The chef, Isadora Chai was being interviewed on radio regarding her playground, this bistro, when a friend heard it. She creates adaptive French cuisine by incorporating local elements to modern French food. It was the brilliant use of ice cream in french onion soup that highly appealed to us, and we found ourselves at the doorsteps of Bistro à Table, after braving Friday night traffic. Situated at the unlikely corner of shoplots in a quieter area of Section 17, parking is a breeze.
The interior is simple but cozy and the dangling lights centerpiece has garnered much interest. But what I liked was probably the drapes that partitioned some tables on the left to give the diners some privacy. Yet I realised I didn’t take a shot of it, haha.
Alas, the menu is one that’s dependent to the current availability of ingredients as well and the french onion soup has outlasted its fifteen minutes of fame. along with the mains and dessert i had in mind too. haha. but well, new items on the menu to try then!
Started with the warm bread…
We then had Irish Oysters with Yuzu Dressing (RM48). The distinctive sharp citrus note of the yuzu fruit with the fresh oyster was indeed a match made in heaven.
I have always remembered Kataifi in sweet variants but lately I have been seeing it featured in dim sum joints with avocado cream filling or even prawn with mango etc. Here at Table, they have come up with Kataifi-wrapped chevre with beet puree (RM28). The kataifi parcel itself I am somewhat impartial to as I tasted more pastry than cheese but i loved the beet puree. Smooth and earthy to taste.
Since I have heard and read so much about the Coddled maple syrup egg with crouton dust & Fleur de Sel (RM16), had to order it and try. Deceptively simple in looks, the soft boiled egg is in fact brimming with the unusual flavour of the runny yolk, maple syrup and crouton dust. Interesting textures and aftertaste.
Their signature main is the Canelloni of seared scallops & school prawns, served with lobster bisque and Indonesian black nut tapenade (RM62). The canelloni looks promising but I found it a tad bland by itself. But the full flavours of the lobster bisque when coupled with the canelloni, creates a more enjoyable experience. But the most intriguing bit for me was probably the buah keluak tapenade. I personally love buah keluak due to its nutty, oily taste that one has to try to understand. Can’t wait to get my hands on some to try to make my own tapenade. Yum!
This is the 8 Hour Duck confit with candied kumquats and puy lentils (RM59). The glistening skin of the duck thigh looked so inviting! Duck confit is actually short cured duck thigh which is then slow cooked in its own fat for the tender, fall-of-the-bones flesh.
I had the Stuffed cured quail with cassis jus (RM68). It was served atop pea mash with a side of beet & ginger, cranberries and truffled mash. As it was a cured quail, it was a tad saltier but once mixed with the jus and mash, it does blend nicely and takes the saltiness down a notch. The truffled mash and pea mash was particularly memorable. It was easily the best mains of the night.
I personally had high hopes for the desserts especially the “finale” of the night after the promising description in the print out that was handed to us earlier. We somehow ended up starting our dessert run with the Chocolate mousse with Milo and hazelnut praline (RM18). It was just that. Smooth chocolate mousse with slightly crunchy but overpowering Milo & hazelnut praline. We could barely remember the mousse as the taste of Milo is so dominant. I do love my Milo, but I can have Milo Dinosaur at a mamak for a fraction of the price. Thumbs up for presentation though. Loved the chocolate leaves.
The earlier mentioned “finale” was this, the Ode to Newton (RM36). I didn’t make any association with apples as the Chef thought we would. But then, it was printed out clearly in the printout that it would be a matter of gravity vs anti gravity. We were probably all waiting for this really elaborate dessert that combined both the soufflé and ice-cream in one so I for one was a tad surprised when we were served 2 separate desserts.
The soufflé represents the anti-gravity which if eaten at the correct speed would see the lemongrass ice hemisphere melt enough to have the cinnamon & nutmeg ice cream plop into the warm ginger beer i.e. gravity. maybe a bit too much physics involved for some, but just think, 2 desserts. Lol.
The incredibly light, fluffy soufflé was probably the best I have had in a long time. So airy that it does defy gravity. Cracking it and pouring in the creme anglaise brought the little satisfaction that one gets when cracking the perfect sugar coat of a creme brulee. It must have been so good coz we finished the soufflé way before the ice-cream dropped. Then as we were chatting away, the ice-cream dropped. And I must admit the sight of the melting ice-cream in the ginger beer was a tad unsightly and reminded me of something that is never meant to be discussed over dinner. Heh.
Our dinner came up to almost RM500 that night which is a pretty penny for dinner. Though there was some that wowed and some that didn’t, i believe what keeps Malaysians coming is the fact that the menu changes according to what’s the best and freshest in the current market. I am especially piqued by Degustation nights but haven’t seen reason to justify the whopping RM330-450+ price tag yet. Until then, keeping an eye on the changing menu…