Taste Takes Off

Visitors to the first day of Taste MIGF were spoilt with a wide range of food to sample, products to buy and activities to take part in.

Walk through the intergalactic time tunnel on Level 14 of Berjaya Times Square Hotel Kuala Lumpur and be transported from ordinary KL to the super gourmet safari that is Taste MIGF 2015.

The Theatre of Cuisines is your first and main stop, where the 26 participating restaurants have set up booths with sampling portions just waiting to be on your tastebuds and in your tummy. Visitors to the first day of this MIGF prelude were seen talking to the chefs as they tasted, getting to know the person behind the food – a unique opportunity which Taste MIGF provides.

Early in the day, Malaysia’s culinary superstar Chef Wan treated an enthusiastic audience to a live cooking demonstration. He chose, as he described them, two common Malaysian dishes with Indian influences: dalcha kambing (lentil and mutton curry) and chicken chettinad. As always, he was charismatic and flamboyant in his presentation, never failing to provide anecdotes and jokes in between his cooking tips. “In Malay cooking, there is no rush. There is always time to talk while cooking.”

Over at the Berjaya University College of Hospitality (BUCH), a total of seven cooking classes were held throughout the day. Chef Kenneth Loke from Tanzini kicked off the proceedings in a ScandiAsian manner – preparing fresh, local ingredients in Scandinavian style. Meanwhile, Chef Andy Seng from Imperial Rama showed eager students how to prepare smoked scallop with spicy herb oil.

Also held at BUCH were lifestyle workshops, including a Coffee and Tea Appreciation Masterclass conducted by Fergus Lim who enlightened participants on the four Ms of making the perfect cup of coffee: machina (machine), machinazione, (grinder), miscela (blend of beans) and mano (hand of the barista). “For the Italians, these four Ms each make up 25% of the end product,” said Fergus, whose favourite brand of coffee is Madheling from Sumatra, Indonesia. “I like my cup of coffee strong.”

At the Epicure International Gourmet Village, our Festival Partner FiftySix Degrees Whisky have set up a hospitality lounge where two specially designed cocktails are served: the Highland Daredevil, made with caramelized kaffir lime leaves and purple grapes, and the Speyside Traveller, made with apples and cranberries. “The Daredevil is stronger while the Traveller is sweeter, to cater to non-whisky drinkers,” said bartender Kano, whose service was never without a smile. Gold mini-keychains in the shape of a FiftySix Degrees Whisky bottle are also available for visitors’ keepsake.

Over at the LuxuryPlus Showcase is the delicatessen dream that is Jasons Food Hall. On sale is freshly squeezed pomegranate juice, as well as premium dried fruit and fresh fruit popsicles. A selection of meats, cheeses and wines are also available. Rounding off the range of products are Shucked Oyster and Seafood Bar and Blue Elephant Royal Thai Cuisine, with live cooking demonstrations and samples.

Visitors to the Inter-Galactic Transit Lounge are in for a real treat. Spun Chairs designed by Thomas Heatherwick fill the room. These chairs literally put the ‘fun’ in functional by letting you spin around or rock from side to side when you sit on them. Standing in their midst are Eco-Artistic Robots by Lim Nam Aik, made entirely from recyclable plastic objects. Depending on the complexity, each creation takes between one week to a month to make. The environmentally-conscious designer says he operates on a philosophy of the Three Ws. “Turn waste into works of art to generate wealth.”



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