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Review: Austrian Spread at Impiana KLCC Hotel

>> Thursday, October 21, 2010

Date: 13 October 2010, Wednesday
Venue: Tonka Bean Cafe, Impiana KLCC Hotel Kuala LumpurOccasion: Meet Austria in Malaysia Food Tasting(spread by Chef Helmut Lamberger)
Overall comment: Interesting Austrian dishes that are rarely available in Malaysia
. I enjoyed their cold starters, beef goulash, & apple strudel (oh, the apple crumble cake too!) :)
Halal: Yes

I was invited to a scrumptous meal at the Impiana KLCC Hotel recently for their Austrian spread. It was really delightful as I have never tried any Austrian food before :) The dinner was even more lovely with the company of Sharifah & Jihan, 2 wonderful MarComm personnel at Impiana KLCC Hotel, & not to forget, my new-found friend, Chef Helmut Lamberger!

Chef Lamberger has been with Impiana KLCC Hotel for the past 3 months as the Executive Sous Chef. Prior to stepping foot into Impiana KLCC Hotel's kitchen, he was working with various hotels in Malaysia, including a hotel in Langkawi. As an Austrian chef in Malaysia, he is proud to introduce some of his home-country's most popular & well-loved dishes. Among the many popular dishes are the apple strudels & the beef goulash!

The spread is currently available for both lunch & dinner until the 26th of October 2010. The lunch buffet is priced at RM50.00++ per person, while the dinner buffet is priced at RM78.00++ per person. There are also ala carte orders ranging from RM20.00 - RM50.00 per dish. So, if you're interested to find out for yourself what Austrian food is actually like, head down to Impiana KLCC Hotel & allow your curiousity to be satisfied :)

Note: Lunch is served from 12.30pm to 2.30pm daily while dinner is from 6.30pm to 10.30pm.

Here's a preview of what I had that evening:

Cold Starter
Marinated Beef with Vinaigrette & Onion Rings
I can’t help thinking that such thin slices of beef tastes like tuna flakes minus the fishy smell :P It’s very appetizing since the beef is sourish & sweetish, with some fragrance of yellow onions. Nice :)
Beef Gelee
The Austrians spell “jelly” as “gelee”. This is probably not a very popular dish in Malaysia since jellies are usually associated with desserts, not a cold starter! Even the chef thinks it’s quite weird, but it is indeed an Austrian dish ;) In actual fact, I really enjoyed this appetizing dish! The “gelee” is made from beef stock + gelatine, & some vinaigrette was added to the dish to give it a sourish taste. Ah, perhaps I like weird food! :P

Beef Gelee (left) & Marinated Beef with Vinaigrette + Onion Rings (right)

Beef Goulash Soup served with Bread Rolls
Popularly eaten during the Crusaders’ time, this goulash soup was like a must-have to wake the men up from their hang-over. Since then, the goulash soup is a commonly drunk soup in Austria & is usually cooked with beef. This soup that I had was packed with herbs & I also thought that it was slightly too heavy on the salt. Nevertheless, it was pretty good as it was “kao” & the pungent aroma of the beef was just delicious :) The soup’s main ingredients were yellow onions, cooked until it dissolved, beef, potatoes, parsley, vinegar, tomato paste, & paprika, which gave the soup a slightly spicy taste. The soup is like a thicker version of our Malaysian “sup tulang”!
There was also the whole wheat bread roll, which was slightly cold by the time I had it. It would be so much nicer if the bread roll was warm! *aahhhh* This bread roll is just like any baguette i.e. hard on the outside, & soft on the inside. It goes pretty well with the soup :)

Main Dishes
Chicken Stew in Creamy Paprika Sauce & Boiled Potatoes
The one thing that came to my mind when I had this dish was “Hey, isn’t this stew like the goulash, but it’s with chicken?” The ingredients pretty much the same, except that this chicken stew has sour cream, celery, & carrots. It's delicious when accompanied by Malaysian's all-time favourite RICE!

