Sep 11, 2013

Ante Kitchen and Bar @ Publika - Very Consistent

Pork lovers - what a refreshing and wonderful way to start of the weekend.

It's been awhile since I've last visited Publika, with so many interesting eateries sprouting up in the span of merely months, I have to admit - I have heaps to catch up on.

Ante have been on my ever-growing, to-eat list for a while. So, when an invitation came from Nomsterads, I was beyond doubt, ecstatic to sample.     

Ante Kitchen & Bar

Known infamously for it's pork dishes, Ante opened its doors in October 2012, welcoming a crowd of like-minded pork lovers. 

The restaurant serves Australian infused - Western dishes and is popularly known for its Crispy pork knuckle, Hogger pork ribs, Ante pork burger and also its Carbonara and pasta dishes, to just name a few.

You won't get bored at Ante (pronounced as Aunt-Tei).

Constantly striving to provide you with something offbeat-come-diverse and are in the midst of creating a range of new and interesting dishes to incite your taste buds. Are you eager to sample yet? I am!

Checking out the menu before my feast of pork degustation lunch.

Do enlarge if you can't see.

The restaurant was cozy yet laidback with a fleur of sophistication - industrial looking exposed fixtures, dangling spotlights, cozy leather couches and cowboy barrels.

I once read - Food is the cornerstone of a restaurant, but the ambiance is what gets the customers into the restaurant. True to its words, no?

Feel free to prop your lazy ares on the comfortable couch - perhaps more appropriately, after a hefty meal at Ante's - with drinks in hand.

Ante also carries a decent array of seasonally fine wines and specially concocted cocktails.

Not knowing what drinks to order, I asked for recommendations.
Nymph of The Mile. Rm14.

One of Ante's best sellers - Nymph of The Mile is essentially an organic white peony tea infused with Egyptian basil and Persian pink rose, part and parcel of the exclusive Griffith tea merchants.

One sip, and my confused face turned into a wide smiley grin. The tea had a strong, fragrant aroma and a whiff of Arabic scent that lingers on the tongue right after. I loved it and so did my friends. 

Cappuccino. Rm9.

Coffee drinkers, this is for you.

All coffees served here are double shots - Great! Using espressolab coffee beans, the baristas here who are also espressolab trained. My cuppa was pretty good. 

Mocktails. Rm12.

Mocktails! There were too many flavors going around, so I lost track. Anyway, I was told that the banana version did not fair well, so steer clear of that!

There's essentially 4 types of soups in their menu - Mushroom (Rm12), Pumpkin (Rm13), Broccoli (Rm15) and Tomato (Rm12).

My Pick: Pumpkin.

I'm not a huge pumpkin fan per se, but this version was clearly one of the better ones that I've had. It had great texture with just the right consistency and a distinct pumpkin taste to boost. For the more conventional mushroom soup lovers, theirs is pretty good too. Give the homemade croutons a go while you're at it also. 

Next up, we had the some light eats.

 Enoki Bacon Skewers. Rm26.

I couldn't help ogling at that bacon - one of my favorite of the day.

The juicy pork slices and enoki mushrooms wrapped beneath the lashings of crispy bacon was simply mouth watering. The dish also came with teriyaki sauce with a raw egg inside. If not for its price, I wouldn't mind having a whole serving of this anytime.

Sweet Belly. Rm23.

I would secretly recommend this awesome dish to everyone.

The roast pork belly was marinated with a secret ingredient, which to me - tasted a little like caramelized sugar with a tinge of soy sauce. Anyway - it was marvelous.

Moving on to the gastronomic meats. 

The Hoggers Pork Ribs. Rm75. 

At first glance, I thought - wow, that looks really really good. How can you say no to ribs, seriously?

The ribs smells incredible. The vinegarish aroma from the barbeque sauce hit me almost instantly. The meat was piled high, marinated overnight and cooked real tender, made to slid right off its bones. I figured it could've been a teeny-bit more flavourful though. I hinted for seconds, but there wasn't enough to go around - oh well.

Crispy Pork Knuckle. Rm78. 

This multiplayer - is meant to be shared. Ante's version was a good change compared to the more saltier, German versions.

The oven baked pork knuckle came plentiful. Each slice of pork have a savoury and juicy side and also a sinfully crisp side - I was instantly spoilt. Everyone was fighting for the crispy pork skin, I had my fair share and I was well satisfied.

If you are also wondering - the dish also comes with a serving of apple mustard, mint sauce and also with mini bowl of sauerkraut. The sauerkraut needs major tweaking nevertheless.

 Ante Pork Burger. Rm28.

I can never say no to burgers! I was told that this burger is one of the-best pork burger in town!

