Friday, December 28, 2012

Bait @ Telawi, Bangsar

We've fallen hook, line & sinker for seafood specialist Bait, which surfaced this week in Telawi, becoming a big fish in Bangsar's pond of palate-pleasuring practitioners.

O Oysters, come & walk with us! With apologies to Lewis Carroll, we might not be walruses, but we're nonetheless infatuated with the briny brilliance of these freshly shucked Dutch Creuses & Northwestern Irish Pacific mollusks (RM8++ each, minimum order of six).

Seared tiger prawns, sliced mangoes & coriander leaves, a sweetly succulent salad (RM24++) that's far from shrimp-sized for flavor. We'd be delighted to discover prawns like these lurking behind every rock, no matter what their proverbial agenda might be.

We hesitated about ordering the soft-shell crab with cucumber, orange wedges & chili mayo (RM23++). But who knew a recipe that sounds so run-of-the-mill could taste so remarkable? Mighty meaty crustaceans, complemented creatively with citric pulpiness.

Happy as a clam: Steamed little-neck ones (RM16++) with bacon, garlic, thyme & white wine.

Deep-fried baby calamari with salted egg, black pepper & lime tarragon aioli (RM25+). Crisply addictive, but some Chinese eateries still do this better.

For beer buffs: Lager-steamed mussels with mustard, chorizo slices & oregano (RM25++).

Finally, we wade into fishier waters: thumbs up for the butter-poached salmon (RM30++), though  it might be an acquired taste, the aqua-equivalent of steak prepared rare.

Fish & chips (RM24++). Mixed emotions here; the beer-battered John Dory's brilliant, with fragrant steam flowing freely from the flaky fish as we crack open the crunchy exterior, but the shoestring fries leave about as much impression as an amoeba in a lake.

Not totally lovin' it: Pan-seared barramundi (RM30++), moisture-challenged, but it gets by with a little help from its friends: corn kernels, parsley mashed potatoes & baby carrots.

There might be plenty of fish in the sea, but Bait only offers four for now: this one might be the consensus favorite _ rock cod with sauteed button mushrooms, baby spinach, potato cubes & brown shrimp.

Peanut Butter Alert! Bait features no desserts, but customers can take a two-minute stroll to Milk And Butter, where the sweets list occupies a place of pride on the menu.
Main entry on Milk And Butter: December 26.

Peanut butter ice cream with chocolate waffle & bananas. We might not swim the deepest ocean for this, but we'd certainly attempt a not-too-shallow pool.

Back to Bait for booze: no fewer than five Campari-based cocktails & six Pimm's ones are available. Try the Old Pal (a pleasurably potent mix of Campari, Wild Turkey whiskey, vermouth) & Pimm's Deuce (Pimm's No. 1, orange juice, cranberry juice, orange wheel, strawberries).

Organic wine: Emiliana Sauvignon Blanc & Merlot, both Chilean. Wine addicts, note there's an impressive range here priced at below RM100 per bottle.

 Varieties by the glass cost RM20++. Bait must be run by folks who want wine to be affordable.

For lemon lovers: tangy house-made lemonade & sparkling San Pellegrino's Limonata.

Housekeeping notes: Bait currently opens only for dinner, but will serve lunch eventually. It replaces the now-closed Madam Kwan's, sandwiched between El Meson & The Smokehouse.

Bait is a smallish restaurant, so be wise & make reservations.

Last but not least: The black-attired service team here ranks among Bangsar's best. Thank you for taking the extra effort, in terms of smiles, attentiveness & genuine consideration.

Bait Restaurant @ Bangsar,
65, Jalan Telawi 3, Bangsar Baru, Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2201-8187
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

32 comments:

  1. Not my kind of bait!This place doesnt bait me! Ok i shall stop the bait jokes now :P

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    1. TNG: i think this place will appeal to customers looking for decent seafood at decent prices (none of the fish costs above RM34++). i hope it does well, i'll be rooting for it! :D

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  2. Soft-shell crab with cucumber, orange wedges & chili mayo...run-of-the-mill? I dun think so...lots of flavours tere...hehe :P

    The Pan-seared barramundi looks so colourful and fab!...hehe =)

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    1. Ulric: heh, ya, i guess you have a good point. individually, all those ingredients sound ordinary, but put them together, and it's super synergy :D ya, the barramundi was nicely presented, though i'm afraid my photos really don't do justice at all to the food here. difficult, partly cos the lighting's really dim, but i have to mention that the food here generally looks much nicer compared to what's depicted in these photos =)

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    2. Haha...dun worry abt the photos...they actually showed the colours and flavours nicely =)

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    3. Ulric: you're very kind, too kind, but thanks, heh :D

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    4. I spot a interesting mussels n chorizo soup...gonna try tat too...hehe =)

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    5. Ulric: Wah, don't strain your eyes to read the menu in the blurry photo lah :D

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    6. It's not so blurry if I can still read it lar...hehe :P

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    7. Ulric: ok I won't have to sharpen my photos next time, heh :D

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  3. Fishy and good! Can't wait to pop by over the weekend for some fishy goodness.

