Raising The Steaks: A Chef’s Table at Flock

Flock Indoor | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

When it comes to beef, it takes a discerning palate to be able to differentiate quality and cuts. From comparing Angus to wagyu, to tenderloin to striploin, there are few better ways to do it than by dining at a Chef’s Table, with a brigade of chefs. The “Raising The Steaks” was hosted at Flock at W Kuala Lumpur, and once again, the experience and conversations did not disappoint.

Chef's Table | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

Stanbroke Farms x Penfolds x Flock

The Chef’s Table included chefs and restauranteurs from some of Kuala Lumpur’s best, including Nicolas Le Toumelin from Classic Fine Foods, Pedro Semper of Brasserie at St. Regis Kuala Lumpur, Toni Valero of the Maxim Image Group (Leonardo’s, Bo Dining), Evert Onderbeke of Soleil, Jean-Michel Loubatieres from Cuisine Boleh and representatives from Entier and the newly opened Chateau Dionne. The dinner included a tasting of beef versus beef with the Signature Black Angus and the Sanchoku Wagyu, both premium cuts from the artisanal Stanbroke Farms.

“For the collaboration, it came about as we were discussing on building a monthly grill weekend at Flock showcasing Australian produce available in Malaysia. We wanted to focus on highlighting the Flock atmosphere combined with and extensive grill menu, in this instance Australian leading beef producer Stanbroke. We choose to pair these with Penfolds a similar historical institution in Australia and a well-known producer of quality wine. Overall the concept came about to offer a cosy casual dining experience with fine produce.” — Nicolas Le Toumelin, General Manager of Classic Fine Foods.

Classic Fine Foods Beef Cuts | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

Stanbroke Farms: Raising The Steaks Menu

Classic Fine Foods, a purveyor of some of Kuala Lumpur’s finest ingredients showcased their different cuts of beef and how it can be used, with two breeds primarily from Stanbroke Farms, a family owned artisanal farm. The cuts that were showcased were the Shanchoku Wagyu and the Signature Black Angus. The menu featured a variety of preparations of the beef, from thinly sliced carpaccio to roughly chopped tartare to thick cut steaks, each with a different way of experiencing their cuts.

Chawanmushi | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

AMUSE BOUCHE

Chawanmushi

Foie gras, chicken, shimeji mushroom and shiso tempura
The starter dish of the night, the chawanmushi had delicate flavours from the foie and umami of the mushrooms and dashi, with the shiso tempura adding a layer of texture and peppery sharpness.

Hamachi Ceviche | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

SHARING SALADS

Hamachi Ceviche

Pineapple, pomegranate, coriander, onion, coconut milk and lime jus
The first course of the salads, the Hamachi was clean on the palate, which was balanced well with leche de tigre. The coconut cream added a dimension of texture to the dish, sweet, savoury, salty and creamy, all you could ask for in a starter.

Heirloom TomatoesChawanmushi | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

Heirloom Tomato

Heirloom tomatoes, burrata, extra virgin olive oil and Balsamic vinegar
The heirloom tomatoes came in a variety of size and were beautifully plated, before it was taken for a good tossing, resulting in pieces of burrata torn and scattered all over the dish. The simple preparation is one of the most classic ways to enjoy the tomato, simply with olive oil and balsamic. The sweetness and flavour of an heirloom tomato is hard to beat.

Beef Carpaccio | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

Beef Carpaccio

Sanchoku Wagyu Chuck Tail Flap MB6/7
Apple, mirin, soy sauce, shallots, watermelon radish and heirloom tomatoes
The marbling on the carpaccio was elegant, and as a decent wagyu cut can make for perfect carpaccio, the mouthfeel from the thinly sliced cuts is one of the best ways to showcase its flavour. The carpaccio was laid around a bushel of salad, when mixed together, made the perfect morsel for a bite, with light flavours from the radish adding crisp freshness, while the soy and mirin both adding sweetness and umami, complementing the cut.

Tartare | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

HOT STONE 7 TARTARE

Beef Tartare

Sanchoku Wagyu Rib Eye MB5
Mustard capers, onion, pickled turnip, cucumber, onion, beetroot, cornichon and fries
The beef tartare was prepared in the form of a coin laid on a plate, with a side of pickles and fries, but the tartare did not need the aid from the sides as it was flavoured well. The flavours from the capers and beetroot bits added a nice umami sweet crunch to the tartare, naturally letting the beef shine.

