Food Talks

Horrible Experience at Bar Italia, Jalan Berangan Article Rating

Posted by Jonathan Teoh on June 13, 2009 - Filed under: Dining Experience

I met up with two of my friends at Bar Italia on 29 Jalan Berangan, off Changkat Bukit Ceylon on June 11 for our quarterly get together and found the whole place quite chic and a great example of the sort of refurbishment that can happen to an old shophouse. We ordered these dishes based on the owner’s recommendations.

Vegetarian Antipasto - RM32
Sliced Veal in Tuna Sauce - RM30
Pappardelle with Beef Ragout - RM34
Orrechitte with Beef Bacon - RM32
Baby Goat w Capsicum + Polenta - RM62
Salted Cod - RM 54

We received the Vegetarian Antipasto and Sliced Veal in Tuna Sauce as the starter. It looked quite good until we took our first bite. The veal was smothered in tuna sauce and it was akin to eating the very expensive filling of a tuna mayo sandwich. Oh my gawd, the Vegetarian Antipasto was a shocker. A dollop of rocket salad and a serving of grilled aubergine cunningly served with balsamic vinegar. A sucker punch at RM32!

Next up was the two pastas. The Pappardelle (Flat and Wide pasta) didn’t make much of an impression as the beef ragout was mildly herbed and lightly topped with parmesan. The Orrechitte (small clamshell pasta) with Beef Bacon bits was a bit harder to digest with cardboard consistency and bacon bits being a tad dry. Again, this is something I could have cooked up as bachelor chow as it certainly didn’t impress.

We thought it couldn’t get any worse until the mains came. Somehow for 62 smackers, I would have thought that the Baby Goat would be delectable and tender as a comparable rack of lamb. They did say it was like Baby Lamb. We didn’t expect however to get deep fried kambing.... so fried that we couldn’t even hack it. We felt that this was too much and sent it back to the kitchen. Paolo’s team had the nerve to send it back to us and told it to us in our face, “This is how it is done in Italia!”. As if it that wasn’t rude enough, our Italian speaking waitress unceremoniously began to hack the goat for us! I tried to swallow my pride but I couldn’t even swallow this insult, let alone that damned goat.

To add salt to the injury, we got served the Salted Cod with Polenta. Oh wow! They weren’t kidding about the salt. This Cod was at least twice as salty as the Chinese Salted Fish with porridge variety and it beggars belief that the Italians can eat this by itself. Needless to say, we all had to spit our cod portions into a tissue napkin. It was so bad, that an immediate round of gelati was necessary and that thankfully did the trick much to the relief of our badly abused palettes.

I’m not the type to be dramatic but sheer arrogance and bad food and service cannot go unnoticed.

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Monica! Said:

Wow, this is a long post! It's sad to hear that you have a bad day. What a pity goat ;)

Saturday, June 13, 2009 6:08 PM
howeh Said:

really a horrible experience >.<"

Saturday, June 13, 2009 10:13 PM
Jess Said:

This a typical example of people who have absolutely no idea what Italian food is like. This a result of going to so called Italian restaurant eating Italian food done Chinese style so when they finally get the real deal, they don't appreciate it as much.
The same if you go to a Thai restaurant in KL it taste Chinese noodle type. Go eat at an Italian restaurant with a Japanese chef/ or whatever chef claiming to know Italian cuisine, it will more suit your palette.
I have eaten at Baritalia and it's the most authentic Italian food around, they also use organic products which will taste different to those who are use to eating the lesser quality stuff.

Saturday, July 4, 2009 6:02 PM from:
Chieftain Said:

To some extend, I agree on what Jess said. There aren't many restaurants in KL serve authentic cuisine and not many know what is an authentic taste. Malaysian being fed too much on bad food.

