Thursday, March 8, 2012

Espressolab & Ettora

From Coffee Chemistry Cafe to Coffee In Love, Antipodean to The Red Beanbag, Real & Wholesome to Artisan Roast, we've encountered cascades of enjoyable coffee in the past year, but none blew our minds until we had Espresslab's.

No food is served; roasted-bean prodigy JH Yee _ who won this year's Malaysian Barista Championship _ concentrates on brewing cups of caffeinated perfection.

If all lattes taste this way, we'd have 'em everyday. Deeply fragrant & flavorful, everything from the froth down to the smooth last slurp seems unimpeachable; even the temperature is terrific. We wonder when, where else & whether we'll ever have coffee this wonderful.

Espresso & hot choc. The beverage selection is limited (no icy drinks). But note: single-origin & house-blend whole beans are offered for sale, with prices starting from RM14 per 100 grams.

TWG tea, soothingly pleasurable. Espressolab opens 9:30am-6pm (closed Sundays).

Downstairs, a cafe called Ettora (not affiliated with Espressolab) sells cookies & chocolates that can be eaten at Espressolab, which generously allows customers to bring their own food.

Gift boxes at Ettora, probably too pricey for most of us; one even exceeds RM1,000.
Added April 21 for clarity: one of the boxes costs more than RM1,000 but the others cost less, starting at about RM150.

Melting Moments, White Chocolate Cranberry, Chocolate Chip Macadamia & Oat Almond _ mostly fresh & crisp, though we prefer our cookies creamier. Strangely, all six of these taste somewhat similar. Each cookie costs about three ringgit.

Belgian chocolates; the service team couldn't say what these flavors were. They look promising but fall short in cocoa decadence, tasting instead like supermarket-bought milk chocolate.

Fruit cakes & brownies are sometimes available. Ettora's business hours are nearly identical to Espressolab's, except it closes earlier on Saturdays.

My Espresso Lab Coffee Roaster,
D1-G4-6, Solaris Dutamas, Kuala Lumpur.

Ettora,
D1-G3-7, Solaris Dutamas, Kuala Lumpur.
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

40 comments:

  1. well it looks like malaysians have finally learn to enjoy good coffee, lets hope people realise that coffee in coffee bean and starbucks is not the real deal!

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    1. Joe: heh, but starbucks & coffee bean still won't be going away anytime soon. they're still the most powerful of the bunch :D

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  2. Wanted to try Espressolab couple of weeks ago. But it was close on Sunday. Will def give it a try again after your raving review.

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    1. Smitten By Food: ya, i guess their target market is the office crowd at solaris dutamas =)

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  3. Super likeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

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    1. AugustDiners: hope you enjoy the coffee! :D

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  4. We're not big coffee fans, but that hot chocolate looks wonderful! Seems like everything is in Solaris Dutamas / Publika these days..someone should organize a food tour there. =D

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    1. Drops of Contentment: the hot chocolate was interesting, though i prefer mine creamier & much more chocolatey :D oh yeah, a food crawl in publika would be fun. it could take up an entire day! :D

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  5. We were just saying that we want to visit Espressolab, and you blog about that today! :P

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    1. CK: yay, i have good timing! :D

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    2. You have sixth sense! (And a kiasu-nak-blog-dulu syndrome, hahaha.)

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    3. Kenny: aiya, espressolab has been in my draft folder since last week!

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  6. would be ideal if Espressolab does breakfast.. sigh...

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    1. Whoisnell: maybe someday! let's keep our fingers crossed =)

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    2. hi whoisnell, do like our page on facebook, and stay tuned for exciting announcements in the next month or 2...rolling out a couple of new outlets ;)

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  7. Okay... They should rename this place (Solaris Dutamas / Publika ) to The F&B Mall.

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    1. Chong: heh, and i think there are still more than 20 more F&B outlets that will open in the next few months. the risk is that it has already hit saturation point, i guess =)

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  8. Yay! Another reason to get back over to Solaris Dutamas! It's now on my weekend to drink list :-)

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    1. The Yum List: make sure it's a saturday, and not a sunday! :D

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  9. The latte really looks good! I think hubby would love it :)

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    1. Iamthewitch: heheh, i loved it, and i'm not even a lover of latte usually :D

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  10. i see the melbourne coffee culture spreading its fiery fingers to this land of teh ais and kopi o!

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    1. Michelle: heheh, by the end of the year, the coffee culture might be a full-blown craze! :D

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  11. Love the latte art! I'm glad more coffee places are popping up. Now it's easier to get a good cuppa. :)

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    1. Bangsar-Babe: oh yeah, i think i've drunk more coffee since the start of 2011 than i had in all my life before that! :D

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  12. Ok now I wanna have a cuppa. Love the beautiful art they do with the coffees. yummy

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    1. Eiling: yaaa, my hands wouldn't be steady enough to do coffee art! :D

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  13. Wow..better than Artisan Roast? Now this I must visit with my coffee friends!

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    1. TNG: oh yeah, i'd rate artisan an "A-", and espressolab an "A," definitely! :D

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  14. I was at Ettora some weeks back. Should have grabbed my coffee from EspressoLab. The teas at Ettora are delightful.

    Did you try the Food for Gods? Its a must have!

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    1. Missyblurkit: ooh, i didn't manage to try ettora's tea. and their food for gods wasn't available that day! looks like i should return for ettora's tea & fruitcake :D

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  15. hi sean, thanks for your glowing review on espressolab! i'm joshua, one of the partners in espressolab. do like us on facebook, as we regularly hold coffee appreciation classes. cheers!

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  16. Sean, I would like to know when were you at Ettora, and why the comparison between a gourmet gift shop and a coffee shop?

    What authority do you have and credentials on food?nDo you bake cookies?

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    1. Linda: i was at ettora on march 1. this isn't a comparison between ettora & espressolab; it's a description of what i ate, drank or purchased at both places in solaris dutamas that evening. and i don't bake cookies or have any formal credentials.

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    2. I was at Ettora recently and I find their cakes and cookies simply decadent.Most malaysians are not used to rich and buttery flavours..

      obviously you did not look at the whole range of gift boxes..i bought one for RM150

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    3. Mel: glad to hear you enjoyed ettora's food. apologies if my phrasing was unclear; one of the gift boxes cost more than RM1,000, but the others cost below that.

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    4. phwoar!!! i quote "what authority do you have and credentials..."
      sounds like angry owner/manager/worker there.
      bad knee-jerk response to your review.
      she'll rue the day she uttered the words....

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  17. By the way did you also say that the best italian is at the Frangipani? You must be paid for giving your reviews!

    there are much better italian restaurants out there...

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    1. Mel: no, if you mean Frangipani at changkat bukit bintang, it's not an italian restaurant. and no, unfortunately, i've never received any monetary benefit from these posts.

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