Drive right through and the mysteriously good service continues, from the friendly guards who directs you where you should park the car to opening the door for you. The pleasant surprise continues when you bump into the maître d’ at the lift and you are greeted and led upstairs by him.
Il Lido creates a nice balance of ambience; sleek, posh, comfortable (not the chairs unfortunately, didn't have a sufficient arm rest) with dim lighting. With a spotlight at each table though, the lighting is sufficient for photographs.
Service is good especially with a ratio of probably 2 staff to per table, well that night was a pretty empty weekday night. Matter of fact, service was probably too attentive and we encountered a staff that probably tried too hard to settle us down.
Too hard? Is that even possible? To mince no more words, our waiter was very convinced to sell us pre-drinks; from repeating Bellini's, Champagne, Prosecco, Moscato and trying somewhat his very best and virtually stop short of insisting. Throughout our dinner when we were having conversations, three different personnel came to ask how was our dinner when we were in the middle of our conversations, from the maître d’, wine sommelier and presumably one of the management staff.
That aside, i couldn't wait to dig into the food.
Our amuse bouche that night was a cheese panna cotta in melon soup which as nice as it sounds and looks, didn't work for us. The sweet cold soup did nothing to bring out the bland panna cotta. If this was to tempt us into our mains, it didn't do the job.
The appetisers on the menu is somewhat generic Italian and nothing really popped up at you. Yes, i would have liked foie gras but the wallet wasn't really gaining any weight like i have been for the last few years.
So we went straight to pasta, a wide range from hand made to gourmet pasta, didn't really notice the difference between the prices though, everything was around RM40-60.
Pappardelle with goose liver, duck confit & truffle sauce (RM59). Now that i am looking back at the name of the dish, i was sadly disappointed with the glaringly omission of the foie gras. I half expected them to say that it was in the sauce but i suppose i should have asked but the dish was surprisingly good without it and i didn't want them to take it back to the kitchen.
Rich and hearty, the well cooked pasta, juicy duck meat and generous slices of truffles did the job for me.
I think this is the tagliatelle but i maybe wrong, cooked with lobster in a spicy herb olive oil sauce (RM59). I had a strand, well cooked again but didn't quite like the heat.
Veal agnolotti with porcini mushrooms. Similar to the ravioli, this was another very hearty and rich pasta. The filling is a veal mousse which can be putting off depending on personal preference. It is almost like eating pate, its either a love it or hate it experience.
Instead of having appetisers, we shared the talked about Sardinian suckling pig (RM85).
I think the pork does deserve a special mention. Yes its fatty, with a crisp layer of skin and fats in between the skin and meat but the meat is tender and juicy, separating with a nudge from the fork. The shallots braised or roasted with honey complimented the meat well.
Here again, the waiter needs to polish up on his way of recommending without looking too "hard sell". We again felt that he was trying very hard to get us to order a salad together with the pork which is a good choice actually but it reminded me of direct selling marketing.
We did oblige with the spinach and endive salad with golden fried egg topped with some sweet red onions. Have it alone would have been a tad plain but the raw crunchy vegetables was a perfect antidote for the rich meat we had. Although at RM29, a tad too expensive?
All that, accompanied with a glass of Chardonnay (RM22), which i must say for a house wine, was incredibly good, no surprises with the acidity and sweetness and well chilled when it arrived.
Desserts; the meal was just a week before the race and my stomach couldn't afford the extra calories, although i did steal a bite or two.
Il Lido has my vote if you want a sophisticated looking place for a romantic date. I like how the lights are dimmed at the right areas and almost mysterious like. However, the waiters could do with more practice and shouldn't appear to be too aggressive in recommending. Foodwise, there are some good things and some ok things, with prices not exactly the most affordable, i might just be able to afford one more round before i fly down under. Dinner was close to RM150 per pax, along with RM18 bottles of water.
Lot 183 Jalan Mayang (located directly opposite the Australian Embassy)
Off Jalan Yap Kwan Seng
50450 Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2161 2291
Verdict: 3 stars out of 5 stars. Nothing really wowed me compared to the final bill except of the glimpses of hope. I sincerely do hope the stars will go up when (if i do) i visit them in the near future. By the way, the lounge bar is opened as you read this!