Max Cafe @ Taman Tun Dr Ismail

January 13, 2018

By Aiman Azri

When it comes to inspiration, restaurateurs draw from a range of sources, but few might open a cafe that seems to pay homage to budget carrier AirAsia. That sets Max Cafe apart, with a mural that clearly represents Tony Fernandes on its wall and AirAsia's unmistakable red caps spread over its cake chiller.

The food is not quite airline fare: The first thing that caught our eye was the Claypot Nasi Lemak (RM 12.90). How would you cook nasi lemak in a claypot? Turns out, you don't. The nasi lemak is prepared separately before being served in a claypot, which feels practically decorative. Nevertheless, this is a hearty portion with satisfyingly prepared chicken rendang, sambal that might be spicier and sweeter than expected, plus plenty of anchovies and roasted peanuts to go around.

For pasta fans, the Sapid Salmon (RM 15.90) places crisp-skinned, fairly moist salmon atop a savoury heap of fettuccine, accompanied by a small side salad - beware of potential bones in the fish though. The Mushroom Masta (RM 12.90) is somewhat similar, perhaps creamier and certainly cheesier, with mushrooms instead of seafood.

Skip the Soppa Soup though (RM 8.90); it's much too salty, even when mixed with the rice, and the flavours of chicken and corn fail to come through.

The rest of the menu includes Western breakfasts, Asian fried rice, noodles and sides.

Besides the typical juices, coffee and tea, the signature Max Specials might be noteworthy, particularly the Rosa Latte (RM 8.90), which blends aromatic elements of rose, spices and milk, and the Spiced Curcuma Latte (RM 9.90), with sharp notes of antioxidant-rich turmeric.

Max Cafe
36, Jalan Tun Mohd Fuad 2, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Kuala Lumpur. Daily, 9am-10pm.

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