The past year I've been waxing lyrical about Malaysian food in Malaysia (of course) on this blog. I mean, it's kind of hard to go wrong with a char kuay teow with loads of chilli or a freshly made roti, but it's always interesting, when the opportunity comes up, to see how they would do fine dining.
One of my dear friends, who'll I'll call E, was the restaurant manager of Tanzini in Kuala Lumpur, in G Tower, and kept asking our friends and I to visit and check out the food.
Earlier this year in March, my friends and I all had planned to be in KL together, so of course, we all dressed up a little bit (heels for the girls, jackets for the guys) and finally went to check out E's pride and joy.
Tanzini itself is quite beautiful, on the 28th floor of G-Tower. Softly lit with white tablecloth, lots of glass in the interior and warm wooden floors, it has some rather prime views of KL city and the Twin Towers.
We were treated to an even more intimate setting though, as we walked up the stairs to the Upperdeck, where we were surrounded by windows and a mirrored ceiling. It was a rather serene and beautiful setting to relax in.
At the Upperdeck at Tanzini, there is no ala carte, simply the Chef's degustation menu, which on this particular night was crafted by Chef Eugene, who came out to greet us. Young and full of smiles, it was clear that we were going to be in for a rather adventurous menu, as E told us about his passion for unconventional cooking, mixed with the fundamentals.
Our evening started with a wee amuse bouche of smoked salmon (I think), with a bit of pickled veg, presented on a rock. A cool and refreshing tidbit to get our appetites stimulated!
Next up we had pan fried ricotta gnudi 'scallop' with a Hokkaido scallop with a light garlic butter alfredo. Oh I was tickled by this. I loved how playful this dish was, with the ricotta gnudi shaped to look like the scallop, which also filled the air with a delicious and comforting aroma. They were light and fluffy, and the scallop was beautifully cooked.
Oh. Macaron you say?
Not just any macaron darling. It's a salted egg macaron.
Before tucking into it though, the waiters came around to pour the cream of cannellini bean around it. The cannellini veloute was lovely and although I was tickled by the idea of a salted egg macaron and certainly appreciated the chef's creativity, I do feel it could have had a bit more saltiness and flavour to it, but did impart a bit of flavour all the same.
A blushing smoked muscovy duck with stewed parsnip, parsnip chips and parsnip-truffle puree was not so experimental, but comforting with familiar flavours and a pleasant earthiness. The duck was just cooked perfectly.
Between entrees and mains we had a spoonful of house made berry sorbet to freshen up the tastebuds after a whirl of curious flavours.
There were two options for the mains and the guys opted for the 52 hour braised wagyu beef brisket. Although a somewhat small serving, it was a seductive looking little minx, falling apart at a knife's touch.
The girl's on the other hand, opted for the wild caught Nunavut Artic char in light soy court bouillon with simmered kyoto eggplant and toasted baby sardine 'tuile'. I loved the idea of the 'tuile', although I felt it could have been just a little bit crunchier. Maybe two more seconds in a the deep fryer?
The arctic char was an incredibly generous serve and I struggled to get through it! It was tender and so tasty, I did enjoy the Asian accent on flavour here, wrapped in leaves with eggplant and soy.
Last but not least, we tucked into a Grand Cru Guanaja 70% chocolate creme chiboust (apparently a pastry cream lightened with stiffly beaten egg whites), with a pecan croquante, banana Confiture de Lait and Fleur de Sel liquorice gelato.
Painstakingly constructed, you could tell how carefully plated this dish was. However, before we could tuck into it though, a few bowls of dry ice with rosemary in them were placed in the middle of the table. We were slightly befuddled until the waiter came back with a small pitcher of water, which they poured over the dry ice.
Oh my goodness, I didn't realise how much the smell of the rosemary would surface, so that we had rosemary scented clouds washing over our plates. It created a lovely atmosphere, and was really just a bit of fun. Kind of wish I had dry ice all the time just so I can do this at home. Rosemary. Mmmm.
The dessert itself was just lovely as well. Rich, but not too much and I absolutely loved the hint of banana. Lots of textures in this dish too, which you guys probably know I always like.
Overall, it was a fabulous evening. We did feel as a group that maybe for a degustation, the flavour story didn't always flow and that the higher concept or vision for the meal was a little bit scattered. However as individual dishes, it was all quite beautifully executed.
So although I can't imagine you would get tired of the local Malaysian fare, but if you did want something a little special, with a great view to boot, Tanzini certainly makes for a great option.
199 Jalan Tun Razak
50400 Kuala Lumpur