Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
August 9, 2007
Isthmus restaurant is located in a chic new office building near Mid Valley Megamall. It serves a good variety of east-meets-west cuisine. You need to have adventurous palette to be able to handle the blends of western cuisine with oriental spices. I had the WOW platter for two as appetizer. It's a good degustation portion for five different signature appetizers - Simply Lentil, Just Avocado, Smoked salmon with wasabi sauce, blue lotus dumpling and the oyster shooter. I wasn't too impressed with either of them. In fact I was quite disappointed with the blue lotus dumpling, which was given much hype on other reviews. I believe the chef must have given lots of heart into the presentation as we could see the lotus petals were finely shaped into a dumpling. However, I would appreciate it more if the chef could work on the taste as well.
The oyster shooter was a tad too spicy to the point of covering the taste of oyster, which to fresh oyster-lovers like me, was quite a let-down. The other appetizers were not memorable so I would skip introducing them. Next, I ordered the famous Din Kum Duck as main course. Again, I wasn't impressed at all. The duck breast was roasted Cantonese style but spiced with anise and drizzled with plum sauce, on a bed of cha soba and grilled shitake mushroom. Sorry to say, the only thing I like about the dish was the very nicely grilled shitake mushroom and the crispy duck skin. The cha soba was overcooked, the spices for the soba was too 'industrialized' (it tasted like instant noodle flavouring!) and the duck, although crispy, was nothing to shout about. Luckily my partner's main course saved the day! He ordered the lamb cutlet which was very tender and juicy and delicately cooked to medium rare. The red wine sauce was good too. I highly recommend this dish. The meal costs about RM160 for 2 mains and 1 appetizer platter. The price was quite reasonable and the service was attentive. Although the lamb cutlet was really good, the ambience of the restaurant very nice, I wouldn't go back to this restaurant again. Still, for people who would like to try some 'evolved' traditional food, it's still worthwhile to check it out. Maybe I just do not have the tongue for fusion food...
From journal Malaysia - My Home