p Picks and Pecks: review: osteria real blue

Sunday, September 15, 2013

review: osteria real blue

address: A3-UG-06, Solaris Dutamas, Jalan Dutamas 1, KL
tel: 03 6207 9799
www: http://www.osteriarealblue.com/
hours: Tues-Sun, 12noon-2.30pm, 6pm-10pm

Osteria Real Blue is tucked away above Pappa Rich in Publika - quiet and unsuspecting. But for those who are willing to hunt for this restaurant, and happy to stick to a few basic dishes, the experience can be rewarding.

This unassuming restaurant - and I really mean unassuming - does not get top points for decor or ambiance. Your best bet is to stick with the basics - pasta and steak, which are prepared by an Italian chef who has moved to Malaysia. This means that the dishes are a slight hodge-podge of Asian and Western flavors, which customers have to slowly sift through to discover the real gems.

To start, everyone was served a bite-size portion of bruschetta. This was followed by a bread basket for sharing, with an accompanying dip which reminded me of sambal with chilli oil! 
Since this was our first time at Osteria Real Blue, we took the suggestions of the proprietress - Sherry, who is a Malaysian lady who is married to the chef, and has lived in Italy for many years.

Her first recommendation was mozzarella  cheese which was layered with ham. Stacked and grilled so that it was oozy, this was a tasty appetiser that could be shared by four people - if they were all small eaters!

A close up of the mozzarella appetiser. I could definitely have had at least half this portion!

Next was a dish of seared tuna, which was served on some salad, and dressed with balsamic vinegar. I was a bit underwhelmed with this dish - usually when I hear of seared tuna, I expect a block of fish, which is cooked on the outside, but rare and deep red within. Here, the fish was almost cooked through and flaky, which is not really how I like it - I thought this was overcooked, to be honest. Perhaps it might be suitable for those who don't like sashimi or raw fish... 

Homemade fresh pasta - cooked al dente, was welcome by all. Sherry, who would oversee all the tables throughout dinner and offer commentary, wanted to point out to us that Osteria serves Northern Italian food, which are heavier on meats and more hearty - while most Italian restaurants in KL serve cuisine from the South, which has more seafood. 

We ordered a mushroom pasta, which came dressed in a balsamic sauce. Although the portion looks large, it was a good size for sharing between us. 

Next, a plate was put before us. Initially, we were a bit confused about the plate before it - it looked almost like a garnish of vegetables... but it was garnished with... more vegetables!? This was apparently the salad that was supposed to accompany our steak. Although it looks a bit strange, the salad was actually quite delicious. It was a mix of chopped lettuce with peppers and tomatoes, that had been mixed in a savory dressing - I feel like there were bit of (perhaps) tuna or anchovies in it? I could have gladly eaten the entire portion by myself, and I am not a big fan of greens!

Finally the steak appeared! The meat for the steak was imported from Italy. Although it might not be apparent here, this could have happily served at least three people. We asked for this to be done medium-rare, which Sherry apparently agreed with! Its always nice to have the owner agree with your choice of preparation! It came nicely charred on the outside, and Sherry patiently waited for the oohs and aahs to subside before cutting the steak into manageable pieces for us.

As you can see, the steak was still pink, pink, pink and bloody on the inside - just the way I like it! Despite its size, it wasn't too heavy for us, perhaps because it was just lightly seasoned with salt and pepper and did not come with the usual potatoes and gravy that accompany most American steaks.

As you can see, we demolished the steak very quickly! I even picked up the T-bone to gnaw on it and try to get every last scrap of meat off the bone - not a very dignified move!

Since the meat left us craving for more, Sherry suggested we order a roast pork. However, I feel that this did not compare well to the siew yuk that most Chinese love. Because it was roasted and then had a sauce added, the skin was not crispy, and the meat felt too tough. Probably not the note we wanted to end the meal on.

For dessert, we ordered a blueberry pannacotta, which came with a chocolate sauce. I guess those who fancy this milk-based pudding would enjoy the dish, as it was covered in a rich, dark blueberry sauce made with real fruit. However, I might give this a pass as I did not really appeal to me.

Would I come back? Yes - for the steak and pasta! I was tempted by the smells of the truffle pasta which wafted by from the table next to us that I would love to try.

address: A3-UG-06, Solaris Dutamas, Jalan Dutamas 1, KL
tel: 03 6207 9799
www: http://www.osteriarealblue.com/
hours: Tues-Sun, 12noon-2.30pm, 6pm-10pm