It’s been a while since I had such a hedonistic meal.
I admit I have not been fine-dining much, and I’m blaming it on the boring KL dining scene. But looking at the plates of marvellous culinary creations above; I’m certain you’ll agree with me that Upper Deck at Tanzini warrants a visit.
I’m inclined to put Cilantro, The Sage, Lafite & Upper Deck on the same culinary level. Not sure if that would be correct, but the presentation & dishes at Upper Deck certainly demonstrated degustation style dining, with much emphasis on the quality of the ingredients as well as the creativity of the chefs.
However, my vote goes to Upper Deck if price is a factor for mid-budget gourmands seeking to satisfy their discerning fine dining tastebuds. For a 6 course tummy bursting meal, it’s merely RM215++/pax (without wine) & certainly worth the credit for the excellent ingredients used.
The prelude to our extravaganza dinner was a timbale of succulent sweet crabmeat topped with what seems to be like a potato chip. This was followed by Baby Lobster Tail Salad (Assorted Heirloom tomatoes, garden greens, basil ravioli, and aged balsamico); again sweet & bouncy lobster meat thanks to the freshness of the produce used. We had a good laugh trying to share the portion among 4 of us, and the intriguing green sphere in the middle was actually a “molecular” basil ravioli which spurted “liquid basil” upon “dissecting. Interesting, though we were not sure how it should have complimented the whole dish.
For the uninitiated, in degustation menus; where there are many components on a plate, each component is supposed to play a part to either enhance or lent a different textural feel to the palate. Or at least that was what I was told (I’m no expert in gourmet dining).
While the wait staff did a commendable job of announcing what was on our plates, I would have preferred it if they could as well recommend the sequence of eating it.
Anyhow, when in doubt, put everything into a single serving & chow it down. One can’t go wrong there!
On another plate a Duo of Hokkaido Scallop (Caramelized scallop with pureed edamame & Carpaccio scallop with crab roe emulsion) was less complicated. Not much is required for top-notch scallops, as it’s natural sweet flavour was all that matters.
The cooking process (mostly pan seared) is of utmost importance though, as the wrong timing would generally rendered your precious scallops rubbery. Nothing unforgivable of that sort was present on this plate of course. And both rendition of scallops were rave-worthy.
The soups were direct opposites of each other; one Spanish inspired Momotaro Tomato Gazpacho with tiger prawn (served cold, in case you don’t know) and another piping hot from a teapot is the Smoked Duck Tea (ox tongue ragu ravioli, black trumpet mushroom served with a pot of smoked duck consomme).
I much preferred the duck consomme of course, clean tasting with a good depth of flavour while the gazpacho was on the opposite end with very refreshing naunces, almost fruity, probably thanks to the Momotaro tomatoes used. I heart momotaro tomatoes, specially imported from Japan; its flavour is an intricate & harmonious combination of sweet and tangy.
Dinner proceeded rather slowly, and I was anxious to get to the mains by now. I glanced at the menu, and realized we are just at “Starters”!
Starter: Butternut squash ravioli with avruga caviar & creamy sea urchin. The juxtaposition of distinctive flavour from each ingredient burst on our palates. The sea urchin is delicious: subtle, sweet, creamy, and sea-salty rather than fishy. Decadent avruga caviar popped in my mouth & the sweetness from the butternut squash all coalesced seamlessly in one mouthful of bliss.
Starter: Pacific Rainbow Trout – Dole sweet corn risotto, black truffle, and styria pumpkin seed oil. This paled in comparison after the butternut sqaush ravioli. I found the fish to be a tad overcooked or perhaps that’s the texture of rainbow trout? Can’t claim to be an expert here but I generally like my fish moist & flaky in texture.
A pretty good portion for a starter yes? These are the same portions served for ONE pax if you are opting for the RM215++ Degustation Menu.
Palate cleanser. Intermezzo – Citrus Sorbet – ultra sour sorbet. No kidding.
2 and a half hours into our meal, we were finally served the mains. Being a typical china(wo)man, I was impatient to get my lamb/beef; no thanks to raving reviews from Sean.
When the plates were set in front of me, I had little doubt that I won’t be disappointed. The verdict is in the taste of course & the 1824 Beef Tenderloin & Cheek – Slow-roasted beef tenderloin & cheek, swede purée, summer root vegetables, and zinfandel reduction was as excellent as I had imagined. Cooked sous vide to a tender pink, it went marvellously with the zinfandel (a red wine from California) reduction. I’m so glad that I wasn’t served the typical brown, bearnaise, black pepper or mushroom sauce!
Equally sterling was the Lamb Rack in Granola Bar Crust – Caramelized onion tarte tatin, baby vegetables niçoise & spiced peach chutney.
Food here is both a culinary & visual feast.
I stared askance as plates after plates of glorious red meat from the other tables were sent back to the kitchen to be re-cooked. I think in general we Malaysians are conditioned to having our meats thoroughly cooked. For me both the beef & lamb were perfectly done & retained its natural flavours as it should be.
Fillet of Yellowtail King Fish – Oven-roasted lemon grass infused hamachi fish, and braised kohlrabi & fennel broth.
Profiteroles with Banana Ice Cream. I loved this, though some bloggers find it icy. The ice cream has actual bits of bananas in it & one could taste the distinct flavour of coconut too. The profiteroles were dry so I left them untouched.
Ambiance. Classy & formal.
Redefining Chic Eating with Contemporary Fine Dining and Fresh Nuevo Cuisine
Chefs: Executive Chef, Johnny Fua and Upper Deck Sous Chef, Alven Tan.
Choice of dining options is varied from a four course dinner at RM155++ per pax or a five
course dinner at RM185++ per pax. Epicureans however, can go for Chef’s Degustation
Menu which features a sampling of the offered menu in six courses at RM215++ per pax.
Open for dinner service only, reservations are highly encouraged as the Upper Deck sits a
maximum of 40pax per dinner service.
For early reservation please contact Tanzini at +603.2168.1899.
For more information please email Tanzini at [email protected]
Visit Tanzini’s website for the latest promotions www.tanzini.com.my
199 Jalan Tun Razak
GPS: N03 09′ 54
E 101 43′ 21