The Steak­house at Hil­ton Kuching is a tribute to the clas­sic en­joy­ment of good food.

Robb Report (Malaysia) - - Best Of The Best - By KEN­NETH TAN

Lo­cated cen­trally in the city, Hil­ton Kuching has long been an in­sti­tu­tion for lo­cals and the de facto ho­tel of choice for well-heeled trav­ellers. The ho­tel’s culi­nary op­tions abound, among them, its cosy and mul­ti­ple award­win­ning Steak­house restau­rant. Inside an am­bi­ence en­riched by jazzy strains of mu­sic, seat­ing is of­fered for up to 52 peo­ple (in­clud­ing a pri­vate room for up to 14 din­ers) with re­lax­ing river­side views of the day­time bus­tle and serene evenings. Ex­ec­u­tive chef Alex Wong’s 20+ years of ex­pe­ri­ence in the kitchen has en­abled him to of­fer a menu of clas­si­cal steak­house de­lights, with a rhap­sody of local touches to en­hance the palate.

An ex­am­ple of the lat­ter comes with the Gula Apong Cured Salmon, with the palm sugar at­tach­ing fra­grant new aro­mas on the salmon. A Cow­boy Steak of 780g (RM285), served with Tog­a­rashi fries, of­fers a hearty serv­ing for two. Aged and cooked sous vide be­fore grilling, the steak re­tains its juices and flavour, al­though one may opt for in­house made bear­naise and brown sauce for ex­tra di­men­sions.

A Cow­boy Steak of 780g (RM285), served with Tog­a­rashi fries, of­fers a hearty serv­ing for two.

“Qual­ity in­gre­di­ents is of course the key,” says Wong. “How­ever, we also like to in­tro­duce some­thing new to our din­ers and this cut of meat is an ideal ad­di­tion to the menu.” To pair, you can se­lect from a se­ries of New and Old World va­ri­etals in­clud­ing Castello Banfi’s Pog­gio all’oro Brunello di Mon­tal­ciono Ris­erva ( RM1,500), a 100-per­cent San­giovese blend bear­ing a sym­phony of to­bacco, liquorice, vanilla and tof­fee.

For Wong, his go-to favourite here is a Chateaubriand done medium rare, served with a side of creamed spinach and crushed pota­toes. “To drink, a New Zealand Pinot Noir for its in­ter­play of flavours.” Cook­ing is a game of pa­tience for Wong. An ex­am­ple of this is the Cheese and Sun­dried Tomato- Crusted Beef Ten­der­loin (RM145), which is de­scribed as a painstak­ing process of grilling and prepa­ra­tion of the crust to achieve smooth smoky aro­mas even be­fore you bite into it.

Sim­i­larly, the Steak­house’s Lamb Rack (RM125 for 380g) is an ex­er­cise in re­straint, with pedan­tic char­grilling to pro­vide crusty, caramelised edges on still suc­cu­lent meat. As his coup de grace, Wong of­fers Green Tea Lava for dessert (other choices in­clude choco­late and caramel). The softer sen­sa­tions of the matcha are soon joined by an ir­re­sistible liq­uid cen­tre send­ing waves of de­light for a re­sound­ing fin­ish. www. hil­ ≠

“Qual­ity in­gre­di­ents is of course the key. How­ever, we also like to in­tro­duce some­thing new to our din­ers.”

The lamb rack comes with a great sear and main­tains a ten­der and most inside.

Above: ex­ec­u­tive chef Alex Wong of the Hil­ton Kuching. Inset: savour a melange of tex­tures and flavours with the cheese and sun­dried toma­tocrusted ten­der­loin.

Clock­wise from above left: Gula Apong Cured Salmon; Green Tea Lava dessert; pri­vate din­ing at the Steak­house.

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