I have not blogged about middle eastern food as much as I would have liked. Then again, I have not eaten middle eastern food as much as I would have preferred too.
It’s not that I do not like middle eastern cuisine; no no. On the contrary, I’m extremely fond of it, be it Greek or Turkish or Lebanese, (though I can barely tell them apart!), as warm pita pockets, creamy tahini spreads and flavourful lamb (the middle eastern methods of lamb preparations are so yummy!) are some of my favourite dishes.
Tahini spread with warm pita pockets always starts off my middle eastern experience nicely.
My problem with Middles Eastern cuisine in KL lies in the portioning & the price factor. Both seem to go hand in hand; where both are big in size & cost and hence not very small – group dining friendly.
Most fortunately, I’ve found the solution to my woes for now. I’m loving Al Amar Express, the hip and comtemporary Middle Eastern restaurant that offers casual Mid Eastern dining with prices that are more accesible to all budgets.
A branch off the succesful full-dining restaurant Al Amar on the 6th floor of Pavilion Shopping Mall, Al Amar Express offers a menu that are one-diner sized, with a repertoire of Lebanese wraps, healthy sandwiches, chawarmas, salads & Manakeesh (Lebanese Pizzas) and authentic bite sized Lebanese pastries to choose from.
My Mixed Lebanese Platter gave me a good overall taste of Lebanese pastries, offering a fair selection of 6 different pastries that each has its own unique shape, flavour & preparation method.
You can order these individually off the menu or opt for a platter like I did. Description of each pastry are as below.
Another entree I had during dinner was this leave – wrapped Greek Dolmades look-alike.
Each individual parcel encased tasty but sourish rice grains & nuts within.
The EggCellence – 3 eggs baked your own way (RM15), with choice of toppings of Cheese, Turkey, Soujouk, Beef Bacon, Awarma for RM4 each sounded intriguing on the menu……
…..but turned out to be quite ordinary. My advice? Do opt for some toppings to spice this baked egg dish up.
Healthy juices are available – RM12/glass.
My favourites – the thin crusty Manakeesh are baked on the spot at the premise.
And the end result are delicious Lebanese pizzas at the very affordable range of RM12 -RM16.
No middle eastern meal is complete without their Chawarma – their version of kebabs.
For the best of both
world meats, we had the Mix Chawarma Platter – RM26, which combined chic & beef chawarma & served with tarator, garlic sauce, and french fries.
Desserts were light but no less interesting. Achtalieh – Lebanese Milk Pudding served with slices of bananas and topped with Pistachio and honey –RM12 was entirely new to me. Brigette finds the Lebanese coffee -(cup) RM8 slightly powdery but aromatic enough.
Riz BL Halib – Rice Pudding topped with Pistachio. RM12. This was our pick of the night, as we all loved the smooth, creamy but light on the tongue taste. Nestled within the concoction was grains of rice which made for an interesting texture.
Al Amar Express – perfect for a relaxing meal and to enjoy the KL skyline at night.
Shisha takes centrestage here at night. ………
………..with majority of the crowd opting to sit outside and enjoy the cool evening breeze.
Suspended from the high celing are numerous black wire chandeliers that give off a soft ambient glow. The exterior side of the restaurant has been modeled using a large expanse of glass walls so customers can watch the busy crowds of KL stroll-by.
Beers and wines are available from the bar.
Almaza – RM20.
The textures and colours of the restaurant come in soft soothing shades of cream and beige with wooden floors and touches of Al-Amar’s signature stamp of red.
Opening hours: 8am to 3am daily – Great hours for that early morning brekkie or a healthy late night snack with shisha!
Al Amar Express
G44, Ground Floor
You can’t miss it! It’s right in front of Vincci & Charles & Keith on the side walk.