THE Cinnamon Restaurant and Tanglung Bar in Hotel Penaga, Penang, spices up its modern European and Western offerings with a touch of Asia.
Diners can look forward to exotic flavour combinations conjured by executive chef Fong Kong Loong, in both the ala carte and value-for-money set menus.
The Penang-born chef, who worked in Macau, Hong Kong and Shanghai in recent years before returning here, is inspired by the knowledge and experiences gained during his time abroad.
In the former Portuguese colony, he worked under a renowned French chef in a one Michelin starred restaurant, where inventiveness and attention to detail is a requisite.
This is reflected in his sophisticated creations, like the crowd favourite Forest Mushroom Soup, made fresh from several types of fungi, and enhanced with truffle essence.
“We take pride in making things fresh from scratch, and do not rely on artificial products.
“Our philosophy is to realise the potential of each ingredient, and maximise a dish's flavour,” he said.
For mains, Fong recommends the seabass, which is pan-fried to crispy perfection then paired with the restaurant's signature golden mash, sauteed asparagus and chervil sauce.
“The mash is made with sweet potatoes and perked up with a dash of cinnamon,” he said of the dish’s localised helping of carbs.
Equally great is the Grilled Beef Ribeye, marinated with a special red spice. The punchy oriental flavours means the grain-fed Australian prime cut can be eaten on its own without needing any sauce.
His Prawn Pasta Aglio Olio is another with local notes, and reminiscent of Hokkien Mee with its combination of anchovies, garlic, chillies and olive oil.
The chef is also introducing a new Rambutan Watermelon Granita, a combination of passion fruit crystal jelly, watermelon ice, chunky rambutans and candied orange and lemon zest, which is perfect for cooling down on a warm day.
The restaurant, which started business in February this year, also serves set menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
From 7am to 11am daily, one can walk in for their Small Breaks at RM15 or Big Breaks at RM28. Both offer a semi-buffet spread of morning staples, but the latter comes with an extra main course.
There is a Set Lunch promo at mid-day, offering an appetiser, main (pasta, fish or chicken) and dessert.
In the evenings, one can enjoy hearty meals priced from RM39.90 onwards depending on one's choice of main course – Prawn Pasta Aglio Olio, Beef Burger, Roast Spiced Chicken, Seabass or Lamb Rack.
It comes with Caesar Salad, Mushroom Soup or Calamari Rings, as well as a selected dessert.
The restaurant can host functions for between 40 and 50 pax, while its accompanying Tanglung Bar has a private area for 25 to 30 people.
Opening hours are from 7am to 11pm daily. For inquiries or reservations, call 04-2611891.