Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Cilantro @ MiCasa All Suite Hotel

For an entire generation of Malaysian restaurant devotees, Cilantro evokes memories of some of their best meals in KL, haunting its patrons' dreams with specialities like braised unagi with foie gras & roasted pigeon de Bresse with red wine reduction. The Grande Dame of august gastronomy is now poised for a renaissance, following a recent extensive refurbishment - the result is a refreshed look for 2017 & beyond, sleeker than ever before but still elegantly soothing & comfortable. With a terrific service crew firmly in place, this remains one of the city's worthiest choices for a top-flight feast.

Chef Takashi Kimura & his team continue to work their magic with food that's founded on French inspirations with a flourish of Asian inflections. Chef Takashi, a stalwart of KL's restaurant scene for more than a decade now, compelled us to indulge in Cilantro's weekly lunch, taking place every Friday afternoon. The lunch menu changes every week & can be glimpsed in advance at cilantrokl.com/menus - on this occasion, we kicked off with a gorgeous duet of sea urchin, stirringly luscious & sweetly briny, coupled with botan ebi that's blanketed with delicate consomme jelly in a creamy combination that brings a new perspective to savouring raw shrimp, illustrating Chef Takashi's mastery of reinterpreting ingredients in his signature styles.

Fine, fresh produce, woven together into a tapestry of temptations: There's a deceptive sense of effortlessness & delightful facade of simplicity in ensembles like this buckwheat tagliolini with scallop & endive. The creation looks tempting on the plate but tastes even more tantalising on the palate - perfectly al dente pasta that fills the mouth with flavour & texture, partnered with an irreproachably tender mollusc & a crisply nutty vegetable that merits a more prominent presence on Malaysian tables.


For the main course, the hakkaku sailfin poacher is a beautiful representative of Japanese fish, ideal at the tail end of winter; a true treat, paired in a basil mustard sauce with another delicacy, France's springtime offering of white asparagus from the sandy fields of southwest Landes. A marriage that gracefully unites the season's bounty from the Japanese sea & French soil.

The alternative main option also carried a clear allure - lamb that grazed on the Australian outback's Saltbush pastures, slow-roasted to sheer exquisiteness, with most of the flesh entrenched in succulence on the bone & some stuffed in a piquillo pepper for double the enjoyment. Lamb at its most satisfying, each bite conveying rich dimensions of unadulterated flavour.

Even dessert defies expectations - a warm chocolate cake with ice cream & Bentong ginger may sound nondescript on paper, but with every component so peerlessly prepared & playing pleasurably off each other, it's a sumptuous symphony to revel in. 

Cilantro is also open for dinner, Mondays through Saturdays, with a full a la carte menu. As part of the restaurant's renovation, the bar has also experienced a face-lift, & there's a private room beside the wine cellar, complete with a kitchen for customers to bring in their own personal chefs. We look forward to many more years of Cilantro; thanks to the team here for having us.


Cilantro Restaurant & Wine Bar,
MiCasa All Suite Hotel, 368-B, Jalan Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur.
Direct Line: +603-2179-8082 

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

8 comments:

  1. I am very impressed with the excellent food presentation and the chic decors! Your photography skills made them even cooler. I respect those menus that proudly displayed the Chef's names below that added a prestige status to the dishes served.

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    1. Twilight Man: the restaurant and chef take a lot of pride and pour a lot of passion into their work - they'll be glad to know that customers appreciate all that! :)

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  2. Hehe we love the truffle butter here! Such a delightful start to a meal. ;) Indeed one of the best fine dining restaurants in KL.

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    1. Baby Sumo: oh yes, i forgot to mention the truffle butter ... i guess it's something that some of us take for granted at cilantro, but you're right, it deserves attention! :)

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  3. Lovely place. Love the mirror ceiling.

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    1. Suituapui: yeah, that ceiling really makes for a remarkable centre-piece :)

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  4. Oh! Mirrors on the ceiling :) The food is so artfully plated that it would seem such a shame to eat it!

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    1. Phong Hong: heheh, we can look up at wave at ourselves :) and yeah, the dishes here are such a visual pleasure ;)

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