Words: Nathaniel Jay
Photos: Monica Tindall
Tacos, tequila and great views… oh my!
Fuego is a well-known dining destination in Kuala Lumpur, boasting both stunning panoramic views of KL City Centre and equally amazing Latin American influenced cuisine. The restaurant offers two seatings: 6:30-8: 30 pm and 8:30 pm onwards. But now Fuego is offering a new, unofficial, third seating on Friday and Saturday nights from 10 pm – 1 am: Midnight Tacos. Tacos, tequila and great views… oh my!
Pre-dinner Cocktails at Coppersmith
Having arrived early, there was time to enjoy pre-dinner cocktails before we were seated. I chose to take the go big or go home approach and ordered the Good Old Fashioned (RM48) from the “Fiery” section of the cocktail menu. Bourbon, truffle honey and a slight hint of chocolate rounded out the cocktail. Mon chose a slightly more reserved but equally appealing libation called, The Jasmine (RM42), featuring gin, Cointreau, Campari and lemon. The cocktail was fresh and light, setting the appropriate stage for the dining ahead.
Fuego Troika – The Best Guacamole
Once we were seated it was an obvious choice that we would start with guacamole. There is a full-time guacamole chef that prepares every guacamole, ensuring that the flavor of each one is the same for every table! The chips are homemade. And they are not tortilla chips, but rather a colorful combination of plantain, yam, sweet potato, taro root and lotus root and there is a choice of four different guacamoles on the menu.
I selected Pickled Prawn Guacamole (RM35). It was creamy and tangy as expected but the pickled prawn gave the cool green dip a pleasantly unexpected bam! The guacamole also came with a crisp prawn head garnish for those who love the transcendental experience of sucking the head. All the flavor and the moisture is in the head and many of my friends call it the essence of life.
Now for the grand show and the purpose of our visit – Midnight Tacos! The late-night weekend special includes six tacos of your choice and six shots of tequila (RM195+). At Fuego, they are calling it taco roulette. Why? Because the chef secretly spikes one of the tacos with habanero chili. You never know who will be the one to get it so it adds a little risk to the experience. Don’t worry, the spiked one isn’t that hot – they are trying to keep it fun. Upon request, however, the chili can be kicked up a notch.
The tequila shots are Ocho Blanco (RM32) and are offered with plenty of orange slices. Ocho Blanco is 100% agave and is a single estate tequila made entirely at El Puertocito. It is superb, having a creamy mouthfeel and a lot of flavor. There are definitely floral notes, citrus and black pepper. It finishes with a lot of warmth.
The tacos are featured on the dinner menu. So it is possible to enjoy them during, one of the two seatings. There are three types to choose from and each one has its own personality. Chicken Taco, Beef Taco and Fish Taco (RM25) each respectively.
The cumin, lime chicken, chili mayo with avocado and fresh lime juice was tender and bright in flavor. The chipotle braised short ribs with salsa negra and oregano was smoky, slightly chewy in that oh so good way and a little heavy. The buckwheat battered barramundi with yuzu aioli, fresh arugula, jalapeño and pear salsa was moist and had a rollercoaster of tastes. The play of the yuzu aioli with the pear balanced the tartness and sweetness with a touch of heat. There is something for everyone. My personal favorite though was the fish.
It may sound truly crazy but the best part of the tacos are the tortillas. They are made from scratch. Now that might not sound too impressive to some but I know that masa harina is not easily found in Malaysia. The kitchen staff is taking the time to go through the nixtamalization process to create a fine tortilla dough. Among other things, this process makes the healthful benefits of corn available to people and aids in digestion. The tortillas are a little thicker than those commonly used in Mexico and most of the United States and a little thinner than what is served in Honduras and Guatemala. They were truly fantastic and I appreciate the effort that went into making the humble tortilla – the vehicle for the other goodies you can enjoy.
The Ceviche (RM32) was served in a coconut “bowl” and flavored with yuzu, wasabi, preserved lemon, cucumber pickle, salt foam, tequila and red seaweed. It is amazing everything could fit in that shell. It was cold and fresh and not surprisingly had a lot of zing from the citrus and pickles. It was certainly appealing to the eye and I would recommend it to others. I would have liked some herbs personally or maybe a touch more seaweed.
Fuego Menu – A New Dish
New on the menu is the Dorper Lamb Ribs (+/-500g) (RM130). The succulent and extremely tender meat is spiked with smoked paprika chimichurri and Dastardly hot sauce. I imagine this to become a top-selling item. The meat is separated from the bone and then placed back on top, making it extremely friendly to eat. The lamb has that slightly gamey quality, deep lime flavor and a touch of smoke. It would be great with a salad or a starch to compliment the rich fattiness of the meat.
Fuego Menu – You Must Save Room for Dessert
The night was finished with a classic that has been elevated to Troika Sky Dining heights. Fuego Churros (RM35) are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Dusted with cinnamon sugar and served alongside dulcey crémeux and salted caramel espuma, you can try sharing them but I bet a second order is soon requested. Unstoppable tastiness.
Reasons to visit Fuego at Troika Sky Dining: a chilled out late night place to relax on the weekend while sipping tequila and downing some tacos. Splendid view of the skyline and a well thought out menu. Must try the guacamole, ceviche, tacos and don’t forget the churros.