Asmara translates to love in English. The name of this place clearly suggest lots of romance and intimacy in the process as ambiance builds and create affections as meals are served ala five star. As we entered, frangipanis and palm tree, gong by the entrance, and lots of sculptures with Balinese elements instantly calm the soul. This instantly creates immediate segregation of city hassle as we enter this tranquility.
Couples looking forward to celebrating any special occasion will find this place amusing especially when the restaurant is versatile when it comes to prior arrangements and requests. The restaurant is very thoughtful and delicate when it comes to table setting or dishes presentations.
And speaking of effort, the very tiny bit of effort in every aspect is very admirable. Right from preparation, to plating, the presentations are overwhelming and I was really impressed with my dining experience. The staffs were amazingly well trained at servicing and friendly, while the owner participating at the operational site truly makes an impression in elevating the standard of dishes and services.
Starting with the Asrmara Punch (RM 11) where the thoughts that I truly appreciate here would be the fresh and beautifully craved watermelon slice that is not only edible but also very pleasant to the eyes. Alas, the looks of it was hardly half as sweet as the taste of this punch. It consists of a mix of syrup which I thought was slightly overpowering the freshness of watermelon juice, but although agreed by the rest of us this may be subjected to personal palate.
When the Thai fish Cake(RM 15) served cocktail style was presented, it was definitely mesmerizing to see such delicate presentation. It must have taken quite a bit of time to arrange in such pop sized bites. The cucumber and tomato slices were still succulent inside out, meaning it was prepared fresh. I really like that. Having awestruck by the presentation, some layers could have been made slightly thicker to balance the overpowering flavour of Thai fish cake.
An extra treat on the menu, which is very suitable for cocktail parties would be the Asmara Kentang which was beautifully served in pretty glasses with Thai chili sauce at the bottom. The potato maybe simple long cutlets of hash brown but it serves as good appetizers or cocktail bites.
Once all warmed up and ready to taste, the next serving was the Butter Prawn (RM 35) which was crispy enough to nicely gnaw, slowly tasting the fragrant of lightly burnt prawn shell. The flavour from this dish depends very highly on the butter milk gravy so it would be nice if the prawn itself have more flavouring in it.
Speaking of flavours, the Asam Pedas Asmara Tenggiri(RM 29) is the bomb while the mix of spices and herbs all combining to create the exciting sensation which balanced and masked any fishy flavour from the plump slices of tenggiri fish. The usual okras and brinjals were also included in slightly unusual sizes, slightly bigger than what we are familiar with.
The local delights were pretty charming with very beautiful set that comes with the essential rice, and a couple of beautiful sides at rather reasonable prices. The fried rice combos were charming although lack fragrant and aroma from wok heat. The Nasi Goreng Cina came with battered fried prawns, pandan chicken roll, pan seared fish, some keropok ikan and served with chili api. The Chicken Pandan Roll was impressively delicious with very luscious and juicy texture deeply infused with aroma of pandan leaves.
The Nasi Goreng India was accompanied by the lovely Lamb Masala which was decent and palatably delicious. The portions of herbs and spices blend amazingly and nicely at the same time mellowing any gamy flavour from the lamb. Generous cashew nuts contribute to the nut fragrant and creaminess to compliment intense flavour of all the herbs and spices. This of course is available on the ala carte menu at RM 25.
Nasi Goreng Melayu was not far in similarity from the first two when it comes to fragrant of the wok heat. However, when accompanied by the tangy spicy chili, the combo manages to redeem and do justice to the beautiful platting. Also served with prawn and chicken pandan, the star in this would probably is the Rendang Tok– a dish very much appreciated us. Something I rarely cook at home due to the tedious cooking time, and the trouble to gather the ingredients. This one was nicely seasoned and meat still retaining its tender.
When preparing for events or special occasions, the restaurant makes sure that individual tasting portions were beautifully served.
On top of these amazing local delights, the restaurant serves pretty decent western menu of which we tried the Grilled Salmon (RM 38) which has a rather peculiar combination of plump size of salmon, pasta, salad and corn comb. I would appreciate this even more if the salmon would be more moist and juicy on the inside, and less burnt grills on the outside.
And lastly, all sweet things must end with appropriate dessert. Sago Gula Melaka sells at RM 5 (RM 9 with ice cream), matching with fresh coconut milk was heavenly. And for events, serving sizes can be made really beautiful and elegant.
Pendant lighting and stone lamps beautifully lit up the place as dusk takes place and gradually transformed every nook of different layout into fairy tale-like dinning legroom. From verandas to lounges and comfy rustic wooden tables and chairs and to couches and comfy pillows and bolsters in private huts, customers can choose to dine indoor or outdoor by the lively water ponds and pretty frangipanis.
Gorgeously decorated and accessorized with matching drapes, curtains and pretty table cloths to create amazing atmosphere and hence consigning this into perfection for couples or family for any events or occasions. The quiet nest in Kampung Sungai Penchala vouched peaceful natural surroundings, along with soothing music like therapy for relaxation.
The Asmara Penchala is located at :
Lot 29 33,Kg. Sg. Penchala,
Jln. Damansara,60000 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-7726 0964
GPS: 3.15979, 101.62086
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