Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Sage @ The Gardens Residences


Being one of the last ones to lose your virginity isn't always funny. When one speaks about the intricacies between the courses, from the appetizers right up to the desserts, one can only wonder what the taste is like as you cant feel and smell like the ones that speak like true professionals.

I suppose they are nothing but evil as they praise of their deeds and yet criticise that it is over-rated all in the same sentence. Yet, you can only nod, as deep inside, you haven't got a clue what is going on and be it orgasmic or sadistic, your wish is to venture to the dark side.

Or you can only pretend that being the virgin is the new in-thing and that the trend belongs to the special ones like you; for not having fallen to the traps of the suave Takashi Kimura, head chef of Sage.

So after all these months of hearing the ups and downs of Sage (i mean who were you thinking?), the Girlfriend and I along with 14 others stepped into the hidden corner of the Gardens Residence to eat and enjoy what the Sage had to offer.

With the ambience certainly classy, the guests looking the part; all prim and proper, holding a big wine glass and sniffing at wine to see if it is worth swallowing, you cant help but feel that you are artsy and fartsy too.

Look harder and it is really a simple restaurant, simple decor with the highlight of the open kitchen where food is prepared by the head chef under the eyes of the guests that surrounds him and his crew. Service is fine at this point, with the waiters making sure you seat comfortably and menu is passed around. Kudos to the captain for recommending a good wine too!

A duo of complimentary bread, a wholegrain bread and another one that seemed fried with a spinach paste that was sparsely spread. Somehow at this very moment, i started to miss my butter, i wonder why.

A complimentary amuse bouche is presented.


A sliver of eel resting on a well braised piece of raddish, served with some broth. It is certainly promising and obvious that the japanese cuisine plays a big part in this Western laced cuisine themed restaurant.

Service was generally very quick, and barely after the spoon was whisked away, the first course arrived: Tataki of Yellow Tail with Kyuri and Mackarel Jelly.

Magnificent starter if i may dare say so. The fresh and firm sashimi slices was lightly marinated with a hint of ginger and soy, accompanied by the slices of kyuri. Very refreshing and definitely would not be out of place in a Japanese restaurant.

With the first course teasing your palates, you realise all the hype about Sage is starting to become true. The second course is again swiftly presented to us: Feuillete of Anago and Foie Gras and Duxulles. The piece of smooth melting goose liver was the highlight with the addition of even creamier eel. Not to be downplayed, the crispy filo pastry at the bottom with a filling of minced mushrooms (i think) completed the whole cycle.

If anything, i wanted to peak at the mains.

Rump Steak with Carrot Purree with Anchovy Sauce. Sounding like a stand alone dish, i was surprised to be presented with beef brisket masked in the light purree while the slices of rump was serve in the overall anchovy sauce. The sauce not too powering but enough to sniff the distinct fish out.

Alas, the compliments end here. I had asked for medium for the Girlfriend cant see blood on her steak, and being the nice Boyfriend (eventhough she may insist on many ocassions i was the contrary) i had obliged to waive my usual Medium Rare order. When served, the waitress seemed to have listened to my mind instead, and voila i see medium rare. That was when i realised, no one really had their meats the way they were suppose to. Either it was all randomly jumbled up or it was a case of whatever goes. Not what i expect from fine dining.

Roasted Saddle of Lamb with Zucchini and Thyme. Sadly it was again a case of not getting the orders right. Medium becoming Well Done and vice versa. The meat was decent in flavour and texture, but at ala-carte prices of RM80, the serving is miserable, with the meat bearly 80gms i think. The sauce is definitely thyme base with mash playing a decor role rather then being substantial as a side.

At this moment, you might have thought, oh well, is this it? Was this what i was having wet dreams on all this while?

Desserts are apparently their forte, but again it was a wrong choice of recommendation, when they fixed our menu and dessert.


The name sounds gorgeous; Crispy Roll of Tasmanian Cherries with Vanilla Ice Cream. Essentially it was fried spring roll filled with gorgeous coarsely chopped cherries that was hard to eat. One could just their hand and bit right into it, but that wouldn't be very gentleman or womanlike would it? The Vanilla Ice Cream is faultless with specks of vanilla beans that was so aromatic that i felt like asking for the whole tub when i eyed across the open kitchen.

A nice thick coffee was served; no fault about the coffee but service was getting a bit slow. Having to ask for my coffee once in a coffeeshop is acceptable, it is the norms of life but not in a fine dining restaurant.

Wash it all down with this light bodied Burgundy that costs a flat RM 195 (no charge or tax) that i would recommend (anyone out there know what the market price of this wine would cost?) and you are left with a lost feeling; whether it was all worth it, the hype and the preparation or it would have been better if you just remained the virgin you were.

Address and contact details:

The Gardens Residences (same side as Isetan)
6th Floor, The Gardens
Mid Valley City
Lingkaran Syed Putra
59200 Kuala Lumpur.

For reservations, call: 03-2268 1188 (to be honest, on this side of the spectrum, people aren't affected by the recession, judging from the virtual free flow of wine and food. Although there were a few tables empty here and there, i would think making a reservation is pretty much sensible to do)

Verdict: I contemplated long and hard, whether this would breach to the high end of 4 stars or just stay at 3 stars. On one hand, the food was good whilst some showed potential and the other i was annoyed at how they got all the little things wrong (well humans are not perfect). So with that, this really deserved 3.5 stars out of 5 stars. With Chinese New Year close by, and the ang pao coming in, i will review this place in the near future again.

