Uncle Chilli’s @ PJ Hilton, The Place Where ‘U’ Belong
Uncle Chilli’s @ PJ Hilton
The Place Where ‘U’ Belong
There’s a place off the Federal Highway in KL where you belong. It’s there, waiting for you. Waiting to be discovered.
Many people know it as a bar. Some remember it as fine dining outlet Red. Others know it as a place to go for live music. How many know it as a place that serves fuss-free, quality dishes made from the freshest available produce?
Yes, I am talking about Uncle Chilli’s, on the Lobby Level of PJ Hilton. Recently revamped and boasting a new oversized one-piece menu, Chef Carloz brings his passion for food to our plates with new ideas on old favourites. “I hear the food sizzle,” he tells me. “I listen to it, that is how I cook.”
“Why are you called Carloz?” I asked him. He told me, and I couldn’t stop laughing. If you meet him, remember to ask him!
Our gracious hosts Elaine Chiew and Cindy Wong from Hilton’s marketing team entertained us with lively tales of the journey Uncle Chilli’s has been through to where it is today.
Terry (Red FM Drive) rocked up and cheekily said,” Hi, I’m Terry. Where’s the food?”
That’s how he starts every conversation. Hazim (Red Weekends) and Dilly (Red Breakfast) unraveled our individual menu’s for the evening and we chose out main dishes.
Dilly asked our friendly waiter Shaun to recommend a mocktail for her to try. “Nenas,” he replied simply. I thought he was being sarcastic, and telling her to have pineapple juice, but it is actually a mocktail in the menu! Along with others like the ‘Pakcik’, a blend of bananas, milk, chocolate and Grenadine, and the Walking Stick made from Blueberry, Strawberry, Apple, Cranberry and Lime Juice, you are spoilt for choice.
Of course if you fancy something stronger, try the Chilli Red Signature with Rum, Cherry Brandy, Lime, Cranberry and Grenadine, or the powerful Long Island Iced Tea.
The place was filling up with its regular after work crowd, having a laugh and chilling out by the bar. The area we were in was towards the back, with warm red walls and intimate lighting encouraged a laid-back feel.
Our appetizer of Classic Caesar Salad was fresh and tasty, with crispy Romaine lettuce coated in creamy parmesan dressing, crunchy turkey bacon bits, topped off with a poached egg, parmesan shavings and warm toasted garlic bread.
Nods of approval from around the table as we looked at one another to our empty plates.
We were joined by Executive Chef Denis Vecchiato who hails from Italy but had worked extensively in Asia. His vision for the restaurants at Hilton PJ is slowly taking shape. Chef Denis explains that he wants each outlet to have its own distinct identity, and here at Uncle Chilli’s the concept is laid back American, with a fine dining touch.
As I take a slurp of my second dish, the Crab Bisque I understand what he means. It was divine, very rich and very velvety.
The secret? Roast five to six kilo’s of fresh crab and remove shell. Pan fry tomato and onion, add fish stock and tomato paste and reduce for about half an hour. No additives, no thickeners, just wholesome, fresh ingredients and a delicate cooking process.
As we move on to our mains, I begin to wonder if Chef Carloz, like me, has a thing for eggs. Poached egg in the salad, fried egg on the burger and on my lamb.
I adored the Braised Lamb Shank with Onion Confit and Sunny Side Up. The egg is added for a touch of freshness to balance out the intense, meaty flavour or the sauce while the greens added a great crunch.
Terry devoured his in a matter of moments and moved on to a burger.
The Uncle Chilli’s Burger can only be described with one word: Monster.
It was large, with a juicy patty charred to your liking. Hazim’s burger was well done, which I found a little dry. I recommend the burger in medium. Cheddar cheese, sautéed mushroom, crispy beef bacon and a fried egg, smothered with guacamole and spicy salsa sandwiched between fluffy buns.
Open wide, and remember, there is no shame in sharing!
Dilly ordered the Simmered Roulade of Sea Bass balanced on a dollop of potato puree.
Dotted with steamed brussel sprouts, asparagus, cherry tomatoes, topped off with wild fern, it was an amalgamation of fresh, light taste and textures.
Definitely the healthier option out of all three!
Dessert was a delightful Passion Fruit Crème Brulee, and a healthy Granola Parfait.
I loved the combination of passionfruit in the delicate baked custard. Tangy, and not too sweet with a crisp caramelized layer on top.
The in house band Hyperzone took stage and we moved to a comfy sofa to wind down and digest. From salads to soups, to burgers and sandwiches, to pasta and pizza, mains and desserts, you’re spoilt for choice at Uncle Chilli’s. If nothing takes your fancy, your can even “Create Your Own”.
Sophisticated yet laid back, this really is “The Place Where ‘U’ Belong.”
Win RM 150 vouchers to Uncle Chilli’s! From Monday 23rd – Friday 27th November, tune in to The Big Red Food Review, Eleven2Three, with me Aly. Only on Red FM, Today’s Best Music.
Uncle Chilli’s, Hilton Petaling Jaya
No 2 Jalan Barat, 46200 PJ
For reservations, call 03-7955 9122
*This restaurant is bookable through theQguides.com. Book, Eat, Be Rewarded.