Red Kettle @ Taman Desa

February 21, 2015

Colouring up Taman Desa's culinary landscape, Red Kettle could become a boiling-hot new neighbourhood hangout, thanks to its warm crew - led by married couple Enzo & Theresa & their long-time friend Desmond - & their cool, comfort-food creations.

Red Kettle marks the fulfilment of a decade-old dream by the three Malaysians, who first met while studying in Sydney, to open their own casual outlet together. Head to this bakery-restaurant, peek inside if the shutters are unbolted, & watch crusty baguettes & bacon-laced loaves being freshly baked to feed curious residents strolling in from their nearby homes.

The hog-heavy menu pays homage to Asian traditions, with a Red Kettle twist to every recipe. The signature pork chop is Hainanese-inspired, featuring loin slices marinated for 12 hours & pan-fried - thin but tender, well complemented by old-school gravy that evokes home-style cooking, buttered green peas & hand-cut seared potato wedges. RM15+.

Red Kettle gains a crucial edge by showcasing kitchen-crafted components as much as possible, making everything from its own moist-&-meaty pork sausages & tomato-based, tangy-not-tart sauce to shower on herb-tossed bucatini pasta (RM18+) ...

... to hand-moulded pork patties & own-cured, own-smoked bacon for its burgers, bolstered by tomato-salsa ketchup (RM16+). We liked the patty - textured & tubby - but the bacon was surprisingly stiff & dry, while the bun proved stodgy & dispensable.

Red Kettle's most enjoyable success might be this on-fleek East-West combo of angel hair pasta, cloaked in a buttery broth, crowned with juicy roasted pork shoulder & a ramen-type soy lava egg, served steaming with sesame seeds & oven-dried tomatoes (RM18+). Not into pork? Red Kettle also promises lime-lemongrass lamb chops, chicken chops & pan-fried snapper.

Choose your own ending: Hot Vietnamese coffee (RM7) or cold soft-serve vanilla ice cream (RM3.80). And keep an eye out: By next month, Red Kettle expects to cook up many more offerings, from banh mi to mantou, all coupled with pork, of course.

Red Kettle
37 Jalan Bukit Desa 5, Taman Bukit Desa, Kuala Lumpur. Open Monday-Saturday, 12pm-10pm. Tel: 03-7988-0801

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