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Tuesday 28 July 2015

Ri-Yakitori Bar @ St Giles The Gardens Hotel Kuala Lumpur – Grand Hotel & Residences Mid Valley Kuala Lumpur


At a recent food review at Ri-Yakitori Bar @ St Giles The Gardens Mid Valley Kuala Lumpur, I had a BIG tasting of an array of kushiyaki items, which the restaurant takes pride in. An establishment specialising in kushiyaki or skewer grilled claims to serve perfectly cooked meats that are worth making a beeline for.  

The secret to a good  Kushiyaki (skewer grilled) lies in the quality of the charcoal and the skill of the chef, according to Ri-Yakitori assistant restaurant manager Encik Shahren.

Yakitori, as it is known among the Japanese community, is grilled skewered chicken, but it also refers to skewered food in general and typically enjoyed with a glass of cold beer or shochu. 

"We use a kind of high-grade special charcoal that are specifically for grilling, as it is able to allow heat to penetrate the meat quickly without breaking down the protein". This results in meat that is flavourful and juicy from the natural taste inside, yet it slightly crispy on the outside with a mild smoked flavour.  

Now, Ri-Yakitori Bar's Japanese kitchen is headed by Chef Isao Hasegawa as the new Chef de Cuisine. Japanese Chef Isao Hasegawa has close to four decades' experience from Japan to France and now, Malaysia.With  previously experience with prestigious hotels such as Hayama Hotel Otowa No Mori, Kannonzaki Keikyu Hotel in Japan and also in France specializing in France food.

His culinary skills have been sharpened during many years of experience will definitely enhance your dining experience at Ri-Yakitori Bar. Chef Isao has always been passionate in his profession in culinary trade. He only speaks in Japanese, nevertheless this is never a barrier for him to serve, create unique and delicious food for any patrons whom dine.

Specializing in Japanese Appetizer, Meat Dishes and Dessert; Chef Isao cordially invites you for an unforgettable dining experience at Ri-Yakitori Bar, St Giles The Gardens Kuala Lumpur, thus bringing in new culinary ideas and influences to its offerings.

Armed with a new chef and new revamped menu, we were the lucky few invited to review Chef Isao Hasegawa's latest culinary offering at Ri-Yakitori Bar recently.

Cabbage Salad 
Complimentary Dish

Our authentic Japanese dining experience started off with Cabbage Salad as appetiser to refresh our taste buds. A special slicer is used to prepare finely sliced chilled cabbage (of the same thickness) and dress with a tangy roasted sesame dressing and spicy wasabi dressing too. You can easily demolish the mound of juicy crunchy cabbage with its detectable dressing. Refreshing and healthy, we finished up the cabbage salad in no time!

Oh, the good news is that the cabbage salad is a complimentary appetiser to all its diners at Ri-Yakitori.

 Fried Garlic Mussel with Steamed Sake 
RM 29

Our next appetiser was a pure flavour of the ocean with simple Fried Garlic Mussel with Steamed Sake served with a baguette. The mussels with a delicate texture were very fresh and went well with the garlic gravy. My son, a non-seafood person was surprisingly seen cleaning off the bottom of the bowl with his baguette to soak up all the tasty sauce. 

Ri-Yakitori Bar being famous for their kushiyaki;  presented us with a selection of meat like chicken, beef, seafood and vegetable, as well as 'spare parts' such as chicken skin and beef tongue. First on the list was their mouth-watering Yakitori Moriawase (Assorted Grilled Chicken).

Yakitori Moriawase
 (Assorted Grilled Chicken)
RM 38

Meatball (Tsukune), Thigh (Momo), Breast meat (Mune), Chicken skin (Kawa),  Wings (Teba)
(From left to right)

Yakitori Moriawase consisits of an assorted grilled chicken meat from the breast meat (Mune), thigh (Momo), wings (Teba), skin (Kawa) to meatball (Tsukune). Top in my list was of course the Momo, chicken thigh was juicy and tender with smoky flavour.  The chicken wings (Tebasaki) was good too. The meat was juicy on the inside, and crispy on the outside; though it was on the saltier side if compared to the rest in bamboo skewers. The grilled chicken meatball (Tsukune) was firm and well-marinated while my last in my list were the skin and breast meat. 

