Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur,
Tel 03-2380 8888
Business hours: Open daily,
lunch 12.00pm-2.30pm (RM88++ per person),
dinner 6.30pm-10.30pm (Monday-Thurday: RM108++ per person)
and (Friday-Sunday: RM128++ per person)
FROM the land of spices, chef Rahul Kulkarni and his team from The Oberoi, Mumbai are dishing out some of the best flavours of India at Mosaic Restaurant, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Kuala Lumpur.
“There are no fusion or localisation. We have selected a range of dishes prepared in the traditional method for its authentic tastes without any additives or colouring, including the desserts.
“Indian food is very diverse, but with the different flavours and textures, you cannot satisfy everyone. Everything is flavourful but some dishes need acquired taste, some may not like it but others may love it. It is all about personal preference,” he said.
To kick off the meal, I was served with two shooters — the Shikanji, sweetened lime jaggery with holy basil seeds and Jeera paani, a cumin drink. Chef Rahul explained that it would ease the digestive tract and prepare it for a big meal. I drank them both, not only because it would be good for me but also because it was a perfect mix of sweet and sour tastes.
The chicken broth Murg Yakni is a must-try. It is very comforting to have the hot soup that is slightly sourish due to the dash of yogurt in it.
At the salad bar, Dhat Bhalle was my favourite similar to the tairu vadai (lentil dumpling in yogurt) sold in many restaurants. The dumplings were small round balls and much easier to pop in the mouth.
The chicken salad called Murg Hare Pyaz Chaat, however, had a pungent and sharp taste due to the mustard-based sauce which may not please those not used to eating a lot of mustard but would go great as bites with drinks.
There were 14 side dishes to go along with two types of briyani or naan for the bread lovers.
A lot of masala is used in the cooking hence the spicy flavourful dishes. The rice for the Gohst Biryani of Lucknow is cooked with the juice from the raw marinated mutton with more than 15 different spices that results in the darker colour and spicy taste. If it is too hot to handle, I would suggest mixing it with Raita (a yogurt dish) to subdue the spiciness.
Then there are, among others, Malabar Prawn Curry, mix meat platter consisting of prawn tandoori which is highly recommended for its succulent juicy prawns, chicken tikka and lamb dumplings, Sabz Shahi Kurma — mixed vegetable cooked in cashew-based gravy from Lucknow — and Murg Makhani — chicken cooked in tandoor and mixed in a curry-based gravy and flavoured with dried fenugreek leaves from Punjab. With the variety of dishes and tastes, I am sure one would find their favourite. .
Desserts are a must for Indian cuisine as they believe in ending meals with a sweet dish. From the variety of typical Indian desserts offered, one stood out — the Benarasi Paan Gulkand ice cream made from betel leaves and rose.
Chef Rahul explained that this was his own invention and that I should give it a try.
I am not a fan of betel leaves but because an unusual ingredient was used to make the ice cream, I gave it a shot and was in for a surprise. It had the minty spicy taste laced with sweetness and I loved it, but it is definitely an acquired taste.
The Indian food promotion is available for lunch and dinner until May 27 and is served alongside the usual buffet line.
This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.