Thursday, October 13, 2011

MIGF 2011: Lai Po Heen, Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur


This week has been a MIGF food review week for me! After a series of European, Italian and Lebanese, I am heading towards Chinese this round at Lai Po Heen, Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur. J





Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur is synonymous with prestigious and luxury indulgence through its hotel and dining scene. Their Cantonese restaurant, Lai Po Heen specializes in contemporary Cantonese cuisine and is proud to present their new Executive Chef, Chef Ricky Thien. The whole restaurant replicates the great ancestral homes of 19th century Chinese tycoons through its décor of Asian artifacts and ornate panels of Chinese motifs with grand chandeliers.





Chef Ricky Thien brings with him to Lai Po Heen a vast experience of Cantonese cuisine with a modern influence which I had the opportunity to have savored quite a few times. The man has also won a few awards for his ingenious inspiration of modern Cantonese cuisine and is definitely a chef with great potential to look out!





There are two MIGF Festival menus at Lai Po Heen catering to the dinner and lunch guest.


We started off with Chilled Vinaigrette Scented Cucumber Roll with Roast Duck and Yam Puff with Braised Baby Abalone. What I adore is the contrasting elements of both appetizers with one rendering a chill bite while the other warming up to the palate.





The Yam Puff with Braised Baby Abalone was a rendition of the infamous yam basket. Luxury is the twist to savor the fluffy and crispy mini yam dumpling with a gorgeous braised baby abalone. The slight tender and firm baby abalone was succulent and luxurious!





Although the Chilled Vinaigrette Scented Cucumber Roll with Roast Duck looked fairly plain, the flavors were refreshingly addictive. The slight hint of sourness from the cucumber matched perfectly with the sweet mango and dragon fruit while the slice of roast duck lends the savory taste to the overall bite. Good start to the meal as the burst of freshness from the fruits and duck with its various textures were well thought off!





If there is one thing Chef Ricky does beautifully, it’s his signature soups which have never failed to impress me! Cantonese Style Braised Sea Treasure, Golden Melon in Supreme Broth came in the form of a baby pumpkin.





As soon as I lift the little carved out pumpkin cap, an intoxicating aroma of heavenly broth scented with seafood seduced my nostril beautifully. Sigh with a smile… a definite notation of a fabulous soup at its first scent! The golden baby pumpkin held sea treasures such as pieces shark fin, top grade fish maw, dried scallop and a thick piece of sea cucumber. The broth was intensely flavored from the hours of double boiling the sea treasures and yet was not heavy on the lips. You know it’s a stellar dish when there is utter silence in the whole room when savoring the broth!





While others may deemed that the Dong Po Style Barbecue Scented Lamb Rib with Chinese Pear and Wok-fried Hong Kong Baby Siew Pak Choy was a bit too fatty, my piece of the lamb rib had a good balance of meat and fat in it. The fat was meltingly tender and almost seems surreal against the tender and juicy meat. A boldness of sweet and savory sauce flavored the rib so pleasantly and the matchsticks of pear were such an ingenious addition to the meat by providing a fresh and crunchy supporting role to the dish. I have to concur with the guests that night that one rib is simply Not enough! J





Just when I thought I had already reach the peak of the meal, this glorious dish of Crispy Egg Noodles, Blue River Prawn, Prawn Roe and Egg Gravy was placed right in front of me. Certainly the pièce de résistance of the meal, the huge blue river prawn was ultra fresh and sweet with loads of creamy dark orange prawn roes! Talk about sensual luscious salty and sweet roes lingering with an egg soaked noodles and firm sweet flesh prawns… Divine!!





Dessert came in the form of a Trio of Sweet Potato: Purple Sweet Dumpling, Vanilla Sauce, Sweetened Jelly with Osmanthus and Chilled with Sago in Lemon Syrup. Chef Ricky showed boldness to go where most chefs would not go by introducing the humble sweet potato in his finale menu.





The ever so humble Purple Sweet Dumpling was well executed and the sweet potato remains fluffy and light on the inside. I like the fact that it was not too sweet as well.