Saturday, July 4, 2009 6:41 PM
stephanie Said:

Went to Bar Italia 2 days ago for drinks and the bartender took about 25 minutes to serve a damn martini :-(

I've tried baby lamb last week in Sentidos Tapas (claimed to be 7 days old). It was oven roasted and the meat taste so so so good ( like suckling pig but even better than that actually!) Not sure if they still have it now coz it was part of their Midsummer promotion. You should check it out :-)

Friday, July 17, 2009 7:07 PM
Disappointed also Said:
Disappointed also

I recently dined there and had the same experience. The lasagne was suppose to be veal taste like mince lamb. The pastas were very salty and the aglio olio was so salty we had to spit out and could not eat. We complained and they replaced, this time - totally tasteless!

Thursday, August 6, 2009 4:46 PM from:
Hugh Said:

It is clear that you have not the slightest clue about Italian food. Vitello Tonnato IS sliced Veal drenched in Tuna sauce and sometimes topped with Capers. Complaining about the tuna sauce is like an Italian asking for Hokkien mee cooked without soya sauce. Bat Italia is still new and they may have some quality issues which they normally are happy to address but how do you do this if it is NOT a quality issue but rather aquestion of a customer who has not a clue of what is talking about

Sunday, August 23, 2009 11:58 AM from:
jess Said:

Yes Hugh, it is obvious that there are a lot of people who have absolutely NO IDEA what Italian food is; perfect example the posts above.

Monday, September 14, 2009 8:11 AM from:
Vince Said:

LOL, I see we have alot of Italian food connoisseurs in Malaysia. Whatever the way the food is served, what Paolo said to his client (This is how it's done in Italia) is plain stupid and arrogant. I like Nero Vivo (haven't been to Bar Italia) as much as the next pretentious Malaysian and expatriate, but there needs to be some sophistication in handling complaints. Unless, this kind of service is how they do it in Italia as well, I don't see any justification to being rude to your clients. And please, there is no authentic Italian food in Malaysia. There's bound to be some variance and people should be allowed to have their own opinion without having some holier than thou critiques judging his taste palette or exposure to global cuisine.

Also, to the idiot who said Malaysians are being fed too much bad food, I have only this to say : stop eating McDonalds and Italian food in Malaysia and start eating our local food. Granted we do not have the best food in the world, but it's hardly bad food.

Friday, October 16, 2009 2:22 PM from:
Tony Said:

Woah i never knew BAR ITALIA was a hotspot, no i'm not talking about it being happening, i'm talking about it being run by an asshole who puts his staff's head under a coffee machine steamer because he the staff made a mistake. Some pe...ople are just INHUMANE. So actually its a hotspot if you like watching HUMANS GET ABUSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, October 18, 2009 2:32 PM
KL Yeap Said:
KL Yeap

There are 2 issues-the quality of food and the attitude.
There is no excuse for the attitude irrespective of history of success or failure.
On the food, come on Vince are you saying there is no genuine Italian food in KL? There is a lot of bad restaurants in Rome which are for tourists (the opinion of locals)only. Similarly, there are restaurants here that serve half decent food. Discerning good food from bad does not make one pretentious. KL and Asian food in general is outstanding no doubt but there are many second rate restaurants here. As a KL-ite, I do not think I am pretentious by saying that a certain restaurant is good and another is bad. It helps if I know what I am talking about though which seems to be the issue with some of the comments.

Monday, October 19, 2009 2:18 PM from:
Sue Said:

I totally agree with Vince. I m living abroad and have gone to few so called Malaysian authentic restaurant here but when you order a plate of fried noodle, it is cooked for the local's taste, not to the Malaysian's taste, so I guess Bar Italia should try to adjust the cooking to the Malaysian taste, not so much but to an acceptable extend.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 7:17 PM from:
Vince Said:

KL Yeap, you don't need me to answer your question if there is any genuine Italian food in KL. Just ask yourself, is there genuine Malaysian food in Italy? Or even China, for that matter?

