Tag Archives: Western Cafe

The Haute Food Co [food review]

Woke up to the soft patter of rain right outside my bedroom window. What began as a storm an hour ago was slowly dwindling to a gentle placid drizzle, slowly but surely dying down. My toes were cold and stiff as I lay wrapped under the blankets with my whole body aching from a hard no-gi jits and yoga session the night before. Headstand anyone?

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It was a dreary morning in Kuala Lumpur, one that required the use of covered tops. Strange indeed, cause this is the tropics after all. I blame it on 2012 and global warming. Maybe the world is ending after all. Heh.

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Anyway, F and I had arranged to meet for lunch at ‘The Haute Food Co’ in Plaza Damas. It was a new place that neither of us had ever visited but came highly recommended by a trusted foodie friend of ours. She described it as a ‘quaint cafe with good sandwiches and excellent western style coffee’. The coffee we get in Malaysia is very different from the coffee in the US, UK or Australia. Here it is made to taste stronger and for lack of a better word extremely coarse. It isn’t quite like the type of coffee you get in little Italian shops (sadly Starbucks was for a long while the only good overseas style coffee in Malaysia, thank goodness those days are long gone!). It is made to taste as strong and black as it looks and is usually made with condensed milk. While we like that coffee (it is home after all), having spent some significant years abroad – you can’t help but miss certain things. So when you tell yuppies like us ‘western style coffee cafe’ we were sold.

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20110416-092345.jpg Love the quaint charms of the counters and the front door (you can’t see it in the photo but there’s a little wind chime at the door and it twinkles ever so slightly when a customer enters).

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The daily specials written on a blackboard.

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20110416-092415.jpg Each table has a postcard size art piece that introduces up and coming artists based in Kuala Lumpur. This illustration is too cute! And yes my dear cake I won’t let the glass case get in the way of our love! Heh 🙂

F ordered a latte while I got a berry mint lemonade.
20110416-092427.jpg The latte was full-bodied and creamy. F commented that the espresso shot was quite strong (he normally likes to order double shot cause he finds most places that do western style coffee tend to have weak espresso shots). Overall it was a very good latte. I’m not much of a coffee drinker cause I really don’t like the bitter taste of pure coffee but the subtle bitterness yet full flavor of the coffee coupled with the extra creaminess of the milk made this latte thoroughly enjoyable ❤ My berry lemonade was really nice too, very refreshing with the mint just adding a very subtle hint of a kick.

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The menu is so reminiscent of coffee shops in Manly Beach, Sydney Australia which usually means having breakfast on the menu (something which we have to try next time) with sandwiches and salads being the focus for lunch. They also have teatime treats like jam drops, pound cakes, scones and chocolate logs. The specials are mainly pasta and meat entrees like chili con carne. F decided to order the smoke chicken and cheese with sundried tomato paste while I ordered the roasted lamb wrap.

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20110416-092500.jpg Anyway….. The sandwiches were soooooooo tasty! F’s sandwich was borderline heart attack indulgent. The bread was slathered with butter on both sides then toasted to a perfect crunch. While my lamb was roasted tenderly perfect, I think the spiciness of the lamb could have been increased (like definitely a bit more cumin and fenugreek). It came with a mint dip so perhaps that’s why they toned down the spices in the lamb. However the full gamey flavor of lamb came through (which I love!!)If you don’t like a strong gamey taste, I would totally avoid this. The bread wrap was also toasted so that added a nice texture too. My only complaint about the sandwiches was the lack of vegetables inside the sandwich while F complained the portions were a little on the small side. Anyway regarding the veggies, I know that it’s served with salad on the side but you know having some greens would have made the sandwiches have an extra layer of flavor. Maybe it’s cause Malaysians don’t like leafy vegetables in their sandwiches and they wanted to cater to the average Malaysian taste buds? Who knows…

Soon it was time for dessert!
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Having a huge interest in baking, I find that a lot of cakes in cafes rarely impress me. But the cakes here were baked and decorated very well.
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Most of the cakes were actually torted (cut top and bottom to give a flat surface). As strange as it sounds (since torting is cake decorating 101) most Malaysian cafes don’t torte and try to pass of their lopsided uneven cakes as ‘rustic’ or ‘homemade’. I call bullshit on that and say it’s cause of ‘laziness’ or ‘scared of wastage’ lol.

Anyway since cheesecakes are cakes I can’t quite bake well (can’t really get the texture right) we decided to order a banana honeycomb cheesecake.
20110416-092510.jpg The cheesecake was actually a normal cheesecake with a layer of banana on top of the bottom biscuit layer and honeycomb bits scattered around. I wished the honeycomb bits tasted more like a honeycomb as it was a bit more cookie in texture and I really couldn’t taste the honey. And I didn’t like the idea of the chocolate biscuit base having nuts. Almonds have a really strong taste, one that doesn’t really blend well as compared to something like walnuts. So the almond slivers kept distracting me from the taste of the chocolate base. Such a waste as the chocolate base did taste really bittingly chocolate. But overall it was quite enjoyable. Would I order it again? Probably not… although if someone did order it, I honestly wouldn’t mind a nibble. Heh. 🙂

Some instagram shots before I end the post:
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Pros: Good lattes, properly decorated cakes and desserts, good flavors in the sandwiches. Very nice cafe ambience.
Great Western style cafe!!

Cons: Portions are a little on the small side.

Cost: RM12-18 a sandwich. RM8-RM12 a drink.

Recommended? Hell yeah!

20110416-092254.jpg hehehe and one camwhore pic of yours truly. 🙂

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