Eat Drink KL: Kompassion II @ Taman Tun Dr Ismail

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Kompassion II @ Taman Tun Dr Ismail

The sequel is as strong & satisfying as the original: Kompassion's second outpost is a serene suburban space suffused with charm & character - chef Nikom 'Kom' Uatthong has not only authored a fresh repertoire marked by a playful remodelling of Thai fare, he's also drawn up the distinctive decor for this boundary-pushing restaurant, stowed away on a TTDI backstreet.

Start with the pucuk paku salad (RM20) - beautifully tender vegetables, blanched instead of fried, served with slices of young coconut, kerisik & plenty of herbs & other accompaniments, a pleasurably nuanced, painstakingly elaborate recipe that succeeds on every score. Note that unlike the first Kompassion in Damansara Kim, Kompassion II is a no-pork outlet, catering to this neighbourhood's dominant clientele. But the loss of the hog isn't an issue, since there's still so much to sample on the menu; faced with a chicken-or-egg dilemma, it's fair to order both - tandoori-style, lemongrass-laced chicken satay (RM17.90) & a thick omelette tinged with oysters (RM30).

Kompassion's Thai curries go beyond the norm; our absolute favourite is the lobster & avocado green curry (RM50) - a heap of fresh-tasting crustacean flesh, coupled with lots of soft, ripe avocado & various vegetables in a curry that's creamy & not too fiery, enabling the flavours of the lobster & avocado to take centre stage. Mix everything up, & the textures are totally gorgeous - a dish we'd happily have again & again. Caveat: Some of these recipes may take extra time to prepare; patience is a virtue.

The lamb shank hang laey curry is ideal for customers who like rich & robust concoctions - double-cooked, fall-off-the-bone meat in a savoury northern Thai curry, teamed up again with avocado cubes (yay!) & lychee (RM50). For red meat devotees, there's also a succulent grilled beef panang curry, terrifically layered & balanced with dragonfruit & other tropical fruits (RM50). Enjoy with Kompassion's marvellous mixed sticky rice, a repudiation of run-of-the-mill steamed white rice.

If you'd like a complete meal on a single plate, Kompassion II's nasi campur special is a triumph - a fulfilling compilation of rice with assorted curries, tom yam, an egg, fried fare & veggies for only RM18.90. Two light eaters could share this this for lunch.

Desserts & drinks also display shots of extra imagination - mango sticky rice with pandan gelato, red rubies & jackfruit with coconut gelato & cheesecake with coconut, & cendol (RM10 each), washed down with slow-juiced green mango & passionfruit (RM15; tangy!), lemongrass pandan sparkling (RM10; a nice one if you want something wholesome), a coconut smoothie (RM15; love the topping of attap chee), mango yoghurt smoothie (RM15) & blue flower sparkling (RM10). All in all, this second venue staunchly reinforces Kompassion as one of our favourite Thai fusion brands; thanks to the team here for having us.

Kompassion II TTDI
15, Lorong Datuk Sulaiman 7, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Kuala Lumpur. 
Tues-Sun, 1130am-230pm; 6pm-1030pm. Tel: 03-7731-7016

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