Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Kitchen Table Restaurant & Bakery @ Damansara Kim, Petaling Jaya

One of 2014's most heralded openings, The Kitchen Table signals the next step in the evolution of the Klang Valley's Darwinian F&B scene, spearheaded by two partners who may become poster children for the future of Malaysia's restaurant entrepreneurs.


The Kitchen Table is a name that's already synonymous with Marcus & Mei Wan, thanks to home-based supper-club sessions that they've hosted this past year. Their full-fledged casual outlet stirred to life this week in a low-key fashion on a peaceful PJ shop-house street that's set to soon explode with cafes.


The Kitchen Table stands out with its clean, bright-white facade & interior, plus its handsome wooden furnishing, simple but strikingly fitting. Mornings are chirpy affairs here; for now, come at 10 a.m. & sweeten the start of your day with fresh cakes & cookies, beamed out by pastry perfectionist Mei Wan & her team of local talents.

From fudgy brownies (RM7.50) that live up to their promise of being densely, richly creamy to raspberry-coconut 'crack slices' (RM7.50) that pack a zippy-zesty punch, banana to lemon drizzle tin cakes (RM6.50 per slice), these desserts are not only easy to like _ they're difficult not to love.


The Kitchen Table is a reflection of how _ for now _ the trailblazers for Malaysian eateries nearly all left the country for at least a little while, experienced how diverse & dazzling the most beloved restaurants can be, & came back with sparks of inspiration to create a slice of that culinary magic here at home. With Marcus & Mei Wan, their confidence stems from F&B stints in Toronto & the UK respectively.


Mei Wan has a reputation for being a cookie monster; it's no shock her chocolate chip creations, simultaneously soft & chewy, are a treat that any Muppet, blue-furred or not, would want. RM3.90 per piece.


Carrot-pineapple cake (RM12.90). Sunday brunches will also be available soon; queues could form for The Kitchen Table's buttermilk pancakes with cornflakes, macerated strawberries & gula melaka syrup.

At noon, Phillip Phillips & The Lumineers take command of the speakers, curious customers from around this neighbourhood of homes start streaming in & the kitchen kicks into a higher gear, finally serving hot lunches.

Tender pulled pork with crunchy carrot-beet slaw, salsa & sourdough (RM12.50). The Kitchen Table's recipes straddle the line _ with minimal fuss, no pretensions & a comforting sense of effortlessness _ between rustic & refined.

Piping-hot, pleasurably thick potato-leek soup with toasted sourdough. RM9.


Made with 200-year-old leaven, mother dough that Marcus & Mei Wan inherited from Finnish bakers.


Coffee (Sumatran Mandheling). The Kitchen Table hasn't secured its liquor license; corkage is currently RM35 per bottle.


Pukka organic herbal tea; Marcus recommends 'Cleanse,' a combo of nettle, fennel & peppermint. Marcus, Mei Wan & their affable team are completely hands-on on the front lines of The Kitchen Table, so it's easy to imagine that some customers here will leave feeling like they've made new friends among the proprietors.


More elaborate fare focused on domestic produce is offered only for dinner (think red snapper ceviche with calamansi vinaigrette, or slow-cooked pork belly with apple reduction & watercress, or buckwheat fried chicken with thai basil crisps & garlic ponzu). If we can get a table at The Kitchen Table, we'll be there.
June 5 Update: Here's our review of The Kitchen Table's dinner menu this week.


The Kitchen Table Restaurant & Bakery
23, Jalan SS20/11, Damansara Kim, Petaling Jaya
Open 10am-1030pm (with 530pm-630pm break). Closed Mondays


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22 comments:

  1. Love the looks of the potato-leek soup...will wait a short while before visiting =)

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    1. Ulric: yeah, so far the menu is still relatively limited ... they seem to be getting a feel of how much they're able to serve right now ... should be fully up and roaring by the end of the month, hopefully :)

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  2. Ahh... sourdough! That's one good reason to visit already!

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    1. Ken: yeah, the kitchen table takes a ton of pride in its bread :)

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  3. I really like the decor, (well, the light fixtures in the first photo kind of look like upside down funnels). LOL! The tea looks and sounds great, and I love potato-leek soup!

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    1. Linda: that's a fun observation about the lights! :D the tea was pretty distinctive, and we lapped up every last drop of that potato-leek soup :)

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  4. Lovely place and it's a stonethrow away from me - perfect :-D

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    1. Pureglutton: yay, i think you'd be able to have quite an enjoyable lunch or dinner here :)

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  5. I like this place, simple, bright, clean and with a lot of sunlight. The food looks good too.

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    1. CK: ya, i think your food photography would be quite beautiful here. and your description of this place and its food is totally accurate, heheh :)

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  6. I like the ambience of the cafe, and I noticed that the pendant lamps are all from Ikea ;p

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    1. 比比: very calming space ... heheh, i don't know about the lights though :D

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  7. Good tea, good cakes, good bread...the power of three!

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    1. YouHadYourLunch: a triumphant triumvirate! :D

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  8. I love how everybody looks so neat and clean. You should see me when I'm cooking - not a pleasant sight. Hehehehehehe!!!!

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    1. Suituapui: heheh, a messy chef can have his/her own virtues too! :D

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  9. Oooo thanks for sharing this, I have been following them on Instagram and am really keen to go try their place out! :D

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    1. Baby Sumo: this does feel like a family-friendly place, so i think you'd have a very nice outing here! :D

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  10. Ohh... looks like the lunch menu plus the cakes agrees with me more :P

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    1. Rebecca: definitely a few interesting cakes here for you to check out! :)

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  11. My brother is working as a part-time waiter there! The food looks amazing and apparently the sourdough from the bakery got sold out in 3 hours from opening. The owners are super nice too. Wow!! :)

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    1. Chiqess: your brother's part of a terrific team, ya! :D and gosh, sounds like they need to bake more sourdough everyday! :D

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