Friday, December 4, 2015

Christmas at La Risata

Instead of a fixed set menu, Italian restaurant La Risata is offering diners the choice to pick what they want for the upcoming festive season at the restaurant or to enjoy it at home.
Despite it being a weekday evening, the restaurant in Medan Damansara was pretty full and it took me quite awhile to find parking.

There was a mixed crowd at the restaurant, at one table was a group of ladies having a girls’ night out, another had several middle-aged gentlemen enjoying wine, and outside there was a group celebrating someone’s birthday.

We started the meal with some antipasti like Pizza Mozzarella, Tonno Pinna Blu Alla Griglia Con Gnocchi Nero Di Seppia (Grilled blue fin tuna with squid ink gnocchi in a lemon butter sauce), and Insalata Razzo E Pera (Rocket and pear salad with lemon dressing and shaved parmesan)
Pizza Mozzarella
The pizza is made with anchovies, homemade smoked mozzarella, and marinated peppers, which added a fiery kick. I planned to pace myself before the main course, but I could not resist a second slice.
I enjoyed the tuna slices that has grill lines.
The salad was refreshing, thanks to the pear and lemon dressing.
For mains, we had Tacchino Arrosto (RM338++, 4kg, serves 10-12 persons), which is Roast Turkey with traditional chestnut stuffing, roasted vegetable with cranberry sauce and giblet sauce; and Cosciotto D’agnello (RM228++, 3 kg, serves 10- 12 persons), Roast leg of Lamb with root vegetable and rosemary sauce.
The cranberry sauce complemented the turkey.
According to chef K. Kumar, he used port wine for the turkey to bring out the flavours and add a fruity taste. It also masks the gamey flavours of liver and gizzard.
The mixed vegetables were not merely second fiddle to the mains, the brussels sprouts were so popular that when I went for a third serving it was gone!
To complete the Italian meal, we had the Italian dessert Tiramisu (RM160++, serves 12 persons), which has Savoiardi biscuits soaked in espresso and filled with Italian mascarpone cream cheese. I love it that the dessert was not too sweet, the acidity of the espresso complemented the sweetness of the cream.
Another Italian dessert served was Zucotto, a liquer dome cake filled with chocolate and vanilla cream with almond, hazelnut and chocolate bits, which added a nice, crunchy texture.
We also had Torta Di Zucca (RM80++, serves 8-10 persons), which is the traditional Christmas dessert pumpkin pie served with maple cream sauce. It was a simple yet satisfying dessert.
Customers need to make their reservations three days in advance for the items in the Christmas and New Year menu, which are available from Dec 5 to Jan 10 2016 or while stocks last from all LaRisata outlets.
For group dinners, call 03-2031 6568 or email to  

Damansara outlet: 128  Jalan Kasah  Medan Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur (tel: 03-20959572 ). Business hours: 11.30am-3pm and 5pm-11pm
Ampang outlet: 16 Persiaran Ampang, 55000 Kuala Lumpur. (Tel: 03-4252 6269). Business hours: 12-2.30pm, 6.30pm-10.30pm. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Christmas and New Year's Eve at Trader's Hotel & SkyBar

Celebrate the festive season at Traders Hotel, Kuala Lumpur and start the New Year with a bang at SkyBar’s Aurora New Year Eve party with a display of fireworks.
There are several offerings for Christmas and New Year’s Eve at the hotel’s dining outlets namely SkyBar, all-day dining restaurant Gobo Chit Chat, and the cosy yet stylish Gobo Upstairs Lounge and Grill.
During the review, we started the evening with cocktails at SkyBar.
Here you can usher in 2016 at the Aurora New Year’s Eve Party on Dec 31.
There are several packages to choose, including the popular option with the KLCC view where you can see the fireworks display against the Petronas Twin Petronas.

Gobo Chit Chat.
The Christmas Eve dinner on Dec 24, 6.30pm-11pm, offers a selection of international and local delights with Christmas goodies; also available here is the Christmas Day Brunch and the New Year’s Eve Seafood Dinner, which has an early bird promo.
You can enjoy English scones, pastries, finger food and local delicacies at the Festive High Tea Buffet every Saturday and Sunday from Dec 1-31, 3pm-5pm. It is priced at RM79nett per person; for every group of six, one dines for free.
At the carving station, there is the roasted turkey with chestnut stuffing and cranberry sauce.
My colleague enjoyed the Beef Wellington, he said the beef was tender and the sauce complemented it; no wonder he went for seconds.
For those who love Japanese food, there’s a selection of tempura, sushi and sashimi.
You will be spoilt for choice at the dessert section with Christmas-inspired desserts like Black Forest Cube Log, Stollen, Orange Marmalade and Chestnut Yule Log, Christmas Pudding, and Christmas Cookies.
There was a nice selection of imported cheese that can be enjoyed with dried fruits, crackers, black olives and a variety of breads and rolls.
Aside from seafood on ice, other seafood items offered are smoked salmon, seafood terrine,
Main course choices for the Christmas Eve dinner include chicken roulade, grilled lamb cutlet with rosemary sauce, and beef lasagna.
There is a rotating menu so you may want to check with the restaurant on that.

Gobo Upstairs
At Gobo Upstairs, the Festive Set Dinner is available throughout December, 6pm-10.30pm. There are also menus for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year Eve.
Here, were served samples of the Blue Swimmer Crab Meat,Turkey Breast Mascarpone, and Chestnut Apple Soup; all available in the Christmas Eve and Christmas Day menu
The soup, made from granny smith apple, is a comfort food that scored a thumbs up from some of the guests during the review.
One of the items featured during the review was the Deconstructed Seafood Tartare, which is available in the New Year Eve Dinner menu.
The tartare consist of scallop, green-lipped mussel, and tiger prawn, and is served with black caviar, tomato, avocado mousse, and orange reduction.

The Blue Swimmer Crab Meat is served with ahi tuna, fish cracker, black caviar, and compressed honeydew
Char Grilled 150 days Black Angus Tenderloin

For details or reservations,

Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur, 
Kuala Lumpur City Centre, 
50088 Kuala Lumpur. 
Tel: 03-2332 9888