Vineria @ Bangsar Shopping Center

January 18, 2010

BSC keeps getting better. The latest restaurant here, Vineria, is an offshoot of Bar Italia, offering rustic fare that's fairly unusual for a mall outlet. Thanks to the comfy setting and gracious service, it's a pleasant place that's perfect for a leisurely evening with friends.

Spanish Nocina ham on Tuscan bean stew. Hearty comfort food, featuring robust flavours.

Duck & foie gras sausage with truffle cheese fondue. Worth ordering as an alternative to artificial-tasting supermarket sausages, though the saltiness overpowered any hint of foie gras. We were kinda bewildered by the fondue, which was more like a congealed chunk of cheese sprinkled with pepper instead of a warm sauce scented with truffles.

Barley with fried capsicum and tuna. A healthy substitute for risotto, with mild, subtle flavours. We appreciated how the barley remained firm without being chewy.

Gnocchi Sorrentina (potato gnocchi with tomatoes, oregano & mozarella). Finally, gnocchi that isn't lumpy! Alas, it still fell short of greatness; while it wasn't heavy, it wasn't quite the fluffy, pillowy gnocchi that haunts our dreams. Also, the sauce needs more fine-tuning to really complement the gnocchi _ perhaps a different type of tomato could be used.

Whole seabass with prawns, more barley and veggies. Flown in from Italy, here's a whopping catch that should easily feed two diners. Its clean, natural taste and tender, meaty texture should satisfy fans of fresh fish.

Two types of tiramisu: "Traditional," with Sicilian Marsala & Espresso Ristretto (no surprises, no complaints) and "Modern," with coconut and fiordilatte (weird, but fascinating; imagine the usual creamy tiramisu, except that it's coconut-flavoured).

Cabernet Shiraz Zinfandel Fusion T. Mater 2004 (Chile).

Prosecco di Prosecco Tenimenti Extra Dry NV.

Grappa, to end on a throat-scorching note.

G-133, Bangsar Shopping Centre.
Tel: 2287-7889

This restaurant is available for bookings under TABLEAPP, which enables customers to make instant reservations at Malaysia's top restaurants, while saving time and money in the process. Reserve your table at this restaurant by clicking here.