There’s no denying Malaysia has some colourful culinary offerings but even for a city with a diverse F&B scene like KL, Scandinavian food is not easy to come by. Thus, it’s with great anticipation that Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur is hosting guest Chef Sayan Isaksson, the name behind the famed Michelin-starred restaurant, Esperanto until this Saturday.
The Thai-born Swedish chef takes guests on a journey of discovery, as he presents his creative interpretations of Scandinavian cuisine, which includes fresh, high quality seafood. Drawing from his life’s experiences, Isaksson’s food demonstrates universal flavour, as one would expect from the owner of a renowned restaurant named after a language created to cross frontiers.
Pickling and fermentation, which are characteristic of the region, are predominantly featured in most dishes. The chef’s creativity is on display throughout the menu, as first seen in the almost too-pretty-to-eat amuse-bouche and later in the ‘Oyster Pearl’ starter, which attempts to challenge logic. “Would you care to eat the oyster shell?” the chef asked as he presented the dish during our press preview.
The series of light bites set the tone for the main course and did a wonderful job of sating the expectation. For dessert, the potato ice cream shaped like an apple and drizzled with grilled apple broth impressed with a show of the chef's imaginative streak.
Bearing a long list of accolades – including being chosen to prepare the menu for the prestigious Nobel Prize banquets two years in a row – Isaksson promises a treat for all the senses. In addition to the food, guests can also look forward to live jazz music performed by Swedish singer Deri Rowlands (from 6.30 to 9.30pm at Lounge on the Park) to complete the Scandinavian experience, which is best enjoyed with a glass of wine.
Available until 21 April for lunch and dinner at Mosaic (buffet), Mandarin Grill and Lounge on the Park (a la carte). Prices ranges between RM198 and RM468 per person nett. Call 03 2142 8000 or email [email protected] for reservations. See here for the full menu.