Adventurous Bring Me Food dinners at Tosca
Tosca Italian Trattoria
@ Doubletree by Hilton,
182, Jalan Tun Razak,
Tel: 03-2172 7272
or visit www.makan-moments.com)
Business hours: 10.00am-10.00pm, daily.
FOR me, many memorable gatherings revolve around food, where there is almost an endless stream of delicious food coming from the kitchen. It could be a family celebration or just girls having brunch.
We would laugh and joke while passing the food around, like how Italians might do on Sundays.
Michelin Guide accredited guest chef Andrew Blundy introduced this idea to Tosca Italian Trattoria diners. Aptly named, “Bring Me Food” allows diners to set a price (starts from RM80 per person) and lets the chef makes the food decisions.
“There is no special menu, we use the freshest produce available in the kitchen on the day,” said Blundy.
Each table of guests is given a card where they decide a price and a simple list what the group doesn’t like to eat.
During the review, our table budget was set at RM150 where Blundy likened it to a “Mercedes-Benz dinner”.
“The budget dictates the kinds of meats I can serve you.
“Be realistic. If you are paying RM80, I can’t serve you high quality stuff such as foie gras or lobsters,” he said.
By the time the starter, Egg Broth with Chicken Pasta and Green Pea Puree, arrived, we hardly needed prodding to lick the plate clean, figuratively.
The tortellini was nicely stuffed and cooked al dente. The broth was delicately flavoured and a sign that heavy flavours were to come.
As Blundy shuffled between the open kitchen and our table, we were treated to two appetisers — Nicoise Salad with Tuna Tartare and Mollet Quail Eggs, and Salad of Beef Bacon and Quail with Walnuts.
Each serving of the tuna tartare was served on a lettuce leaf and easily finished in one bite.
On the contrary, the meaty salad came in a big bowl. The greens went well with the savoury bacon and large pieces of quail.
It was followed by three oven-baked crispy pizzas — smoked salmon, calamari and clams; air dried beef, pepperoni and roasted onions; and capsicum, mushroom and spinach. The crust of the pizza was thin and crunchy, and the toppings were fresh.
Blundy came to check on us while we started to feel distended.
“It’s totally up to the diners if they want to take a break. You can take a walk around the pool or the hotel and come back to dinner. But I don’t advise that you jump into the pool,” he joked.
We cheekily told him just keep the food coming. And not a moment too late, we were digging into the Lasagne al Frono.
Garfield’s favourite dish took a twist as it was filled with meaty chunks of beef ala a ragout.
Blundy shared that a bit of research went into creating the dish. He was inspired by the traditional beef ragout that went back to the 1700s.
Next were the main courses — Branzino Saltimbocca and Stinco D’agnello Brasato Osso Bucco.
Blundy wanted to created a dish that was a “light Mediterranean summer on a plate”. Saltimbocca referred to a traditional Italian cooking of meats with use of sage and saltwater or pork bacon.
Instead of red meat, sea bass was used and dressed up with squid ink tagliatelle, clams, and tomato and coriander salsa. It tasted just as Blundy promised.
The star of the show, at least for the chef, was the second main course. It was lamb shank braised with vegetables and polenta.
“I stick the shank in the oven as long as it needs to be. I don’t rush it and stick to a specific cooking time.
“When it comes out perfect, I feel real happiness and I hope diners will too,” he said.
Although we were almost bursting from food, the dish was reduced to three bones when we were done.
The polenta lent a thicker touch to the delicious gravy while the meat was truly off the bone. Sighs of appreciation and contentment were heard from the other reviewers.
Lastly, a beautifully-plated dessert of Semifreddo di Nocciola e Cioccolato, Limoncello Panna Cotta e Gelatin and Italian Cassata. By the time we finish the dessert, I was ready to pass out from a food-induced coma.
Jokes aside, Blundy has done a great job with the concept. “Bring Me Food” ends today so hurry and book a table.
This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.