Sunday, January 23, 2011

Over-priced Du Viet

This Vietnamese restaurant was recommended by a family member. Apparently it served very good food. I don't know if it was really that "very good" but it certainly burnt a big hole in my pocket. The place we went to was Du Viet. It is a swanky place on Jalan SS21/37 in PJ Uptown, not far from where defunct Fajar Supermarket used to be.

The entrance up a flight of stairs was rather impressive - even grand. It was tastefully adorned and led us into an equally impressive dining hall. The decor was contemporary and nicely done. The tables and chairs were comfortable and there were even a couple of sofas for easy relaxed dining.

But the place was devoid of patrons. We walked into a big nice restaurant and we were the only people there. It should had been a nice feeling having the whole place to ourselves (kinda like having booked the whole restaurant for our exclusive dining) but it was not. I didn't like the void. Any restaurant so empty cannot be good. It was after awhile that a few other customers started to walk in.

We were attended by a Myanmese lady who spoke Cantonese. We made our orders which I thought was quite sufficient for the 3 of us. But she kept insisting that we did not have enough - that their servings were small and that we should have the big orders instead of the small ones. We ended having more food than we could eat.

Our starter was a mixed grill platter. In it were spring rolls, sugarcane prawns, roast beef, chicken and various types of salads. It was served with some rice papers which were used like a popiah skin to wrap the goodies in. There were 2 types of sauces. The plate was very pleasant. The roast beef was particularly delicious. I liked the assortment of veges that went very well with the meats in the rice paper.

We had the beef stew with white radish. It was chunks of meat in a spicy gravy. The white radish (lobak putih) tasted better. But there was not much of it. The gravy was nice. I guess it was not a bad dish. But we didn't really enjoy it. Perhaps we were put off by too much of the meat.

Next was the braised duck in a nutty sauce. Again, it was chunks of meat. This was one time we were really meat-saturated. The gravy was very oily. The duck was over-cooked and had lost its texture. It wasn't a very happy dish.

The chef's tofu was rather ordinary. It was in a spicy tomato sauce. The taste was rather strong. I was neutral to this dish.

Finally the fish... It was a deep fried haruan (snakehead or 生鱼). The fish was fried with its scales to a nice crisp. It was served with various types of salads and 2 sauces. The ugly fish did not look very appetizing. The skin was crispy but the meat was rather flat and tasteless. Nevertheless I still enjoyed it. Eaten with the salads and the sauces, the fish was really quite good. 

I ordered a cup of Vietnamese drip coffee with my meal. It was a tiny cup and came in the typical Vietnamese coffee making container. It would be more appropriate as an after-meal. But it was served before the food, so it was rather cold by the time I got to it. The coffee was was smooth and strong. I enjoyed it. 

The damage of the meal was close to 200 ringgit. The fish was about RM50. The coffee was RM7. We asked for some water and we were billed RM1.20 for a small cup of "mineral water". I do know if it was indeed mineral. If it was, they should had served it in its original bottle instead of pouring it into small cups like below. We had 4 cups of those and I felt cheated paying RM4.80 for them. Our daughter asked me not to make a scene and I left it as that.

Du Viet has 4 outlets. Beside PJ Uptown, they are also in KLCC, Pavilion and Sunway. However, it is very unlikely that we will be back there any time soon.

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