It was just a one night, exclusive event.
Ahhh… why not longer you ask. (And actually, so did I).
And the reason being that visiting guest chef Carlos Montobbio from ESQUINA Singapore was so busy, that was the only time he could spare. His own kitchen being of open concept meant that his own customers in Singapore would get a little angst if he was gone too long and they couldn’t see him – it’s tough being the face of the restaurant, if you know what I’m saying. Anyway, we were super grateful to have been part of the dinner event at Mezze KL where we got to meet the talented chef himself.
We have to mention Mezze’s current 1 for 1 promo of cocktails at this point -superbly well crafted (balanced, not overly sweet, and employing fresh ingredients only).. go try them – best value for money!
Esquina’s style is more of ‘open kitchen – tapas menu’ concept and so, this dinner was an 8 Course Tapas Tasting Menu, in the same vein as Esquina. Chef Carlos told us we’d have to be his guests in Singapore for us to sample the complete repertoire one day, and of course we gladly accepted!
Oyster | Jalapeno Ponzu, Salmon Roe, Pickled Ginger Flower – fresh as hell oysters and that crazy Jalapeno Ponzu sauce which imparted tanginess and a lovely tart edge to the succulent mollusc.
Spanish Niguiri | Bacalao Brandade, Roasted Bell Pepper, Soya Sauce – the Bacalao fish was robust & full bodied in flavour, but generally smooth on the palate and its sweetness enhanced by the roasted bell peppers.
Croqueta | Chorizo Iberico and Manchego Cheese Croquetas, Piquillo Pepper Mayo – cheesy, rich comfort food.. say no more!
Cauliflower | Roasted Cauliflower, Cauliflower Cous-Cous, Serrano Ham, Brown Butter – Didn’t think we’d be so ga-ga over a veggie dish, but this one hit the spot. Gritty, chewy, roasted cauliflower, cauliflower cous cous, serrano ham.. The contrasting textures juxtaposed against subtle cauliflower, capped off with the smoky serrano ham was just outstanding.
Spanish Octopus | Jerusalem Artichoke Puree, Burnt Onions, Pickled Seaweed, Oyster Leaf – died and went to heaven. I heard it’s super difficult to cook octopus just right, but these guys, well, they certainly pulled it off.
Pigeon | Burnt Rosemary Polenta, Forest Berries Sscabeche, Crisp Shallots
Not bad, but the pigeon was a little gamy and er.. for want of a better word, too skinny. We would have preferred a more plump bird to carry off the flavours for sure.
BBC .. not British born Chinese, but rather, Banana, Beer and Caramel! Sweet cubes of super ripe banana, studded the rich and decadent ice-cream, laced with beer aroma and salty depth of caramel – couldn’t fault this dessert.
Chocolate | Chocolate, Crispy Bread, Olive Oil Caviar, Sea Salt – loved the exploding caviar pearls that the Chef hand carried from Singapore – the amazing play on savory-sweet, and that rich aroma of olive oil permeated the dark chocolate to perfection.
We can’t wait to visit Chef Carlos in Esquina Singapore, and now you know why. If these 8 were only scratching the surface of his purposefully well crafted cuisine, imagine what a 10 course would do. Mind-blowingly simple, yet fantastic food.. a foodie’s wet dream to be sure.
So the next time we do a shout-out on FB and IG on visiting Chefs to Mezze, be sure to sign up ASAP if good food & wine is your thing. Because the selection of guest chefs rarely disappoints, when it comes to Mezze, that is.
Mezze Wine Bar & Bistro
132, Jalan Kasah, Medan Damansara,
50490 Kuala Lumpur
Phone:+60 3-2095 0122