    Must say the idea of keeping wine affordable is certainly a great welcome! Cheers to that!

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    1. Missyblurkit: fishy fun! four types of fish is an solid beginning, and i hope they expand their repertoire in the months ahead. it'd be nice if they offer some unusual catch of the week, maybe :D and ya, i've been alarmed to see so many other outlets set their average wine prices this year to more than RM30 per glass, so the RM20++ at bait is definitely an inspiration i hope others will emulate somehow =)

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  4. Oysters? Eyewwwww....must tell you my "look terrible, smell terrible, feel wonderful" story one day. LOL!!! The rest look real good though. Hmmm...soft shell crab, I like - no need to bother about the shell. LOL!!!

    Brought a whole lot of chirozo home from NZ, yet to try any cooking with it - would probably be good with our imported frozen NZ mussels - may drown out the smell that puts me off. The mussels I had there were good, not so strong the smell, very nice and sweet.

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    1. Suituapui: haha, that sounds like a very interesting oyster story. I'm just glad I've never experienced any oyster poisoning before :D but yeah, the soft-shell crab here is excellent, not over-salted at all =) ya, mussels taste better abroad. Chorizo with mussels sound good, add some herbs and cook it in a white wine sauce maybe, heh :D

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  5. Last night we ordered 3 starters and some salads around 8pm when we saw you, but untill 9pm+ only half of these came out.... at the end we have to cancel the rest of the order as we were too hungry.
    But I agree with you about their service team is friendly and attentive. I think maybe they are still new, have to give them some time.

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    1. CK: eeks, that's quite disappointing. I had no problems with my food, everything came out of the kitchen quite fast, but maybe it's because the restaurant was still nearly empty when I arrived, but it became full at 8pm and everyone was ordering their food at the same time. But ya, I really enjoyed 80 percent of the food here, and I hope to return when they expand the menu =)

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  6. wow that oyster really look so juicy and fat....

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    1. Simple person: ya, I think if the oysters were cheaper, we might have ordered a dozen instead of just six, heheh :D

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  7. something not related to the food:

    jus curious, the environment of the restaurant is dark? coz i notice the photo u upload is quite noisy..

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    1. Burnett: you're right, my photos here do suffer from a lot of noise. ya, the ambiance here is dimly lit. it's nice, but tricky for my point-and-shoot. and i'm really not very good at photography anyway, heheh :D

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    2. nono... ur photos are great actually... and i m one of the fans of ur blog too... love ur blog so much as u update it quite frequent... totally a good place to search for nice restaurants and food... =)

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    3. Burnett: thanks for your kind words. am glad you enjoy reading this blog :D

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  8. Hahaha! I like your description for Peanut butter ice cream with chocolate waffle & bananas! I am salivating looking at the melting ice cream on chocolate waffle lar....

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    1. Melissa: thanks! yeah, it's an interesting change from the usual plain waffles with vanilla or chocolate ice cream. i'd recommend this one :D

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  9. what a seafood heaven! i agree that there are plenty of fishes in the sea, and i love almost all of them! be it cooked or swimming :P

    Latest: Thanks for being here in 2012!

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    1. Fish: heheh, yeah, fish can be a delicious alternative to chicken, duck and pork =)

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  10. Hey I passed Bait on Christmas Day and it was open in the afternoon! There was no one in there though and I thought it was an old restaurant..shows how long I haven't been trolling around Telawi streets! Must check this place out soonnnn..hehe

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    1. Drops of Contentment: ooh, I think they've been opening for drinks during the daytime for staff practice, but they should be serving lunches sometime next week onwards. This could definitely be a place to watch for 2013! :D

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  11. you can enjoy Cielo Dolci gelati for dessert at BAIT :)

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    1. Cielo Dolci: wow, that's fantastic news! will definitely be having some gelati during my next visit here :D

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  12. Unfortunately my family and I did not have a good experience here. I wouldn't call it decent seafood at all. 3 mains and 1 appetizer was fail town.

    1) Fried calamari batter was all we could taste and hardly a bite of squid meat.
    2) Fish & chips had soggy batter and the fish inside was slimy and falling apart.
    3) Larger mussels were fishy and x2 had sand in it and last but not least
    4) the seafood chowder was fishy tasting as well.

    Pity cause I was all hyped to eat there. I hope it improves soon.

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  13. Is this place halal?

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