Sunday, October 21, 2018

OpenHouse, Suria KLCC

OpenHouse's elegance radiates through rooms brightened by a blend of classical Malaysian inspirations, such as Peranakan themes, with contemporary urbanity. But its true beauty rests in the work of chefs Huzaidi and Yusaini, who've scoured the country for recipes that reflect our roots, paying tribute to everything from pais to pongteh, serunding to sambal, from a modern vantage point that shines a light on what the future of local cuisine might look like.

Start with OpenHouse's reinterpretation of Sarawak's umai, which wraps lime-cured prawn ceviche toasted in calamansi juice with ginger flower, dried shrimp, cili padi and nuts in betel leaves for a burst of sprightly flavours in small mouthfuls (RM47), and the trio of rock melon, watermelon and honey dew balls, their vivaciously juicy sweetness punctuated by the punchy umami of prawn, chicken and beef serunding (RM28).

Local produce brings lively sparks to these offerings: Kemaman shoots furnish herbaceous notes for the turmeric-cured chicken thigh jeruk (RM39), a salsa of ciku fruit and kaffir lime paste adds uplift to the smoked duck breast in a creamy ingkung berlada sauce (RM55), and a medley of village greens, including pucuk gajus, banana hearts, ulam raja and cekur, makes for a marvellous salad with a peanut dressing (RM25).

Even rice and sambal are radically recast; you'll find no fewer than four different variations of rice - glutinous grains served in pitcher plants (RM29), brown in bamboo (RM13), lemongrass-laced (RM19) or steamed with garlic in banana leaves (RM9) - and most extraordinarily, five types of sambal (RM7 each), showcasing a spectrum of pleasurably pungent flavours and naturally earthy textures - kulat kukur (made with wild jungle black mushrooms), isi rong (with rubber seed kernels), tempoyak ikan bilis terung pipit (with fermented durian and baby aubergine), temu pauh (with mango ginger) and hitam kepayang (with black jungle nuts). Cocktails (mostly RM39) also comprise local touches, but to a lesser extent, with components like assam boi, pandan water and coconut milk.

OpenHouse
G48, Suria KLCC, Kuala Lumpur. Open for lunch and dinner. Tel: 03-2162-0888


This feature first appeared on eatdrinkkl.com

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11 comments:

  1. Obviously you do not get to eat free at this open house, eh? LOL!!! Opulence overload but the food is quite affordable - everything looks so good, sure would love to drop by and try. I want all seven sambals!!!

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    1. Suituapui: heheh, yeah, not quite the traditional celebratory open house custom practised here :) i couldn't decide between the sambals - so we had to order them all! :D

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  2. Hello. Was there last week. Had the lunch which was decent in terms of value but taste wise, a lit on the salty side. I guess since it is so new, just the usual teething issues. Big potential to do well but hopefully it taste as well as it looks :)

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    1. Belinda: ooo, i have a low tolerance for saltiness these days, but i found the food here to be seasoned all right for me. but hopefully they'll take your constructive feedback into account and figure out the right balance for customers! :)

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  3. Indeed a refreshing interpretation of local cuisine, I'd love to have that duck breast!

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    1. KY: the ciku salsa is what attracted me to the duck breast! :)

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  4. I love the decor! So elegant, so posh! The food is rather interesting too. I am quite drawn to the umai and salads.

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    1. Phong Hong: yeah, it looks like they've poured a lot into the interior design :) i've always like umai and wish we could find it more widely in kl - and also a fan of local ferns and always have an eye out for ulam! :D

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  5. Very posh and elegant setting indeed, even the nasi is nicely present in very unique way!

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    1. Choi Yen: yeah, great for patrons who like gobbling up grains! :)

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  6. Heard that the minimum bill needs to be 4k to dine here for a maximum pax of 15? Is that true? Or was it for that special Baba Nyonya room they have?

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