Last Saturday afternoon, I had the privilege of being invited to taste the new menu at Isthmus, that swanky restaurant in Northpoint that I've been raving about. Of course, one man's food might be another man's poison, but generally, most of my friends also enjoy the food here.
Saturday afternoon, with good friends, good food and wine, .....ah, this is the life.
The cold starter of a vegetable terrine, held together with a tomato coulis. It was wonderfully tangy, and refreshing starter. Although it was served with toasted baguette, I reckon it's good enough to eat on its own. Layers of zuchinni and egg plant and pumpkin. Very nice.
This is what happens when Dewi Sukarno married Sukarno. Japanese and Indonesian. An interesting combination of vegetables, crunchy golden needle mushroom (or was it enoki) wrapped in nori, with a hint of mayo and wasabi, complemented with a gado gado sauce. Rather interesting, though some didn't care for the mayo. King of England, who was with us, of course doesn't mind all things western, so mayo was fine. I wouldn't have minded a tad more wasabi.
This is inspired the the Terengganu version of otak otak, except it uses crab instead of mackerel. Satan? Santa? Something like that. Not Satan as in Lucifer, but Sah Tan....also an interesting starter, very tasty, and quite distinctly local. King of England was saying he prefers his food defined, either western or asian. I think FDI, me and Mrs King of England are okay with the fusiony (though that word is quite taboo these days) mixes.
The salad, which has the components of the penang rojak, was okay. I didn't particularly like the dressing. It was an interesting combination, nevertheless.
Now, this is worth going to Northpoint just for lunch. Some evolution of our usual chicken rice, but using the most fragrant Bario rice, and the chicken, yummy, stewed to perfection. I am salivating just thinking about this dish. It has hints of our usual hainanese chicken rice, for the rice, but it is gorgeously fluffy, and not oily. The chicken, is really good.
I went to the toilet before this was served, so I didn't hear what this dish is called, but it's some contemporary form of Lam Mee. It may look rather ordinary, but the best thing about this was the stock. Good to the last drop. I didn't care for the chicken breast pieces, I am a leg person, (I think Nigella Lawson is too, for I was watching her mughlay curry and she said "use only thighs") but again, the stock, made from Village Cock, (kampung chicken), was sublime.
I've seen recipes for poached pears in many recipe books, but I can't say I recall actually eating it. This was black sesame ice cream on poached nashi pear, which was fantastic. So much so, King of England placed an order for an industrial size tub of the black sesame ice cream, without asking the cost. He can afford it lah. The poached pear was yummy, still crunchy, infused with all the lovely flavours of the poaching liquid, I suspect red wine may have been involved. We unashamedly asked for a second helping of this dessert. Aiyo, very bad, I shouldn't be blogging about this before lunch.
Anyway, Isthmus is located on the ground floor of the newly completed Northpoint Condos in Mid Valley. You can either park in MVM and walk across the steel walkway to Northpoint, or park in Northpoint itself, which can be a bit costly if you intend to stay on and yarn the afternoon away. Telephone : 03-22828112 for reservations.
Changing topic, does ANYONE know where I can find these tart rings?
There are three different sizes in the picture above. From the top, we have one about 7 inches across and maybe 1/2 to 3/4" high. The middle ones are like cake tins, 7 inches wide, probably 2½ inches high. The ones at the bottom, come in two sizes, one like Wonder Woman's bracelet, (see pic below), probably 2½ " across, (diameter), and 2 inches high, and like the one above, probably slightly larger, 3" across, and 2" high.
Can anyone tell me where I can get these things without paying an arm and a leg?