April 1, 2016

Bounty Restaurant, The Kuala Lumpur Journal

Bountiful Flavours of Contemporary European Fare

The moment you know that you’re going to have a great meal is when you’re quite star struck with the mod ambiance at one of the newest hotel of The Kuala Lumpur Journal as well as its Bounty Restaurant at Jalan Beremi. At least I was…

The ambiance at Bounty is simply bright, cheerful and invitingly smart. Playing with lots of light beech wood with cool greys and black, the restaurant is charming as well as pleasant on the eye. Spaciously set, there are various sections of dining as well as an open pastry kitchen and a bar to tempt diners. With all its glowing light bulbs, the restaurant also has lots of windows to allow natural lights into the room.

The latest child of the Hooked Hospitality Group that brought us the much-beloved BAIT, Bounty is set to also win many hearts through their menu as well as service. Conceptualized as a bistro serving contemporary European-inspired dishes, Bounty Restaurant takes favorite classics and jazz it up with its own creative juices.

We met up with Executive Chef Logan Terence Lopez recently to check out his new menu launching next month. Chef Logan started his culinary journey in his early teens and was inspired by his family. He also jokingly added that during that time, he grew up watching lots of cooking shows and thought being a chef was the easiest and most fun job he could ever have. Luckily, he still thinks its fun today and emphasizes his cooking as soul food meant to be shared. He likes to keep his food simple and focus on fresh core ingredients to allow the ingredients to take center stage when it comes to flavours and textures. His presentation philosophy is simplicity at its best.

Chef Logan encourages his team to mingle with the customers hence he thought an open pastry kitchen would be a great way for his pastry team to showcase their talent and skills to diners. Well, there’s also the fact that anything baked tends to also seduce our sense of smell to a heavenly disposition. True enough, we were seduced, by little shell bites of madeleines that was being prepared, so much so that we wanted a taste!

Dinner kicked off with Bounty’s bar special of Salted Grapefruit Soda. Made in-house, grapefruit is salted and brine and turn into a tangy with a bittersweet refreshing soda finished with an air-dried sliced grapefruit.

With the not-too-long-ago craze on cronuts, the merger of croissant and donuts, many were intrigue on this sweet pastry of heavenly crisp layers. I for one, never had a cronut but only heard about the rumours on how sinful it is.

The team at Bounty took cronut to the next level with their Cronut & Black Truffle Butter. Turning the sweet into savory, Bounty’s cronut was perfectly shaped, baked and flavoured. Made more lavish, the golden layers of cronut contrasted gorgeously against a black tile plate. Crowned with a sunshine yellow disc of truffle butter and a sprinkling of fine sea salt, we paid homage to this pastry by savoring it slowing for its full taste. Thoroughly satisfying, the crisp layers were buttery while the generous creamy truffle butter added luscious notes. A lustful pastry with a promising spot on the menu!

I have always love French Onion Soup. Rich meaty broth well paired with slow caramelized sweet onions are usually pure comfort food to me, especially with a thick piece of crouton soaking the broth and the laces of cheese oozing on the crouton.

Well I didn’t know what to expect from Chef Logan’s French 5 Onion Soup (RM23) to be honest but when it came, but boy-oh-boy did we gleamed with delight. Why the 5 you may asked, well its Chef Logan’s special blend of 5 types of onions that made this French 5 Onion Soup so darn addictive with every spoonful of bold savory and sweet broth laced with a smoky edge and a cheesy crouton. That’s not all as we dug in and found a perfectly sous vide egg. Break the egg to allow the molten yolk to mingle with the broth and lo behold, I was in seventh heaven of gastronomic pleasure.

After that fabulous soup, we also tried another soup of Heirloom Tomato Soup (RM23). This one took on the path of vibrant fresh, tangy and creamy flavours of tomatoes. The bisque like soup was also enhanced with smoked duck bits, grated hardboiled egg on toasted croutons. Such creative injections of flavours when turning classics into exceptional dishes…

When asked which his favorite dish on his menu was, Chef Logan pointed out to the Octopus Salad (RM38). The plate already looked enticing before we even dig in. Allowing the ingredients to stand out on the black tile plate, we immediately identified several familiar ingredients of octopus, baby carrots, capsicum, piquillo pepper, zucchini, potato, onion, rocket leaves and egg. Having sous vide for more than an hour, the octopus was gorgeously tender with a good bite after being finished on the grill. All the vegetables have been charred till smoky and soft and generously dressed with moreish flavours of tangy and sweet. I really enjoyed this dish a lot minus the overly generous mayo on the plate.

