2015 Menu: Bait @ Telawi, Bangsar

January 16, 2015

One of Bangsar's most notable restaurants recently turned two - Bait is becoming better with age, growing into a confident & mature destination. And there's cause for continued optimism, with skilful new chef Logan scouring both sea & land for fresh, memorable recipes.

The ocean remains the main source of Bait's inspiration. If you're seeking terrific oysters at tempting rates, Bait's a solid bet, with its variety of UK, French, Tasmanian & seasonal oysters priced between RM8 & RM11 each; Happy Hour oysters cost even less (until 8pm everyday, including weekends). Whether you like 'em sweeter or brinier, mild or intense, plump or thin, juicy or firm, there's a West Mersea, Jersey Rock, Creuse or Irish Nugget oyster at Bait for you, 

But it's in the cooked creations that Bait displays its distinctiveness, with various recipes built for sharing. A half-kilo of freshwater yabbies comes poached in saffron & champagne (RM88), served with sumac, sun-dried tomato & mustard dips.

And of course, there are mighty mussels that sing of the sea, also poached but this time in Sauternes, served with kitchen-made barley malt syrup for a extra little sweet kick (RM55++ for half a kilo). For lovers of molluscs, Bait also offers cherrystone clam chowder (RM18++) & Burgundy snails braised in tomato broth with fennel (RM48++ for a dozen).

House-made tagliatelle secures the star seafood treatment, mixed with succulent Alaskan king crab flesh, prepared with cream & egg, a recipe that might evoke chef Logan's previous experience at Marini's On 57. RM66++.

Kimchi risotto - a creamy, well-balanced marriage of Korean & Italian flavours - might strive to steal the spotlight here, but the chunky-moist barramundi proves expertly executed enough to hold its own (RM48++). Fish fans won't find Bait's selection too shallow - there's everything from threadfin to leatherjacket, blue cod to mulloway & salmon set to leap out of the kitchen.

There are nights though when only hot-blooded meat will do; thankfully, Bait's non-seafood ouevre is every bit equal in quality. In fact, our favourite savoury creation here turned out to be this duck confit with foie gras, roasted potatoes & red wine sauce (RM59++), an ensemble in which each component shines on its own & together.

Also nicely nuanced: Wagyu beef strachetti (marble score 5+), sliced relatively thinly but yielding a tender bite & a rich chew nonetheless, topped with tomato & rucola salad & parmagiano reggiano, plus a side serving of tangy fig vincotto (RM58++). 

It's fair to imagine that desserts couldn't possibly stand out in this meal, but Bait's table-length sweets platter (RM60++) makes a commanding impression - a customer from nearby even walked over to us & asked if he could snap his own photo of it. Each item can also be ordered separately on its own, but it's well worth having them all at once.

The Noir Du Blanc is chocolate addict's fantasy come true, with six textures of chocolate partnered with gelato & honeycomb. Delicate sago-&-gula melaka panna cotta is a ravishing riff on cendol, while the irreproachably luscious creme brulee flaunts a tantalising Japanese twist, infused with kabusencha tea.

From house wine that starts from RM19++ by the glass to sake, Sidecars & Cosmos, your glass should never run dry at Bait. Many thanks to Bait co-founder Colin, excellent restaurant manager Ron & the rest of their team for hosting this sterling dinner.

65 Jalan Telawi 3, Bangsar Baru, Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-2201-8187
Monday-Thursday, 4pm-1230am; Friday 4pm-230am; Saturday 1130am-230am, Sunday 1130am-1230am

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