As promised to each other and you lovely readers, Sonal (of whenharrymetcelery) and I have been catching up for lunches and snacks, gossiping, laughing and reviewing the newest menus in town. Koh by Ian Kittichai at the Intercontinental, Marine Drive has introduced set lunches and we had to honour our long standing invitation to try them out. So we did and we’re filling you in.
The chef is a dear friend of Sonal’s and we relied completely on his recommendations. He suggested we taste the appetizers he sends for us and then choose from one of the set lunches. I opted for the spa lunch while Sonal opted for the classic. Of course, we didn’t forget desserts.
Food tasting : Koh by Ian Kittichai
Sonal rates the experience 3/5. Here’s what she has to say:
Lemon grass cooler
There is no better way to take revenge from this scorching heat than with a glass of this lemon grass cooler. Hinted with ample lemon grass, this mildly-frizzy nectar is served as a pre-meal drink to stir the appetite for courses to come.
1. Fried noodles on spoon
This light preparation came as a part of amuse-bouche. A little different from appetizers, an amuse bouche is not a part of the ordered menu. It comes from the chef’s side as a pre-meal hors d’œuvre. We especially liked the feather-light feel of crispy, fried noodles that are sparingly dressed with sweet-chilli sauce. The American corn and cilantro add a mild bite that gives this dish some colour and flavour.
2. Tom kha gai soup
A rare Asian soup that managed to catch our attention, tom kha gai came as the chef’s special of the day. The soup tasted pre-dominantly of coconut milk that was beautifully flavoured and scented with lemon grass, kafir lime leaves and galagal ginger. For bite, the soup had three types of mushrooms (shitake, enoki, shimeji) and corn. Say bye to summer flu.
4. Warm mushroom ‘laarb’ cups
This appetizer is a Thai equivalent of sev puri. Little umbrella-shaped baskets of flour are stuffed with chopped and spiced mushroom. It is generously peppered with chilli powder, salt and lemon juice that give it a household, Indian flavor. The appetizer is finished with sprouts that add to the crunch but not much in terms of flavor.
5. Crunchy lotus stems
Using one of the most exotic looking ingredients from the Asian kitchen –our next appetizer was made using finely sliced lotus stems. This crispy appetizer is seasoned with familiarity, thanks to the usage tamarind extract and dry red chilli in the dressing. It is crispy enough for it to have ‘crunchy’ in its name.
Alice also rates the experience 3/5. Here’s what she has to say:
The Spa Lunch
The idea of a spa lunch is that it’s light and suited for the health conscious, those who follow a special diet or prefer these particular flavours. The vegetarian option consists of a baby spinach and cucumber salad; chestnuts, asparagus and lotus stem; trio of mushrooms with pok choi and organic brown rice.
The salad topped with lotus stem and miso dressing was the right amount of creamy. I just can’t wash down dry salads, the dressing’s what makes it for me. My favourite was the pok choi made of three kinds of mushrooms. I love ‘em just like Alice. The absence of a curry was actually refreshing. The brown rice went well with the white garlic sauce. The flavours all complemented each other and it was a rather filling lunch. It’s also a good option if you’re looking for something quick.
We thought the desserts were average. Sonal has seen a better panna cotta at Koh. It was a little underwhelming that day. We enjoyed the accompanying sauces and outer bread crust of the crumble.
Of course, we were in a really good mood after the lunch and caught a movie, indulged in shopping and made a day of it. Until next time, don’t forget to share your feedback on Koh. Happy lunching!