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Mediterranean fare given a Malaysian twist.

PIKAPITA
Lot 163, Fraser Place
No. 10, Jalan Perak
Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 017-676 2103
Business hours: Mon-Fri, 8am-7pm; Sat, 10am-3pm (closed on Sundays)
Pork-free

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WHILE eateries offering takeaway meals are a dime a dozen, Pikapita Delicafe stands out for its emphasis on freshly made pitas prepared by its in-house chef.

Pikapita is a business initiative by a group of young entrepreneurs; chef Jaeho Kim, 27; cousins Eva Liew, 31; and Foo Vanjean, 28. The venture derives its name from the phrase “pick a pita”.

“We wanted to create something that would appeal to diverse tastes and can be easily mixed and matched for different combinations,” said Foo.

Kim, a chef with eight years’ experience working in South Korea and Japan, said he has always had an interest in baking even with his minimal experience.

“I happen to be experimenting with baking recipes at home and came up with the idea of baking pita, but wanted to serve it differently from how it is done in the Middle East and Mediterranean,” said Kim.

“I came up with different pita fillings to suit different tastes. These fillings incorporate a mix of Western and Asian influences. The pita breads are also flavoured to make the product more interesting,” added Kim.

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Pikapita chef Jaeho Kim takes great pride in ensuring Pikapita’s food is of great quality and that everything is made from scratch, including the marinades and sauces.

Pita is leavened wheat bread typically eaten with dips like hummus, or wrapped in kebabs and falafel.

Kim, who is trained in French, Italian, Japanese and Korean cuisine, said the selection for Pikapita’s menu was finalised after numerous trial and error sessions.

“While I was able to come up with a variety of fillings and pita flavours, we had to narrow down our options as some ingredients were difficult to source or were expensive,” said Kim, who studied at the Korea Culinary Arts Science High School.

Kim takes great pride in ensuring Pikapita’s food is of great quality and that everything is made from scratch, including the marinades and sauces.

The top three customer favourites are the Chicken Karaage featuring Japanese-style marinated fried chicken, Fish and Egg Tartar with fried fish fillet and classic egg tartar sauce, and Macho Beef stuffed with beef patty, grilled zucchini and mushroom.

The filling options available include Salmon King that features smoked salmon with horseradish mayonnaise, Ebi Mayo with battered prawn and pirikara mayonnaise, Chicken Sesame with lean chicken strips and roasted sesame dressing and Mr Curry featuring Keema-style chicken curry with fried eggplant.

Vegetarians can enjoy the ATM – pita stuffed with avocado, tomato and mushroom with French vinaigrette.

Customers can also choose the flavour of their pita bread if they do not want the original. Whether it is the mildly flavoured beetroot or curry or the slightly spicy chilli flavours, the pita breads get their taste from natural ingredients.

The Pikapita pita lunch set comes with a drink and a side dish of the day, which is either a soup or potato salad. Those who are really hungry can opt for add-ons like mashed potatoes and gnocchi, or desserts like Gateau Au Chocolate and Double Cheese Cake.

Pikapita’s strategic location in the Kuala Lumpur city centre makes it an ideal place for busy executives to pop in for a quick and healthy meal.

“We want to provide value for money and affordable meals to our customers,” said Foo.

“While we get a fair mixture of locals and foreigners, we were pleasantly surprised to get more male customers as we initially targeted females.”

Pikapita also offers a breakfast menu that is available from 8am to 10am daily.

Diners can fill their tummies with a hearty breakfast of Croque Tuna, Ratatouille with Half Boiled Egg, Yogurt Macedonia, French Toast or Pain Au Chocolat.

“As we are still a fairly new business, our focus is to familiarise ourselves with the operations and business aspects, while ensuring that the quality is up to par,” said Liew.

“We are planning to hire a barista soon to expand our beverage menu to include specialised coffee.”

This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.

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