It’s a sunny, humid afternoon downtown, and a hundred feet above Pavilion Mall, things are unusually calm on the 6th floor of the building. It’s only noon, but business is about to get progressively busier. Today, being a Thursday, means I have time.. a few brief moments to catch my breath over lunch, before heading into the maelstrom of upfront marketing events and planning of activities. For now, I can sit back, enjoy my ice long black, and try to detoxify from the day’s maddening events and chaotic meetings.
I never drank coffee growing up in KL. Then I left for Cardiff for further studies. My love affair began after I returned to Malaysia, started working and thus began the hunt for the perfect coffee. I have to say, the Coffee at Ben’s is pretty awesome. Thick, black, slightly bitter(but not charred) and with that gorgeous aroma of freshly brewed bean, it does not get better than this.
Based on the crowd, it’s really surprising to know that Ben’s just opened its doors a couple of weeks ago. By 1p.m. this place is packed to the rafters. This loungey pseudo-diner’s varied, inexpensive menu and the option of airy, informal balcony seating make it one of the best casual dining options in Pavilion Mall. Looking inside, you will see a sea of bobbing heads and waiters scurrying about taking orders. I have to say they are pretty efficient here and on two separate occasions we waited no more than 15 – 20 minutes before our salads, soups and finally mains appeared on the table. This restaurant also serves up surprisingly good drinks (including milkshakes, fresh juices and of course fabulous coffee) and there’s usually a wait for a table at peak times, so plan to get there early and get your table sorted, or arrive in time for a late lunch when the crowd is beginning to dwindle.
The stylish yet laid back menu
Duck Confit Ciabatta Sandwich RM22.90
Ox Tongue on Cold Potato Salad- RM19.90
Inside the Duck Confit Ciabatta Sandwich.. smothered in Pesto sauce..
This sandwich is a real winner – highly recommended!
Burnt Butter Wild Mushroom Salad – RM21.90
Not that I am a health freak or biased towards salads or anything but, another top pick at Ben’s is this simple yet addictive salad.
Crabmeat Linguine Puttanesca – RM23.90
The Chargrilled Rack of Lamb – RM49.90
Outdoor balcony seating
Toffee Date Pudding with Salted Caramel topping and ice cream RM11.90
Where the desserts were concerned, this date pudding came out tops .. simply must try!
Lychee and Mango Trifle RM11.90
Lemon Meringue Pie RM9.90
I was impressed with the “on-the-go” dishes such as the sandwiches, the pastas and the salads. The Duck Confit Pesto Ciabatta Sandwich was perfection laid out between two slices of bread! The generous slathering of pesto sauce totally heightened the flavour of the duck confit. Super addictive.
The Burnt Butter Wild Mushroom Salad was to die for. It had a generous measure of roquefort cheese and caramelized walnuts, drizzled with truffle oil that elevated the flavour of the salad to new heights. Very nice indeed. From the mains to the desserts we had a fantastic spread of good quality, inexpensive food. But really, you’re not here for an epic meal—Ben’s is about casual food, or sipping a shot of espresso while chatting with your mates and ogling the fashionista traffic at Pavilion. It’s simple, well prepared dishes that make you think the work that awaits you will be tackled in due course. Just not now.