|Grill 582, Best Western Premier Dua Sentral|
Grill 582, MIGF Menu 2014, Best Western Premier Dua Sentral
And… the MIGF menus continue…
What an exciting month to be in Kuala Lumpur! With the Malaysia International Gourmet Festival shining the spotlight on the elegant dining scene in the city, chefs from some of the best restaurants around are putting together culinary line-ups designed to delight and surprise both the mind and the mouth.
For the month of October, Chef Siti Arini Darsom, of Grill 582, has composed a six course festival menu, which she describes as celebrating simplicity and honesty in ingredients and their preparation. This is her second year participating, and our mouths are still water remembering the Chocolate Chili Chiboust served as dessert last year. We’re assured that this round will be another “scrumptiously satisfying” experience.
Both a full and a lighter menu are available, but of course we must do thorough research for our dear readers and partake in the whole nine yards.
|Punch Bar and Lounge|
A complimentary mocktail puts guests into a jolly mood on arrival. And, we’re informed that a 10% discount on any beverage when ordering the MIGF set is also applicable. If dining in a group of eight or more, a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine is provided. We arrive a few minutes early so make the most of Punch Bar & Lounge and make our arrival even jollier with a cocktail: the Blue Hawaiian featuring rum, blue Curacao, pineapple juice and coconut cream.
As we’re settling in soft spongy warm ciabatta rolls are served with a delicious dip. Roasted bell peppers, garlic and fennel are blended together with olive oil and balsamic vinegar producing a tasty beginning.
Cured Duck Breast with Asian Spices, Pomegranate Seeds, Micro Salad and Orange Dressing commences the line up. Presented on a glass plate it’s a pretty piece. Slices of duck lay across each other in a strip down the middle of the dish. Micro salad leaves and pomegranate seeds brighten the plate with both colour and crunch. A marmalade drizzle too provides vibrancy and a sparkle with its zest.
|Cured Duck Breast with Asian Spices, Pomegranate Seeds, Micro Salad and Orange Dressing|
A perky pairing is the 2011 Hugel Riesling from Alsace, France. It’s a lively drop that’s citrusy on the nose and dry in the mouth. It partners well with the salad, but I imagine seafood would also prove a worthy mate.
|2011 Hugel Riesling|
A steaming bowl of Seafood Bouillabaisse, Soba Noodles and “Brittany Blue” Lobster Sashimi confirms our belief that a thread of regional influence is intertwined throughout the menu. The broth is clear but flavourful with a dominance of black pepper. Bonito flakes supply a surprising mouthfeel, while the noodles contrast the texture. Seafood is fresh, but the coriander garnish seems to make it taste even more recently caught. Hubby is singing its praises, and I have to agree.
|Seafood Bouillabaisse, Soba Noodles and “Brittany Blue” Lobster Sashimi|
From Novarra, Spain a 2010 Bodegas Julian Chivite Fuedo Rosado accompanies the soup. Alluring floral aromas are found in the nosing, a blush pink in the glass and soft summer berries in the mouth. Light in alcohol content and medium bodied the wine is well suited to this seafood soup, but would also do nicely with other medium to light dishes such as vegetable pastas and risottos.
|2010 Bodegas Julian Chivite Fuedo Rosado|
Enamored by our first introduction to Chef Siti and her chili chocolate sorbet, (which was enjoyed so much by patrons that it was developed into a dessert), expectations are high for the palate cleanser. Granny Smith Granitas with Salted Plum does not disappoint. The coarse texture of the granita is interspersed with small pieces of dried tart fruit, awarding not only a job well accomplished, but a luscious in-between treat.
|Granny Smith Granitas with Salted Plum|
Australian Barramundi “In Duo Style” arrives Poached served with Tomato and Ginger Salsa, and also Pan Seared and befriended with Lemon Foam. It’s served on a giant round plate with a hypnotic spiral of balsamic circling the base. Crisp skin holds flaky white flesh and the citrus foam means no need for a wedge of lime. Atop the poached flesh is a garden fresh salsa that balances the fish wonderfully.
|Australian Barramundi “In Duo Style”|
The wine pairing takes us to Wairarapa, New Zealand with a 2011 Ohau Vineyards Ohau River Pinot Noir. Merry memories of campfires in the bush in the autumn are upon us with suggestions of smoke and spice on the nose. Stone fruits wiggle around the mouth and the ending is lengthy and very agreeable.
|2011 Ohau Vineyards Ohau River Pinot Noir|
Staying south with both wine and ingredients the second main serves a tender rack of Grilled Australian Short Rib “100 Days Grain Fed” with Smokey BBQ Sauce, Golden Chanterelle, and Horseradish Croquette. The flesh wavers like a fluffy pillow under my knife, and before my fork has reached my mouth, hubby interjects, “It’s a wow factor. Mmmm. Unbelievable. It’s been years since…, Oh my god it’s so beautiful. The tenderness. The flavour…” You get the picture. It’s not just good. It’s awesome. Sides too are perfect. Croquettes are potatoe-y and we don’t note the wasabi until the very end. Mushrooms and tomatoes are shriveled, concentrating their flavour, and the sauce is rich and in just the right amount.
|Australian Short Rib|
McLaren Vale’s 2010 D’Arenberg D’Arry Original (Shiraz and Grenache) brings out the smokiness in the sauce in the very first sip. It’s dark ruby in the glass with traces of cherry and cinnamon in the aromas. This late harvest wine is multi-layered with prunes, herbs and there’s even an earthiness present. I find some chewy tannins in the mouth, and decide this wine is great with red meat, but also easily drinkable on its own.
|McLaren Vale 2010 D’Arenberg D’Arry Original (Shiraz and Grenache)|
It’s time for dessert and I believe portioning has been perfect. I’m content but not stuffed and if sweets prove the right amount, the evening will conclude in full foodie harmony.
A return to Europe finishes the meal with a 2009 Disznoko Tokaji Late Harvest, Tokaj-Hegyalja from Hungary. We sip the wine and I think, “We don’t need dessert!” This is fantastic. Fermented in an oak barrel, oak makes itself present in the palate but also sweet lemon.
|2009 Disznoko Tokaji Late Harvest, Tokaj-Hegyalja|
“Dessert Twist” Salted Toffee Crème Brûlée, Semifreddo Goat Cheese and Caramelized Jackfruits, in true chef Siti style, presents a very attractive, but not overdone finish. Chef seems to know that fine line of style and artistry: stopping at exactly the right point to provide interest, but not overloading the senses with superfluity.
|“Dessert Twist” Salted Toffee Crème Brûlée, Semifreddo Goat Cheese and Caramelized Jackfruits|
While my preferences have yet to grow fond of jackfruits, the crème brûlée is to die for! Super creamy, it elicits an abundance of mmms from both of our throats. I suggest taking a spoon of this, followed by a bite of the ice cream and finally a sip of the wine. Sweet, then semi-savoury, then viscidly honey: the flavours manifest a steady see-saw of sensations.
Coffee or Tea and housemade pralines fill the very last pockets of stomach space and leave us with a sensational ending. One is a smooth moosh of dark chocolate filled with and rolled in crushed macadamias and pistachios. The other, a cheese bon bon, is a ball of fluffy cheesecake rolled in powdered chocolate. Indulgent, decadent, dreamily delicious – we want to take more home. We beg chef Siti to put these up for retail sale. She brushes aside our commendations saying humbly that these, “are simple treats that can easily be made at home.” But why make them at home, when chef Siti already does it so adeptly at Grill 582.
|Tea and Pralines|
|Cheese Bon Bon|
|Dark Chocolate and Nut Praline|
It’s been a faultless menu from start to finish and is one of the more reasonably priced sets on the circuit this year. What is even more wonderful is that all dishes in the line-up have been taken from the regular a la carte menu: so if you love them during MIGF, you know you can return to order your favourites anytime.
The Malaysia International Gourmet Festival menu is available from 1 to 31 October 2014 from 6.30 pm to 10.30 pm daily. The full festival menu is priced at RM298.00++ per person with wine pairing and RM198.00++ per person without wine pairing, while the light festival menu is priced at RM200.00++ per person with wine pairing and RM150.00++ per person without wine pairing.
Reasons to visit: one of the better value MIGF menus this season; don’t miss the Grilled Australian Short Rib, Salted Toffee Crème Brûlée and definitely save space for chef Siti’s delicious homemade pralines.
Best Western Premier
8 Jalan Tun Sambanthan
50470 Kuala Lumpur
+6 03 2272 8888