A Mediterranean inspired dish took form in Baked Lamb Kofta (RM29). Plump and charred lamb koftas are paired with a medley of harissa dip, tomato chutney, pickled peppers and onions, Greek Yoghurt and herbs. The koftas are tender with a moist center and well-seasoned with lots of spices of cumin, sumac, coriander, paprika, onion, garlic and more. These tasted ordinary till you mix it up with all the other condiments. Right away, the flavours are elevated with the harissa dip raising lethal heat levels. The chutney and the yoghurt helped to balance out the heat but I enjoyed the heat so much so, I asked for more harissa dip.

More indulgence came and this time, it is a quite the treat of Roasted Wagyu Bone Marrow (RM32) served with bordelaise sauce, basil pesto, grilled bread, fresh Italian parsley and parmesan cheese with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and sprinkling of sea salt. What a mouthful!

The flavours are just as complex as its ingredients and unctuously sinful. The bone marrow itself was buttery and moreish and possibly too rich so I was glad the pesto, bordelaise sauce and herbs are there to balance up the richness. Only if you love bone marrow….

More seafood appeared and this dish showed off rice and prawns in Risotto Tiger Prawn (RM49). Cooked to al dente with a toothsome bite, the risotto was so creamy and tomatoey. Spoonful after spoonful of the risotto and I am still craving for more. The dish was executed just right in terms of textures and flavours of a darn good risotto. I can also taste the essence of prawn in the dish. Of course the grilled tiger prawns along with lots of hidden prawns took the limelight in this dish with its sweet crustacean flavour too…

One simply cannot go wrong with the signature Roasted Spatchcock (RM42) in the menu. The poultry has been smothered with loads of spices and Carotino oil before being finished on the grilled. One look at the bird, served with Chili butter, roasted vegetable and potatoes, we knew this was going to be delicious. The gorgeous amber hue with charred edges marked bold rich flavours. Indeed, we now know why its one of the most ordered dish at Bounty. Simply succulent, the chook is also creamy and very robust in taste. On a scale of one to ten, with ten being the best, I would rate this dish an eleven!

Fish lovers are so going to enjoy the Barramundi with Sautéed Clams a la Vongole (RM30). Crispy skin, moist and tender creamy flesh, the barramundi is creatively paired with tiny sweet clams in a golden buttery sauce. The sauce is just a pool of flavours from the garlic, chili, saffron and final finished of white wine flambeed. I was scraping the plate for the sauce simply because it was so tasty.

Certainly a wonderful and memorable dining but all good things have to end. Lucky for us, our sweet ending was just as beautiful as its savory courses. Soufflés are one of the trickiest dessert to make and I am just glad I am the one savoring it and not making it. The pastry studio is manned by Chef Heng Jung Yang and his team, churning out freshly baked breads, pastries and desserts at the all-day-dining Bounty.

Hot Vanilla Soufflé (RM25) proved that soufflés are just worth waiting for! Ours was gorgeously risen and every spoonful of fluffy and eggy soufflé was utterly sublime. It’s not overly sweet and the vanilla essence was just right.

From hot to cold, our two other desserts were Frozen Chestnut Parfait (RM26) and Coffee Creme Brûlée (RM25). The Frozen Chestnut Parfait was delightful and I enjoyed the creamy nutty chestnut flavour a lot. The parfait was also silky smooth. Chef Heng amped up the parfait with an Italian liqueur of Disaronno which gave the parfait a light bittersweet and nutty taste.

The Coffee Crème Brûlée had a special ingredient of tobacco to give it that unique and luring taste. The coffee essence makes a nice change from the usual eggy brulee. Crack it lightly and dig into a smooth custard that may just make your heart sing with joy…

It was an unforgettable dining experience at Bounty Restaurant. Food was excellent and so was portion as well as affordable pricing for its quality of ingredients. The ambiance was great too, perfect for lunch or dinner, pleasure or business. I would certainly head back to Bounty for more with my family as I am very sure that they would really enjoy the food and ambiance here.

For more information on restaurant, prices and menu go to www.thekljournalhotel.com/dine. To make reservations, call +603-2110-5520, or email eat@kljournalhotel.com

The Kuala Lumpur Journal
30 Jalan Beremi
52000 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-2110-5520

Business Hours: Monday to Sunday from 6.30am to 11.00pm

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