Sweetened Jelly with Osmanthus was served chilled with cubes of tiny orange potatoes. Decent and fair for the jelly but it was nothing out of the extraordinary.





Chilled Sago with Lemon Syrup had the combination of basic light yellow sweet potato puree with bubbles of sago and a zesty hint of lemon. This one is quite revitalizing and ended our meal with great satisfaction.





On the way out, I caught Chef Ricky posing cheekily in the open kitchen with another chef!





The whole MIGF Festival menu at Lai Po Heen was well executed with such precision of bold flavors and visual. What I like about the menu was the adventurous combinations of modern and yet authentic dishes concocted by Chef Ricky. The man shows no boundaries in his creations and is constantly inspired by his food trips and travels to originate his dishes. I highly recommend the dinner menu to savor the gorgeous Blue River Prawn noodles!  


Festival Dinner Menu
Appetisers
Chilled Vinaigrette Scented
Cucumber Roll, Roasted Duck
Yam Puff with Braised Whole Baby Abalone

Starters
Pan-seared Scallop, Jade Fruit, Szechuan Spicy
Sauce

Soup
Cantonese Style Braised Sea Treasure,
Golden Melon in Supreme Broth

Mains
Dong Po Style Barbecue Scented Lamb Rib
with Chinese Pear
Wok-fried Hong Kong Baby Siew Pak Choy
Crispy Egg Noodles, Blue River Prawn, Prawn Roe
and Egg Gravy

Desserts
Trio of Sweet Potato
Purple Sweet Dumpling, Vanilla Sauce
Sweetened Jelly with Osmanthus
Chilled with Sago in Lemon Syrup

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Festival Lunch Menu
Appetisers
Chilled Vinaigrette Scented Cucumber Roll,
Roasted Duck and Tropical Fruits

Starter
Pan-seared Scallop, Jade Fruit,
Szechuan Spicy Sauce

Soup
Cantonese Style Braised Sea Treasure,
Golden Melon in Supreme Broth

Mains
Dong Po Style Barbecue Scented
Lamb Rib with Chinese Pear
Wok-fried Hong Kong Baby Siew Pak Choy
Seafood Fried Rice with Diced Tomato and Egg White

Desserts
Duo of Sweet Potato
Purple Sweet Dumpling, Vanilla Sauce
Chilled with Sago in Lemon Syrup


Festival Dinner Menu RM228++ per person without wine
Festival Lunch Menu RM118++ per person without wine


Door Gifts
Complimentary confectionary or homemade chocolate from the restaurant welcomes Festival Menu diners upon arrival.

Block Bookings
Book for 10 or more guests and receive a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine.

Wine/Champagne Offers
Enjoy a discounted MIGF wine pairing with the Festival Menu (diners pay RM70 per person for the wine pairing of three courses).

Beverage Offers
Enjoy 20% discount on beverages (excluding the MIGF wine pairing) with the Festival Menu.

Birthday Offers
Complimentary cake for the birthday celebrant dining on the Festival Menu.

Honeymoon/ Anniversaries Offers
Complimentary cake for Festival Menu diners celebrating their anniversary. Newlyweds on their honeymoon will receive a surprise from The Mandarin Cake Shop.

Future Promotions
Dine five times or more on the Festival Menu and receive a complimentary bottle of house wine on the next visit.



Lai Po Heen
1st Floor, Mandarin Oriental, Kuala Lumpur
P.O. Box 10950,
50088 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-2179 8885
Fax: +603-2380 8833

4 comments:

  1. Yummy...I am salivating at 4am and about to start licking my screen!

    The Yam Puff with Braised Baby Abalone is such an interesting take...plus the fact that I love yam baskets:D

    ReplyDelete
  2. Missyblurkit: dear Eve.. what on earth are you doing up on such ungodly hours? make sure to snooze later... and yes, I love that luxurious basket... hehehe

    Nikel: simply delicious!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh I didnt get to say HI to you during the review.

    ReplyDelete

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