Inspiration at a relaxed pace


Almond Peach Tart with strawberry mousse, berries, coulis and gelato.

IT is a fine dining experience, but with a more relaxed atmosphere that still delivers an immersive experience, great food and meticulous service.

That is what diners can expect with the introduction of a 10-course chef’s tasting menu titled “A Skyscraping Rendezvous”, set amid upscale ambience.

The new menu at Element Kuala Lumpur’s Trace Restaurant & Bar is one where guests can enjoy a long weekend lunch, curated by executive chef Taib Ridhwan and senior sous chef Hasrul Hawari.

Taib said the tasting menu is meant to provide guests with a fine dining experience at a much more relaxed pace.

“None of the dishes are overly complicated, yet there is an emphasis on presentation, flavours and textures,” said Taib.

“They are dishes diners can casually enjoy with friends and family over the weekend.”

The dishes are a fusion of Malay and Chinese flavours with Western preparations, he added.

We started off with a medley of cold appetisers which were fresh and featured seafood as a key ingredient.Chef Taib is laying out an exclusive yet not overly complicated menu.Chef Taib is laying out an exclusive yet not overly complicated menu.

Nicoise Salad served in a jar, a Prawn Cocktail and Salmon Mosaic in Thai-style Garlic Chilli Oil made for an appetising start.

The dishes were colourful and flavourful, with microherbs and dressings to make them visually appealing.

The meal starts off with the salad, where the service team will shake and mix the jar before serving, adding a theatrical touch to the meal.

This is not only about visuals, though, as the act helps to emulsify the sesame dressing and ensures all the ingredients in this classic French salad, such as boiled potatoes, green beans, hard-boiled eggs and tomatoes, are fully coated.

The prawn dish was a fresh take with mango salsa and honeycomb garnish.

Those who are not fans of raw salmon need not fret, as the fish is cooked sous vide (vacuum-sealed in a water bath) for 10 minutes.

The result is a lightly cooked fish that still retains its firm yet tender texture.

The fish is lightly brushed with chilli oil and served with green herb oil, fish roe and microgreens for texture.

Rounding off the seafood starters was the Creamy Spinach Scallop Rockefeller, served in a bamboo basket.

Just before serving, it is smoked with cherry wood, which gives it a pleasantly sweet and slightly fruity scent.

The scallop’s delicate flavour is not overpowered by the cheese, while the spinach gives it some earthiness.

Salmon Mosaic in Thai-style Garlic Chilli Oil.Salmon Mosaic in Thai-style Garlic Chilli Oil.

For our palate cleanser, the Orange Sorbet with orange jelly offers a refreshing burst of citrus in anticipation of the next course.

Cauliflower Veloute was the first of our “warm” courses.

The silky smooth soup delivered delicate notes of roasted cauliflower with hints of aromatic herbs and a subtle creamy finish.

Asian flavours are most prominent with the main courses of beef (or duck, alternatively) and chicken.

The Grilled Beef Tenderloin is a fusion take on the Malaysian Daging Harimau Menangis – featuring medium-done, crispy-edged and tender cuts of meat, paired with a homemade chilli and coriander dip.The Orange Sorbet with orange jelly is refreshing.The Orange Sorbet with orange jelly is refreshing.

The Smoked Chicken Roulade included a Sichuan twist, infusing tangy and refreshing elements to the dish.

Finally, a miniature bowl of Soba Noodles delivered a satisfying conclusion to the savoury section.

The grand finale came in the form of a decadent Almond Peach Tart, complemented by strawberry mousse, berries, coulis and gelato.

The tasting menu is priced at RM238 nett for two persons and is available from 12.30pm to 3pm on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays.

It is worth noting that a one-day advance reservation is required.

For diners looking for more sophistication to complete the “sip and savour” tasting experience, a red or white wine pairing deal at RM28 nett per glass is also available.

TRACE RESTAURANT & BAR,

Element Kuala Lumpur, Ilham Tower,

8 Jalan Binjai, Kuala Lumpur. (Tel: 03-2771 3355).

Business hours: 6.30am to 10pm.

This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.

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