These local outlets are adding their own distinctive touch to the Malaysian dining scene
Gourmet To Go
Good coffee doesn’t have to be an expensive and long-drawn affair, as proven by the newly opened Gurume Café in Mont Kiara, Kuala Lumpur. The café’s simple interior and playful Manga-inspired motifs stem from its mission to make gourmet coffee approachable, fun and quick while keeping a perfectionist’s eye for brewing a good cuppa. The beans are a combination of medium-roast beans sourced from Ethiopia, Sumatra and South America –not too bitter and not too light. Customers also have a choice of fresh pastries to go with their beverage.
Expect a more exciting dining experience at Jala, at the Andaman Langkawi, as Executive Chef Fahdrul Malek presents familiar tastes in unfamiliar forms using haute cuisine cooking techniques. When dining at Jala, look out for interesting components such as curry foam and the flattened tiger prawn paper cooked sous vide. Dishes to order include Grilled Octopus with Madras Curry and Smoked Paprika Cream, Soy-Butter Poached Selat Cincin Grouper, and the wondrously presented Black Rainforest Raincake, reminiscent of mushrooms popping up after a rainfall in the tropics. The restaurant is also known as a sustainable seafood restaurant, the concept brought further by sourcing for ingredients locally, and thus supporting the surrounding communities.
Mr Chew has taken up residence in the heart of Bukit Bintang. Mr Chew’s Chino Latino Bar recently opened in a converted penthouse atop WOLO Hotel, serving delightful Asian fusion dishes in a decadent-yet-tastefully decorated dining space and drinking hole spanning several rooms over two floors. Inspired by founder Eddie Chew’s family recipes, the chefs have concocted a Chino Latino cuisine consisting of Asian dishes injected with South American personality, such as the Nori Taco with Sushi Rice; Catfish Char Siew and Som Tam Stuffed Deep Fried Buns; Barramundi with Spicy Tamarind Chilli Sauce, Coconut Cream and Pineapple, Avocado and Ginger Flower Salsa; Mr Chew’s Five Grains Fried Rice; Banana Burrito; and Dessert Tacos. Not feeling hungry? Stop by for a dessert degustation session consisting of six desserts paired with either wine or tea.
Party down with a view at Gravity, Penang’s hottest addition to the nightlife scene. Located on the 24th floor of G Hotel Kelawai, the rooftop bar offers a spectacular 360-degree panoramic view of the island while patrons enjoy a few drinks and bites from the kitchen, which offers more than the usual bar snacks. Among the highlights are the Satay Lilit Ayam, the Balinese-style grilled chicken on lemongrass skewers; spicy Volcano Prawns, served with spicy mango and pomegranate salsa; and Yakitori Chicken Meatball. If it’s a drink you’re after, order the Pomegranate Mojito, which is the bar’s own take on the mint-and-lime classic that includes pomegranate syrup, spiced rum and soda water.
Recently launched, Mercato Café and Oyster & Seafood Bar by Mercato at Pavilion Kuala Lumpur are two new eateries where shoppers can grab a bite after a mall marathon. The two are separated by a walk-way but food from either side can be ordered and eaten wherever you choose to sit. From the café, bite into the tuna steak, slow-roasted lamb or gorgeous meat platter, to be washed down with the Mercato signature hot chocolate or gourmet coffee. Meanwhile, the oyster and seafood bar menu offers oysters air-flown from various regions in France, cheese-baked oysters and mussel fries, optionally to be paired with craft beer from Australia and Ireland.