Eat Drink KL: June 2010

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Midori @ Putrajaya Marriott

Travelers trapped in Putrajaya's culinary wasteland might be tempted to surrender to despair. But several beacons of hope still burn bright here, including Midori.

Geoduck sashimi. A true treat, thanks to its fresh, springy texture.

Spider maki, that classic roll with soft-shell crab, avocado & tobiko. Ordinary-looking, but thoroughly addictive. The crunchy crab blended brilliantly with the creamy avocado.

Trio de oyster, prepared in three styles (all seemed like variations of cheese). We prefer our oysters raw, but if you must cook 'em, this is as good as it gets. Gooey and flavorful.

Salt-grilled blue-tailed prawns. Expertly prepared; despite its location in a landlocked capital, Midori seems to have found its forte in seafood.

Haku nama sake & Midori Yume (sake, malibu, melon liquor, pineapple juice).

Putrajaya Marriott.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Serai Empire @ Subang

Not a bad-looking place for a shopping mall outlet. The menu is a bit more creative than expected, with a few interesting twists to trite recipes.

Serai Platter: oily rice with oxtail asam pedas, honey-fried squid, ayam goreng rempah & acar. Everything on the plate was well-prepared and went nicely together, from the succulent oxtail & sweet squid to the crisp chicken & fragrant rice.

Sang Har Yin Yong (kuey teow & crispy bee hoon with freshwater prawns & veggies in egg broth). Respectable on its own merits, though not as lip-smacking as the sang har meen at Soo Kee, Grandmama's and all those other places. The portion was hearty enough for large appetites and the three prawns seemed fairly fresh.

Nutella "ravioli." A strange concoction. Basically fried sui kow filled with Nutella.

Pisang goreng with pandan-flavored batter. Couldn't taste the pandan, but these were nevertheless decent banana fritters. Crunchy outside, juicy within, without excess oil.

Frosty Tamarind (ice-blended beverage with tamarind pulp) & Sirap Selasih (rose syrup with basil seeds). Quirky flavors, but a bit too sweet.

Serai Empire,
Empire Shopping Gallery.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Prego Italian @ The Westin, Kuala Lumpur

Prego has upped its game, revamping its menu with thrilling recipes rarely found at KL's other Italian restaurants. We were bowled over by what we tried.

Wood-fired oven roasted figs with gorgonzola sauce. The whole figs were plump, juicy and nearly as sweet as peaches, while the cheese sauce added a savoriness that worked wonders.

Braised tripe with tomatoes, chili & pecorino. We're not typically fans of tripe, but the tangy tomatoes made it more than a mere mound of bland squishiness.

Salad of grilled ox tongue, gremolata & pecorino. The succulent, smoky tongue certainly beats out most beef recipes. All salads could use some meat in them.

Ravioli of roasted beetroot & ricotta with poppy seeds. Stuffed with creamy, mushy goodness. Also a nice change from the cliched meat/seafood/pumpkin stuffings for ravioli.

Bruschetta topped with San Marzano tomatoes, basil & garlic. Overflowing with toppings; if only all restaurants served bruschetta this way. Loved the tomatoes _ perfectly soft and ripe.

Potato gnocchi with basil pesto & cream of black cod. Oily, gooey comfort food; the pillowy gnocchi, combined with the not-too-fishy cream, scarcely required chewing.

Fish head braised with olives & tomatoes in Crazy Water (premium mineral water). Hearty salmon head, filled with chunky, tender flesh (and chewy, gelatinous eyes!).

Taleggio cheese risotto with rosemary-smoked trout & butter sauce. Sumptuously sinful. Amazingly, there's still more on the menu to beckon us back.

Click here for previous review of Prego (May 21).

The Westin Kuala Lumpur.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Shout Lounge @ Empire Hotel Subang

Floor-to-ceiling windows help to make this a fine-looking hotel lounge. Alas, the view opens up to Subang Parade, instead of a vibrant city skyline.

Without piped music or a live band, this is the calmest lounge possible.

They're still in their "dry run" testing stage, so there's no food yet, except for complimentary tidbits _ addictively crunchy nuts and anchovies.

Empire Punch (mango, orange, pineapple juices) & freshly squeezed orange juice. Why no alcohol? Because there's none on the menu either (for now).

Shout Lounge,
Empire Hotel Subang.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Bon Ton @ KLCC

Nestled in a discreet corner of Isetan KLCC on the supermarket floor, fairly hidden from prying eyes. The feng shui for this outlet can't be the best though; haven't three different cafes tried their luck here in the past five years?

Nyonya laksa, Bon Ton's longtime signature recipe. Imperfect (blame the bleak, bland noodles), but we still slurped the milky coconut curry to the last spoonful.

Pai tee. Not bad, but not as crisp and fresh as we like 'em. I've resigned myself to never again tasting pai tee that's as satisfying as the ones from my childhood.

Oven-baked chicken breast with shallot rice & mixed veggies. Fairly tender, soaked in a slightly spicy citrus-based sauce. But it won't stick in the memory for long.

Red apple sorbet. Nicely encased in a real hollowed-out apple.

Pineapple sorbet. Somewhat creamier than most sorbets, but every bit as refreshing.

Click here for review of Bon Ton @ Lot 10 (Jan. 21, 2009).

Bon Ton,
Suria KLCC.

Friday, June 25, 2010

China Wok @ Solaris

Those seeking average Chinese food at average prices should search no further.

Siew yuk. A tad too lean and dry to recommend.

Char siew. Also lacking in that melt-in-the-mouth sumptuousness.

Chicken rice. Fairly fragrant and fluffy rice, with tender meat.

Charcoal-roasted duck. Rather bony, but had a nice smokiness.

Chicken liver & gizzard. If you like offal, this won't seem awful.

Claypot assam curry fish head. Sufficiently flavorful and brimming with fresh ingredients, including meaty chunks of fish head. Thankfully, wasn't too spicy.

La-la in pepper soup. The clams were kinda puny and shriveled.

Lo Shu Fan. Greasy goodness. But two eggs would have been better than one.

Fish head noodles. Not bad, though not as milky and tasty as it could have been.

Homemade Lo Hon Kor and barley water.

China Wok,
Solaris Dutamas.
Tel: 6207-9598