Saturday, January 29, 2011

First Experience with 1-star Michelin Dinner

Chef Serge Chenet

I had initially wanted to dine at Spoons (Hilton's resident fine dining restaurant), but diverted to Ginza Hohsen (the resident Japanese restaurant) after I checked out the menu and noticed they had a visiting 1-star Michelin chef. There was only 1 reason for the diversion - I didn't bring enough money! I promised myself I'll return the next evening for this, and so I did!

Complimentary bread & olive pate

I had very high expectations, or rather very hyped up and excited over the experience. After all, how many Michelin starred chefs are there in KL, now especially if there is one in Colombo! I knew it was gonna be an opportunity not to be missed. So last Sunday, I returned to Hilton again which was my 3rd night on the row (I swear the tuk tuk driver outside my apartment was starting to have this impression on me as 'the girl who goes to Hilton every night for dinner' and knew my standard offer would be 200 rupees per trip). I casually walked in to the fame restaurant, looked through the menu and picked a duck dish for mains and a mille feuille for dessert. Don't ask about drinks - usually I go for complimentary iced water but in this case I had to pay for a bottle of cold mineral water.

"Duo of Duck" Pan fried duck breast and honey lavender caramelised leg, turnips confit, and vinegar jus- Rs. 2,200 (RM60)

I requested for my duck dish to be done in medium rare, just like how I like my red meat to be. When the dish came, presentation wise it's decent. As for the taste, I like it because it taste decent too but it's not what I am expecting for a Michelin-starred chef... I was expecting more! There was no burst of flavours, melt-in-you-mouth sensations, not orgasmic definitely... just another plain and expensive duck dish in a nicer restaurant which happens to be in a hotel.

Chocolate coated mille feuille with fresh mint and fresh cream with cocoa sherbet- Rs. 750 (RM21)

Attracted by the 'mint' flavour in this dessert, I was expecting a strudel-pastry texture, crispy and fluffy with cream to melt it all down but instead (again, presentation is good, BUT...) the bottom layer of the mille feuille was just hard, the mint didn't have any minty refreshing taste I was looking for, instead with my eyes open as I was eating this it felt like a green tea cream. I was not sure if it's supposed to be hot or cold as it was served room temperature and to me desserts should either be H or C, a room-temperature dessert is as good as eating melted ice cream or unchilled beer - yucks! Despite the many huge flaws in this dessert, the only thing I love was the cocoa sherbet... cold and strong cocoa taste.

Foamy chocolate mousse flavoured with arabica and cream cheese sherbet- Rs. 750

The General Manager of Hilton was making his rounds at the restaurant and I spoke to him on my less than impressed experience with the dessert. He offered me another one which was supposingly one of the best. I accepted with good gestures, preparing to be wowed.

While it's not not half as bad as the earlier mille feuille, this does not impress me much either. I'm not even sure if it's appropriate to say my favourite item of the whole dessert was the chocolate deco (I'm not sure what is the proper term to describe it, enlighten me if you do). Certainly doesn't leave much to say when you like the little side dishes/decos more than the star of the dish iteself, huh?

In my most humble opinion, it was a disappointment.

Spoons @ Hilton Colombo
2, Sir Chittampalam A. Gardiner Mawatha,
Colombo 2, Sri Lanka.
Tel: +94 11 2544 644
For the regular menu, refer to here

[Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are based on my personal views, tastebuds and preference and may vary for others. Please don't sue me, I don't have money. Kthxbye.]


Calvin Goh Seow Chung said...

My oh my... luckily the prices of the dishes weren't off the chart. Else it's definitely not worth the michelin experience. Oh well... at least you can brag to people that you've eaten food prepared by a Michelin star chef.

P.S. How did you enjoy the olive pate?

eiling lim said...

ok then let's skip this place!

The Sadist said...

uhm...the chocolate deco reminds me of a spooky castle in scooby doo. haha, don't ask me why specifically scooby doo. it just does ;)

YilingL said...

I kinda like butter more I guess. Can't really taste or differentiate anyway since I don't eat much olives!

The chef sudah balik lo...

Kah Yee,
LOL, shall not question your childhood memories of scooby doo :-p

Steve said...

Thanks for the great blog! I will be in Colombo for a couple of weeks in May, and it is always hard to know where to go - I usually end up just eating at the Hilton - not that that is too bad, but great to know of other places people have tried.

Have you been to the spice market at the Hilton? I has great fresh seafood plus traditional clay pot LK dishes.

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