Shahren added that the chef's skill is what gives him the edge when it comes to yakitori, as the meat is not marinated prior to being grilled and only has a dash of salt, pepper and sake for seasoning.

Wagyu Beef On Skewer
RM 41

Moving on, the star of the night for me was the Wagyu Beef On Skewer. Premium meat that was a melt-in-the-mouth experience, which  I gave credit to the excellent skills of Ri-Yakitori's chefs in grilling the imported meat to medium done perfection. Worth every bite for the price you paid for it, well-executed dish... thumbs up for that!

Beef Tongue (Gyutan)
RM 41

Next up was Beef Tongue (Gyutan), a five piece servings of gloriously grilled beef tongue. Usually I don't touch any 'spare parts' of any meat but made an exception for this dish. It was somewhat chewy, but its the chewing part that brings out the natural juices and flavour for the smoky gyutan. Good dish especially for beef-lovers!

 Tempura Moriawase
RM 58

Besides the grilled items, we were served a platter of Tempura Moriawase to complete our Japanese dining experience that night. Generous platter of ten assorted tempura with prawns, fresh maitake mushrooms, pumpkin, eggplant, zuchini, carrot and asparagus just to name a few.

Be sure to eat your tempura with the house-made tasty dipping sauce which was a simple mix of mirin, dashi and shoyu. but somehow Ri-Yakitori got the concoction right in their tasty dipping sauce, and everyone just loves it!

 Shake Ochazuke 
RM 17

Close Shot Of The Japanese Pickles

A rather simple rice soup dish called Shake Ochazuke or Salmon Rice Soup followed - basically a Japanese rice dish which combines dashi, steamed rice topped with savoury toppings of salted salmon flakes, scallions, nori (seaweed) and wasabi. I was told by Chef Isao that the Japanese enjoyed this dish more as a quick meal or a dish at the end of drinking session to fill up instead of proper meal time food.

Niniku Chahan
Garlic Fried Rice
RM 17

Japanese rice fried with garlic and eggs topped with scallions and shredded seaweed.

 Mochi With Green Tea Ice Cream
RM 20

Dessert followed next - it was Mochi With Green Tea Ice Cream. I had to say it was pleasant, pleasing-to-the-eye dessert. Served with kiwis, strawberries and chewy mochi, everything go well with the smooth and not-too-sweet green tea ice cream.

Before I end my blog post, there were also several dishes apart from the new menu which I tried, with request due to our inquisitive nature of checking out interesting dishes. My all-time-favourite comfort food were the tofu and eggs dishes and I usually choose to have them in most of my food-tasting session. Last but not least, I ordered a Japanese steamboat ~ Kamo Nabe.

Please note that the following three dishes are off the new menu but are available UPON SPECIAL REQUEST from the restaurant manager.

Agedashi Tofu
Japanese Style Tofu

Tofu-lovers will loved these delightful tasty, smooth with melt-the-mouth soft Japanese tofu in a very light-tasting broth. 

Hand-Rolled Omelette

Simple but delicious, I always make it a point to try eggs dishes whenever I'm dining in any Japanese restaurant. They have never failed me and all the dashimaki tasted really good, soft and thick, filled with the freshly cooked egg fragrant when served. Real comfort food for me!    

Kamo Nabe
Duck Steamboat With Japanese Soba

Kamo Nabe, it is a delectable pot of shoyu and mirin based soup with assorted vegetables served with smoked duck and fresh soba noodles on the side.  

Ri-Yakitori Bar
The Gardens Hotel 
Level 7, Mid Valley City
Lingkaran Syed Putra
59200 Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 03-2268 1188 ext. 6323

Website: www.stgiles.com/home
FaceBook: www.facebook.com/TheGardensHotelandResidences

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Friday 24 July 2015

Brotzeit German Bier Bar & Restaurant Malaysia @ Bangsar Shopping Centre Kuala Lumpur ~ Special Breakfast, New Lunch & Core Menu Review

Spread Of German Delights
Brotzeit German Bier Bar & Restaurant

Brotzeit German Bier Bar & Restaurant, a popular German eatery which is the world’s leading franchised German concept casual dining restaurant, currently operating with 3 outlets in Malaysia at  Mid Valley Megamall, Sunway Pyramid and Bangsar Shopping Centre in Klang Valley. 