28 comments:

J2Kfm said...

with that many steaks to cook, a mishap or two's understandable.

but paying RM80 for that mere 80gm of lamb ... ahem. i'll choke. :)

sc said...

the foie gras sounds divine..but the rest, hits and misses i presume? hefty amount to pay, hmm, but my BD's coming soon..hahaha

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

j2kfm: err acceptable if i didnt had to pay rm80 for it la..not for fine dining..i suppose its the reputation..

sc: yeah hits n misses..but up to you to give it a try la..

jasmine said...

do think it's a tad pricey for me at the mo. and i have had friends who didn't think too highly of it so bit difficult to get someone willing to go with me :(

but you're right, the starters look heavenly.

Nic (KHKL) said...

lurve that interesting combo of taste of the sashimi. kinda reminds me of a nouvelle yu sang we celup into porridge. shiok!

oh, and the lamb as well. nice, subtle garlic puree. too bad the portion was small, hor? hehehe...

email2me said...

The rump steak look good to me .... I heard they have wagyu served here too right?

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

email2me: hmm yes..the menu changes very quickly though..may not b there the next time..

nic: garlic mash isit..no wonder..definitely dont remember it being potato..but by the time i got the bones to chew, everything was everywhere on the plate..

jasmine: yeah lor..at 160rm ++ its not a daily meal..

Bangsar-bAbE said...

The foie gras does look divine but the mains and dessert...so "potong steam"!

To me, the dessert's merely fried popiah with cherry filling... (I'm more plebeian than FBB! :P)

RM160++?? My balls (if I had any) would drop!

vkeong said...

man, is that some premium price to pay for the lamb? RM80 for 80gm.. wow. And you right about the recession not really affecting the people.. everywhere I go the restaurants are still packed! Seems like enjoying food is something people won't easily cut down on eh.

FBB said...

hahah, eeeeks, bangsar babe used the exact same words as i did...wow, we must be kindred spirits....

RM160 net la Bangsar Babe...but still yeah, balls droppable...

gorgeous pics as usual nipples.

Bean Sprout's Cafe said...

Feuillete of Anago and Foie Gras and Duxulles looks amazing.. it is too sad about medium become well done...if it is that expensive, we can let them know, isn't it?

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

bean sprout cafe: my friend actually complained..came back..the same! but the comment was, it was darn good for a well done..

fbb: u r only too kind with the pics haha..i think u found ur match with the comments bit yeah!

bangsar: hahah ur bf balls might drop too if he took u here, just make sure u catch them yeah..

vkeong: i suppose there is some sort of cutting..but VERY gradual..

Life for Beginners said...

Dun worry about it, bro. You're not the only one to lose virginity... I pun belum visit the Sage. Wait for angpow lah dulu...

cher-ry said...

I was there last Saturday :) Try their chef table. Awesome!!

Wines very decent coz it's nett price! Stocks fr Vinum. We now buy fr there instead of bringing our own.

backStreetGluttons said...

We are so glad that after all the high class temptation and flirting , you are still yet a virgin , tho the power and undying lure of the sage is really empowering and you will certainly need an equally strong group of hands to keep you safe, in the future

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

bsg: did i say i am still a virgin after trying sage?

cherry: were u? so were we! 16 of us..did u c us?

lob: hahaha maybe you might want to re-consider the status of virgin then..

cher-ry said...

yeah 10 of us were seated in the private room. I think u ppl were seated on the long table outside right?

I think u would have seen me with another guy holding a giant camera walking around trying to get Chef's pic. Ha Ha Ha.

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

cherry: hahaha...maybe not..yes we were at the uber long table..aiyah missed u ppl..would have been fun hor since u guys seem to be serious foodies also!

ling239 said...

pricey leh....
economy crisis wor...XD

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

ling239: the crowd doesnt show that there is an economic crisis lor..

fatboybakes said...

harumphing at your angpow remark. lucky you, got angpow coming in. for us, its angpow going out. thankfully got 4 offspring as angpow magnets...

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

fbb: hahaha yes...can i come n visit and leech an angpau off u? or you could put a "loan the tan&tan card for 1 nite voucher" inside the angpau also..

Henry Yeo said...

lfb: you weren't there that night?

I think the wine is about RM 100 or so by the importer's price.

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

henry: yeah kenny wasnt around.. i was actually looking on the net for the wine..costs 65usd..darnit..

CUMI & CIKI said...

the lamb was gooooooood! but overcooked ;) glad you wrote it as it is/was! v good.

traveleo said...

The appetisers seemed promising, but unfortunately the mains were a letdown for you..

Something about Gardens that sound the "Shangri-La" pang.. Hmmm... :)

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

c&c: hahah of course..

traveleo: haha the shangri la pang? hmmmm

Tummy Rumble said...

Good post sage.. I recently did one as well... If you're interested in checking it out, its at

http://tummy-rumble.blogspot.com/2009/12/dinner-at-sage-restaurant-wine-bar.html

If you thought that it was spam, then I'm sorry about it..

Have a nice day =)