Sunday, July 06, 2014



Thai and Malay specialities fill three rotational menus for buka puasa at this opulent Thai restaurant. Chef Solahudin Nutto bolsters up the restaurant's buka puasa spread with selected local favourites culled from his mom-in-law's recipes so diners will find rendang tok, beef with black pepper sauce and ikan bakar tucked amongst evergreen Thai specialities: mango and papaya salads, fish with sweet & spicy sauce and colourful dessert.

The Top 3 picks consists of: 1) mieng kam - wild pepper leaf parcels with seven different condiments: crushed peanuts, tiny lime wedges, diced ginger, toasted coconut flesh, diced onion and bird's eye chilli, and fried dried shrimps. Laced liberally with the dark, treacly and sweetish sauce, one can polish several parcels of these in one sitting.

2) Thai green lamb curry - an evergreen hit that's bound to set tastebuds alight. Creamy rich yet well-spiced, it comes with loads of eggplant, long beans and sliced lamb. Sedap!
3) mango with sticky rice - it's a toss between this or tab thim krob (waterchestnuts 'red rubies' with jackfruit strips in chilled coconut cream-based broth). The toothsome glutinous rice with succulent mangoes won out...
The gado-gado is surprisingly good too so have a go at that if you spot it in the line-up. Buffet price: RM69.50++ per person

Chakri Palace, Lot C4.06.01, Level 4, Pavilion, 168, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur. Tel : 03-2143 1141 

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Producing a special buffet for Ramadan is akin to directing a blockbuster. Over at Nook, Chef Steven Seow and his team have pulled out the stops to rustle up a bountiful buka puasa feast of Malay and regional delicacies. From the colourful and tempting parade, our top 3 picks are:

1) Stuffed Whole Lamb Kuzi - somehow nobody can resist taking a serving or two of delectable roast lamb whenever they spy this centrepiece. Best enjoyed with some well-spiced Nasi Briyani together with vegetable dhal, cucumber & pineapple acar, papadom and mint-tomato yoghurt.

 2) Chicken with Sambal Petai - an unexpected gem that tastes better than it looks. Love the pungency of the stink beans and the heat from the chilli and spice paste.
3) Classic Kuihs - nothing beats evergreen Malay kuihs for a sweet ending to a satisfying buka puasa dinner. Kole kacang, bingka keladi, seri muka, onde-onde and other colourful offerings are certainly the stars of the show here.
Other recommended choices include salted beef with kim chi, the range of seafood on ice and oysters au gratin. The A-list Malaysian Feast is priced at RM100nett per person. Served nightly until 26 July.

Nook, Level 1, Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral, No.5, Jalan Stesen Sentral, Kuala Lumpur Sentral| Tel: 03-2723 1154
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Chef Razak slices off some ‘Kambing Bakar Saddiq Sigaraga’ - roasted whole lamb seasoned with garlic and thyme for InterContinental KL's GM Mr Hafidh Al-Busaidy (right) 
Relive the bygone years of P. Ramlee through a composition of good food inspired by the beloved artiste’s songs and films. With names of key characters and film titles incorporated into the dishes, diners will find tongue-in-cheek specialities such as ‘Gerai Roti Pendekar Mustar’ stall featuring roti john, roti jala and murtabak; ‘Asam Pedas Madu Tiga’; ‘Ikan Bakar Husin Lempoyang’ and ‘Otak-otak Kampung Dusun’.

The rotational menu also includes ‘Aneka Kerabu Kampong Pening Lalat’; ‘Sup Pasir Bedenggung’ featuring Malay oxtail soup and tulang rawan; ‘Hidangan 40 Penyamun’ showcasing sambal udang petai; udang galah masak tempoyak; ikan siakap 3 rasa; gulai kawah; kari kambing dengan kentang; ayam masak merah; ayam perchik and sotong goreng kunyit.

Our top 3 picks: 1) Daging dendeng - coarsely pounded chilli and onion fire up smoky, jerky-type beef pieces that leave you yearning for more
2) Fish head curry - forget about the presentation and just relish the complex profusion of spicy accents. Caution: carb overload ahead.
3) Tapai pulut & tapai ubi - these traditional treats are definitely an acquired taste. I like the slightly fizzy tingle and boozy nuances on the tongue coming from the fermented glutinous rice and tapioca.

The extravagant spread comes at RM138++ per adult (July 7 – July 20) and RM120++ per adult (July 21 – July 25).

Serena Brasserie, InterContinental KL, 165 Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-2161 1111
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Coming Soon! Part 3 of Top Picks for Ramadan 2014

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