What do you enjoy eating when you’re feeling blue? There are many items I crave when things don’t go my way, including a nice big slab of ribeye – wagyu preferably. That was exactly what I got when I checked out the new Mandarin Grill menu at Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur. Mandarin Grill has repositioned itself as a steakhouse where the best cuts of meats are served in a refined yet unpretentious setting.
The new menu features steakhouse favourites such as Beef Tartar, Goose Foie Gras A La Plancha, Boston Lobster Thermidor and of course, the main highlight of them all – premium cut meats from Australia, U.S. and Japan. We started with a Classic Prawn Cocktail, a twist from the ordinary where the prawn is larger, more succulent and isn’t presented in a cocktail glass. I’m glad they served the Thousand Island dressing on the side so it doesn’t overpower the sweetness of the prawn.
Mandarin Grill Salad looks a little like layered cake where you have quinoa at the bottom with a build-up of sprouts, cress, heirloom tomatoes and butter head lettuce, topped with vegetable chips. A pretty assemblage this one, and you get that burst of fruity flavour from the mango caviar to bind the flavours together. That said, I wished there was more dressing to this as quinoa can be on the dry side.
Before you place your order for steak, the kitchen team will present to you a platter of the meats they have available for the night. All meats are prepared using a Josper Charcoal Grill and served with a choice of side dish and sauce. I went for the Sher Wagyu Ribeye (RM368 for 300g) which was medium rare and beautifully charred on the outside. This piece of beauty requires no sauces as its marbling score 8 gives it more than enough flavour.
rif’s Tasmanian sirloin (RM178 for 300g) was also pretty good – juicy and tender with charred edges which gave the meat more character. This cut is juicier and meatier; ideal for those who prefer their steak less fatty. I on the other hand, love my steaks with fat because it gives the meat a richer flavour.
You get a decent range of sauces to go with your meats, like the classic Bearnaise to the more interesting lemon gremolata or tamarind-coriander butter. Like I mentioned earlier, you really don’t need any sauce if you get a good piece of meat but if you’re keen to explore, try the fresh horse radish cream. That helps cut through the richness of the fat so it doesn’t cloy you towards the end of your meal.
I was quite pleased to see classic favourites such as the Baked Alaska on the menu, and this was done well at Mandarin Grill. Unlike the usual version which tend to be overly sweet, MO’s version features vanilla and strawberry yogurt ice cream encased in a light Italian meringue and flambéed for that lovely brown edging.
The Smoked Dark Chocolate Cigar was more my thing – served with smoked single malt on the rocks. I’ve always liked finishing strong so this is definitely my kind of dessert. There was a good smoky aroma which complements the bittersweet essence of the cigar. Great combo!
All in, I do find the new menu at Mandarin Grill more approachable and straightforward, without losing finesse. The restaurant is definitely set to make its mark as one of the top steakhouses in town. To make a reservation, call 03-2179 8960 or email [email protected]
Food: 8/10 (pork free)
Verdict: If you’re into marbling, definitely go for the Sher Wagyu marble score 8. The steaks are quite good and worth the price tag.