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Malaysia Chapitre

Kuala Lumpur, October 21, 2011

“Dining Under the Stars” ... The stars in the night are still shining brightly for the 150 Chaîne members and guests who attended Malaysia’s 2011 Annual Chapitre in Kuala Lumpur's Hotel Equatorial.

The theme “Dining Under The Stars” truly mirrored the mood of the evening. It was a star-studded black-tie affair that would have made Dato Lau Foo Sun, our founder Bailli Délégué who sadly passed away earlier in the year, proud of the gourmet legend that he has left behind.

Splendid tables were set around the room, each offering scrumptious hors d’oeuvres. The epitome of extravagance was shown by the serving of two types of caviar paired with Beluga Gold Line, the luxury vodka from Russia. Delectable sliced Smoked Duck was offered Chinese style wrapped in Peking Doilies or Japanese style hand-rolled Maki.

Beautiful ladies in their flowing gowns paired with gallant gentlemen in their finest suits caught up with the latest news while waiting for the pan-fried mouth-watering Foie Gras flambé with Apple Brandy! Those who wanted the taste of every imaginable seafood fulfilled their wish at the impressive ice table spread.

When it was time for the Gala Dinner to commence Bailli Délégué Datuk Dr Sambhi, together with the Master of Ceremony, K.K. Rajah, Bailli of Putrajaya, called for the Ballroom doors to be opened, hailing in unison “Vive la Chaine!”

The doors magically swung open into a ‘courtyard’ filled with the sound of music and a setting complete with trellises of real vines with bunches of sweet grapes hanging from them. The lighting was romantically muted with twinkling ‘stars’ lit high above and seven ice carvings set around the courtyard. The ambience was magical and befitting of a Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Gala Dinner.

Executive Chef Tony Edington choreographed a superb menu, personally introducing each course during which he highlighted details worthy of note. For example, the Mertensia Meritima Leaf with Champagne Jelly. This leaf was imported from the coast of Ireland which tasted of the ocean and had hints of Oyster flavour. This dish was set with an Umami Oyster from the same coastal region. The wine Schloss Schonborn Riesling 2009 splendidly complemented this special Amuse Bouche.

The next course was Mille-feuille of pressed terrine of foie gras with pineapple crisp. The guests commented on the finesse of the Foie Gras which had been made from imported goose livers. The concentrated sweetness of the pineapple crisps was a pleasant surprise that matched the dish very well.

The soup, Galician black mussels and saffron with chorizo, leeks and potatoes was served piping hot. The fresh, crisp citrus flavour of the Swiss wine Provins Petit Arvine 2010 helped to draw the sweetness of the ocean from the rich saffron creaminess of the soup.

The fish course, Lobster ravioli with bouillabaisse jus and basil oil, was a delicate masterpiece. Each bite into the ravioli with the bouillabaisse flavours was heavenly. This was accompanied by a 2007 G.D. Vajra Barolo Albe from Italy.

The Royale Sorbet was a blend of passion fruit, lemon and Drambuie providing a touch of fine herbal liqueur placed as a quenelle on to a quartered passion fruit shell.

The “pièce de résistance” was the main course which the staff served by lifting in unison the silver domed plate covers. Dutch milk-fed veal with sweetbreads, morel sauce and  sautéed chanterelles and trompettes des morts was tastefully paired with a Cornas Jean Luc Colombo Cornas Terres Brûlées 2007. Ripe, rich and round, with lots of spicy, earth-scented cherries and berry flavours, hinting a taste of tobacco on the smooth finish, complemented exceptionally well the light but rich veal dish.

By the time the dessert was served, everyone was in a festive mood. The Feuillantine de poire au caramel was a honey poached Bartlett pear on caramel sauce with truffle shavings that brought out the essence of the vanilla quenelle with banana tuile.

As coffee was served, the evening moved up yet another gear with a gala concert by Donne Ray Radford, a fourth generation ‘Platters’ singer who entertained with old favourites - “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes”, “Great Pretenders”, “Only You” and so much more.

The evening came to an end with the parade of the Kitchen and Service Brigades resplendent in their red bowler hats and French scarves. Bailli Délégué Datuk Dr Sambhi recognised the hotel and its General Manager, Alan Ong, for a great job well done with these words, “This evening belongs to one of the best Chaîne events the Bailliage of Malaysia has ever experienced”.

Mae Ho Seok Khen
Chargée de Presse