REVIEW: MIGF 2011 – Festival Menu @ Chalet, Equatorial Hotel KL

Equatorial Hotel Kuala Lumpur will be hosting an “Exquisitely Swiss” promotion in conjunction with Malaysia International Gourmet Food Festival (MIGF) 2011 from 1 – 31 October 2011 in Chalet, one of their 6 fine dining restaurants.

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The whole event aims to create awareness on the uniqueness of Swiss food, beverage, culture and music. For the whole month of October 2011, an invited Guest Chef; Chef Fritz Tschantre from Switzerland is here to woo diners with his signature dishes.

I was invited for a preview dinner just last week, and had the honour of having my FIRST MIGF dinner for 2011. :P

Below: Guest Chef; Fritz Tschantre from Switzerland & GM of Equatorial Hotel, Mr Alan.

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The Chalet is offering 2 separate MIGF  menus this year, the Classic Set Menu (which we were served that night) and the Nouveau Set Menu.

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I was told that the dishes were all traditionally Swiss, with most of the ingredients carefully selected & imported wherever possible to ensure the authenticity of flavour and taste.
I had Swiss cuisine before of course; and back then when I was in Penang, my god-sis’s dad is a Swiss. But what was served that night was an eye-opener to me, and made me realized there’s more to Swiss cuisine than sausages, rosti & chocolates.

Classic Menu
Bouquet of Green Asparagus with Apple Balsamic Dressing and Air Dried Beef – RM45

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The 1st course was a simple carpaccio of air dried beef with long slivers of asparagus nicely bundled within a slice of cucumber. I was charmed by the artful presentation, and I loved the lightly dressed asparagus with apple balsamic dressing even more.
The air dried beef was a tad salty at first but bearable once eaten together with the greens.

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Cappuccino of Morels with Caramel Apple Skewer – RM35

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The soup warmed me with it’s creamy goodness & lovely fragrance.
I dipped the caramel sesame coated apple skewer into it (was chided afterwards by the chef that it wasn’t meant to be!) & loved the play of fruity sweetness versus the salty, earthy flavours of the morels (mushrooms) soup. The taste of coffee was distinctive enough, but not too pronounced to interfere with the overall dish.

Basel-style Onion Tart  – RM35

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The onion tart tasted like an onion quiche; albeit a wobblier version. There was nothing to fault nor praise for this. I was anxious to get to the mains, and waited impatiently for our palate cleanser; the customary sorbet to served, for that means the main courses are next! 🙂

Sorbet
Dark Cherry

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Pan-fried Giant Prawns with Poire Williams-Vanilla Sabayon and Rosti Potatoes – RM105

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Generally I’m not a fan of prawns & the word “giant” in this actually puts me off.  But it’s part of the menu that night; and the Poire Williams-vanilla sabayon sauce had me intrigued.

Fortunately for us, an otherwise ordinary crustacean dish was exotic-is ed with the Poire Williams-vanilla sabayon sauce.
It’s basically pear liquer (Poire Williams ) with vanilla Sabayon; a light custard made by using eggs and sugar, whipped over a double boiler or any other heat source.
Sabayon is normally flavoured with liquer & in this case the Poire Williams  did the job nicely. The end product is a luscious, sweet sauce with a tinge of spicy after-taste. I wouldn’t mind another giant prawn or two just so I could have more servings of this sauce!

Rosa Pan-Fried Milk Veal Steak Aargau-style with Semolina Cake – RM125

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Between the 2 mains, I was in anticipation of the milk fed veal steak more. They didn’t inquire beforehand how I like it done so I kept my fingers crossed & hoped that they serve it medium rare as how all red meats should be.
But as I cut into my veal, I found it not as bloody as I would have preferred it to be. However Chef Fritz Tschantre assured me that the veal is best eaten cooked to that degree. Who am I to argue? Anyhow, it was still slightly pinkish inside, and juicy enough.

Mustard Ice Cream with Display of Forest Berries – RM30

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Mustard ice cream. It sounded more bizarre than it’s actual taste I assure you. Because it was very creamy, the sting of the mustard wasn’t as pronounced. According to Chef Fritz, the mustard seeds were specially imported for this, so it is not your typical English mustard blended with cream! :P

Swiss chocolates

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 Should you opt for the Nouveau Set, the courses are as below:

Nouveau Set Menu
Chilled, Jelly Tomatoes Consommé with Trout Caviar, Fresh Herbs and Basil Oil – RM35

Sun-Choked Purée with Veal Sweetbread, Sautéed Mushrooms and Herb Silhouette Potato – RM65

Foie Gras Terrine Crusted in Toasted Almonds with Apple, Walnut and Herb Sprout Salad – RM90

Sorbet
Sour Cherry

Seared Cod Fish, Scallop, Shrimp and Mussels with Leek Confit in Saffron Veloute – RM105
Or
Wagyu Beef with Green Peppercorn Brandy Cream Emulsion, Swiss Chard & Ricotta Cheese Ravioli, Escargot Popover and Jus De Viande – RM125

Sweet Spiced Pyramid with Frozen Nougat on Vanilla Honey and Candied Orange – RM30

PRICES:

Classic Menu: RM225++ per person
Nouveau Set Menu: RM238++ per person

*All prices are subject to 10% service charge & prevailing government tax

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Festival Offers

Door Gifts
Festival Menu diners will receive a delightful confectionary gift while ladies will be presented with a long stem rose.

Block Bookings
Receive 10% discount for Private Luncheons of eight or more guests dining on the Festival Menu.

Birthday Offers
Bring a group of at least four Festival Menu diners and Chalet will offer you its “dancing dessert”, the Sabayon, along with a 500g cake for the birthday boy or girl.

Promotion
An Exquisite Evening with Fritz Tschantre
7 October, 7pm, RM380++ Specially flown over by Lufthansa Airlines, enjoy a very intimate and special five-course authentically Swiss menu with wine pairing, prepared by our visiting Chef all the way from Zurich, Switzerland.

Special Offer
Pre order your Christmas Hamper and get 15% discount throughout the Festival month.

Exclusive Contest
Enjoy a memorable Festival Menu and stand to win a week-long trip for two very lucky diners to Switzerland complete with unlimited first-class Swiss Pass tickets, hotel stays and air tickets. The total value for this prize is RM34,000.

For reservations:
HOTEL EQUATORIAL KUALA LUMPUR
Jalan Sultan Ismail
50250 Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia
Tel: +60 3 2161 7777
Fax: +60 3 2161 9020
Email: [email protected]
Web: www.equatorial.com/kul/