January 18, 2011

The Kitchen @ Grand Lisboa

I'm a fan of prix fixe menus, so I decided to go to The Kitchen with my parents to try out their prix fixe lunch, since my mom is a big fan of steak. Overall, it was a pleasant experience with a couple of misses, particularly in terms of the service.
The bread to start were excellent, served with regular and honey butter. As always, I over-indulged on them, because I can't resist fresh bread with butter. I think I should stop going to restaurants that serve bread, because it usually ends up ruining the rest of my meal.
One of the appetizer option was making your own salad from their salad bar. My dad took this option but I had the honour of helping him pile up the plate! They had a glorious selection of food, with many different types of vegetables, meat, nuts, salad dressings, etc. Because you can only fill your plate once, I went a little nuts here and tried to put a little bit of everything on the plate.
Highlights included the crab roe salad dressing (near the front right of the plate), lots of smoked salmon, and salami (they're hiding under the lettuce). The various grilled vegetables were also quite delicious and I really enjoyed sampling a little of everything. I'm still quite astounded that my dad managed to finish the whole plate!
My mom opted for the Cappuccino of Wild Mushroom, which is a fancy name for cream of mushroom soup. I guess the "cappuccino" part of the name refers to the foam on top of the soup. The presentation was nice, and the soup was pretty good, but nothing outstanding.
For my appetizer, I chose the French Onion Soup with emphasis that it was made the "traditional way". Now, I'm not too familiar with the history of French onion soups, but perhaps the traditional way is to make it with lots of cheese? I swear, the soup was layered with 2 cm thick of cheese! I love cheese, so it was all good for me. However, I felt extremely stuffed after finishing off the soup.
For the mains, my dad attempted to eat healthy by selecting the Norwegian Salmon Fillet. For all the mains, you get to choose the sauce and sides. The sauce here is Champagne Sauce, which is extremely creamy and pretty much detracts any "healthiness" in the dish. The salmon fillet, however, was cooked to perfection. The fish was tender, juicy, and flavourful, although I didn't quite enjoy the Champagne component in the sauce. The side here is grilled assorted vegetables.
My mother is determined to get Wagyu beef, so she selected the Australian M7 Wagyu with forest mushroom ragout sauce, sautéed green asparagus and baked Idaho potato. The mushroom sauce was a nice complement to the steak, although I'm still convinced that high quality steak does not need any sauce. We're disappointed that the stuffing in her potato was not baked with it. Basically, they bake the potato first, and then come out with a tray of stuffing that they spoon on top. It was pretty funny because my mom likes her potato REALLY loaded, so we had to keep telling the waitress to spoon more and more chives, bacon bits and sour cream into the potato. In the end, I think my mom just wanted to grab the tray and do it herself.
For me, I also prefer the steak, but mine is the USDA Prime Sirloin with French mustard and terragon sauce, mashed potato and gratinated broccoli. The sauce was too salty, and my cut of meat was not as good as my mother's Wagyu beef. However, I really liked my sides. The mashed potato is possibly the creamiest I've ever tasted, and it made me wonder how much butter they must have poured into making it. The gratinated broccoli meant more cheese, but it was nevertheless very tasty. I was completely overdosed with cheese by the end of the meal.
The meal included dessert and coffee to finish. The coffee was super strong and I had to add so much cream to it. I got the Almond Cake, which was pretty good but I was already stuffed at this point and had to pack most of it home after taking one bite.
My mother opted for the Fruit Salad, topped with some sort of sorbet. I didn't even try this at all, but it looked pretty good as well. In the end, much of our mains had to be packed because we were so stuffed by the appetizers and bread. Service was really off for a fine-dining restaurant, however. At one point, they brought me someone else's meal. As well, they didn't pack my leftover gratinated broccoli and mashed potato, which were the favourite parts of my meal. I was really disappointed about that. Would I come here again? probably not, even though certain parts of the meal were highly enjoyable. But there are just so many other options to explore.
The Kitchen



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