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Friday December 21, 2007

Dining out on Christmas Eve


ONE of the most exciting things about Christmas is the traditional Christmas Eve dinner enjoyed on Dec 24.  

It’s a time for families and friends to come together, mingle, catch up and enjoy a sumptuous spread of delightful food. 

Exquisite: The decor of Michelangelo’s exudes an exotic charm with a play of black and white for contrast..
Most people prefer cooking a meal at home before proceeding to midnight mass, but that would mean coming back to dirty dishes.  

But there are some who prefer to enjoy an equally elaborate dinner at restaurants minus the hard work 

Finding a place to enjoy a cosy Christmas dinner is certainly not a problem in Kuala Lumpur, as there are plenty of choices to pick from.  

One location to consider is the new shopping mall in the city called the Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. Pavilion is quite popular for its F&B outlets, which are found in different sections of the mall. In fact there are over 70 F&B outlets in the mall to choose from. 

A unique combination: The loaf offers dishes combining Japanese and French elements.
In case you’re considering dining out this yuletide season, here are some suggestions to consider.  

For many the ubiquitous turkey is a must during Christmas. So if you’re looking for a traditional Christmas Eve dinner with turkey, you might want to consider Michelangelo’s.  

It’s an Italian restaurant with gorgeous ambiance reminiscent of the Renaissance theme. The presence of Michelangelo posters all over the place coupled with the dark chandeliers and contrasted with white chairs gives the place an exotic charm.  

Tasty treats: Some of the delectable breads from The Loaf.
Even more charming is the Christmas menu, which features a Special Marinated Roasted Turkey breast with traditional cranberry and rosemary sauce.  

Michelangelo’s corporate chef Asher Khairuddin politely declined to divulge the secret of this dish, but assured me that it was prepared using imported herbs and spices and takes over a day to prepare – hence early booking is necessary. 

But more delightful then the turkey, in my opinion was the Poached Peach in Wine served with Vanilla ice cream and topped with almond.  

“This is a divine dessert which requires the peach to be poached in red wine, and flavoured with cinnamon and cloves which is offered on the Christmas menu,’’ he said.  

Now if you’re not sure about Michelangelo’s, perhaps the complimentary secret gift being offered to guests who dine at the outlet during Christmas might be an incentive.  

But not everyone is into traditional Christmas fare. If you’re into fusion food, you might want to try out something a little different this season – like Thai food.  

If yes, then Celadon may just be the place for you. Despite it being a Thai restaurant, the décor however exudes a modern yet refined feel.  

Not your usual Christmas fare: Whole Lobster in Lime and Chilli Sauce, which are of the best quality and prepared by a Thai chef from Celadon.
It’s posh, yet cosy at the same time and for Christmas, Celadon is offering a Sweet Christmas for its patrons.  

“Everything from the décor to the table setting is going to be a sweet and memorable experience for our guests,” said Celadon’s marketing manager Elyna Tan.  

Sweet indeed, candies and M&M’ form part of the table setting décor, and this said Tan would give guests something to munch on while waiting for their order.  

The highlights include Tom Yam River Prawn in Coconut and Whole Lobster in Lime and Chilli Sauce, which are of the best quality and prepared by a Thai chef. 

“Despite the fact that we’re an authentic Thai restaurant, the Christmas menu we’re offering features dishes with a Western touch,” said Tan,  

“For instance the The Thai style Beef rolls served with Green Curry Gravy is a perfect example of the East and West fusion,’’ added Tan.  

Known for their exquisite dishes, that are as delectable as the little diamonds that they sell at their showroom downstairs, The C. Club offers an exciting Christmas Eve menu themed Symphony of Appetisers and is another option to choose from. 

“Like concerto which gets better as you go along, likewise when indulging in fine food, the journey gets better and better as you reach the end,” said the outlet’s head chef Jayabalan Pillai.  

According to chef Jayabalan, everything at C.Club is premium. “We only use the best of imported ingredients like the mushrooms which are difficult to source and expensive too,” he said  

“But then again we are here to offer an experience – and with knowledge comes passion and C. Club is here to provide access to the better things in like,” he said.  

For something a little less frilly – you could also try the The Loaf, to enjoy a Japanese-French Fusion dinner presented and redefined with the delicate touch of creativity and artistry in presentation, taste, and style inspired by both Japanese and French cuisines. 

“We offer a fusion of French and Japanese cuisine, hence our food look western but carries layers and layers of different flavour,” said The Loaf restaurant manager Mervyn Chong.  

Michelangelo’s: Lot C3.04.00, Connection Level 3, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-2141 1123. Christmas Set menu available from Dec 22-Dec 25, for lunch and Dinner at RM99++ and New Year Set Menu available on Dec 29-Jan 1, 2008.  

Starter: Salad of Baked Potato with Ham and Parmesan Cream or Roasted Pumpkin with Rocket and Ricotta Salad.  

Soup: Mussels & Clam in white wine, or Creamy Broccoli with Almond Soup. 

Main: Fetucinne with Duck and Porcini mushrooms in a creamy tomato and marsala wine sauce or Special Marinated Roasted Turkey Breast with Traditional Cranberry and Rosemary Sauce or Lamb and Potato stewed in Red Wine and Tomato.  

Dessert: Chilled Baked Apple with Crusted Almond and topped with Mascarpone Cream or Poached Peach in Wine served with Vanilla Ice Cream and topped with Almond. Coffee or Tea, and free one glass of red or white wine + mystery gift. 

 

Celadon Royal Thai Cuisine: Lot 6.37, Level 6, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-2148 8708. Christmas Set menu available on Dec 24, Dec 25 at RM359++, and New Year Menu on Dec 31, and Jan 1, 2008  

Welcome Drink – Sundown Mocktail, Prawn Cocktail served in Shooter Glass, Tom Yam River Prawn in Coconut, Thai Style Beef Rolls served with Green Curry Gravy, Chill Sago with Fresh Fruits & Bottle of Evan & Tate Salisbury Cabernet Merlot or Evan & Tate Salisbury Chardonnay.  

 

The C. Club: Lot 6.11, Level 6, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-2141 3160. Christmas menus available for dinner on Dec 24, at RM180++ per person and RM450++ per person. 

RM180 menu comprise:  

Crepe veloute with spiced prawn and bacon dust, Breaded oyster wrapped with smoked cured duck and served with wasabi roe, Fresh oyster with champagne vinaigrette served with tobiko roe.  

Teriyaki marinated slipper lobster with foie gras mango salsa.  

Lime and pink pomelo sorbet with a dash of Vodka. Grilled red snapper fillet caramelised endive and pineapple & tomato chutney or Grilled Tenderloin with Mushroom Risotto and Arugula Topped with Oxtail Stew.  

Bread Pudding with Kahlua Vanilla Creme Brulee with Strawberry Coffee Cream and Coffee & Tea.  

 

The Loaf: Lot 3.13.00 & 4.12.02, Level 4, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-2145 3036. Japanese French Fusion Dinner for a two-course dinner RM120++, for a three course dinner RM160++ and four course dinner RM200++ available from now until Jan 31 2008.  

Main courses include, Oven baked eggplant with parmigiano, spicy tomato coulis, and garlic bread or Seared swordfish with capers, tomato, ponzu sauce and baby spinach or Padi Padi fish with puy lentil, kinome, and sea urchin sauce or Cod with chilli miso shirasu and Capsicum Coulis or Lobster pasta with roma tomatoes, szechuan peppers and basil. 

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