“Around the World with Michel Rolland” – The Restaurant, The Club @ The Saujana

Here I am, back at The Restaurant after my initial dinner here a month back. Seafood was exemplary on my prior visit and today, Chef Alexander totally outdid himself with the meats. Perhaps it’s time to pay some attention to The Restaurant, as opposed to the other restaurants in town.

The new kitchen maestro at work has certainly shown much potential. At this moment, I look forward to more creative dishes from Chef Alex, rather than the usual Modern European cuisine of lamb, veal and halibut. Perhaps a more intriguing and exciting menu would pull the crowd here?

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Tonight was a dinner highlighting the wines of Michel Rolland.

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The Rolland Collection is a range of Bordeaux wines with 5 appellations from the right bank where the Rolland family originated, in Pomerol, France.
Added to this, they have their favorites from ‘abroad’, discovered when travelling for their work. The new world range are 3 wines from Argentina and 2 from South Africa, followed by Spain and coming soon, who knows what other wine or personal adventures lie ahead!

Ayala Zero Dosage NV. Ayala has a unique wine in the Zero Dosage : it is a Brut Majeur without any dosage.
What does that mean you ask?

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Well, I’m a newbie in wines too, but I have been lucky enough to have some exposure in wines in the last few months, especially from my Wine For Asia 2011 trip, the exclusive and Asia’s most comprehensive international wine exhibition.

Zero Dosage refers to the term used in the production of champagne to denote wines at the very driest end of the scale  –having less than three grams of residual sugar per liter of wine. They are often referred to as being non-dose (undosed) or ‘Brut Zero’.

Before being sealed for the last time, almost all champagnes are given a final dosage of sweet ‘vin de liqueur‘ (usually a mixture of sugar syrup and wine), known as the liqueur d’expedition. In case of Brut Nature this step is missed out – meaning that the champagne is left in its ‘natural’ state.

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Champagne Brut Nature wines are naturally high in acidity and low in sugar, making for a highly refreshing but searingly dry mouthful.
Needless to say, I didn’t quite enjoy this as much as I would for other champagnes. I love champagnes yes, but I prefer sweeter and not dry ones.

The amuse bouche of Home-dried Rock Melon with Smoked Mozzarella, drizzled with 24 years Aged Balsamic was superlatively good though as the 24 years aged balsamic has an amazing depth of flavour.
24 years…..that’s the oldest balsamic I have ever tasted so far!
Now I understand the whole business about balsamics and it’s escalating value in tandem with it’s age. I would fork out the cash for such good balsamic!

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For my dinner here a month back, I enjoyed the Expression of Tuna and tonight, Chef Alex Expressions of Salmon with Beetroot & Horseradish was somewhat less stellar, though I’m a bigger fan of salmon than tuna.

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The tartar was alright but the beetroot was too sour while the smoked salmon was too salty. Ah well, at least the amuse bouche made up for it.

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This was paired with a white, the Chateau La Grande Clotte Blanc, France 2007 (on the left), a crisp, oaky and citrus-y wine with good acidity and a long finish.

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A huge fan of duck, I eagerly awaited the Pan-Seared Duck Breast, Pot Roasted White Cabbage, Confit Duck Leg. And it didn’t disappoint one bit. I love every element on this plate. Perfect pink, tender duck breast and really delicious savoury cabbage.

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I had duck confit puff a week before for the Nerovivo X’mas preview dinner (post coming up next!) and I had thought that was good. This, however, was much much better! It’s essentially shredded duck meat puff; crispy, savoury and satisfying.

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Mariflor Pinot Noir, Argentina 2007. Ok, I’m never a fan of reds. Especially not Pinot Noir (this is 100% pinot noir grapes) and Argentinian wines. Enough said.

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Palate Cleanser. Blueberry Granita.

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Olive and Herb Poached Saddle of Lamb, Creamy Polenta, Sautéed Peppers. 

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Another outstanding dish. I think the picture illustrate everything I wanted to say. How can you not love this?

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Campo Alegre, Toro, Spain 2008 (left). Full-bodied and mouth-filling on the palate, this is wine is rich in blackcurrant and black cherry fruits with hints of oak spice and black pepper. In short, it’s pretty hard for me to drink, since I never liked “spicy”wines.

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Chateau Fontenil, Fronsac, France 2006 (right) was paired with the next bovine dish, Strip of Milk fed Beef, Red Wine Braised Beef Cheek with Truffle Potato Blini and Mousse Line.

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The beef cheek was sublime, very well executed, soft and have the most beautiful gelatinous texture. The cheeks have evidently been slow-cooked as the meat falls apart at the mere prod of the fork. The truffle potato blini (the scallop looking disc above) and mousse line (mash) was pillowy soft and a pleasure to eat. If only the same can be said for the supposedly “main star”of the dish. The milk fed beef cut fell short of expectations, coming across surprisingly rubbery though it looked so promising! Looks can be deceiving indeed.

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Yes! It’s desserts time. And the Muscat below was my favourite that night. Well, it’s smooth and it’s sweet. So yea, it’s a no brainer.

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Chocolate Passion Fruit Cake, Dark Chocolate Mousse, White Chocolate Ice Cream.

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Interesting pairing of the sour-ish passionfruit (both fruits and sauce) for this cake, where the zesty tang from the fruit cuts through the richness of the chocolate very well. I’m not sure why it was so hard (the cake) and a few of us had parts of it flying off the plate in our attempts to eat it! :P 

This “Around the World with Michel Rolland” wine pairing dinner is available for the month of December at RM260++ per person.
Contact [email protected] or ring +603 7806 7000 ext 6722 for your reservations!

Now, I have to try Italian dining at Senja next, before moving on to Kogetsu. It’s time to explore all the dining outlets here at the Saujana! :P

The Restaurant @ The Club Saujana Resort KL.

Address
The Saujana Hotel Kuala Lumpur
Suajana Resort, Jalan Lapangan Terbang SAAS, 40150 Shah Alam, Kuala Lumpur
Phone
+603-7840 5502 ext 6122/ 4717

All pictures are:

Samsung NX11