Signature Mural showing the History and Development of German Beer Culture

Knowing that there is a market for good authentic German cuisine and premium biers from the Paulaner family, Brotzeit® had expanded to seven countries around the world to meet the demand for customers worldwide. 

~ Paulaner Draft Bier Sampler ~
Dunkel Hefe-Weissbier, Hefe-Weissbier, Original Munchner Urtyp, Original Munchner Dunkel

Brotzeit® offers world-famous German beers accompanied by authentic German Cuisine in a chic and contemporary setting. Brotzeit® is a typical Bavarian expression – 'Brot' being German for bread and 'Zeit' for time, referring to a cosy meal complemented by fresh beer.

With complete range of dishes ranging from soups, appetizers, salads, fladen, sausages, platters to main courses, sides and desserts, we had to limit ourselves to some of the more popular and well-known dishes at Brotzeit® during the review.

~ Star Of The Day ~
Brotzeit® Signature Pork Knuckle 
RM 99.00

Star of the German cuisines lineup was, without a doubt, the Signature Pork Knuckle - Oven roasted the German way with a crispy crackling, served with potato salad, pickles, sauerkraut with a beer infused knuckle gravy. 

Being the core menu showcased to us during this review, it was probably one of the most photogenic pork knuckle I had ever seen and tasted. With German Chef Christian's superb culinary skills in craving, it was presented to us resembling very much like a head of a cauliflower and it was still crackling when served to us during the photo taking session. 

Tender and juicy with quality pork meat's natural flavour, pork-lovers will enjoy savouring premium porki-licious pork knuckle in its natural juices. The dish was a sinful indulgence as the pork knuckle contained a good balance of fat and lean meat but what is life without good tasty food to look forward to... And remember to go with an empty stomach for this one as the knuckle makes a complete meal for three or four even. 

 Crispy Chicken Salad
 Regular : 44.50 Small : RM30.50

Crispy Chicken Salad consists of crispy chicken strips on a bed of salad greens with potato salad, drizzled with house dressing and garnished with sweet corn, tomatoes, cucumber and semi dried tomatoes.

Diners looking for something more healthy and lighter, can opt for this wholesome salad dish. Boasting of being a balanced meal on its own with carbs, protein and fibre together with  a colourful variety of Australian grown salad greens, this is an excellent low in fat, fibre-rich dish to choose especially for weight-watchers. 

~ Lunch Specials ~

Moving on, we were presented with 2 sets of their Lunch Specials for this review. Brotzeit® also offers 9 varieties of Lunch Specials which are served from 11am to 3pm daily except on Sundays and Public Holidays. Each comes with a free ice lemon tea and prices start at RM16. We run a lunch card promo and every lunch ordered is entitled to one stamp and after the 4th, 8th and 12th meals, there is a food favour reward.

~ Lunch Specials ~
Pork Chili con Carne with German Egg Noodles
 RM 16

Pork Chili con Carne with German Egg Noodles was indeed a tasty and comforting noodles dish you must try. The handmade German Egg Noodles was a reminiscent of the chinese 'pan-mee' and eaten together with the spicy pork chili con carne, making it a tasty option. Can be quite filling and I especially enjoy eating the fibre rich pork chilli cooked with lots of corn, kidney beans and minced pork meat. 

~ Lunch Specials ~
Gypsy Belly Bacon Carbonara 
RM 17.50

Gypsy Belly Bacon Carbonara on the other hand is less robust in taste, with the hand made German egg noodles cooked carbonara-style with bacon for added flavour. For a more complete meal, diners can have personal portions of soup of the day for RM5 and/or green salad for RM7 are also available with a lunch plate. If either one is consumed the diner will enjoy a free dessert of the day, truly a good offer with value-for-money lunch specials!

~ Bar Bites ~ 

As the name suggests, these are small plates served between 3-6pm daily. It is ideal to have when one is peckish but not quite in need too big a meal. Prices start from RM 15 except for the the Mini Brotzeit Platter . Amongst the items we sampled were .....

~ Bar Bites ~ 
Mini Brotzeit Platter 
RM 35

Mini Brotzeit Platter is an ideal for 2 persons sharing as its a combo platter of Gouda & Ementhal Cheeses, cold cut cuts of belly bacon, and honey baked ham plus 3 spreads, bacon, cream cheese and pork liver pate, topped with some pickles and olives.

