Bistro a Table's degustation dinner for March: "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland," luring us down a rabbit hole of crazy creations spawned by Mad Hatter Isadora Chai's imagination.
The Walrus might be pleased with this meal's first chapter: Irish oysters (two per customer), soaked in a delicious champagne dressing. No trotting home now; the evening has only begun.
Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum. Bistro's fans would be familiar with the restaurant's signature coddled maple syrup egg, but this platter adds another egg, delicately sprinkled with salmon. Double the albumin, double the delight!
Eat Me: Parmesan & sage choux puffs. While these might not cause us to suddenly sprout to ceiling-height, munching on too many would surely spark some growth in girth.
Frog Footman: fried frog leg with cold rouille. Enjoyably crisp outside, meaty & juicy within; this vanished from our plate faster than you could say "Cheshire Cat."
Testicle alert! The menu describes "Hold Your Tongue" as duck tongue with veal sweetbread in creamy Cognac veloute. But a surprise ingredient awaits in the bowl: confit of chicken testicle, boasting an buttery explosiveness reminiscent of pork brains or cod milt.
Queen of Hearts: quail with lychee puree & rose water. A playful, fruity-flowery formulation for a bird that's often simply sauteed or roasted without much thought or effort.
Drink Me: Besodevino Rosado Rose, 2009.
The most indelibly presented course: The Smoking Caterpillar.
Lift the lid & let the smoke clear to reveal what lies beneath.
Duck "saucisson" cured sausage, wrapped in baby Savoy cabbage to resemble a caterpillar, perched on a Portobello mushroom in Pinot Noir jus. Lovely to both look at & eat.
The March Hare: a roulade of rabbit saddle with mushrooms. Earthy & tender.
Finishing this filling feast with the Mad Hatter's Tea Party, featuring a lemon & mascarpone cheese cupcake, Earl Grey Tea ice cream & lavender tea madeleine ...
... as well as concentrated milk ice cream & a brownie. We're stuffed!
Who Stole The Tarts: Valrhona Guanaja bitter choc ganache in thyme tart with Kahlua anglaise. Overheard at Bistro a Table: "If I could have this tart every night, I wouldn't need sex."
Through the drinking glass & back: six of the courses are paired with wine.
Bistro a Table,
Section 17, Petaling Jaya.