Qbar is famous for its Latin American cuisine and regulars to the restaurant know it comprises four main sections, the Wine Bar & Cigar Lounge, the Latin Grill dining room, the Island Bar and the outdoor Tapas Courtyard. Young couples and small groups of diners engage in animated conversations as they devour tapas, churrasco, and knock it back with glass after glass of spanish wine. All the while, bath in incandescent lighting, diners chat and mingle to background music and tunes heavy with a Latin American beat.
Here at the Qbar, the kitchen specialities are straight from Latin America, featuring a combination of bright ingredients and vivid seasonings, with an emphasis on grilled meats and classic tapas dishes. Qba Latin Bar & Grill is also well known for its selection of award-winning and rare cheeses. Here you can have Talleggio, Fontina Val d’Aosta or Gorgonzola, and pair them with sweet muscatels, cornichons, fresh and pickled olives or dried fruit and roasted nuts.
APERITIF – Matusalem Rum
As for this MIGF season, Qba Latin Bar & Grill has created a score of Latin American specialities, starting with A Composition of Tapas, followed by A Taste of Starters in Q Minor and the Classical Arrangement of Qba Soups. For the mains, you can choose between A Symphony of Seafood and A Concerto of Beef, while a tasting plate of Argentinean crepe, churros with hot chocolate, coconut creme caramel and caramel ice cream means that dinner is close to its conclusion. We chose the 5 course MIGF menu, and quickly settled into dinner..
A COMPOSITION OF TAPAS : Master Kobe Oyster Blade Roll, Pico De Gallo; Grilled Chicken St. Antonia, Tomato Relish; Basil Marinated Tuna, Melon and Goat Cheese, paired with the Codorniu Clasico Brut NV
A great selection of tapas that paired beautifully with the Codorniu Clasico Brut NV. Light, delicate and just enough to whet the appetite.
A TASTE OF STARTERS IN Q MINOR: Smoked Salmon Parcel, Habenero Chive Aioli; Cuban Beef Empanada, Chilean Pebre, Brie Croqueta paired with the Torres Gran Vina Sol 2010
Then on to the heavier starters of Smoked Salmon Parcel, Habenero Chive Aioli, a Cuban Beef Empanada and a Chilean Pebre, Brie Croqueta. Of these, I liked the smoked salmon parcel best. Its smoky flavours were brought to the surface by the fruity Torres Gran Vina Sol.
Thanks to the presence of the Chardonnay, the wine is intensely aromatic and full-bodied, with a profusion of flowery notes over a fruity background. This went with the range of starters beautifully.
CLASSICAL ARRANGEMENT OF QBA SOUPS: Mexican Tomato with Fried Tortilla; Spiced Pumpkin with Lobster Brandade; Peruvian Chowder of Black Cod and Prawns
What a lovely presentation for the soups! We were captivated by the colors and aromas. My favourite was the Spiced Pumpkin with Lobster Brandade because I am a big pumpkin fan anyway.
Then it was time for the main courses…
A SYMPHONY OF SEAFOOD: Ocean Trout Veracruz Style, Capers, Bell Pepper and Onion; Crispy Cod Finger, Roasted Tomato, Rocket Lettuce; Cajun Marinated Tiger Prawn and Seared Scallop, Romesco Sauce. These were paired with Jean Leon Chardonnay, Vinya Gigi 2008, Vina Errazuriz Estate Chardonnay 2010 and Matetic Corrarillo Chardonnay 2009 respectively
I had the fish and hubby and the steaks for the mains. The symphony of seafood was light, fresh and tastefully seasoned. I had no complaints here. Each dish was paired with a corresponding white wine of matching calibre.
And if you don’t like seafood, opt for the red meat instead.
A CONCERTO OF BEEF: Braised Beef Cheek, Wild Mushroom Confit, Beef Jus Grilled Australian Angus Beef Ribeye; Braised Shallots, Cabrales Cheese Sauce; Master Kobe Sirlion, Tomato and Goat Cheese Cannelloni, Red Pepper Oil. These were paired with Marques de Murrieta Reserva 2006, Marques de Riscal reserva Tempranillo 2007 and the Chivite Coleccion 125 Reserva 2005 respectively
Hubby’s concerto of beef was slightly over cooked. We would have preferred it medium rare, but it was served medium well. Of the three, the Beef Jus Grilled Australian Angus Beef Ribeye paired with the Marques de Riscal reserva Tempranillo 2007 was the best match.
QBA’S DESSERT TASTING PLATE: Argentinean Crepe, Churros with Hot Chocolate, Coconut Creme Caramel, Caramel Ice Cream paired with the Chivite Vendimia Tardia Blancho Cosecha 2006
Finally, it was time for some delectable desserts, and the night ended on a high note. All three desserts were superb and paired rather well with the moscatel. The Chivite Vendimia Tardia Blancho Cosecha had a deep golden colour with bright green reflections. Botrytis initially dominated the nose but eventually gave way to honeysuckle and jasmine. It was rich and full in the mouth yet incredibly well balanced and complemented the Argentinean Crepes and Churros nicely.
Chivite Vendimia Tardia Blancho Cosecha 2006
If you would like to check out the MIGF Full Festival Menu At Qbar, the prices are as follows for the 5 course menu:
RM 370++ per person – 5 Course with Wine Flight
RM 220++ per person – 5 Course without Wine Flight
Light Festival Menu 4 Courses (Selection of Tapas or Dessert with Starter, Soup and Main Course)
RM 300++ per person – 4 Course Light Festival Menu with Wine Flight
RM 180++ per person – 4 Course Light Festival Menu without Wine Flight
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Qbar @ The Westin KL, 199, Jalan Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur