It's not everyday that I have an opportunity to dine in an established Chinese restaurant inside the very posh Starhill Gallery, Kuala Lumpur, let alone being served by a top chef. Recently named one of Asia's top 20 chefs, Hong Kong native Chef Alex Au introduced 40 new Chiu Chow dishes at Pak Loh Chiu Chow, Starhill Gallery. These additions, alongside a number of signature dishes, will be available from 5th December 2015 onwards. Check out a sneak preview here on this post.
|Pak Loh Chiu Chow Restaurant @ Starhill Gallery, Kuala Lumpur|
Pak Loh Chiu Chow Restaurant
LG 12 Feast Village
181 Jalan Bukit Bintang
55100 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03 - 2782 3856
|Located inside the Feast Village of Starhill Gallery|
A brief history lesson is in order. Established in 1967, Pak Loh Chiu Chow in Hong Kong has long since forged a name for itself, uncompromising on authentic high-end Teochew cuisine. Reputed for serving the most authentic Teochew cuisine, Pak Loh Chiu Chow delivers a wealth of delicious flavours associated with China's gastronomical capital of Guangdong Province.
|Posh looking interior|
After many years of fame and formidable success, the restaurant decided to expand its operations overseas, to us. Bringing with it almost 40 years of culinary experiences and signature recipes, Pak Loh Chiu Chow Starhill Gallery, dubbed the Golden Sister of the famed Hong Kong brand, opened its doors to the public in 2005.
|Where the action is at, see through glass to see the chefs at work|
With over 90 dishes to choose from, the new menu at Pak Loh Chiu Chow includes present signature dishes, and an addition of over 40 new recipes, covering items such as refreshing soups, chicken, beef, pork, seafood, medicinal bird's nest, rice, porridge, noodles and dessert. Basically its a whole revamp, exciting times ahead come this 5th December 2015.
|Have some tea first|
The newly improved Pak Loh Chiu Chow menu will also feature an extensive list of premium Chinese and Taiwanese teas, such as Lily Jasmine and Tung Ting Oolong. For those who would like to try out some authentic Chinese wines, varieties such as Wu Liang Ye and Shao Hsing Hua Tiao are also available to order.
|Chef Alex Au introducing to us the new additions to the menu|
|A cooking demonstration was also performed too by the very skilful Chef Alex Au|
Chef Alex Au truly spread his wings and rapidly gained international recognition in 2011 when he and his team won the prestigious HAPA Platinum Award for “Most Authentic Asian Cuisine Restaurant”. At Pak Loh Chiu Chow, Kuala Lumpur, Chef Alex presents authentic Chinese cuisine in a brand new way. Heading the culinary team in Malaysia, the new dishes at Pak Loh Chiu Chow was skilfully created by him.
|Baked Bombay Duck Fish with Plum Sauce - RM25|
Our first course of the satisfying meal over at Pak Loh Chiu Chow was the very delicious Baked Bombay Duck Fish with Plum Sauce. Almost alike to the usual sweet and sour fish which happens to be one of my favourite seafood dish, here it comes with plum sauce, and uses premium Bombay Duck Fish instead. The meat itself is tender, with edible bones due to being deep fried earlier before doused in imported plum sauce. Love the crispy outer skin layer, with aromatic flavour.
|Threadfish Fish Soup with Coriander and Leek - RM98|
A very premium soup was served next, the Threadfish Fish Soup with Coriander and Leek. It has a very strong fish flavour, one which I had a small problem adapting to. The chunky cuts of threadfish head is pan fried prior to being added to a base fish broth which has been boiled for many hours. A nourishing soup dish indeed, inside there's leek, pre-cooked radish and parsley to be found.
|Authentic Top Shell with Preserved Vegetables - RM108|
Premium and exotic ingredients were used for the Authentic Top Shell with Preserved Vegetables dish, which actually reflects in its pricing. The top shell is thinly sliced, and then stir fried together with onions, scallions, red pepper and preserved mustard to give out a rather flavourful dish. I still have not gotten over my reluctance of taking shelled seafood, snails and so just had a small bite from this dish.
|Traditional Steamed Tiger-Toothed Croaker with Pork, Ham and Garlic Wrapped with Aromatic Chinese Cabbage - RM98|
A case of a dish that tastes way better than it looks, the Traditional Steamed Tiger-Toothed Croaker with Pork, Ham and Garlic Wrapped with Aromatic Chinese Cabbage came served looking rather gruesome, with green chinese cabbage wrapping the fish. Just by looking at it, you know a lot of effort has been put into its preparation. Subtly flavoured with soy sauce, stuffed with minced pork and ham prior to steaming the fish, the freshness of the fish really shines through the moment you bite into it.
|Authentic Smoked Bacon Cooked with Yellow Chives - RM45|
Finally, my type of food, the meaty kind. Now the Authentic Smoked Bacon Cooked with Yellow Chives tasted as good as it looks, this fragrant pork belly is smoked to perfection, specially prepared by Chef Alex Au. Love how the yellow chives went well with the flavours from the fatty pork belly. Yum, I wished they had more slices of meat though.
|Braised Spring Chicken Stuffed with Glutinous Rice, Garlic, Ginger and Straw Mushroom - RM45|
Up next, we had an appetizing poultry dish, the Braised Spring Chicken Stuffed with Glutinous Rice, Garlic, Ginger and Straw Mushroom. One of the traditional Teochew braised dish, the juicy spring chicken is stuffed with lots of glutinous rice and mushrooms before being braised for many hours. Definately a flavourful dish, the aroma and sweetness of the sauce and chicken bursting out with each bite.
|Classic Chiu Chow Assorted Seasonal Vegetables - RM32|
Unlike any vegetable dish, the Classic Chiu Chow Assorted Seasonal Vegetables had a certain uniqueness to it. It had a combination of seven varieties of vegetables such as lotus, carrot, celery, black fungus, parsley, leek, spinach, and onion. Interestingly the vegetables chosen had names which rhymes with a prosperous Chinese word. Tasted great though, love the crunchy, savoury bits.
|Braised Pumpkin Bean Curd with Wild Mushrooms and Dried Scallop - RM42|
The Braised Pumpkin Bean Curd with Wild Mushrooms and Dried Scallop came served hot on a plate, with generous amount of sauce on top. The bean curd is made by Chef Alex himself, with a unique texture unlike the ready made ones you find off the shelf. It literally melts in your mouth, with that distinct pumpkin flavour infused into the bean curd. This dish actually tastes great, for a vegetable dish.
|Flat Rice Noodle Soup with Threadfin Fish and Preserved Vegetables - RM35|
The subsequent dish had the same flavours as the soup that we initially had, as it uses the same threadfin fish, this time with added flat rice noodle. A rather filling noodle dish, the Flat Rice Noodle Soup with Threadfin Fish and Preserved Vegetables had this slippery goodness to it. You cannot argue with the nourishing values of this noodle dish.
|Authentic Crispy Bananas with Golden Cream - RM24|
We ended the meal with a dessert worth at least two servings, for me. One serving is not enough to truly savour the Authentic Crispy Bananas with Golden Cream dessert. This particular sweet and savoury dessert is coated with five different types of flour to coat and deep fried to perfection. Really good stuff.
In conjunction with the launch of the new menu, Pak Loh Chiu Chow will be running an Instagram contest throughout December 2015. Diners would have to take a picture of a dish at Pak Loh Chiu Chow, write and interesting caption and post it on Instagram. Tag @feastvillageshg and hashtag #Paklohchiuchow and you may be on your way to win a Chinese New Year 2016 family set menu!