Thursday, June 3, 2010

Villa Danieli - Fine Italian at Sheraton Imperial KL

To ward off the mid-week blues, the darling and I head to Sheraton Imperial to explore the much-talked-about Villa Danieli. Lots of good reviews out there on how good the food is, so we just had to try it for ourselves!

First impressions are awesome - this place is wonderfully decorated. Feels a notch above Prego and Favola in the 'classy' ladder - the entire restaurant is cozy and romantic. Even have live entertainment!

Shot of the darling sitting at the table, waiting for our food.

Central dining area - check out the murals near the ceiling! Perfect place decoration and ambience-wise to impress a date :)

Surprisingly, we don't get an assortment of bread as I expected, but instead a single loaf. No complaints though, the crust was nice and crispy white bread itself wonderfully soft and fluffy.

Being very careful not to over-stuff on the bread, we start off with the Crispy Calamari with tartare sauce and spicy tomato sauce (MYR35.00). I'll skip the Italian name because I don't think anybody reading this would actually understand any Italian ^_^. But anyway the batter is light and fluffy and yet crispy on the outside, but a tad bit mushy on the inside. Not bad, but I've had better elsewhere.

We decide to do pasta, starting off with Tagliolini with prawns and asparagus in rich shellfish bisque (MYR50.00). We're rather unimpressed by the dish. The prawns are big and oh-so-fresh, but the overall taste of the sauce it's in was a rather big miss.

The Ravioli 'Malfatti style' stuffed with prawns and potatoes with crab sauce (MYR50.00) makes up for the disappointment, being an absolutely delicious mix of chewy pasta and a gorgeous filling in a superb sauce. But (and it's a big But) the portion size is, in my opinion, ridiculously small. Even small-sized mouths will polish off this entire dish in 6 mouthfuls.

On to dessert! The Traditional Tiramisu (MYR28.00) is good, but not spectacular.

Our Melting Heart Chocolate Cake with Orange Sauce and Candy Orange Skin ($24.00) gets higher marks for creativity. I think orange goes perfect with chocolate, so this dessert was delicious! The melting chocolate in the middle was nicely bitter, which was more than compensated for by the sweetness of the candy orange skin.

Overall, the darling and I go home unimpressed. At MYR107 for 2 pax after taxes (and 50% SP discount), it wasn't exactly a cheap dinner, and the quality of the food was above average at best.

Worse still was the service - on a weeknight with barely a third of the restaurant occupied, we had to wait about 5 minutes at the entrance before a server even noticed us and brought us to our table - a theme recurring throughout the night as we had fairly long waits between courses, meals, getting the bill, etc.

5 big stars for the superb ambience, only 3 stars for the food.

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