When I received the invitation for the last food review of the year on Boxing Day, my first thoughts were, “But I just want to sleep in.” Driving 25km for a 1:00pm appointment wasn’t exactly how I pictured my off day. This is coming from the worst non-morning person you’ve probably yet to meet. My usual day starts at 2:00pm just so you know. However, when I found out I was going to review French pastries, my inner voice stopped grumbling. Nothing makes me happier than tasting the sweet things in life.
After missing the turn to Plaza 33 TWICE, I met up with our in-house photographer, CK, just outside D’Cuisine. Together with D’italiane Kitchen, these three make a “D’licious” trio (sorry, couldn’t resist). D’Viennoiserie has three corners housed in glass on the sidewalk of Plaza 33, which gives the impression it has a much larger space than my bedroom. The small dimensions are perfect for that “little French café” feel. With rows of tiny potted plants and cushions with “LOVE” emblazoned in large letters resting on black comfy sofas, it felt more like home.
Soon, we were introduced to our review guide for the day, Mary Anne. Like me, she has a passion for teaching and that made our conversation all the more fun. Being a non-coffee person, I started off with the Slow Extracted Apple & Orange juice (RM 9). This slow-extracting trend is all the rage now so I had to try it. I was pleased to note the fruit fibres were conserved well in the juice. CK opted for coffee and was presented with the Cappuccino (RM 8) and Latte (RM 9). The former was smooth and light while the latter was light and frothy with no after sourness. CK thinks the Latte is mild enough to have two.
Anyway, my first bite of the day came from the French Butter Pound Cake (RM 3/slice). Mary Anne stresses that D’Viennoiserie uses French baking methods with ingredients imported from France. It certainly makes a difference as the cake was moist and light, and the butter had a fragrance and flavour beyond most of what I’ve eaten before. Take it from someone who doesn’t regularly enjoy butter cake – it was good!
The Custard Raisin Danish (RM 4.90) with French butter, raisin and almond was not hard like regular Danish, instead offering a flakier fluffier centre. This made the next offering pale in comparison (or so I thought). Butter Croissant (RM 3.80) which was just a croissant with French butter made me go, “that’s it?” After one bite, it made me go, “what in the French-baking world of Vienna is this?” It was light, fluffy, and flaky, and that creamy salty sweet French butter once again had me hooked. This is proof that the simple things in life are often the best things in life.
We then moved on to our main dishes. First was Alpine Sunrise (RM 18.90). This all-day breakfast featured turkey rosti, an interesting dish of finely grated potato mixed with turkey that tasted almost like turnip. It also had poached egg, homemade fresh herbs chicken bratwurst and salad. Overall, it was good though I felt the texture of the meat in the bratwurst was too fine. I would prefer chunkier bits of meat. Next was Pasta Platter (RM 22) which featured chicken stroganoff in a creamy mix of mushrooms, green peppers, parsley and herbs. The pasta was perfectly al-dente and there was a bit of everything in every bite. The paprika and black pepper accentuated the flavours in this dish. One drawback for those who are not into things cheesy, it can be a bit too heavy so I suggest you share this.
After such savoury samplings, it was time to end the day with sweet sensations. The Fruit Tart (RM 11.90) was colourfully topped with strawberry, grape, kiwi and peach over a creamy custard centre and crumbly tart base. I like how the flavours are well-balanced but it’s not something I’ve not had before.
Lemon Meringue Tart (RM 7.90) was not as tart as it would seem (pardon the pun). CK thinks this tart could be a little tarter but I think this tart was tart enough. The sour notes of the lemon hits you at first but it tones down after that, especially when you reach the thinly condensed tart base. I just feel that there is too much meringue and not enough tart in this one.
Pistachio Mousse (RM 10.90) was the perfect end to our meal. The smooth mousse glides across your tongue and it’s not overly sweet. I do have a sweet tooth but I’m not a fan of just-sugar-in-everything. There has to be different dimensions of sweetness and this offering nails that. The base of crunchy crumbly pistachio and sesame balance the textures so well. It’s definitely my favourite dessert of the day.
And so, we bid adieu to Mary Anne and D’Viennoiserie, grateful for a wonderful French retreat on a cool rainy Malaysian day. As I walked along the streets, I couldn’t help thinking how life is a bit like that Lemon Meringue Tart. Not everything in life is sweet. Sometimes, things go a little sour but you never know just when that sweet moment might come again.
Food : 3.5/5
Drinks : 3/5
Service : 3.5/5
Ambience : For that little French café feel, this is it. Sit here with your hot cup of coffee on a cool rainy day as you disengage from the hustle and bustle so visible through the glass walls and you’ll find some solace here.
Pros : Plaza 33 is easy to spot and parking is quite a breeze. There are also nearby attractions for shoppers such as Jaya Grocer next door and Digital Mall across the street.
Cons : There’s really nothing bad about this place, unless you think you have diabetes and can’t stand the sight of anything French.
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Written with passion by Caleb Ho