Chef collaborations are exciting, as you get to taste dishes that aren’t on the regular menu of either restaurant. They’re also a way for imaginative chefs to try out new flavour pairings and push the boundaries of their respective cuisines. Thus, a highly anticipated two-night collab that’s happening this week is between Chef Sean of Kikubari and Chef Diego of Natalina—a collaboration that combines Eastern and Western culinary philosophies.
While Kikubari serves an innovative medley of French-Japanese cuisine, Natalina is known for its rich and flavourful Roman cuisine. The six-course menu crafted by both chefs highlights the strengths of each establishment, with fresh and premium ingredients enhanced by delicate techniques and bold flavours.
Case in point: the amadai (tilefish) is a Japanese fish with edible scales and a clean, slightly sweet flavour. Fried to crispy perfection by Chef Sean, it’s insanely addictive on its own—but Chef Diego’s delicious pepperonata and gremolata elevate it from good to exceptional.
Their synergy also shines through in the pairing of burrata with amela fruit tomato and sherry dressing, the latter a twist on the usual vinaigrette. Simultaneously sweet and tart, it’s a refreshing combination that will awaken your tastebuds; its placement on the menu—second only to the amuse bouche consisting of cured beef with melon and sardines on a baguette made by Chef Sean—ensures it will whet your appetite for the subsequent dishes.
I do think this collaborative menu will be appreciated the most by an adventurous gourmet who has few dietary restrictions. This is because the menu alternates between land and sea with the inclusion of fish, beef and lamb. Besides the few dishes I’ve mentioned, there’s also Wagyu Tartare with Italian summer truffles and oscietra caviar; Hot Capellini Aglio Olio with katsuo tataki; and Grilled Lamb with eggplant caviar and goat cheese crema.
It’s meaty, hearty for casual-fine dining, and packed with flavour. Hence, having Yuzu Ichigo Millefoglie is the perfect way to end this epicurean journey. The pastry is beautifully light and flaky, while the acidity of the yuzu cream and strawberry is balanced by creamy vanilla ice cream.
P/S: To cleanse your palate between courses, do order the Kikubari Can Bucha, a mango-flavoured kombucha spiked with Chivas Regal 12 Year Old whisky.
The Kikubari x Natalina six-course menu is priced at RM390 per pax plus taxes and will be served at Kikubari on 22 and 23 June, 2022. To enhance the experience, add on The Tokubetsu Sake Journey Pairing that comes with four glasses of sake for RM160 plus taxes (per person) or a wine pairing at RM180 plus taxes (per person).
For reservations and more information on the event, please contact Kikubari at +6013 362 4546.
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