Monday, December 09, 2013

Asmara Penchala, Kampung Sungai Penchala Food Review

When I first heard of this place, I was expecting something along the lines of authentic Malay food since it's smack dab in the middle of a kampung village which I've never even traveled into before. Due to a lazier side of me, I overslept my appointment time but thankfully, manage to get there just as they were about to serve the food. *Phew*

When I arrived at the place, I was delighted to be greeted with such a beautiful and lofty exterior that looks amazing with it's surroundings.
But my first thought was where do people park? Since the front yard does not have much space. It was later clarified that people may park alongside at the side area and even if there still isn't enough space due to here for a function or such, they may park at alongside the road or the Rukun Tetangga nearby. They needn't worry of the cars blocking since the road is quite wide which I do agree.

Inside it's high walls, I marveled upon it's large dining place with a surrounding area that can be likened to a resort.
The environment of this place very much puts me at ease and makes me feel more carefree, as if I'm here for a short holiday to get away from it all. It's peaceful and tranquil.
It's also quite a romantic place for a date with it's low but ample lighting, serene surroundings and no traffic to be heard despite on an outdoor area.
No doubt, I may be impressed by it's settings, but I'm also ultimately here to try their food.

We were served with this reddish looking drink called the Asmara Punch:
Presentation-wise looks superb. The drink is very sweet and tasted like Rose Syrup to me predominantly. Loved the heart-shaped watermelon on the glass though.

We started off with some bite-sized Cocktail Thai Fish Cake:
The Thai Fish Cake was definitely made as the main of this dish.
The rest of the ingredient along atop and below the fish cake lightly complements it with the crispiness of the bread below doing most of the work.

Here we have the Asmara Kentang Goreng, English - Fries:
Taste okay. It's served to us in shot glasses and sits on top of a little Chili sauce. Again, presentation-wise in all of their food is good.

From that, we moved on to some Creamy Butter Prawns:
Somebody mentioned that these are meant to be eaten with their shells but I just couldn't as the shells annoy the hell out of me and I just had to spit it out. But I guess they're right since if you were to get rid of the shell, then you wouldn't get the taste of the butter sauce on top at all. Still, prawns aren't something that I like to eat.

This is their signature dish, the Assam Pedas Asmara:
Ours contain fish in it, Ikan Tenggiri (Mackerel). The Assam soup is delicious and is not the thick kind but more soupy. The sourness and spiciness were 50-50 and weren't too overwhelming. The soup is nice to just eat it with rice.

There were 3 kinds of Nasi Goreng (Fried Rice) that were served to us for tasting. One is the Nasi Goreng Cina:
The Indian Fried Rice:
And the Nasi Goreng Kampung:
Among the 3 fried rice that was served, I like the Indian Fried Rice the best. The rice has some spice taste to it in comparison to the other 2 which has a more plain taste and the mutton meat is cooked in a way that I like more than the other 2 fried rice dishes' meat. The Poppadom was disappointing because not only is it soft and not crispy at all but it has a weird taste to it.

There's also a Western dish that's presented to us and it was the Grill Salmon:
It's served with some Tartar sauce, a side of salad and some pasta and corn. The salmon was dry and the spaghetti was tasteless. Need some work to improve on.

Dessert came in the form of Sago with Gula Melaka (Palm Sugar):
Normally, it would look like this if served with the Ice Cream:
The sago is too lumpy for me. I prefer sago that is individually on it's own or as few clumps as possible so that when you take a scoop at it, you have juices (usually coconut milk and gula melaka) of it mixing well in between the sago while if it's a clump of sago, the taste of sago and the liquid it's served in is well separated and doesn't give as much satisfaction.

This place may have a great ambiance but if they improve on the quality and taste of their food instead of just okay food, I think it would be sensational.
Currently, Asmara Penchala opens everyday except Monday and is opened from 3pm-12am but the opening hours may changed in the near future.

The full address is:
2933, Jalan Sungai Penchala, Kampung Sungai Penchala, 60000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


Merryn said...

I know this place. It was called Bora Asmara previously is it?

Kelvin -KtheBlogger- Tan said...

Also known as Asmara D'Penchala at one point. But Bora Asmara has a Balinese theme to it. I think they've now moved away from the Balinese theme.

Tekkaus said...

a lot of the food is really different from what we usually see.

Kelvin -KtheBlogger- Tan said...

I guess they intended to go towards fine dining and cater for occasions but I think they should keep it simple