Sunday, August 06, 2006

Once Upon A Time

First there came a Kingfisher. He lived and prospered in his tree on the star hill for a few years. At first he brought fresh catch everyday and people came to marvel at his dedication. Then he became complacent and one by one, people stopped coming. Soon after, he had to leave his nest. Two others came but they were weak and could not survive the sometimes harsh conditions on the hill. Years later, the Bull came along. He was passionate and determined. The others who lived on the hill predicted he and his clan would stay for awhile but he and his clan argued. Soon they divided and went their separate ways. The nest was quiet once more. Such is life on Lot Z on Changkat Bukit Bintang.

Restaurants have come and gone on this street faster than you can say “Cheque please!” This business is unpredictable. The ones that seem to have the right combination for success don’t make it. And sometimes the one that seems wishy-washy end up being the front runner. The latest restaurant to take on the dreaded Lot Z is Sancho's. They are a tapas-type steak house thingy. Wishy-washy? Hmmm possible recipe for success?

Last night was my brother’s 40th and Sancho's has become his latest watering hole so it was the obvious choice for the venue. It was a beautiful evening, it was cool and the skies were crystal clear. We had drinks and tapas on the balcony for what seemed like eternity because they took forever to start our meal. Finally at 9:20pm we sat down to zucchini salad with pickled shallots, sultanas, pinenuts and cumin. Fortunately I do like cumin so I didn’t mind that my mouth smelt like an Indian curry house after. The next course took forever! Almost an hour later we got the second course. I had ordered the garlic soup because the other option was roasted tomato soup. If you like canned soup, you’ll like the garlic soup. Enough said surely. Another half hour later, the third course came. I had tenderloin with red wine reduction and caramelised onions. It was pretty tasty but it may have been I was so hungry by then. The other choice on the set was house-smoked salmon fillet with pea aioli. I didn’t try it but apparently it was very tasty. I’m just sick of seeing salmon on the menu. I mean, there are a lot of other fish available so enough with the shocking vermillion-dyed salmon.

It was another 30 minutes before we finally got our squid ink seafood paella. Thankfully, everybody was so tipsy by then they didn’t even notice. And it was already 11:30 by then, too late to eat. Good thing too because the paella was quite ghastly. First of all, it was tinged-green and secondly, it was tasted like dried up porridge with a squeeze of lemon. What a waste of carbs! It gets worse. They brought out dessert which was birthday cake and I swear I could smell the essence three feet away. I didn’t want to try it. My sister was brave enough to give it a go and she couldn’t figure out what it was suppose to be except that it was meant to be banana-flavoured! I would give it a few months to iron out their operational issues before trying it again.

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