Chef Sergio E.V. hails from Sicily, but he has both Italian & Austrian blood coursing through his veins, making him a versatile figure who's capable of cooking up a cross-border storm at this new first-floor restaurant in Old Klang Road's NewCom building; the outlet is owned by a food-loving Malaysian couple who operate multiple European & Asian eateries in KL.
The Soprano's bursts with pride in its kitchen-made pastas, freshly baked bread, oven-hot pizzas & much more. The restaurant's name is meant to refer to the soaring-voiced singers, not the HBO mobster family - a slice of trivia highlighted by the spacious stage in this restaurant where live bands perform late on week-nights & open-mic karaoke amateurs on Sundays.
Thanks to The Soprano's for hosting this meal, which kicked off with an irreproachable bread basket, served with a spicy tomato dip that proved likeable to the last drop, lusciously textured & luxuriously tuned in its sweet-savoury dimensions.
Chef Sergio seems to be enthusiastic about his seafood; he took command to recommend what we should eat & rolled out a slew of oceanic recipes, from blue mussels sauteed in a creamy-tangy white wine & cherry tomato sauce (RM22 before taxes), served with dense farmer's bread laced with morsels of pork ham & boiled egg white to mop up the gravy ...
... to an icy 'Blue Marine' bouncy prawn cocktail in light Aurora sauce (RM24; the chef has a thing for cherry tomatoes too) ...
... to a seafood-splashed 'Mediterranea' pizza potently flavoured with tomato sauce, capers, black olives & oregano (RM30) ...
... & tender, parchment-prepared pasta with mixed seafood (more mussels & prawns, plus fish, calamari & clams), sauteed again in a cherry tomato sauce (RM30). Much of the flavours up to this point were variations on a tried-&-tested Italian theme.
Meat triumphantly takes over for the German portion of The Soprano's repertoire; we enjoyed the restaurant's rendition of 'schweinbraten.' showcasing succulent roast pork in a rich dark beer gravy, partnered with red cabbage & mashed potatoes (RM48). Fleshy & flavourful, this bodes very well for The Soprano's other German pork specialities, such as smoked loin chop, crackling roast belly & oven-baked ribs with maple glazing.
The Soprano's serves sausages galore; the garlic pork version partnered with sauerkraut proved plump & juicy but was perhaps too sodium-loaded for our preference. Steaks, lamb chops & spinach-stuffed chicken breast are also available.
It's not impossible to be a vegetarian at The Soprano's. The best bet: An indulgent saffron risotto, powerfully perfumed.
Desserts span several fan favourites, from vanilla & pistachio ice cream cassata cake with strawberry sauce, inspired by the chef's Sicilian roots, to traditionally familiar Italian choices of tiramisu & panna cotta. Maybe there'll be black forest cakes soon.
No lack of liquor - Chilean wine by the glass starts at a pleasant RM18 per glass; the classic cocktails are worthwhile too.
The Soprano's Italian-German Restaurant
1st Floor, NewCom Club Building, Batu 5, Old Klang Road, Kuala Lumpur. Sort of opposite Pearl Point Hotel.
Open daily, 12pm through late. Tel: 03-7972-8363
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