Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Greyhound Cafe Malaysia @ Bukit Bintang

Malaysia's first offshoot of Thailand's Greyhound Cafe is open, bringing one of Bangkok's best-known F&B brands to Kuala Lumpur. If you've enjoyed your experiences at Greyhound in Siam Center, Emporium & elsewhere, it may be worth visiting Greyhound KL to see if the spirit of exuberant, trend-setting gastronomy can be captured in shopping-consumed Bukit Bintang.

Some signature starters have been successfully transplanted here; the fried mini chicken wings (RM18++) remain as devilishly moreish as ever, while the salmon sashimi (RM22++) will be wiped clean in no time - the secret for both rests in the sauce: an umami-rich fish sauce marinade for the former, a spicy-savoury, textured dressing for the latter, each infused with Indochinese flavours. But a crucial concession has been made: Greyhound KL's a no-pork restaurant, so a piece of the renowned Complicated Noodles (RM18++) is lost in translation - customers still assemble this recipe themselves, topping lettuce leaves with soft noodle sheets, chilli sauce & coriander leaves, but the meatiest component of minced pork is substituted with chicken.

The menu abounds with hit-&-miss elements - the stir-fried spaghetti with Thai anchovies (RM24++) is pretty enjoyable, its intense brininess balanced with the heat of chilli oil & peppercorn. If you like rich & robust fare, the northern Thai khao soi (RM24++), featuring egg noodles & a chicken drumstick in a thick curry broth, partnered with crispy noodles & red onions, is an elaborate ensemble with full-bodied flavours that'll stick to your palate. But several other specialities seem hobbled by forcible flaws: The Weeping Tiger with spicy pesto (RM32++) is a visual triumph, but it's undone at first bite by excessively chewy slices of steak. The duck stew noodles (RM24++) also look glorious, but the whole leg meat - while tender & fleshy - borders on blandness, & the soup lacks genuine depth. The garlic fried rice is blanketed with plenty of crab meat (RM42++) as promised, but it's not particularly fragrant, & the crab is rather dry & one-dimensionally flat-tasting, neither succulent nor sweet.

 Skip dessert for now; the kitchen needs to fine-tune its prep for the mango sticky rice (RM16++) & the coconut sago with water chestnuts (RM14++) - both were stodgy & desperately needed more moisture, unaided by coconut sorbet that broke apart into icy fragments when pierced by a fork. The Yok Lor berry & Nom Yen tea granitas (RM14++) perform better, with more distinctive flavours, though they might get cloying halfway through. Service is efficient & accommodating - no mean feat, since this is one of the rare restaurants where the entire service team looks like they fervently wish they were somewhere else.

Greyhound Cafe Malaysia
Ansa Kuala Lumpur, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur. Daily, 11am-11pm


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21 comments:

  1. Hmmm will visit some time later after they fix the dessert, I love mango sticky rice, hehehe. Oh and I like their plates, so pretty! :D

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    1. CK: heheh, yeah, i like the presentation of the mango sticky rice, layered in the glass. and yup, the glasses are well-designed ;)

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  2. Thai, eh? Ok, I'm in. Looks like a rather formal place though, I see men in suits. Name reminds me of the buses in the States. :D

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    1. Suituapui: oh yes, the main maitre d' or manager guy was in formal wear - adding to a sense of professionalism, i guess ;)

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  3. Thanks for the heads up on the Mango Sticky Rice.. it would have been my first order.

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    1. The Yum List: mango sticky rice is generally a total crowd-pleaser! :)

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  4. Have walked past it a few times now but it was closed. Think this will be prove to be a popular spot amongst youngsters.

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    1. Baby Sumo: especially the ones who've been on holiday in bangkok and have enjoyed greyhound there! :)

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  5. No pork?!!! How can a restaurant brand from Bangkok serve no pork! LOL

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    1. Choi Yen: i think they kinda had no choice because they decided to locate the cafe adjacent to/part of the new ansa boutique hotel, so they probably want it to be the go-to place for all hotel guests as well :)

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  6. Shame about it being a hit & miss cos from photos all the dishes look great!

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    1. Shane: the meal actually started out really well - the first three dishes we had - the chicken wings, the salmon sashimi and the stir-fried spaghetti - were all pretty satisfactory :)

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  7. Not ready then don't rush it. Disappointed!

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  8. Not ready then don't rush it. Disappointed!

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  9. But the service for this outlet in KL, totally fail.

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  10. is it halal for the meat and chicken?

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  11. is it halal for the meat and chicken?

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  12. Food - small portion, so-so, slightly overpriced.

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  13. I was actually quite disappointed after trying their corned beef Spaghetti,one of their must-try specialties, I think?; the pasta was fine but the corned beef was seriously super-salty. I have always had this dish whenever I visit Siam Center in Bangkok as it has always been tastefully unique and flavorful as usual. I'm not sure what cooking standards they set for the Thai food in KL or I was just plainly unlucky, but this little detail just put me off to ever wanna try corned beef spaghetti again in that same restaurant. If I'm feeling this way, so would other costumers. BUT, the rest of the other dishes were super great, such as the fried chicken, the coconut crepe cake and all the different kinds of spicy Thai soup. Overall, I would still go there for their food (and also try out the others)despite the 'unfortunate' experience.

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