Thursday, January 5, 2012

Living Food & After Ate


A study in contrasts: two eateries opened this week on Jalan Tun Razak _ just a 15-minute walk from each other but offering food on opposite ends of the gastronomic spectrum.


First up, Living Food at Menara Tan & Tan. Despite its simple, somewhat sterile look, this cafe feels like one of KL's most innovative purveyors of health food, using intriguing ingredients to construct recipes that placate the palate & boost the body.


Noodles? Nope, it's zucchini, sliced into slivers & slathered with three spectacular sauces _ cashew, sun-dried tomato & tahini. Creamy yet springy, with tasting notes that somersault between pasty-nutty & salty-tangy, this vegetable is very rarely so enjoyable.


Move over, meat burgers; Living Food's signature patties of dehydrated mushrooms & seeds, sandwiched in tomatoes, guacamole & sprouts, are a herbivore's fantasy come true, fertile with feisty, force-of-nature flavors.


The cafe's business hours (8am-6pm weekdays & 10am-3pm Saturdays) make it tough for many to eat here, but takeaways are an option. Sealed in a paper bag, this Japanese-inspired salad of cabbage, cucumber, tomatoes, carrots & seaweed with wasabi tamari dressing no longer looks appetizing after some time, but it still tastes more wholesome than KFC's coleslaw.


Next, After Ate at The Intermark. The status update hit like a sugar rush _ at 5:34pm Tuesday, The BIG Group announced to its 2,000-plus Facebook followers that it had opened a "dessert lounge where sweet dreams come true."


The word spread faster than ants attack a picnic: After Ate _ which replaces T Forty Two at the Intermark stable of Tate & Estate _ is branded as a "playground for the ladies," promising the fairer sex that they can sip bubbly here while savoring saccharine sensations.


The most devilish of desserts: inspired by Snickers, the list of components on this plate speaks sinfully for itself. Gooey caramel mousse. Salted peanuts. Peanut chocolate cracker. And oh yeah, BIG's own milk chocolate ice cream. Heck, it's better than a Snickers bar.


Meringue chunks, fruits, fresh cream & orange jelly, with a quenelle of raspberry sorbet. Would work wonderfully with champagne, but After Ate currently serves bubbly only by the bottle. And since this was lunch, we were forced to resist the promotion of two bottles of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin for RM380++.


Wrapping up with nutrition-packed smoothies at Living Food _ thicker than anticipated & nowhere as disgusting as they sound. On the left: a blend of dragon fruit, banana, purple cabbage & chia; on the right: leafy greens, orange, pineapple, ginger & lemon.


There's more to come: both Living Food & After Ate will have new neighbors within weeks. At Menara Tan & Tan, Antipodean from Bangsar is launching a branch here soon (coffee!). And at The Intermark, expect The BIG Group to establish EST _ potentially a meat-lovers' paradise _ after the Lunar New Year.

Living Food Bistro Cafe,
Menara Tan & Tan, Jalan Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2181-2778

After Ate @ The Intermark,
Jalan Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2161-4160
Check out EAT DRINK, a new F&B website jointly run by The Expat Group (TEG) & Eat Drink KL. This website features all of our up-to-date reviews, plus exclusive weekly articles & a searchable database on restaurants in KL & Selangor: EatDrink.my

34 comments:

  1. Zucchini...sliced...awesome sauces...I m so gonna visit Living Food :D

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  2. OMG!! this post is good; a combi of healthy living followed by very unhealthy living! LOL
    the desserts is positively sinful!!

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  3. Looks like there's no stopping the BiG people in 2012 either? Their expansion seems to have no limits. We are so getting our hands on that Snickers bar though.. =D

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  4. Living Food Bistro looks like another brilliant lunch option since we head in for meetings there rather often. Something healthy!

    T Forty 2 was good. Was just telling my friends that I would be back there when I visit his shop at The Intermark.

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  5. Oooh,ooh ooh! I'm torn between the two places -which to visit first or just do both on the same day? Health food yippee! Desserts yippee! Both walking distance from home, double woo hoo!
    By the way, visited Antipodean last week, liked their coffee, good range for the breakfast menu, but nothing we ate really wowed us. Do you have any suggestions for what to try?

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  6. Hmm. If After Ate is meant to be a "playground for the ladies", dare I ask if you were their playmate or their plaything when you were there? Hehe.

