LRT No. 13/50 articles – MRT Muzium Negara: Prasarana x Malay Mail x Rebecca Saw
NOTE: This is my year long collaboration with Malay Mail and I am charged to explore gastronomic around (within 600 m walk) fifty selected (Prasarana Malaysia Bhd (RapidKL) train stations (LRT & MRT).
** Written work (pre-edit by editor) and images are mine.
Published article: Published 18th September 2017
1. In Malay Mail e-Paper:
2. On Malay Mail.com: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/print/eat-drink/good-bites-amid-treasured-landmarks
ORIGINAL submitted article: My long winded one!
The Muzium Negara MRT, as its name suggests, provides direct access to one of Malaysia’s largest museum.
500 metres away is The Majestic Hotel, restored to glory and is currently a luxury classic hotel. Opposite it sits the iconic Kuala Lumpur Railway Station, another historical and architecturally remarkable building.
All these beloved landmarks are among the most photographed symbols of the city due to their gorgeous facades and with the opening of Muzium Negara MRT, tourist and locals alike can now benefit from its proximity to several such emblematic sites.
Street food is however, a bit elusive.
But not all is lost, as a 240 metres, air-conditioned pedestrian walkway links KL Sentral and the Muzium Negara MRT so it is possible to head to Brickfields to gorge on banana leaf rice and hawker food.
Nevertheless, if we were to keep to a strict 600 metres radius, your options are Nu Sentral, KL Sentral, The Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur, The St. Regis Kuala Lumpur, KL Hilton, Aloft Hotel and Le Meriden Kuala Lumpur.
While I agree that hotel dining can be expensive and predictable, The Majestic Hotel and St Regis, both steps away from the MRT exit, offer significant unique dining experiences that are exclusive to their brands.
For a start, THE ORCHID CONSERVATORY in The Majestic Hotel is the only one of its kind in the country.
Showcasing a hanging garden with various orchids in bloom within a glass atrium, the botanical surroundings provide a wonderful backdrop for photography and the perfect serenity for an afternoon tea. The tea set includes sweet and savouries from both western and local gastronomy worlds.
The Colonial Cafe recreates the atmosphere of the halcyon days of the planters of Malaya and offers authentic classical cuisine from the colonial era.
Signatures are the Hainanese Chicken Rice Balls and Hainanese Chicken Chop. We were informed that the tightly guarded chicken chop recipe was carefully passed on to the chefs by Puan Sri Kai Yong Yeoh, wife of Tan Sri Dato’ Seri (Dr) Yeoh Tiong Lay.
Suffice to say, The Colonial Cafe is the only place you would be able to taste it, alongside other classic colonial favourites and British options like Spotted Dick and Old Style Faggots.
For value dining, Contango is reknowned for serving one of the best buffets in town, excelling at both quality and quantity.
Come nightfall, the descendants of the legendary Maestro Alfonso Soliano, a family whose musical traditions date well back into the nation’s history, entertain with their classic renditions at The Bar.
This nostalgia experience is rare as not many (if any) nightspots in the city offer such an affair. I would recommend it for those seeking a sentimental, relaxed night.
No less opulent is a high tea experience at The Regis. Here a delectable selection of cakes and entremets are displayed in a hand-crafted vitrine, while a competent Tea Sommelier is on hand to make recommendations on tea flavours.
While the The Orchid Conservatory is serene and wistful, the smart yet casual vibe of The Drawing Room, accented by original works of art offers a contemporary, upscale feel. So the choice is yours.
The St Regis also boasts of housing Malaysia’s first restaurant opened by a three-Michelin starred chef.
The omakase-only menu at Taka by Sushi Saito consists of the freshest sushi with the choicest ingredients sourced from the same suppliers of the original three Michelin star outlet, Sushi Sait in Tokyo. This recreates a dining experience with high similarity to the original, and assures patrons of the best omakase meal money can buy.
An extensive collection of the finest sakes has been curated at the Sake Bar so if your libation leans towards rice wines, then Sake Bar would surely appease the sake connoisseur in you.
For meals below RM20, Nu Sentral is your best bet. F & B outlets are located on every level of this modern mall, be it snack kiosks or Peranakan, Japanese, local fare or fast food. My personal picks are Sam’s Deli for casual, budget meals and Warisan Nasi Kukus for their unique Nasi Kukus Ayam Goreng Berempah. I also like Kurin for their poke bowls and pokeritto.
It is grab and go or quick dine-in at Sam’s Deli. Operating on a self-service system, the dining area is clean, the food fresh and most importantly, value for money.
From cook-to-order Japanese meals to ready made salads, sushi, hot dim sum and rice bowls, there is something for everyone. Over at the entrance of Sam Groceria another food enclave offers local fare like rice with dishes plus ready cooked pasta, local kuih and baked desserts.
Sam’s Deli: Decent Japanese food, decent prices.
The Nasi Kukus Ayam Goreng Berempah set from Warisan Nasi Kukus is delicious and unique in the sense that patrons can select any of the four types of rice available for their set.
If you are sharing, I’ll recommend the seven rice set with comes with Nasi Kukus Biasa (Normal Steam Rice), Nasi Kukus Lemak (Steam Rice with Coconut Milk), Nasi Kukus Beras Perang (Steam Brown Rice), Kukus Pandan (Steam Rice with Pandan Leave), Nasi Kukus Bunga Telang (Blue Steam Rice), Nasi Ayam (chicken rice) and Nasi Goreng (Fried Rice). Accompanying the rice & meat would be different types of curries, keropok (fish crackers), egg, pickled vegetables and sambal belacan. Overall the quality of food is more than decent and is certainly a worthy dining option if you are seeking local fare. With drinks, a meal can go up to almost RM 20, but you can also get by with a slightly lower budget.
There are two exits here — Exit A: St Regis and Exit B: Muzium Negara/Jalan Damansara.
1. Contango, Colonial Café, The Orchid Conservatory, The Bar, The Tea Lounge — Majestic Hotel KL
From the station: Take Exit B and once you are on the street level, turn left and walk on until you see The Majestic Hotel on your left.
2. The Drawing Room, Taka by Sushi Saito, Ginza Tenkuni, The Astor Bar and Decanter, Crystal — St Regis Kuala Lumpur
From the station: Take Exit A. Once you are on the street level you are at St Regis.
3. Warisan Nasi Kukus, Sam’s Deli, 4Fingers, Nyonya Colours, Aroma Village, Kurin, Dolly Dim Sum, Family Mart — Nu Sentral
From the station: Exit the fare gates but ignore Exit A or B. Follow the sign that says KL Sentral and once you are in KL Sentral, make your way to Nu Sentral.
Last but not least….
My original article is usually longer/ ‘more complete’ since I wrote on and on without restriction.
Understandably, due to space constraints, the original was edited prior to publication. Thus I’ve shared my original article as above.
You may also find that my articles for this Prasarana x Malay Mail x Rebecca Saw series rather diplomatic/non- opinionated, but it is meant to be so as per the brief given.
Anyhow, if you think I’ve missed out on some eateries worth highlighting near any MRT/LRT stations, please let me know! I’ll be sure to go check it out.
Please do be in touch via FB message HERE.
Thank you and I look forward to your suggestions! 🙂