I had just returned from New York the week before I stepped into The Bowery Kitchen & Bar at the Main Square of Publika Solaris. So it was a pleasant surprise for me to discover that the restaurant has an American-centric menu. It was like stepping into a New York cafe all over again, albeit The Bowery being more spacious and “newer” than most eateries I’ve visited in my short stint at the Big Apple.
Opened just in October this year, all 3,500sq ft of the restaurant breathed of fresh creativity and fun vitality, thanks to the vision of the incredibly good-looking husband-and-wife team of Aneesha Veriah and Fariz Zain Zahedi. Well, they are also incredibly young and with so much enterprising spirit in them, it’s hard not to be buoyed by their passion and drive to be credible players in the cut-throat F&B scene these days. Tapping on both their experiences while living in New York, both Aneesha and Fariz offer their interpretation of American dining with a gourmet and fine casual twist.
Love those tiles and the retro-looking turquoise sofa!
The Bowery Kitchen & Bar’s menu focuses mainly on quintessential American fares like burgers, sandwiches, salads, pizzas, pastas and night nibbles. However, there are also several Asian-inspired items like Kimchi Fried Rice, Mantou Chinois and Bonito Somen Noodles for those who are not so into American fares but would definitely enjoy the cool elegantly chic atmosphere here.
As we relaxed on the turquoise (with a hint of mint undertones) sofa seats, we were treated to two of The Bowery’s signature cocktails. These handcrafted drinks were really creative concoctions, using the likes of gula Melaka and rojak sauce in the blend. Yes, you read it right – rojak sauce! The Margarita Malaya was a cheeky play of tequila, orange curacao, fresh lime juice and the mentioned rojak sauce. The sweet, tart and slight spiciness of the cocktail was a burst of fun on the tongue.
Margarita Malaya (in the foreground)
And then there’s the richer, creamier Sago Melaka which had gula Melaka and sago blending with white rum in a wicked way.
Sago Melaka (no, it’s not a dessert!)
So we got down to some good old American fares with flair. The Chicken Popcorn, a typical American chicken snack in the genre of chicken nuggets took on a fusionistic twist with a coating of sandy salted eggyolk. Malaysians seem to have a fascinating obsession with salted eggyolks, from croissant fillings to mudcrabs, so why not Chicken Popcorn too? DL loved it well enough to pick up every crumb from the plate, with a bit of help from Aneesha.
Salted Eggyolk Chicken Popcorn (RM23)
Mac & cheese, pastrami – both these were so typically New York – I saw them all the time on menus in most diners. While the pastrami was mostly crammed between rye bread in New York, The Bowery’s version – Reuben Bagel – combined it with another typical American item – the bagel and done Reuben style with all the requisite ingredients thrown in: Swiss cheese and sauerkraut besides the layers of beef pastrami. This begel was a meal in itself because it was served with a huge portion of fries and the most colourful mountain of salad. The pastrami was an excellent rendition, much better than the drier meat I had in New York.
Reuben Begel (RM29)
Mac & cheese at The Bowery was a luxe version – with lobster tail meat, baby peas, 4-cheese sauce and a huge lobster claw. I’m not a huge fan of Mac & Cheese but I could see this was a popular item on their menu as quite a number of tables had this.
If you are tired of the regular pizza toppings on your pizza, how about building your own pizza choosing from a variety of ingredients given? For RM33, The Bowery’s Artisan Pizza offered diners a variety of toppings and dressing:
- Sauce base (either tomato or white garlic sauce)
- 4 types of greens
- 1 meat
- 2 dressings
So then I had a great pizza assembled from white garlic sauce, aubergine, jalapenos, mushrooms, roma tomatoes, spicy lamb sausage topped with aragula and sun-dried tomatoes!
My Artisan Pizza (RM33)
If you must have a meat dish at The Bowery, check out their Harissa Lamb Rack (RM69) – perfectly cooked lamb cutlets with juicy pink centres served on a bed of maple & pecan sweet potato casserole and French beans on the side.
Harissa Lamb Rack (RM69)
By this time, we were completely full and could barely manage any dessert. But on Aneesha’s insistence, we gave the Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta (RM26) a try and were glad we did. The smooth silky panna cotta was served prettily with fresh figs, sea salt tuile and Tahitian vanilla frozen custard… a perfect end to a hearty American meal.
This festive period, The Bowery team has come up with some special set menus and it’s worthwhile checking the place out as it’s a great venue to just relax and eat away some hearty meals. And if you see a guy walking around with some awesome cool shoes, it’s quite likely that’s Fariz because he believes that “Good shoes take you to good places”! and obviously one of those good places is The Bowery Kitchen & Bar!
The Bowery Kitchen & Bar
D4-1-16 Solaris Dutamas
No.1 Jalan Dutamas 1
50480 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +60 (3) 6411-4989