It's the ingredients lah brother

Tuesday, January 26, 2010 6:10 PM from:
KL Yeap Said:
KL Yeap

Vince, you are quite right in saying that availability of ingredients is essential in cooking decent food of any cuisine. Your analogy is not quite there though. There are many bad Malaysian restaurants all over the world and there are some that are quite good that can give our "Malaysian" restaurants a run for their money. It is more an issue of demand. There simply isn't enough demand for GOOD Msian food. If ingredients alone are a problem why are there good Indian and Chinese restaurants in London and elesewhere? Why are some of the Japanese restaurants in KL very good. It is simply an issue of demand. The US is a good example. Chinese food there used to be very ordinary but in recent years there have been some excellent restaurants that have opened. With todays logistics, you can get quality ingredients in most places provided there is a demand.
I am confused by what Sue said, she complains that Malaysian food overseas has been "adjusted" and wants Bar Italia to do the same? I thought we want proper Italian Food?

Thursday, January 28, 2010 9:02 PM from:
KL Yeap Said:
KL Yeap

I suspect that the real issue is the poor hyper-sensitive response by the management of Bar Italia rather than the food itself. Arrogance fueled by previous success I suppose.

Thursday, January 28, 2010 9:06 PM from:
Jess Said:

Ho Vince, you obviously did not know that PAOLO the ex owner of Nerovvivo and built that name. I don't think you would know real Italian food if it hist you in the face.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 4:48 PM from:
KL Yeap Said:
KL Yeap

I dont think Paolo 's reputation as the person that started Nerovivo will cut any more ice. My recent experiences at Bar Italia and their new outlet in BSC at best can only be described as average. The food at Bar Italia in BSC ( Vineria) was extremely patchy as with the service and I think Paolo's sidekick Max has got some kind of deep seated inferiority complex which manifests itself as hyper sensitivity.
The downtown location ( with local/Burmese chefs) is better although they both need to pull up their socks before they alienate even their most loyal customers. At the moment, neither of them are hitting us in the face with GOOD Italian food .

Saturday, March 20, 2010 6:56 PM from:
Joshua Said:

well.....if u guys have a great, awesome, creative ideas about how to prepare a single Italian meal....share with the Bar Italia Executive Chef & If you guys have better solution to run the operation & the bar please share with the management.Thats the way we should help the F&B industry instead of bitching & condemning the particular outlet in the blog.They need feedback as well.NO BODY IS PERFECT.Based on my 10 experience of managing F&B outlets.Everyday is a new days n new thing been intrudeced in this industry.Wake up you guys....Get on reality world...If u have the same meal at Milan or Sicily i bet you won't complaint coz it's in Italy.....Things happen for a reason...Thsnk You.United We Stand For F&B.

Saturday, June 12, 2010 12:23 AM from:
Cindy Said:

Went to Vineria Rest at BSC ystd, a joint managed by the same person Max. Ordered seafood pizza minus the scallop, prawn not fresh, mussel stink. Told the waitress, she later gave us a plate of the missing scallop as side dish. We commented to the manager, Max ..... he told us we got our missing scallop so what the issue. Max also said that the restaurant was packed every nights, so our comments not welcome and we are not welcome. Feel so insulted. Whoever plan to go there for food, just beware. Shut up and eat your food, even thou its bad or you are not welcome. Without ordering any other food, we just paid and left.

Saturday, July 3, 2010 9:59 AM from:
no more vineria Said:
no more vineria

I faced the same situation recently at Vineria.
Bad service, bad food, very bad attitude from the manager.
We cannot say anything to him, worst than a kid! what kind of manager is this.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010 5:13 PM from:
Louis Said:

We had a birthday dinner there last Saturday and it was not pleasant. We have to wait for so long for our food and the service was bad. For the price we paid, we were not happy. Food nothing to shout about.

Thursday, November 18, 2010 11:37 PM from:
Sam Said:

Have a go at Osteria real blue in Publika/Solaris Dutamas. That place have really good and authentic italian food. Check out their website. My all time fav Italian restaurant. Quite consistent.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013 11:00 PM from:
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