Thursday, January 28, 2016

Barat Vegetarian Restaurant @ Lorong Kurau, Bangsar

Into the West: Barat is a vegetarian restaurant that everyone can explore, whether you're herbivorous or not. Its irrepressibly friendly founders Meeta & Prabodh Sheth have nurtured a loyal following over the past two years with their first outlet, the casual Gujarati vegetarian joint Ganga, & they've clearly poured plenty of heart into their new effort too (Ganga & Barat are now neighbours on Bangsar's Lorong Kurau). Like Ganga, Barat is intentionally economical, belying its look as an upmarket venue - this is a beautiful establishment with compelling flourishes, including a mural by Indonesian illustrator Ines Katamso. But its cuisine leans in a different direction (the clue rests in the name Barat), looking to the Mediterranean for inspiration.

If you're visiting this week, Barat is exclusively serving a tasting menu that exceeds 10 courses, likely lasting more than two hours - the kicker is it costs only RM30 nett per person. Barat is blessed with an intelligent chef, Lingesh, who weaves both the fascinating & the familiar into his repertoire. Barat is still fine-tuning its selection - there were both hits & misses for us; we enjoyed the opening salvo of pumpkin soup tinged with the heat of ginger. The fried mandarin orange segments were fun, served warm, perhaps the citrus equivalent of pisang goreng, paired with with currants, rocket leaves & a sesame dressing that may not have been the perfect match for this ensemble. The watermelon gazpacho was a shot of pure perkiness, & the fried cheese with spiced jam seemed an easy crowd-pleaser, but our favourite was the couscous laced with a ravishingly nuanced curry, coupled with glazed baby carrots, grilled asparagus & pomegranate dressing. The caveat: There was an inconsistency in how this was served - for one of us, the couscous emerged comfortingly warm; for the other, completely cold.

 Barat's grilled peppers stuffed with cheese & roasted plum tomatoes packed with prunes in herb oil prove that vegetarian fare can yield robust, punchy dynamics. We'd probably skip the patatas bravas though (the potatoes evoked mass-produced slices of fried wedges that you might find at a lesser mall outlet, partnered with tomato sauce that was somewhat textured but a bit too heavily salted). The pastas were a mixed bag - the aglio olio was under-seasoned, relying on the mushrooms, zucchini & grilled lemons for flavour; the pistachio carbonara with sun-dried tomatoes showed more promise, with a light nuttiness adding a mild extra dimension to the sauce, while the tomatoes provided bursts of chewy savouriness. Barat's sweeter offerings might nonetheless help customers leave relatively contented - the endives with berries should satiate fruit devotees, while a concluding trio of a house-made chocolate brownie, ice cream & peach in brandy proves uniformly pleasurable. Many of these recipes are expected to make it on Barat's a la carte menu, which should be unveiled within a week or two.

A bar upstairs should be ready soon too - it looks set to be a lovely space to linger over vegetarian tapas & wine. 

Barat Vegetarian Restaurant
19 Lorong Kurau, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. 
Currently open for dinner only; will commence lunch service soon. Closed Sundays. Tel: 03-2284-2119


The Eat Drink KL mobile app is now available, connecting restaurants & customers to promote a positive spirit of community.
Every restaurant on this app rewards users with a 6 percent discount, instantly & conveniently, everyday, all day long. 
In return, users share photos of their experiences at these eateries, creating a new community of restaurant lovers.
For every transaction, at least RM0.20 will be channelled to a charity of the month.

Stay up to date: The Eat Drink KL newsletter is sent by email to subscribers every Monday; it's the Klang Valley's foremost weekly round-up of new restaurant openings, F&B promotions & other tasty tidbits.
Subscribe to Eat Drink KL Weekly for free via this following link: 
Note to subscribers on Gmail: The newsletter will be in the Promotions folder of your inbox.

Check out the latest edition of Eat Drink KL: 100 Favourites, with 100 recommended restaurants for Jan-Mar 2016. This eBook is available to read or download at this link: http://issuu.com/eatdrinkkl/docs/ebook

Buckle your seatbelts: Eat Drink KL is partnering with Uber to take restaurant lovers on new adventures across KL & Selangor!
If you haven't used Uber yet, it's time to begin! For new users, just follow the steps below to redeem free rides:
1. Download the Uber app from the App Store, Play Store or Windows Store - and register your Uber account.
2. Apply the code EATDRINKKL as your first promotional code & you'll receive 2 Free Rides worth RM30 each.
3. Request a ride through the app and ride for free to any destination (with two ride values of up to RM30 each).
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

16 comments:

  1. It is a beautiful, bright and airy, cozy setting for a nice meal! The presentations are quite attractive and I love the ambiance!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Linda: agreed on all your great observations :)

      Delete
  2. Temperature of dish is like how vegetarian is being treated in this world, sometimes warm, sometimes cold. kan?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. KY: haha, that reminds of me of katy perry's song, hot n cold :D

      Delete
  3. We have a couple of vegetarian joints here but they all serve Chinese, no western. Never tried but I hear it is nice, just a bit more expensive than the regulars.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Suituapui: yeah, vegetarian cuisine can be pricier than meat in some cases ... and you're right, it's not often we find a western-cuisine vegetarian outlet in m'sia :)

      Delete
  4. I'm not a big fan of vegetarian food. But this place look lovely & the dishes look pretty too. :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. CK: yeah, i usually need some meat in my meal too ... but for this dinner, we were satisfied even without any meat, heheh. ya, the place and the food are very pretty :)

      Delete
  5. Yay, I'm always excited to see a new vegetarian concept. Must check this one out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Yum List: yeah, i love restaurants that try to find a unique niche for themselves! hope you enjoy Barat! :)

      Delete
  6. Can't wait...this wld be a change for many vegetarians wishing to experience a difference!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Purple Yogi: i hope you like the experience! it'll be fun to watch this outlet evolve in the months to come :)

      Delete
  7. I am so excited.No more being treated like a cow or fed disguised tofu.I may be vegetarian but I have tastebuds too!And they came back to life tonight at Barat.I am rather particular about combining flavours but every dish I tasted was a surprise symphony-Everything was pleasantly familiar yet excitingly new!Kudos to chef Lingesh and his creative culinary skills.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Vicky: really glad to hear you enjoyed your dinner at Barat, and i love your description of the meal. i'm sure chef lingesh appreciates your positive sentiments :)

      Delete
  8. I was there last night and enjoyed every bit of the dining experience. Truly a must try.. Great job team Barat!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. eNeeshia: kudos to Barat for satisfying its customers :)

      Delete