Poached Emerald Fillet with Creamy Dill Sauce
I was Googling to find out what an Emerald Fish is & this was the only definition that I found: "a fish of the Gulf of Mexico (Gobionellus oceanicus), remarkable for the brilliant green and blue color of the base of the tongue; - whence the name; - called also esmeralda." All along, I thought this would be just like any fish dish at the buffet spread. However, the emerald fillet is slightly different. The fillet is much firmer in texture compared to the usual Dory fish that’s soft & smooth. This one’s quite the opposite. It has a slightly “fishy” flavour alike our local ikan Kuran/Tenggiri. The dill sauce was nicely done & does not have a strong “milky/cheesy” taste that can cause one to feel ‘jelak’. If you enjoy eating fish, this may be something different to tickle your tastebud ;)

Boiled Beef with Root Vegetable Julienne & Horseradish Sauce
Being a typical Cantonese, my taste buds have gotten accustomed to flavourful dishes. This dish wasn’t on top of my “List of Favourites”. It’s quite bland (since it’s boiled), but one thing good is that you can savour the pure taste of the beef & the root vegetables i.e. carrots & radish.
Clockwise from top: Chicken stew, boiled beef, & emerald fillet

 I have to admit that the Austrian dessert spread is really extensive (Just the Austrian spread! Not inclusive of the "non-Austrian" desserts available at the same buffet spread!). I'm not a great fan of desserts, but I surely loved the Apple Strudel & the Apple Crumble Cake! *drools*

Famous Austrian Apple Strudel with Vanilla Sauce
A thin pastry stuffed with mashed apples, nuts, & raisins. I find this a tad too sour & not very sweet. The apples were quite fine & "mashy", unlike the apple crumble cake, which I actually prefer (I like to chew on the chunks of apples! :P) This was nonetheless lovely...it's Austria's famous wei!

Sacher Cake
This chocolate cake is a specialty cake from a hotel in Austria called Sacher. As written in the website Sacher.com, "The Original Sacher-Torte has been the most famous cake in the world since 1832 and the original recipe a well-kept secret of our hotel." Unlike the American moist chocolate cake, I find this chocolate cake to be slightly more crumbly & not as rich (although still quite rich with the dark chocolate "feel"). It was also quite sweet & felt like some "wake up call" for the Ruthless Eater! I'm not sure if the "real" Sacher Cake tastes alike, but this one's sure interesting!

Malakoff Cake
What a unique name for a cake. Topped with a thick layer of whipped buttercream over vanilla sponge cake, this cake is not to be missed for cream-lovers! This particular cake was soft in texture & contained peaches in between (me like!)

Hot Dessert
Pancakes with Cream Cheese Filling & Vanilla Sauce
I would not have imagined pancakes to be stacked to look like bread pudding...hahaha...I kinda enjoyed this hot dessert as it has a touch of fragrant cream cheese + raisins. The best part of this dessert is that it was not too sweet :)

Apart from the four featured dessert as above, Chef Lamberger prepared three more Austrian desserts for his diners :) Awesome!

*p/s: Liza, you would have liked this!

Apple Crumble Cake
Ah, one of my favourite desserts for the evening. It's sweeter than the apple strudel, the apples were more chunky, & the cake was more "floury", unlike the apple strudel's pastry :) I like!

Cream Schnitte
I didn't get a chance to savor this dessert as I was really stuffed with the vast variety of the Austrian spread. I am PerutBesi (Iron Stomach), not PerutGetah (Rubber Stomach) :D This dessert looks like a type of cream puff, but sadly I didn't taste even a bit of it :(

 Meringue Pie
I find this meringue pie slightly too sweet for my liking, although I admit that I enjoy meringues & pavlovas! Oh, I just love the fruity-tutti meringues/pavlovas....

Here are some desserts that I tried out (this was round 1 of desserts)

The stuffed PerutBesi with Sharifah, Jihan, & Chef Helmut Lamberger

Once again, thank you Impiana KLCC Hotel for the lovely meal & an enjoyable journey through Austria in a gastronomical way ;)

Another post on Impiana KLCC Hotel's spread: Click here
Write-ups from other sites: Kuali.com


Presentation: * * * *
Price: * * *
Environment: * * * 1/2
Taste: * * * 1/2
Service: * * * 1/2



Joel Yim October 21, 2010 at 10:57 PM  

I love goulash especially Hungarian goulash. Didn't know the Austrians had their own version.

PerutBesi October 24, 2010 at 8:54 PM  

->Joel Yim: U do?? Never heard u mentioning that :P I think the Austrians adapted this dish from the Hungarians or the other way around...should be quite easy to cook up some goulash, right? Jom, 1 day we try it out together-gether :P

Joel Yim October 25, 2010 at 11:44 PM  

Sure. Get your paprika ready ;)

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