This gourmet burger was everything that you'd expect - the presentation was appealing, the layered texture of the lots was perfect, the pork patty was flavoursome and the raisin and walnut bun was a clever touch. For that alone though, albeit all my humble compliments, I may think twice on ordering again because of it's hefty price tag. Perhaps a tinge of truffle add-on? *grins* 

Char-grilled Pork Steak (New York). Rm42.

This 360gm prime cut steak was another sweet success.

The steak was cooked well and served with a dash of raspberry cream sauce and a baked apple at the side. Oddly, the combination works quite fine. The baked apple that came warm was a wonderful addition to the dish. Once pry open, it had a mushy texture and basically resembles that of apple pie puree, it did complemented the dish overall. 

Volcano Sacrifice. Rm30.

Straight to the point - the grilled pork loin came a little too dry for my liking. The mashed potato and special spicy sauce though, was a great alternative to the more conventional savoury gravy sauce. 

Mixed Shroom. Rm22.

Definitely one for the mushroom lovers.

Topped with a medley of chunky mushroom on a homemade thin crust pizza base, shroom was pretty good. 

Signature Chorizo and Bacon. Rm27.

Chorizo and me - paired well.

I folded and popped the whole slice into my mouth at once. The flavours of chorizo immediately popped and I was instantly greeted with crispy and chewy textures - so delish.

The Real Bacon Carbonara. Rm26.

The real bacon carbonara is another dish that came highly recommended by my fellow food bloggers. I was delighted to give it a go and subsequently tantalized with a blanket of rich creamy sauce and spaghetti cooked al dente, it was wonderful.

Curry Cream Pasta. Rm26.

The curry cream pasta on the other hand, was an interesting dish. Fret not, there's only a tinge of curry taste to the spaghetti and I really loved the deep fried mushrooms at the side too. 

Seafood Marinara. Rm38.

Posh ingredients aside, the seafood marina is also worth mentioning. Packed with river prawns, green mussels and clams, mixed with herb tomato puree, this was also pretty good.

My pick: Frankly, I'm torn between all 3 pasta dishes - all were equally scrumptious, though my preference is leaning towards the carbonara. Do request for a dash of lemon if you'd like to tone the creaminess down a little. All in all, trust me, if you enjoy creamy pasta dishes, you will not be dissapointed. 

Bread and Butter Pudding. Rm15.

There's only 6 of these prepared daily. An enticing dessert which had me going back for more.

The bread and butter pudding had a warm and moist middle with crunchy edges - the amalgamation was heavenly. The vanilla ice cream was smooth, on tip top condition and a sinful indulgence. We gobbled this all up within seconds, literally.

Overall Rating: 7.5/10. Initially, I gave Ante a 7/10 - what prompted me to re-rate was the factor of what I called, 'being memorable'. It's different eating then giving feedback, compared to writing and trying to remember.

While I was writing this post - recalling my old notes and age-old taste buds, I had flashbacks of some of the dishes I had - the extra touch that likely made it memorable. Like the baked apple on the pork steak and the distinct flavours of the bread and butter pudding.

I'm certainly interested to find out what Ante have in store in the coming weeks - new dishes! 

Ante is located at:
A2-G1-09, Solaris Dutamas
No.1 Jalan Dutamas 1
50480, Kuala Lumpur

From the Ground Floor, same floor as Ben's Grover, take an escalator down a level from GNC living. You can also park outside as the place conveniently faces the main road.  


  1. Every single dish looks so great! Stomach growling and saliva drooling already! Gotta try out the food there soon, I'm aiming for the carbonara! :D the curry cream pasta looks interesting too hmm...

    1. yes! ish good provided u enjoy the creamy based type =)

  2. Oh, those porky dishes are calling me....

    1. =) It was calling me when I was writing this too =)

  3. i love your ending "We gobbled this all up within seconds, literally."

  4. The picture looks so delicious and I'm so hungry right now. Wish that the food is right in front of me. Anyhow i can only see but cant eat because the price is too expensive. T_T

    1. worthy or trying nonetheless ok! and no! ur the type who eat steaks and ribs everyday!

  5. all the food look so good!!! drooling over here! =D

    Heaven Knows

  6. Can't quite recall the difference between the Ante Pork Burger and Up the Ante Pork Burger but I had the Up the Ante Pork Burger and it's definitely one of my fave pork burger.

    In fact, the night that I ate, the only thing that wasn't up to my standard was only the Volcanic Sacrifice.

    1. haha i think it's the same - naming convention.

      Agree on the volcanic sacrifice. when was it that you last went and tried? Looks like no tweaking was done thereafter?

    2. After checking back my blog, it's somewhere in December 2012.

  7. Will pay them a visit this weekend :) yummy yummy

    1. Don't be deceived by the pictures! lol. but yes, definitely worth a go =)

  8. this one is seriously for me, take me there!!!

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