Travel Anecdotes – Frangipani, Republik Damansara

We popped by here spontaneously one evening. For obvious reasons, my other half is a Mughal Indian food snob. Nothing quite meets the bar here in KL, apparently. I struggle to recommend any good authentic biryanis here in Malaysia, is a constant lament. And the posher a place looked, the more he disdains, certain that it would be too much status and not enough quo. Anyhow, we didn’t try the biryani here so no comments on that but we did give these other dishes a shot.

Prawn ambotik – soaked in tamarind and coconut curry.
Bindi Kurkuri – Ladies fingers fried in crispy batter and mixed with aromatic spices.
Pav bhaji sliders – hot, warm buns stuffed with spicy mixed vegetables.
Seating out at the terrace
Glimpse inside – colonial vintage
Swish sink
We were trying to capture the background, for a glimpse of the ornate and atmospheric charm inside, but I think we didn’t make that clear to the waitress, so we were left with this pretty random photo!

The restaurant, as you can probably tell, is beautifully adorned to revive visual memories of the sub-continent’s colonial past. Rattan chairs on the balcony and leather seats inside, heavy wooden floors, baby grand piano and those delightful vintage tiles. It’s also located on the first floor of Republik, which is the latest and some might say trendiest food spot in our neck of the woods, Damansara Heights. Service was very attentive and the menu offered a lot of classic Indian staples that we didn’t have the tummy space to try. The food? It was solid fare, generally. I really liked the crispy lightness of the Bindi Kurkuri and the Phav Baji sliders were, according to my husband ‘quite good’ which, given that it is ultimately a Mumbai street food delicacy, is pretty high praise coming from a Mumbaiker. We also liked the flavour and texture of the garlic naan bread – just the right crisp. The one let down though was the Prawn Ambotik. I can’t say it was too memorable – a little bit bland, overly saucy and there were literally five small prawns in the rather substantial pot. Overall though, it had more pros than cons and I’m kind of looking forward for more lazy evenings here in these last few weeks of the year. I would recommend it for a little indulgence out with some style and taste, and definitely a great dinner date option with its romantic and aesthetically pleasing ambiance.

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