Kim Ma (a direct translation of “Golden Horse”), the award-winning Chinese restaurant in Palace of the Golden Horses recently went through a refurbishment. A magical transformation, it was said plus a whole lot of exclusivity.
How so? Well, Kim Ma is now only available for private-dining during weekdays; sorry walk-in folks. You’ll have to make reservations 2 days in advance if you’d like to dine in Kim Ma during weekdays. However the restaurant is open to public for dim sum on weekends.
A few of us were invited to check out the new Kim Ma, and to find out what Chef Roy Wong has in store for us.
If the amuse-bouche were anything to go by, boy were we in for a treat! We enjoyed smoked egg with shimeji mushroom. The smoky smell, wood flavour came through and it was a richly delicious. Nouvelle Chinese cooking, is it?
The more common freshly-baked oyster was served with tangy lime mayonnaise with a hint of lemongrass that whet our appetite for the rest of the dishes.
In line with the hotel’s wellness concept, Kim Ma serves healthy (steamed) and delicious dim sum to discerning diners.
You get dumplings served with superior broth. Steamed prawn dumplings (siu mai) topped with shrimp roe and truffle. And my favourite, steamed chicken meat roll in beancurd skin with deep-fried yam sticks, served with porcini mushroom sauce.
How fusion is that?
Calrose rice congee served with sliced cod fish and century egg. The fish is very fresh and is real cod – apparently there are cod imitations of inferior quality going around. The fish is vacuum-packed and soaked in low temperature water for 10 minutes.
On to samplings from Kim Ma’s set menus, priced from RM1,688++ for a table of 10.
Chef Wong served us an experiment of his own creation – deep-fried abalone with grouper fish paste, caviar and homemade soft, cold beancurd.
There was so much going on in this dish but it came together nicely. The abalone maintained its juices, every bite was a surprising delight.
It could have been done with a lot less sauce, or at least a very mild, light one.
Next was my favourite of the lot – double-boiled village chicken broth with fresh fish maw (prized fish stomach), dried scallops and deep-fried prawn dumpling.
To cook this, you simmer the ingredients for 3 hours followed by high boiling for half an hour. The yellow colour of the broth comes naturally from the village (kampung) chicken. Two whole chickens yield only 15 bowls of this soup!
Very hearty and delicious, love the mushroom fritter that came with it.
Chef Wong’s Chinese ravioli is actually foie gras with minced chicken ravioli and charcoal egg floss. A novelty for sure, though I’m personally unsure if the combination complements.
Three types of almonds (including apricot kernels) are used to make this creamy almond milk dessert, double-boiled in a coconut for an hour with snow jelly (hasma). I don’t eat anything with hasma but my fellow diners happily downed the hot dessert in no time.
From time to time, Chef Wong would pop out to join us and give a run-down of his cuisine. I find him detailed and passionate about his craft. We also have the same type of spectacle frame, wahey!
Now for the magical part: famed illusionist and mentalist Zlwin Chew is Kim Ma’s resident magician! He will be at your table-side at selected hours from Thursdays to Sundays, thrilling you with a repertoire of tricks.
Kim Ma Restaurant
Palace of the Golden Horses
Jalan Kuda Emas,
MINES Resort City,
43300 Seri Kembangan,
Tel: +603-8943 2666
Weekdays (reservation only): 12pm – 2.30pm, 6.30pm – 10.30pm
Saturday & Sunday (walk-in): 10am to 4pm