Written & Reviewed by Choy Kok Ming
I’m always on the lookout for a great place to chill after a hectic day. Most days, your choices are limited to either good food with bad ambience OR good ambience with lousy food. This Christmas, the wife and I were feted to all of the above, and more. On Christmas eve, were were invited to WIP for great food, fantastic music and a very relaxed place to chill out. Exploding with a 24 Carat Christmas theme, WIP rolled out the red carpet for us.
WIP at Bangsar Shopping Centre has always been known as a great place to go for a drink. The regulars are a mixed crowd of expats and Bangsar locals, who expect great ambience and an equally well stocked bar. It’s the place where the beautiful go to be seen, and where everybody knows your name. I loved how the staff treated us with utmost professionalism, yet was able to maintain a buddy, buddy feel.
As part of the SOULed OUT group of restaurants, it’s also famous for its innovative marketing ideas and energetic crew. Tonight’s presentation was no different. Featuring a live band that had many a patron dancing by their table side, and a crew of 24 carat golden fairies that went around greeting the guests, it was no surprise that WIP is THE place to go.
WIP, however, is usually off my food radar. I had a misconception that a great bar could not contain a great chef. WIP proofed me wrong that night! Promoting a Christmas dinner choice of Baked Crusted Seabass, Karuma Prawn or Provencal Crusted Beef, the wife chose the seabass while I had the beef. We were both astonished by the quality of the cooking. The seabass was both moist and firm. Sweet to the core, the seabass was large enough to share. Perhaps a touch of tangy sauce would have created a delicate contrast to the fish.
The beef, however, ruled the roost. Consisting of an Angus tenderloin, my steak is, in my opinion, the best steak I’ve had in a long time. Cooked medium, the beef had a nice mineral taste and was so very soft to bite. It was almost like cutting butter with a hot knife. Although not as well marbled as a Kobe steak, WIP’s chef managed to cook it beautifully. Even my wife loved it, and she usually shies away from beef. Kudos to the chef.
In addition to the main courses, WIP had also laid out a buffet of starters, the traditional carvings of turkey and roasted lamb and a small selection of Christmas desserts. I generally appreciated the buffet, but felt the main course was more than sufficient. The portions both pleased the palate and satisfied the belly.
WIP ended our meal with a selection of Christmas cocktails, specially created for this Christmas package. We sampled their Fire & Ice and the Gold Rush. While both were delicious, it was the Fire & Ice that stood out. A tasty concoction of Gin, peach puree and lime juice, this cocktail had an exotic lacing of fire. Rimmed with a touch of chili, it gave my nostrils a flare of fire that was immediately quenched by cool lime juice. What a wonderful creation! My hat’s off to the barkeep.
In summary, WIP is a complete package: great entertainment, food and drink all in one place. As a bonus, you get a fantastic presentation of professionalism yet friendly crew, who try their utmost best to make your night an enjoyable one. If you read this early, try to book their New Years’s Eve dinner. WIP promised us an equally fantastic meal awaits, to be topped off by a blazing display of fireworks, celebrating both New Year’s Eve and BSC’s 50th anniversary.
WIP Cafe & Restaurant,
G111, Ground Floor,
Bangsar Shopping Centre,
285, Jalan Maarof,