[Romantic Dining Spots]
This is the first time I’ve gone out of my normal areas to have a meal even though Putrajaya is not really considered very far out of the Klang Valley. Waited for Ying to return from the Moto GP before picking her up and heading over to Shangri-La Putrajaya to try out their contemporary Western restaurant – Azur.
Now Shangri-La Putrajaya is located in Precinct 1 near the Prime Minister’s office (ie. Perdana Putra) however I relied too much on Waze (which normally does an outstanding job of getting me to my destination) but for once it led me to some place in Serdang so do double-check the location before getting it to navigate.
After a 45 minutes detour trying to get out of Serdang and back to Putrajaya we finally reached the hotel which was located on top of a small hill and were quite impressed with the driveway which was very outstanding against the relatively dim surroundings.
The staff were very welcoming and they led us down to Azur which had a modern and chic design. As it was rather late (9+pm) most of the other customers had left so we pretty much had the whole place to ourselves! The floor-to-ceiling windows offers a great view views of the greenery and lake, as well as some iconic Putrajaya landmarks if it’s not too dark and you can even dine outside on the outside terrace which is a potentially romantic spot for a candle-lit dinner for two if the weather permits. As it was a rather warm night and as we were already quite late we opted for a table inside by the window instead. The candlelight dinner would have to wait for our next visit.
The table setting was pretty and not cluttered with lots of cutlery although more were added/ subtracted depending on your meal of course.
Sparkling water and a welcome cocktail before the food.
The cocktail was good to soothe our rather frazzled nerves after a long day.
The Amuse Bouche to get things started. Think it was tuna wrapped in a skin (reminded me of a popiah skin) and topped with caviar which bursts in your mouth when you chew it.
Home Smoked Duck Breast – Juicy and moist duck breast served with fresh fig and lingon berry marmalade. – RM32.00 – oh this was a lovely start to the meal! The deliciously tender and savoury taste of the smoked duck was matched with the sweet and slightly sour flavours of the marmalade! Definitely a highly recommended dish!
Salmon Gravlax Carpaccio – a Norwegian specialty of thinly sliced dill marinated salmon dressed in sweet mustard. – RM35.00 – I’m a big fan of salmon (BTW the correct way to pronounce it is without the “L” so pronounce it as sa-mon). The dill provided some nice texture and herb flavours, while the sweet mustard balanced the savouriness of the smoked salmon which was nice and fresh! And oh yeah there’s some salad on the side (I’m not really a fan of vege).
Lobster Salad – Warm marinated lobster salad toasted with lemon emulsion and cilantro mango salsa – RM53.00 – this was a quite luxurious dish! The delicately seasoned lobster salad, and the caviar were a joy to eat while the citrus sauce provided a little flavour to cut through the richness. I find that the chef has taken effort to really balance the dishes to ensure that none are too rich/ salty/ etc. etc.
Bergen Traditional Fish Soup – A savoury light cream seafood soup with scallops, prawns, salmon and vegetable julienne – RM25.00 – now please don’t be alarmed by the name “Fish Soup”. It’s a traditional Norwegian dish that originated from the Norwegian port of Bergen which has access to some of the freshest seafood from the North Sea and thus this dish was born! Loaded with seafood, the broth was more like a (less creamy) seafood bisque with just a hint of sweetness (probably from the seafood), and sourness from the vinegar. The trick to a good Norwegian Fish Soup is the balance of the flavours and I was quite impressed by this soup. Definitely a must-try if you are a seafood lover!
Lamb Shank – Slow-braised lamb shank in tomato gravy served with aromatic vegetables, forester potato, roasted garlic and onion. – RM65.00 – this was one very hearty dish. Tender lamb over a bed of veges, potatoes and for those who dare – roasted garlic (a bit hard to kiss your date if you ate the garlic so I’d suggest you don’t eat the garlic). The tomato gravy provided a nice “twang” to go with the lamb and good thing they served us with extra gravy as we mopped up every last drop in the dish!
Grilled Black Cod Fish – Pan-fried to perfection and accompanied with mushroom ragout, mixed baby vegetables, forester potato and garlic saffron cream sauce. – RM58.00 – Now I really like this dish. The fish was very fresh and the sauce oh the sauce was so good I asked (and got) more of it! The sauce just went with everything on the plate – fish, potatoes, vege. If only they sold it in a bottle I would have bought a whole carton. The mushroom atop the potatoes lent a nice earthy flavour to the dish while the crunchy vegetables gave a variation in texture.
Accompanying our food were some wines:
2003 Yarra Burn Sauvignon Blanc Semillon
2004 Serafino Goose Island McLaren Vale Cabernet Merlot
Of course we paired the red with the lamb and the white with the cod and we tried both with the starters. Basic rule of wine pairing is that neither the food or the wine should overpower each other.
Ask your server to recommend some wines that will go along nicely with your meal.
Classic Creme Brulee – served with cream and almonds – RM 24.00 – Ying had most of this one and she liked how it was not too sweet (traditional creme brulees can be very sweet from all the caramelised sugar on top) and it was nicely accompanied with juicy berries.
Exotic Durian Mousse – served with strawberry coulis – RM25.00 – this one was all mine as she doesn’t eat durian. I love durian and durian desserts in restaurants are hard to come by so I was super excited by this one and it certainly impressed! You could taste and feel the texture of the durian on your tongue even though it was in a mousse. Ahhh heaven!
Tomcat says – Azur at Shangri-La Putrajaya is off the beaten track which is sometimes where you want to bring your date rather than always at the same crowded places in Bangsar. The staff were very warm and attentive and service was impeccable which was a great plus point! There are food items which are different from other restaurants (fish soup, lobster salad and durian mousse!) while the classic favourites (smoked duck, cod fish) were cooked and presented very nicely. The beautiful and tasteful interior provided a nice ambience and we can’t wait to try a candlelit dinner on the outside terrace.
It’s not very far from KL/ PJ (take the LDP) but make sure you check your Waze properly when setting the route. I suggest going slightly earlier in the evening so that you can take in the view from the hilltop as it overlooks Putrajaya.
Putrajaya Shangri-La is located at:
Taman Putra Perdana,
Presint 1, Putrajaya, 62000,
Wilayah Persekutuan Putrajaya,
Lunch : 12noon – 2.30pm (Monday to Friday)
Dinner: 6.30pm – 10pm (Monday to Saturday)
Closed on Sundays and Public Holidays.
Dress Code: Smart Casual
Smoking Policy: Azur accommodates both smoking (outdoors on the terrace) and non-smoking guests.