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  7. I saw peanut!
    Gooey caramel mousse, salted peanuts, peanut chocolate cracker and ice cream...
    Sound so yummy, I want to try!

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  8. What's with the umbrellas at After Ate?

    Btw I love zucchini, it's a great vegetable to cook with pasta!

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  9. OMG! The second place After Ate looks so cool with all the elegant looking seats. Looks like anyone who enters the area of the restaurant can say hey I'm pretty cool 'cause I'm about to enjoy my lunch here ;))

    Btw, I hope the burgers are cheap 'cause they look tiny :-S

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  10. Oh yes, and, I want that strawberry fruity thingy. I wouldnt mind to gain weights on that thing every night after my dinner ;))

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  11. I would love to come to after ate. :) It's just so melburnian!!!

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  12. Ulric: oh yeah, i almost forgot that you've mentioned before that you're a major fan of zucchini! :D
    Thenomadgourmand: heheh, the sinful desserts completely destroyed the health benefits of all the salads & zucchini & mushrooms! =)

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  13. Dropsofcontentment: yeah, it looks like there'll another three or so BIG outlets in the next couple of months, and that should be it for now :D
    Missyblurkit: oh yeah, living food seems to get a strong lunch crowd. nearly 10 groups walked in within less than an hour! :D

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  14. The Yum List: wow, you live in a great, convenient location! i wanna be your neighbor! :D gosh, it's actually been too long since my last trip to antipodean, but i remember they had a nice corn-&-pumpkin fritter, and their breakfast platter with pork bacon was nicely done =)
    Kenny: eeeeks, you're playing with fire by asking a curiosity-killed-the-cat question like that! :D

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  15. CK: if you like peanuts, you'll love that dessert, almost guaranteed! =)
    Baby Sumo: yaaa, the umbrellas are a strange & quirky touch, considering the outlet is in the air-conditioned indoors! i've never really liked zucchini, but i guess i should try more of it! :D

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  16. Rad: heheh, i guess After Ate is intended to attract ladies for leisurely lunches, high tea & dinner :D the burgers were, ermm, well, a bit pricier than McDonald's Big Mac :D hmmmm, if you must gain weight, then i'd recommend a chocolate dessert! =)
    Michelle: hope you manage to check it out! it's just a two-minute drive away from Acme Bar & Coffee (ABC) at the Troika! :D

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  17. I actually like the look of the burger for the tomatoes instead of the typical bread. I enjoy salad so much. One that comes with some bits of meat.

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  18. haha it's rather funny to be sitting under the umbrellas indoor

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  19. Rad: oh ya, i guess it's good to have salads or some sort of fresh veggies in every meal =)
    Eiling: ya, though i wonder, isn't it bad luck to open an umbrella indoors. heheh :D

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  20. What an awesome way to end that healthy lunch!!! Hehe Snickers are my favourite chocolate bar!!! That would be like pure bliss!!!!

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  21. Rad: eek, that sounds wrong! :D
    Vien: oooh, i prefer Mars to Snickers actually! the nougat-caramel-chocolate combo in every Mars Bar satisfies me better than Snickers =)

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  22. I noticed you didn't really answer my question... :P

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  23. Kenny: we're all becoming anwar ibrahim! :D

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  24. oOOoohhh Mars' good too!! but eating Mars makes me wonder how deep-fried Mars would taste like....

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  25. Vien: the deep-fried mars bars that i've tried haven't really hit the spot for me. i prefer 'em straight out of the packet, without any heavy, greasy batter to distract me. though i do like mars ice cream! :D

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  26. HAHA thanks for the heads up! Now I'm not that keen on trying one!! but I'd definitely go for the Mars ice cream! :D

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  27. Vien: heh, i think I spotted tubs of Mars ice cream at Ben's independent grocer :D

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  28. That zucchini dish looks intriguing! Almost makes me want to invest in a vegee shredder.

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    1. Sorry Elaine here...

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    2. Elaine: heh, I actually have no idea what a veggie shredder looks like :D

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  29. Sean its a gadget like a mini machine turn, haha

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  30. btw, LivingFood dinner is on 3 days ago with a new dinner menu as opposed to lunch menu for dinner.

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  31. opening hours revised from 8am-6pm mon-sat and dinners 7-10pm thu-sat as 1st roll out

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