KING OF ALL TRADES
Updated: Sep 30, 2020
by Prestige (Malaysia) Magazine
December 2018 Issue
In the space of a year, Vantador has already garnered a cult following among culinary enthusiasts, particularly those who love their meat. Boasting the only asado grill in the city, it affirms Vantador’s commitment in delivering the most authentic of grilled meats. By reputation alone the quality of the meats should not be questioned, but what’s only known to their customers is how Vantador brings an unprecedented level of diversity to its menu which really is second to none, with the latest introductions further distancing Vantador from the competition.
The new menu introduced at Vantador consists of dishes that strike the harmonious balance between intricate culinary craftsmanship and the finest ingredients. While the Rubia Gallega still remains Vantador’s crown jewel, the addition of dishes such as the Boston lobster pasta will definitely leave patrons wondering how an establishment that’s known as a steakhouse can manage to execute a pasta dish with such excellence. As if having the lobster cooked in beurre monté melted butter isn’t enticing enough, it is then laid on a bed of spinach tagliatelle sautéed with morsels of bone marrow which is then imbued with a subtle tang of lemon butter sauce. Tantalising to say the least.
The seafood options at Vantador are undoubtedly nothing short of luxurious. The mackerel tiradito serves as one of the various seafood starters that have joined the new menu. Served with pickled lemon, the mackerel is cured and smoked. Sliced tiradito style, the lightly cured flavour of the mackerel paired with the pickled lemon, Japanese cucumber gazpacho and cilantro gel results in the perfect way to start your meal. Alternatively, one could also opt for the tiger prawn capellini. The refreshing taste of the truffle garnished chilled blanched pasta complements the firm prawn prepared a la sous-vide, with the flavour explosion of the pearls of salmon roe rounding off with the spice of pink peppercorns and the umami that can only be brought upon by dashi stock.
By now, many would deem foie gras as a pretty much played out dish. That being said, trust the people at Vantador to challenge themselves in reinvigorating the dish. Incorporating citrus overtones through the encasement in a blood orange dome, the torchon-soft foie parfait is laced with Marsala wine and brandy, paired aptly with cheese grissini, with each crunchy breadstick spiked with Spanish pimento. For the curious, one can also try burnt fennel burratina. Giving what is usually a supporting ingredient the spotlight, the fennel bulb is charcoal burnt, with the resulting smokiness accompanied by burrata cheese finished with fresh dill and extra virgin olive oil. Of course, why not also start your meal with the wagyu beef tataki? The marble-score-seven striploin offers a taste of the just how good the meat is at Vantador.
The Boston lobster pasta isn’t the only seafood option in terms of the main course. For a taste of true oceanic decadence, indulge in the uni pasta. On first sight, one may have the misconception of the uni only being a measly garnish, but upon tasting, one can revel in the sweet surprise of the sauce also incorporating top quality Japanese sea urchin. Besides that, bask in the glory of the luscious Pacific scallops, pan seared to perfection served resting on textured polenta cakes laden with truffle béarnaise and micro greens.
Beef isn’t the only meat Vantador excels in, as the establishment also serves dishes ranging from poultry to lamb. Give the duck breast a try, as the meat is cooked to a perfect medium rare which brings about crisp skin and juicy flesh, with the dish completed with gingerbread crumbs, piquillo pepper coulis and compressed heirloom tomato. Lamb is also done exquisitely here at Vantador, as the rendered lamb confiture being the result of it being sous-vide cooked before pan seared, then served with a medley of pumpkin puree, roasted fennel bulbs, scallions, apricots, raisins and walnuts, topped with an indulgent chocolate sauce. Suckling lamb may seem unorthodox to the local ear, with Vantador being one of the very few destinations for one to enjoy this delicacy, but here the Spain originated dish is charred to perfection.
With the versatility of the menu, it is indeed easy to forget that Vantador is by reputation a steakhouse for a reason. From the juiciest cuts of rib eyes to the most primal tomahawks, the fact that Vantador’s highlight is still the beef amidst the other top quality dishes served here truly serves as a hallmark of its quality. And of course, not to forget the Galician-bred Rubia Gallega. Cut from cattle at least eight years old that spent their lifetime on lush Spanish hills, the cuts are then dry aged for at least a month in-house. This results in a truly bewildering taste experience, one that cannot be attained from any other cuts from any other cattle breed.
After a fulfilling night of gastronomy, end the night on a sweet note with an imaginative selection of desserts comprising inventions such as the green apple mousse to the somewhat odd yet perfectly paired beetroot and dark chocolate gateau, dishes that tickle curiosity as well as taste buds. Alternatively, move on to the first floor of Vantador, which serves as a bar area for patrons. Apart from a wide selection of the finest wines and whiskies, the bar also boasts a few signature cocktails of its own. The Vantador Mule, among many other signature concoctions, stands out with its combination of homemade ginger beer, lime wedges and vodka, served in a copper mug.
Coming through for the festive season, Vantador have packaged these scrumptious dishes as part of a Christmas menu that caters to groups. With the two private rooms located on the second floor catering to parties of different sizes, patrons are advised to make a reservation on their website beforehand to avoid missing out on what would be the perfect gastronomic experience.
Progressive, daring, inventive. Vantador’s meteoric rise in the local culinary scene is a product of constant innovation and experimentation. From the perfect execution of complex ingredients such as sea urchin to the finesse of the desserts, it takes a lot of reminding that Vantador is after all a steakhouse.