Known for his French cooking techniques picked up at Paris-based Le Cordon Bleu and Alain Ducasse’s restaurant at Sofitel Le Parc, James Won has established himself as the go-to chef in KL when it comes to preparing menus in collaboration with brands like Hennessy, Strongbow and Krug champagne. In these pairing menus, you can expect dishes that were created specifically to perfectly complement the drink. His menu is largely French but he does enjoy injecting a bit of Asian influence into his dishes here and there.
The current offerings at Enfin are wine and Krug champagne pairing degustation menus for both lunch and dinner, and you can look forward to exquisite dishes the likes of mushroom texture tartare, beef brisket with battered daikon and beef jus, lobster with ikura, and pineapple mile feuille with salty toffee.
Lunch menu, from RM98; dinner menu, from RM388.
Few restaurants offer a better view to go with a lengthy multi-course dinner than Cantaloupe, whose Head Chef Christian Bauer has been putting together eightcourse menus for his mother’s dinner parties from the age of 14. Since then, he’s played a key part in developing the local fine dining scene, having helmed the now-closed French restaurant Frangipani, and now as the Executive Chef and director of Troika Sky Dining.
Cantaloupe’s eight-course Express Gourmet lunch menu was updated in May to include dishes like smoked salmon with cucumber jelly, truffle pearls with crème fraiche; grilled eel with confit leek, garlic chips, baby herbs and sakura prawns; and slowcooked chicken with seared foie gras and button mushroom ragout.
Express Gourmet lunch, RM140++.
Three years on from opening DC Restaurant, Chef Darren Chin shows little sign of slowing down his dynamic approach to marry Asian ingredients and flavours with the French cooking techniques he learned from Le Cordon Bleu. This year, Darren has been particularly inspired by Japanese snow crabs – prepared with white asparagus and gochujang hollandaise – and uni, which makes a prominent appearance on dishes like the Takao Cold Somen with Bafun Uni & Truffle Celeriac Cream, as well as the crispy-seared Brittany French sea bass served with uni emulsion.
Three-course menu, RM298++; five-course menu, RM398++; seven-course meal, RM498++.
A relatively new eatery in 1 Utama and headed by Chef Darren Leong (previously of Miam Miam, a restaurant serving Japanese-French cuisine), MARCO Creative Cuisine prides itself on its usage of artisanal produce. What sets this 62-seater restaurant apart is the affordable six-course menu offering a variety of options at only RM78. The soup, entrée and dessert courses offer you three items each to choose from, while the main course boasts a selection of six items. The food is predominantly Western with dishes like chicken liver parfait, sous vide duck breast with orange purée, salmon with squid ink hollandaise, and a deconstructed lemon meringue pie. Despite its affordable price, you’ll find the same finesse in the execution as you would at a more upscale restaurant.
Tucked away in Shah Alam’s Kolej Damansara Utama (KDU) is Dewakan, a restaurant serving what can probably be described as modern Malaysian cuisine. Head Chef Darren Teoh shines the spotlight on Malaysian flavours by using locally sourced ingredients and produce, and sometimes even native species not commonly used. With past dishes including the likes of cured blue mackerel with ulam raja and a gula Melaka marquise with sour meringue and pulut ice cream, Dewakan’s multi-course menus are a fine balance between Malaysian flavours and Western concepts that lead the way in KL’s fine dining scene.
Dewakan’s latest menus are an impressive 11- and 17-course meal. Some highlights include Bidor duck breast with blood sauce, slow-cooked red snapper with temu broth, and grilled lowland vegetables. Check out their Instagram page, which occasionally teases with upcoming dishes or ingredients.
Eleven-course menu, RM300nett; 17-course menu, RM370nett.
Located above Sitka Restaurant on Jalan Batai, Sitka Studio is where Chef Christian Recomio gets to flex his creative muscles by introducing a new tasting menu twice a month. The dishes showcase his ability to modernise European cuisine – in the same way he did with his modern Scottish restaurant Moonfish Café in Aberdeen – while incorporating local flavours and ingredients sourced from organic farms like A Little Farm On The Hill.
This year also saw the restaurant embark on Sitka + Friends, a bi-monthly series of collaborative dinners that has featured Chefs Rishi Naleendra from Singapore’s Cheek by Jowl, Will Goldfarb from Room4Dessert (which counts Ferran Adria as a fan), and Benjamin Cross and Stephen Moore from Mejekawi. Prices vary from month-to-month, but expect to pay upwards of RM248 per person. Keep an eye out on their website and Instagram for future announcements.
A modernist cuisine restaurant reinterpreting Japanese cuisine through Spanish tapas culture using contemporary food science techniques. Having recently undergone a makeover, Babe now boasts a new sleek interior, a cocktail collaboration with Karl Too of the acclaimed Omakase + Appreciate, and a new menu showcasing the fun, whimsical ideas of Michelin-starred chef Jeff Ramsey. The 12-course Japas (Japanese tapas) Tasting Menu starts from RM300++ per person, featuring innovative dishes such as the BabenDazs, which is a foie gras and VSOP ice cream sandwich.