Sep 30, 2014

Top Shelf French Restaurant @ TTDI KL

The week rushed pass in just a blink of the eye. It has been an incredibly hectic week for me. From as far as I recall, this is the longest concurrent streak of reviews that I've done to date. Feeling utterly fulfilled but also very drained. I'm so glad the weekends has arrived and I need a massage badly to rejuvenate - and probably another 12 hours of sleep.

Top Shelf

It was drizzling when I arrived at Top Shelve. A late Saturday evening that calls for some good ol' and hearty French Moules Mariniere. Tucked right at the other end of Peruvie, spotting a black and white signage, and probably the only French restaurant within the vicinity of TTDI.

You can either walk in here with flip flops or in a pair of classy heels. I was totally under dressed - in shorts and flip flops - but nice shorts and flip flops if I may vaguely add.

A glimpse around the restaurant and the settings here are extremely simple - wooden chairs and metal tables, black and white ceiling and walls, with contemporary dangling lamps from above. The full-bodied exposed kitchen is something very new to me too.

Top Shelve's Food menu.

The French use a lot of wine in their food. Thus, expect to see a good number of wine infused dishes in their menu.

For now, the restaurant is pork-free, but I have been told that they may soon introduce some pork dishes. Wise call or not - I don't know. There were a fair seating of non-pork eaters in the crowd while I was there, hence, the pork dishes would have to be damn good to lose them.

Anyway, starting with the entrees.

Moules Mariniere. Rm30.

A massive pot of mussels in white wine, shallots and fresh herbs. This speaks heartily French in all its glory. The broth was sweet, rich and flavorsome, with texture along the lines of a reduction and soup. 

Nicoise Salad. Rm27.

This tuna salad was also quite delicious but I would personally prefer it with a hint more dressing.

Chicken Liver Pate. Rm23.

The liver pate (left) was absolutely scrumptious - it was smooth and had intense flavors, outshining the olive tapenade and pickles - we didn't finish that. The crusted toasts was also one of the highlights for me, baked in house and reminded me of a cross between a slice of white bread and baguette - easily one of the better ones I've had. That said, this is one of those dishes that would probably require an acquired taste. 

Duck Confit with Berries Sauce. Rm36.

On a bed of green beans and braised cabbage infused with red wine, a piquant serving of pan-seared duck leg made tender, topped with a spoonful of berries. The lightly toasted potatoes at the side, those were seriously delectable too.

Mussels and Clams in White Wine. Rm35.

Packed with a generous serving of mussels and clams, the linguine was done al dente, perhaps a little chewier than usual, with a sauce base that resembled one of the appetizers that I had earlier.

French Toast.

The French toast had bread-like textures and came a little less eggy than I thought it would. Covered with berries and cream sauce, it tasted more sour than sweet.  

Creme Brulee. Rm22. 

Those crusty caramelised bits that crackles in your mouth - simply addictive. I thought the texture of the custard base resembled a pudding more than the creamy ones that I'd normally have. 

Overall Rating: 7/10. The French was good - the dishes that I sampled tonight was delicious. However I felt that the overall experience was lacking in that little warmth that I always look for in a neighborhood restaurant like this. But then again, French cuisine does not spell hearty - it is meant to feel exquisite and elegant.

Notwithstanding, Christopher, the owner and head chef of the restaurant, whom has worked in a handful of notable restaurants in Paris and London, will kick start a reservation-only, 6 course fine-dining menu, for RM128++, every last Sunday of the month, from 7pm onwards. Limited to 12 pax per session. The meal will be served fine dining style or in Japanese, omakase-style, diligently prepared by Christopher and Gary, right in front of you. I will definitely drop by for some fine food again soon. This time, properly dressed for the occasion.

Top Shelve is located at:
Address: 61, Lorong Rahim Kajai 13, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, 60000 Kuala Lumpur.
Phone: 03-7727 7277
Opening Hours: 4pm - 12am 

Tucked right at the other end of Peruvie, doors away from Kool Kats and spotting a black and white signage.


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