Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Makcik Minah goes to New York, Lunch @ Alexis@ Gardens Mid Valley

Alexis... The Uber cool joint that hosts a couple of Jazz Concerts a month. I last went there, invited by Siew Hoon, for a Peter Grant concert. But That was in Ampang at Great Eastern Mall.

Right Smack in the Middle of the madness we know as Mid Valley/Gardens, with it's horrendous parking, Alexis has opened up a new outlet on the First Floor, Robinson Wing.

An Oasis of tranquility in the Ocean of retail Madness... Everytime I cross from Mid Valley to Gardens, I can feel a sense of calm, the crowd is less dense here and the air is cooler, and there is more space. More breathing room. As I entered Alexis, the voice of China Forbes, the lead singer from Sympathetique, hit my ear drum. Her voice, together with the sparse, yet stylishly decorated interior of Alexis, immediately put me into low gear once again. I felt I must have been transported to a chic restaurant in Manhattan. A very pleasant Myanmar waiter greeted me, and I plonked into a comfortable seat, and read through the Menu.

Ordered the Duck Confit, Nasi Goreng Kerabu and Pavlova.

The Duck Confit was wonderful. The Duck was fried to perfection and was crunchy. Frangrant and not at all Gamey. It sat on some Rocket leaves soaked with a dash of Vinegarette dressing and was served with poached, caramelised pear. I was immediately besotted. I greedily devoured the duck and my appetite was all worked up. I waited eagerly for the next dish.

Nasi Goreng Kerabu. Wait a minute... Strains of Coltrane was teasing me as I sat there and tried to make sense of what I just ordered. What did I do? The best Nasi Goreng kerabu I had so far was in Kemaman. What in the world make me order that here? The version at Alexis had fried rice, mixed with some still crunchy long beans sitting on some unripe mango and Japanese Cucumber (not manggo kerabu as stated in the Menu). It had a piece of dried fish on top and Keropok and some fried chicken wings. Salty and Oily, I winced as a took a bite of the chicken wings. The fried rice was rather bland and the chili sauce that came with the rice did not help much. Nothing like the Nasi Goreng Keabu I had in Kemaman. It was completely out of place, just like Makcik Minah, with her head wrapped in a batik, wearing her baju and sarong, in clogs would be at Yerba Buenna in Manhattan. I cold have kicked myself for ordering this and listened to my instincts. Ha Ha... It was passable, but not what I envisioned it to be.

The Pavlova, on the other hand was huge. Humongously huge. Layers of finger cake interspersed with dairy cream, plus an avalanche of fresh strawberries and blueberries. This was another piece of heaven. Yummy... and sort of makes up for the fried rice fiasco.

The service was good and attentive without being intrusive. The music was wonderful, just the kind of laid back jazz that fits into a drizzly, rainy afternoon. Ambience was good. Sheila Majid singing dome old P. Ramlee songs there would have been perfect. Chic, with a modern twist, yet managied to evoke a nostalgic feeling. Loved the feel of that place.

Total damage? 80++, plus a coke light.

Sorry about the makcik, though. She just did not fit into the chic cool crowd today. She tried too hard to look chic, with her Manolo Blahnik pumps, which did not go well with the rest of her ensemble of Baju Kelawar and Terompah. She tried using MAC makeup instead of her usual bedak air. It also resulted in a very complicated mess, which is a pity. She should have just been her usual self, and perhaps been a fine conversation piece for the sophisticated, chic crowd. Although simple and cheap in her original rags, i loved her rustic taste compared to her cloned sister at Alexis.


Vonks said...

Mak Minah nasi kerabu for the ore kampung bang... even with MAC make up... cannot make it far. Where in Kemaman can u get the delicious nasi kerabu leh??

paranoidandroid said...

Restoran Limbong La... Nasi goreng kerabu, with lots of sliced bunga kantan inside. Thai chef, MIA for 2 weeks now. Hence the A&W debacle.

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