Ante @ 1 Utama
February 3, 2016
One of our favourite restaurants for meat, meat & more meat, Ante has finally opened its second outpost - a bright, sleek setting that's an alluring addition to 1 Utama. If you're a fan of Ante at Solaris Dutamas, it's worth checking out this new branch too; there are several offerings exclusive to this mall outlet, including inventively conceived small plates for the modern palate.
Only at Ante 1 Utama for now, fans can kick off their meal with a tasting platter of cold cuts & other appetite-whetting nibbles (RM38; serving size for two persons) - Jamon Iberico ham, house-cured salmon, smoked duck breast, confit onions, candied olives, cherry tomatoes, pickled beetroot, multi-grain bread & smooth French butter. Each component is fresh & appealing, presented in precisely the perfect proportions; it's a pleasure to polish off the entire platter & look forward to the next course.
Ante 1 Utama specialises in beautiful small-plate recipes personally created by the team here, separated into cold & warm categories. The former includes Jamon Iberico balanced with poached & fresh apple slices, shaved radish & chive flowers (RM32), while the latter boasts highlights like succulent cuts of sous-vide cured pork loin coated in a delicate tuna cream, shallots, celery leaves, capers & tomatoes (RM24). Each is admirably elaborate in its conception & ambitiously nuanced in its flavours & textures - dishes that shine a new spotlight on Ante's capabilities as a confident, contemporary-minded F&B brand.
Ante's best known for pork, but its repertoire extends to poultry too, with temptations like a small plate comprising a chilled duo of smoked duck breast (RM26; the first side is shaved thinly & layered with a bed of soft tofu for an intriguing combination, well-contrasted against a counterpoint of juicy chunks tossed with orange segments, hazelnuts, cucumber & chilli oil for a bit of heat that teases the taste buds) & a main of tender sous-vide chicken breast (RM36), made creamy with hollandaise sauce & mashed potatoes, complemented by the earthiness of mixed mushrooms, some sauteed & others turned into crispy chips.
The restaurant performs similarly well with fish - customers can savour their salmon house-cured & coupled with a complex ensemble of fried capers, red radish, chervil, egg cream, dill & spring onion oil on toast (RM28) or poached to a supreme moistness, miso-glazed with a surprisingly crunchy seaweed crust, partnered with braised shiitake & torched leeks (RM52).
But ultimately, pork is the reason for Ante's existence & the chief lure for most of its followers. Ante 1 Utama carries on the tradition of turning the hog into the best sort of comfort food, from hard-to-find concoctions like sumptuous confit pork cheeks with cauliflower puree, carrots, demi-glace, onion rings & parsley (RM39) to crowd-pleasers executed with flair, such as a satisfying bolognese pasta with minced pork, kitchen-made tomato coulis, herbs & parmesan cheese (RM28), all ideally paired with Ante's thoughtfully curated wine selection, spanning Australia to Argentina. Many thanks to Ante for having us here.
Lot F346, First Floor, Rainforest, New Wing, One Utama, Bandar Utama, Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
Daily, 10am-10pm. Tel: +603-7732-5204
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