Sunday, January 25, 2015

Fine Dining: Marini's on 57

I have always wanted to dine at Marini's on 57 and I finally did on New Years Eve 2014. I've heard so much about this place, both good and bad so I was excited to finally get the chance to sample their exquisite cuisine. There was a special set for NYE which will definitely burn a big hole in your / your date's wallet but fine dining is an experience everyone should go through (if they can help it) at least once in a lifetime. I have had dinners at so-called "fine-dining" restaurants in KL but after going to Marini's, I realised that those experiences, weren't really the true fine dining experience. Read more to follow me on this 5.5 hour dining experience...

There were 14 items on the menu (!!!), which partially explains why the time taken from Appetizer 1 to Midnight Supper took 5.5 hours. Anyway, first things first, each guest was given a party pack that contains party favors, a Marini's notebook & pen and a mask to put on in line with the Masquerade theme they had going on that night. That was followed by a variety of breads with a choice of truffle butter and normal butter. I only ate half a bun as I was saving my stomach for the rest of the goodness yet to come.

The set came with Panacress Flower Champagne which I absolutely loved and the restaurant came with a stunning view of the Twin Towers & KL Tower.

Oyster Leave with Beluga Caviar & Cream
The first Appetizer blew me away immediately as it was presented on an ocean bed. Love the effort put into the food presentation as it was my first time eating on a plate that has actual sand underneath and eating out of a seashell spoon... 

In case you are wondering, Oyster Leave is basically a type of rare seaweed that grows wild in northern parts of Canada, Greenland & Scotland...and it tastes like oyster, hence the name. I don't usually take oysters so I am not too sure if it tastes like one but it did taste salty with a chewy texture. The caviar, was divine, as caviar should be. 

Foie gras aka goose liver

THIS WAS THE BOMB DIGGITY. It was my favourite dish of the night! It was buttery, soft, tasty and huge!! I've had foie gras before and this was the best I've ever had. Enough said.

Stracciatella with Alba Truffle

I didn't know what I ate until I went back and google it. Lol. It is basically a Roman Egg Drop soup. It tastes more like yogurt than soup but I'm not complaining! Since I am in definition mode, I might as well talk about truffles. They are basically a type of highly prized culinary fungus that grows on tree roots. The reason they are expensive is because it is very difficult to farm them so they must be harvested from the wild.

"Harvesting truffles is not like picking apples. Each one has to be discovered and carefully removed from the tree without damaging it. This is done with the use of specially trained dogs and, in some cases, a female pig that is attracted by the scent of the truffle, which is apparently similar to that of a male pig." Source
Red Prawns with Rucola Dressing & Horseradish
Next up is the 4rd appetizer of the night which is a pretty unique dish. It is probably the only dish that felt more Asian than Italian but in a good way. The semi-cooked prawn was fresh and the sauce went perfectly to it with a tangy Wasabi taste to it. mhmm...

Zucchini Flower with Blue Lobster
The last appetizer was basically zucchini stuffed with lobster. At this point every dish was so amazing, our bellies felt like it went into belly heaven. And we haven't even started the main courses yet.

GRANCHIO. King Crab Consomme served with Palm Heart & Leave
 We rested our bellies awhile before delving into our first main course. While the soup was lovely, I didn't quite get the palm hearts, but maybe that's because it's my first time having them and didn't know what to expect. Plus at that juncture, I wasn't sure what I was eating...i thought those were scallops initially (lol). 

Definition time again:
"Consommé is a type of clear soup made from richly flavored stock or bouillon that has been clarified, a process which uses egg whites to remove fat and sediment." Source: Wikipedia

"Palm heart is a vegetable harvested from the inner core and growing bud of certain palm trees." Source: Wikipedia

ROMBO. Turbot served with Porcini Mushrooms, Red Wine Sauce & Parship
 I am really curious about that orange ball sitting on the mushroom! It tastes and feel like a fish egg of some sort but are there really such huge fish eggs? Let me know if you know what it is.

TAGLIATA. Dry Age Wagyu Beef Tenderloin & Black Trumpet Mushrooms
 You can't go wrong with Wagyu! Juicy, tender and perfectly done. 
Umbraico Champagne Cheese and Sorrel Cream
 Now that we are done with the main courses, it's on to the after dinner cheese. I love cheese and have no complaints. We also had a good laugh about how the sorrel cream (I assume) looks like spit. Hope that didn't turn you off! It is supposed to be culinary art.

Lavender Flavoured Cotton Candy

At this point, we were stuffed silly and in came the pre-dessert of the night which was a huge cotton candy ball! Definitely felt like a little kid here.

White Truffle Gelato with Vanilla Pure Cream Chocolate
 When this dish arrived it was 15 minutes to the NYE countdown so we were pretty much rushing through this one. The gelato was fantastic! It always preferred savoury over sweet so this won me over. The chocolate on the other hand was quite overwhelming to finish. I only managed to finish half of it as I was just too full from the earlier courses, but it was really good chocolate...kinda wish I had space to finish it!

MIDNIGHT SUPPER. 18 Carat Golden Lentil with Spaghetti Aglio Olio

After watching the fireworks at the Marini's bar and ushering the new year, we proceeded back into the restaurant for our final dish of the night. Supper! I found it very thoughtful to provide supper as part of their menu and it is definitely the most expensive supper I've had. It's not everyday you get to eat gold flakes for supper right? 

As we got ready to end the night, we get to have a last treat of unlimited chocolates from their "chocolate box". Once again, wish I had more space to eat them chocolates but I only managed one Passionfruit Chocolate to end the meal. 

Just when we thought that was it, we were presented with a freshly baked croissant takeaway for the next morning. It was definitely a night to remember :) 

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