck confit look really interesting! Really can't keep up with all these new places. (Oh, and I caught that small Glee reference! :p)

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  7. wah, have not had good "fusion" in ages. will check it out, based on ur stelar review;)

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  8. Hmm. Them cakes do look familiar... ;)

    Btw, "Let's call it a Thai" - is that the actual dish name or did you come up with that one yourself, you witty blogger you?

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  9. Ulric: yeps, after finishing the pizza, we had barely any stomach space for anything else! and it only cost about RM30 :D
    Wendy: heheh, i'm glad that there's actually a fellow gleek who read this entry! though i must confess that i haven't watched that episode yet =)

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  10. Ciki: yeah, i think 'fusion' has become like a bad word, since some other outlets tend to make a mess of it! hope you'll enjoy your visit to UrbanSpoon :D
    Kenny: you've probably enjoyed many, many slices of those cakes =) and nope, the dish isn't actually named "let's call it a thai." i just realized, in your case, we could now say "let's call him a tai-tai." hehehe :D

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  11. the owner is oridi sweating when i told him who ate there last night. he'll be most relieved to have gotten such a stellar review.

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  12. fatboybakes: heheh, i'd actually like to thank the owner for restoring my faith in hartamas as a place for eating out :D

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  13. we bought a bottle of sambal on the weekend and i know what to do with it when i cook salmon tmmw!

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  14. joe: heheh, i hope it goes well together! hmmm, now i'm wondering if sambal might go well with other types of poached fish too (tuna, sea bass, etc) :D

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  15. Wow I haven't had time to blog hop for a few days and look how much I've missed! Just finished reading all the previous posts and boy am I hungry now! The poached salmon with sambal is definitely very attractive and unique, very curious to know how they match! :)

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  16. iamthewitch: hehe, yeah, they also have another salmon dish, an appetizer of cured salted salmon with thai sukiyaki sauce & boiled egg, which also sounds very interesting! :D

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  17. I've been there. The duck confit was cooked to perfection and the soft shell crab tempura was very very good. Will definitely go back to try out the other stuff on the menu!

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  18. Shan li: glad to hear you feel the same way! yeah, i was pleasantly surprised by the duck. it was practically perfect ... meaty, juicy & flavorful. will try the soft-shell crab the next time, thanks :D

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  19. Oh, I could always do with more slices of the same... though my waistline shall complain! :(

    And less a tai-tai, and more bored-out-of-his-mind. :P

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  20. Mmmmm...that lamb keema pizza looks promising. Sounds funky though!

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  21. Kenny: your waistline won't mind if you buy baggier, looser pants! :D and it's impossible for one to be bored after such a short span of time. especially when one went on an exciting jungle excursion over the weekend :P
    Bangsar-babe: yeah, i think it's the thick, rich coating of egg that made the pizza a success! the most cholesterol-laden pizza EVER! :D

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  22. the portions do look big. hopefully their price isn't that "big" either.

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  23. eiling: prices are actually very reasonable. i think a meal here could cost similar to a meal at alexis :D

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  24. Just gotten around catching up on your posts. This sounds like a good place to try. I like the twist to every dish. Let's hope it's as good as it you make it sound to me...or else it's a western F in my books. LOL

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  25. Qwazymonkey: heheh, ok, I must admit i'd be a really lenient teacher. Everyone in my classroom would get A's and B's unless they absolutely mess up :D

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  26. Been to this rest a few times. Not bad, but on my last visit the taste and flavour aren't as good as on previous visits, rather inconsistent, that's a real pity. Unlike many above, I shudder at the thought of mixing ikan bilis sambal on poached salmon. Yuck!

    Salmon has a distinctive and rather delicate flavour when poached. It is a fish best eaten with subtle tasting ingredients such as lemon, butter and light herbs.

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  27. Foods look so delicious. Yummy!, I should try this. ;)

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