Al Amar MIGF 2011 Pavilion Kuala Lumpur
When I meet Joseph Afaki that was some time in 2008 where I fingered into the Lebanese cuisine at Al Amar. The food then was very authentic and simply unique. In early year 2011 the food took to even a higher height, refined and into great detailing. My own interpretation, Al Amar definitely progressing very well in creating an outstanding International Lebanese cuisine in Kuala Lumpur. Al Amar defintely has a very strong, dynamic and dedicated team players in creating inspiring food.
Moving from a modest Al Amar restaurant situated in the Pavilion, Jalan Bukit Bintang, it expended to a huge main kitchen and from there, Al Amar Express and Al Amar Catering Services were created. Last couple of weeks ago, I dropped by Al Amar main kitchenfor a visit tour. A 15,000sqft built up area fitted with the state of the art kitchen with best equipment and technology in line with HACCP international standards classifying it as one of the first of its kind in the country.
On that day, a group of us attend a pastry demostration class held at the main kitchen. We got rather excited upon knowing that Executive Pastry Chef Qoutyba Fakih was going to teach us the art of making of fruit tarts, from mango toppings to strawberry that filled with great vibrant colours that was difficult to resist.
We played with tart dough, piping and lastly decorating. It was a fun day and truly something new for some.
After exploring the main kitchen, we chilled ourself at the meeting room waiting to indulge Al Amar’s Lebanese Four Seasons MIGF 2011 dishes. This time Chef Michael Karam had came up with a gorgeous style of Lebanese dishes that wasvhic trendy and foremost scrumptious! His dishes were kept authentic and coupled with an artistic French styling and Middle Eastern taste.
To grace the lunch we had the Sunny Start of Authentic Labneh Trio with Lebanese Southern Tapenade and a Brush of Thyme presented artisticly and a touch of flair that came with crunchy pastry sticks! Labneh is basically made from strained yoghurt that resembles a soft cream cheese. The three cheese balls are coated with dried mint, dried thyme and paprika with chili. It was truly unique in taste and the creaminess of the labneh was savored with the breadsticks and crunchy pastry sticks. It was just a filled with luxurious, the cheese was silky smooth and flavoursome refreshing.
The next course was this stunning attractive beauty, Summer Blooms of Apricot Glazed Beetroot Tartar on Mango Leather and Rocket Coulis, the colors was so eye catching while the taste was superb. Earthern taste of the beetroot paired very well with the mango leather which gave a lovely balance taste of sweetnes and sourish. Lovely.
The Autumn Flavours Spinach Bonbon, Soujouk Mille Feuille and Herb Crust Filled with Hommos and Grass Fed Baby Lamb Fillet was the next dish presented lavishlly. I just love the refinement and softness of the filo pastry that wrapped around the spinach, It was an interesting bonbon. Soujouk Mille Feuille tasted authenticly and sumptuous. This Soujouk, little lamb sausages served with a lovely tomato sauce had caught a few eyeing form the guests due to the freshness in taste and texture. It was brilliant. While my eyes were caught looking at the Herb Crust Filled with Hommos and Grass Fed Baby Lamb Fillet which was rather uniquely sculptured. It looked like a dashing cute gold fish. I just love hommos.
It was caught speechless. I got to confessed that the Sayadieh rice was just brilliant, this Lebanese rice pilaf cooked with caramelized onions and broth came with such a fantastic texture and filled with full flavour. While the Pan seared Red Mullet Fillets with Drops of Fish Jus was done just perfectly, seared to great detail and maintained the freshness of the fish. Nice.
We put up a great smile as the Raining Chef was features Braised Rack of Lamb with Stuffed Baby Marrow and Vine Leaves Accompanied by a Garlic Mint Sauce. The light seasoned Lamb was cooked nicely till pink to keep it moist and juicy while the light grilled yellow baby squash was stuffed with some meat and rice. At another corner placed the stuffed Vine Leave, soft vine leaves wrapped with filling of meat and rice and cooked gently in a broth. I just love the comination, perfect for any evenings.
Sunshine after the Rain brought the Nougat Glacé Laid on a Bed of Vanilla Pineapple Confit Served with Pineapple Sauce & Spiced Chocolate Shell. Nougat Glacé was a mold of heavenly soft nougat muddled with dried fruits and coated in a crispy shell sitting on a sliced of vanilla pineapple confit can easily melt any dessert lovers. The Pineapple Sauce was delightful and not overly sweet. The Spiced Chocolate Shell that housed a gorgeous Cardamom Ice Cream in it was just an epic.
Truly after this escapetism, I truly appreciate the works of Lebanese cuisine which was exciting and entertaining tasty . . . . . I still craving my salted roasted chicken from Al Amar Express! Sidney Kan
Lot 6.10, Level 6, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur,
168 Jalan Bukit Bintang,
50450 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-2166 1011