I tried to eat the stewed short rib as slowly as possible, hoping to prolong the experience. Portion was smaller than I liked it to be but the rib was wickedly moist. This form of evil came from the kitchen of Chynna in Hilton Kuala Lumpur, where I was invited to sample their Malaysian International Gourmet Festival 2011 menu (MIGF). Stewed till a tender state and slicked with some reduction sauce, the rib was paired with some fragrant roasted onion potatoes and an onion ring.
That was my favourite dish that afternoon. The meal started with a platter comprising chilled Alaska king crab leg, chili paste seafood skewer and half a Momotaro tomato in brine. We had this with a glass of Hana Kasumi Junmai Ginjyo. While decent, I thought the crab leg wasn’t chilled enough and it could have been more succulent. The others seemed to enjoy this, so it’s probably personal preference.
I found the combination of tomato and brine interesting. The ‘brine’ is actually the same ginger-garlic topping you would find in steamed fish dishes, only more refined. The seafood skewer was a shelled tiger prawn, topped with piquant chili paste. Nicely done, but not my cup of tea.
“You sure it’s shark’s fin ah?” I teased Chef Lam Hock Hin about his double boiled snakehead soup with fresh milk and shark’s fin. Chef Lam is so skilled, that he once tricked me into believing his shark fin melon was the real deal. The soup was lovely; it tasted like an ‘atas’ version of the fish head noodles with a subtle hint of ginseng. I dug into my bowl and found two fairly large pieces of shark’s fin and generous chunks of fish.
Soon after the short rib, we had the black chocolate parfait with five nuts and sweet potato cha cha mousse with yam ice cream. The latter was a modern take on the bubur cha cha, where the sweet potato is pureed and made into a mousse. I preferred the parfait – which was dense, smooth and not overly sweet – to this.
We were supposed to adjourn to Iketeru for the Teppanyaki Master Kobe Beef Sirloin with Foie Gras Ice Cream but I had to return to work. A shame really, as I was really looking forward to this dish. I’ll just quote what Nigel Gan, PR Manager of Hilton Kuala Lumpur said: “The Kobe beef with foie gras ice cream was amazing!” *wails*
Oh well, at least I got to try half of the menu. Thank you Nigel, for the invite! For those who want to try this gastronomic menu, you have an option of going to Chynna (RM178++ per person without wine pairing, additional RM90++ per person with wine pairing) or Iketeru (RM250++ per person without wine pairing, additional RM70++ per person with wine pairing). For more info, visit www.life.hiltonkl.com/dining or call 03-2264 2592.
Maybe I’ll go there for dinner with rif to celebrate our marriage registration next week. He’s paying.