D-G-3A, Block D,
2, Jalan PJU 1A/ 7A,
Oasis Square, Oasis Ara Damansara,
Tel: 03-7859 9316. Email: email@example.com
Business hours: 10.30am-9.30pm (Tuesday to Sunday).
IT WAS a love for a small, buttery and unpretentious French sponge cake, combined with her passion for the French culinary arts, that led to Alina Hew starting the Madeleine Patisserie business.
Madeleine Bistro, a place that serves French cuisine with an Italian and Asian twist, is the latest venture by the general manager and founder of the Madeleine Group of Companies.
Hew left a career in the telecommunications industry to enroll in the renowned Le Cordon Bleu culinary institute to pursue her dream. After graduating, Hew decided to venture into the food and beverage line.
“I named my business Madeleine in hopes that people could enjoy food that is unpretentious and wholesome,” she said of the name that was inspired by the French cake that she enjoyed.
Helming Madeleine’s kitchens are a pair of young and talented chefs — head cuisine chef Jonathan Heng, 29, and head pastry chef Joanne Yeong, 36.
Yeong, also an alumnus of Le Cordon Bleu, was named Pastry Chef of the Year (Regional) at the World Gourmet Summit 2015.
Heng, who trained at Flamingo International College, was presented the Best Commis Award 2009 by the Chaine des Rotisseurs, an international gastronomic society.
The Madeleine Group also runs two other Cafe Madeleines at Sunway University and Sunway Medical Centre, as well as Cake Crisis Central (C3) — a central kitchen that supplies cakes and pastries to its three eateries and other cafes.
Madeleine Bistro offers a more relaxed dining experience and an extensive menu compared to the cafes.
“The meat dishes and selected main courses are available only at Madeleine Bistro, while the all-day breakfasts, pasta, salads, sandwiches and Asian dishes are available at the bistro and cafes,” said Hew.
Heng’s signature dishes include Canard A L’Orange, Chef’s Special Beef Cheek and Braised Lamb Shank with Gremolata.
“The Canard A L’Orange is a classic French dish of roasted duck breast served with orange sauce, while the lamb shank is topped with a chopped herb condiment of lemon zest, garlic and parsley called gremolata, giving the lamb a zesty flavour.
“The beef cheek offers the cheek of the cow cooked sous-vide. It is tender and has a deep, rich flavour,” said Hew.
The lamb shank and beef cheek are available only on weekends.
A personal favourite was the Salted Egg Crab Aglio, an Asian-influenced dish featuring pasta sauteed with salted egg yolk, garlic, curry leaves and bird’s eye chilli, then topped with a crispy soft shell crab. The salted egg sauce was not overly creamy, and its spiciness can be adjusted according to diners’ preferences.
Also deserving special mention are Madeleine’s Signature Chicken Bravo and Chicken Cordon Bleu (top pic).
The Chicken Bravo is a hearty meal of Cajun-marinated and roasted chicken leg served with two side dishes, while the Chicken Cordon Bleu, another classic French dish, was crispy on the outside and tender on the inside with its stuffing of ham and Swiss cheese.
Yeong, who is C3’s operations director, showcases her talent in the cakes and pastries section.
Her award-winning cake is the Chocolat Royale — a decadent chocolate mousse cake with a crunchy feuilletine layer and hazelnut praline.
Madeleine’s other cakes include Carrot Walnut, Chocolate Gateau, Lemon Poppyseed and Marble Cheesecake, as well as a seasonal addition in the form of Durian Cheesecake.
For an indulgent treat, the bistro serves a tea time special on weekdays priced at RM15 onwards for a slice of cake and coffee.
The weekend afternoon tea priced at RM50 for two, includes sandwiches, macarons, cakes, French pastries and tea.
Madeleine Bistro also works with seasonal ingredients such as clams and asparagus for its dishes, and offers an executive lunch set on weekdays. The three-course set priced at RM18.90 includes a choice for the main course.
In addition, the bistro offers special cakes and meals for occasions such as Mother’s Day and Christmas, as well as food hampers for festive occasions.
Those who want to take a little souvenir home, the bistro sells the shell-shaped madeleine priced at RM3 for a pack of two.
This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.