This review is brought to you in part by Rendez-Vous and Upstage Lounge.

KL welcomes a fresh face to its F&B landscape: Chef Benjamin Reilhes is relatively young, scarcely in his mid-twenties, but he succeeded in crafting one of our favourite dinners in recent weeks. Now jazzing up the menu at Bangsar’s Rendez-Vous, the talented Frenchman – who’s cooked in restaurants since he was 15 – infuses imagination and intelligence into his work, the result of having refined his prowess at venues like Paris’ Michelin three-star Le Pré Catelan and Toulouse’s Brasserie des Beaux Arts.

1. Rendez-Vous

From the very outset of the meal, it’s clear that chef Reilhes aims to bring a modern sparkle and renewed exuberance to the restaurant – nibble on a well-conceived and unique amuse bouche while enjoying a Mojito while deciding what to order.

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Starters

For the ideal introduction to Rendez-Vous revamped repertoire, start your journey with a fish soup that’s assembled at the table, comprising a tartare of confit vegetables and thick rouille sauce that’s poured over with the briny broth, balancing contemporary finesse with traditional flavours, recommended for pairing with a vibrantly zesty South African Golden Kaan Chardonnay 2013..

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Tuna takes on an elaborate and elegant presentation, demonstrating a candied tenderness on a platter painstakingly put together with cauliflower puree, cabbage and rouille (RM25) – the meticulousness feels befitting of haute cuisine, albeit at reasonable prices.

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Many of the offerings in Reilhes’ oeuvre are delightfully distinctive, such as the half-cooked eggs with Parisian-style gnocchi and cheese (RM22), irresistible comfort food matched with a label from the vineyards of Côtes du Rhône.

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9. Rendez-Vous

Fans of foie gras won’t want to duck this sampling of creamy-smooth liver terrine (RM48), enriched with port wine and spices, buoyed further by mushrooms for a memorable ensemble that sings together in ravishing harmony. A few accompanying sips of Porto Cruz Tawny Port make the experience even better.

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Mains

Moving on to mains, the star of the seafood section is likely the crusted sea bream with potato and truffle oil risotto, complemented by a bouillabaisse-inspired sauce (RM62) – it does full justice to the fish, balancing the delicate nuances of the sea bream with irreproachably selected embellishments. The pairing of an Italian Pinot Grigio works predictably well for this.

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14. Rendez-Vous

 Steak enthusiasts can now bookmark Rendez-Vous as a deserving destination – the grilled rib-eye with all the trimmings (RM89) is exemplary, as compellingly executed as we could have hoped for, supplying sheer succulence to sink your teeth into; definitely worthwhile for that beef fix. Good to go with a Chianti.

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Desserts

Reilhes’ flair extends through desserts, with his profiterole-like reinterpretation of the Paris-Brest (RM20; choux pastry stuffed with hazelnut custard) and a lemon tart blanketed in both soft and hard meringue (RM17) ensuring a fine finish to this exploration.

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Upstage Lounge

We wouldn’t hesitate to visit Rendez-Vous on any occasion for its food, but to make a complete night out of it, founders Florian Nigen and Arnaud Chappert have recently opened a crimson-cloaked bar above – named Upstage Lounge – that regularly hosts jazz and stand-up comedy shows.

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It’s a cosy space for chilling out in Bangsar over a top-flight curation of stand-out European potions. Now nearly two years old, Rendez-Vous keeps getting better and better – thanks to the team here for having us back.

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22. Rendez-Vous

Location & Details

Rendez-Vous

100 Lorong Maarof, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur.

Rendez-Vous opens daily, 12pm-3pm, 6pm-12am.

Upstage opens Mon, Thurs-Sun in the evenings.

Tel: +603-2202-0206

Find: View directory for Rendez-Vous here

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