January 8th, 2021
15 Restaurants for Smoky Flavours in KL & Selangor
Smokiness is a recurring theme throughout the degustation dinners at Damansara Heights’ new restaurant, Babe, where meals commence with warm potato mousse crowned with smoked coconut strips (their savoury flavour ends up evoking bacon, but with clear vestiges of tropical fruitiness) and oysters that are smoked to accentuate their brininess. Subsequent smoky courses include charcoal-grilled Alaskan king crab legs & butter-dripped Wagyu beef, but the feast eventually concludes with smokiness of a very different kind: Smoking meringues. Dunk each skewered piece of meringue into the liquid nitrogen for eight seconds, pop it in your mouth, & you’ll have instant ‘dragon breath,’ spewing cold smoke from your nostrils.
Address: 11th Floor, Work @ Clearwater, Changkat Semantan, Damansara Heights
Stoked may be Asia’s first restaurant to bank on Bertha, a British-built, cast-iron charcoal & wood-fired oven that fuels meat-loving establishments across England. Stoke’s mild-mannered executive chef Yu Yao oversees the 300-kilogramme oven, carefully cooking everything from meat to vegetables at soaring temperatures of up to 600 degrees Celsius to lock in moisture & flavour while imbuing a smoky char in the produce.
Address: Jalan Kasah, Bukit Damansara
Read Review: Stoked at Kasah, Medan Damansara: Restaurant Review
3. Nomi Tomo
It’s worth visiting Nomi Tomo simply for the skewers, served sizzling & smoky – beef with togarashi spices, tasty-tender pork belly, crispy-savoury chicken wings, & juicy salmon wrapped in bacon.
Address: 3rd Floor, No. 2 & 4, Plaza Damansara
Breadfruits’ squid salad is infused with Burmese influences inspired by Breadfruits’ predominantly Kachin-origin kitchen crew. Prepared with paprika, garlic, salt & pepper, the perfectly tender squid is pan-fried at a high heat to replicate a resplendent ‘wok hei’ smokiness, complemented by crisp rocket leaves, cherry tomatoes, coriander & lime.
Address: 17, Jalan 26/70A, 50480 Desa Sri Hartamas
The highlight of Ante’s Big Breakfast might be its house-cured, hickory-smoked bacon, the result of intensive kitchen R&D, a dynamo of smoky-porky magnificence that more than measures up to expectations at 8 millimetres thick, accompanied by immaculately cooked eggs, the chubbiest bratwurst, a trio of shimeiji, button & oyster mushrooms, creamy-fresh guacamole & sourdough toast.
Address: A2-G1-09, Solaris Dutamas
6. The Bar Kinugawa
The Bar serves distinctive canapes, smoked for hours over wood fire – edamame, octopus, cream cheese, oysters, scallops & fish roe, showcasing sultry flavours that supply sheer satisfaction.
Address: 112, Empire Damansara, Heritage Lane
Read Review: The Bar Kinugawa at Empire Damansara: 2015 Review
Hana’s eye-catching goose liver roll is torched by the table for a smoky flavour boost. This is an unexpected pairing – the roll is topped with foie gras & stuffed with crab stick filaments; both components complement each other harmoniously.
Address: OB2.G.U1, Oasis Boulevard, Ground Floor, Sunway Pyramid (Opposite Kim Gary)
8. Porcupine Place
Porcupine Place smokes its own salmon, an ingredient in some of its specialities such as smoked salmon blanketed in rice paper rolls with rocket leaves & lemon caper cream.
Address: B-3A-G, SetiaWalk, Persiaran Wawasan
The extensive selection here is confidently cooked, retaining all the essential succulence & resulting in an enjoyable smokiness, from meaty sticks of Spanish quail, rosemary-rubbed Spanish suckling lamb chops & ox tongue to the ocean’s fresh bounty of Spanish octopus with pimenton paprika & olive oil, Spanish Carabinero large red prawns, Japanese oysters wrapped in pork belly, shrimp in serrano ham & squid with shiso leaves.
Address: 18A, First Floor, Changkat Bukit Bintang
10. Steaks & Lobsters
Steaks & Lobster’s kitchen-produced smoky sriracha aioli is paired with Portobello mushroom fries for a snack that everyone will keep on munching.
Address: 42, Jalan 24/70A, Desa Sri Hartamas
11. BWB Yakitori Bar
Double the sensation of smokiness with smoked duck grilled over a charcoal fire.
Address: 8, Jalan 27/70A, Desa Sri Hartamas
Wide-ranging snacks such as applewood-smoked cream cheese prove a pleasurable foil for this cocktail bar’s potent potions.
Address: E-01-08, First Floor, Electric Boulevard, TREC KL
Read Review: IKKI at TREC KL: Snapshot
Smoked chocolate Chantilly & chocolate ‘branches’ with nutmeg syrup & dill, plus ‘pisang goreng’ ice cream, is a dessert that’ll leave customers high on a cloud.
Address: Lower Ground Floor, KDU University College
14. Olfactory Bulb
The Whiskied & Whipped waffle with JW Black Label cream, dark chocolate, marshmallow & vanilla bean ice cream, has a smoky flavour to complement the crisp but fluffy torn waffles.
Address: 15-2, Jalan PJU 5/13, Dataran Sunway, Kota Damansara
Read Review: Olfactory Bulb at Kota Damansara: Restaurant Review
15. P&C Cocktail Bar
One of P&C’s most popular cocktails turns out to be smoky & sensually nuanced, with visual theatrics in its preparation to bolster the intrigue.
Address: Desa Sri Hartamas