Delectable  Spreads
 Bacon, Cream Cheese and Pork liver Pate

~ Bar Bites ~ 
Pigs In Blanket 
RM 20.00

Pigs in Blanket consists of  Pork Cheese sausages wrapped in gypsy belly bacon and sear to perfection, served with spicy wedges.

~ Bar Bites ~ 
Spicy Chicken Sausage
RM 17

Spicy Chicken Sausage is spicy chicken sausages sauteed with onions and peppers in a spicy chilli/tomato marinade. Great complement with a tall cool glass of Hefe-Wessbier draft beer!

~ Breakfast Menu ~

If you fancy a German-style hearty and delicious breakfast, Brotzeit® at BSC has some tempting treats for diners. There are 6 other breakfast varieties besides the Signature Breakfast and all come with a complimentary brewed coffee or tea.
~ Breakfast Menu ~
 Hangover Breakfast

RM 30.50 

The Hangover Breakfast as the name suggests, the perfect combo to nurse a hangover. An appetizing breakfast set comprises of a farm fresh fried egg, smoked salmon, strips of gypsy belly bacon and a bowl of beef goulash soup with a laugen bread roll and also comes with with a free coffee or tea. Diners can top-up RM 5.50 for a short glass or Radler (lager and lemonade) too if they like. It's ONLY available on Sundays and Public Holidays till 3pm.

Strips of Gypsy Belly Bacon

~ Breakfast Menu ~
Brotzeit Signature Breakfast 
RM 32.50

Do try out the Brotzeit Signature Breakfast, featuring a large breakfast plate features a combinations of a hot and cold breakfast. It's a hearty and filling breakfast with the hot offering of two farm fresh fried eggs, strips of streaky bacon and two nuremberger sausages on a bed of creamy mashed potatoes whilst the cold offering comes  two open sliders of honey baked ham, belly bacon, emmenthal and cream cheese on a bed of multi-corn bread. Priced at RM 32.50, it comes with a free cup of coffee or tea and is available daily till 3pm.

Sweet & Savoury Duo 
RM 29.00

Completing the meal was the chef's recommendation dessert, Sweet & Savoury Duo Dessert. A delightful perfect combination of chocolate coated bacon with cream, served with sliced strawberries and kiwi. The dessert stands out for its uniqueness with a savoury and sweet combination coming from Chef's clever creation of crispy bites of bacon chocolate.  

All these can be washed down with a selection of imported fruit juices, red or white house wines, and wide selection of alcoholic beverages such as draft beers, bottled beers, beer mixes, whiskeys, rums, brandy and vodka to name a few.
Mountain Fresh Fruit Juice
Non Alcoholic & Juices
Made from 100% Australian Fruit.

Brotzeit® serves a variety of fruit juices from the Mountain Fresh Fruit Juice (Premium) brand. Delicious and good for health, these juices has no added artificial colours or flavours, no added preservatives, no added sugar, no added water, and is not from concentrate. It is made from 100% Australian fruit.

Favourite Drink Of The Day
Mountain Fresh Fruit Juice 
 Blueberry Plus Grape& Apple Juice

As I loved blueberries in any form as it's an excellent source of antioxidants, be it as dessert, ice cream, cake or juices, I opted for the Blueberry Plus Grape& Apple Juice. Refreshingly good especially after a heavy meal, I downed two bottles of this awesome juice.  

Thumbs Up for The Chefs at Brotzeit® 
Chef Christian & Chef Tak Sharma

Brotzeit German Bier Bar & Restaurant
The BANGSAR Outlet Has Closed 
You Can Still Find BROTZEIT at MID VALLEY Megamall

Lot GE( 018) Ground External Floor
Mid Valley Megamall, Mid Valley City
Lingkaran Syed Putra
59200 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03 - 2287 5516/7

Monday-Sunday: 11 am to Midnight
Later closing on eve of Public Holidays and weekends

Bangsar Shopping Centre (BSC) 

Lot G 130, Ground Floor,
Bangsar Shopping Centre,
285, Jalan Maarof, Bukit Bandaraya,
59000 Kuala Lumpur
Tel : 03 - 2282 9516/7

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