Stanbroke Trio Wagyu Cuts

Sanchoku Wagyu Chuck Tail Flap
Sanchoku Wagyu Rib Eye (Karubi) MB5
Sanchoku Wagyu Striploin MB6/7
Red miso sauce
Three different cuts were laid for a self-cooking experience with hot stone, each cut being a different texture and flavour. The chuck had the beefiest flavour of the three, and is great for people who lean towards meatier flavours. The rib eye had a good fattiness, with that melt in your mouth texture you would expect from anywhere near the rib, decent marbling. The striploin was the most balanced of the 3, as it has the right amount of fattiness and flavour. All three cuts are perfect for thin sliced grilling, depending on how marbled you like your cuts, therefore making them perfect for hot stone cooking. One isn’t necessarily greater than the other, its just different. The red miso sauce was beautifully done, but the cuts could have done with or without them at this quality of beef.

Rib Eye vs Sirloin | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

STEAK

Signature Black Angus Rib Eye MB2 vs Sanchoku Wagyu Rib Eye MB5
Signature Black Angus Striploin MB2 vs Sanchoku Wagyu Striploin MB6
Butter loaded purée, grilled asparagus, heirloom carrots, mixed greens, Penfold’s red wine sauce, béarnaise and Sarawak pepper sauce

The main course of the night was a selection of 4 cuts of steaks, two cuts of the Signature Angus rib eye and two cuts of the Sanchoku Wagyu striploin, for comparison. The Penfold’s red wine sauce and béarnaise were decent, but with cuts like these, the sauces are best left enjoyed with the sides, with special appreciation given to the perfectly charred asparagus and complexly sweet heirloom carrots.

Signature Black Angus MB2 Rib Eye vs Sanchoku Wagyu Rib Eye MB6 | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

Signature Black Angus Rib Eye MB2 vs Sanchoku Wagyu Rib Eye MB5

The first 2 cuts were the rib eye, also known as cuberolls in industry jargon, which were soft, rich and are known for its fat marbling, usually pronounced. When compared side by side, the Signature Black Angus fared better when it came to flavour compared to the Sanchoku Wagyu. However, the wagyu is also perfect for those looking for a richer cut.

Signature Black Angus MB2 Sirloin vs Sanchoku Wagyu Striploin MB6 | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

Signature Black Angus Striploin MB2 vs Sanchoku Wagyu Striploin MB6

The second 2 cuts were the striploin, which is generally known for its stronger flavour and layer of fat, and as you know, fat equals flavour. Both cuts were beautifully cooked as well, with the Sanchoku winning out by just a bit on the striploin, and although not for everyone, thanks to its valuable and flavourful layer of fat. One thing to note on sirloins is that a layer of fat is thick and on the side, versus intramuscular marbling more commonly found in between the flesh itself. That is why a wagyu striploin will have both of these elements, whereas an Angus striploin will be beefier in taste, which is also less fatty.

DESSERT

Sarawak Pineapple Tartin

Pineapple, dehydrated pineapple and ice cream
The tarte tartin was decent, with a nice layer of sweetness and crunch, and a bittersweet layer from the dehydrated pineapple. A classic dessert, the dish was paired with ice cream and was a good ending to the meal, which helped the dessert course transition from medium-bodied crispy and umamisweet to the heavier cheesecakes.

Zen Yuzu Cheese

Yuzu, meringue, yuzu cheesecake, matcha cheesecake, blackberry and fig compote
The cheesecake came in two cubes, one yuzu and one matcha flavoured. The dessert was light and creamy, and the matcha had a nice bitterness to it. The magical citrus yuzu works with everything, so it was only natural that this dessert would be enjoyable.


Penfolds Collection | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

Penfolds Wines

The Chef’s Table dinner was also complemented with a range of Penfold’s wines, including their signature Bin 28 Pinot Noir, as well as their Max’s Chardonnay and Max’s Cabernet Sauvignon, which all went well with the beef focus dinner.

Penfolds Max’s Chardonnay 2016

A tribute to Penfolds former chief winemaker Max Schubert, the chardonnay was quintessentially South Australian, with its creamy disposition, peach aromas and with a decent structure and bright acidity, pairing well with the hamachi and heirloom tomato salads. This chardonnay also worked well as an opening drink.

Penfolds Max’s Cabernet Sauvignon 2017

The Penfolds Max’s Cabernet Sauvignon was easy to drink, with a nose of dark berries being prominent. Not overtly acidic, the wine had an oaky disposition and was mildly spicy. This wine worked well with the carpaccio and thin cuts of beef that were cooked on hot stone. 

Penfolds Bin 28 Pinot Noir

The Bin 28 is one of Penfolds’ signatures, the pinot noir had notes of strawberry, and a medium body with oaky undertones, so you can see why it’s one of their best sellers. The Bin 28 paired well with the steaks as the mains, matching well with the thicker cuts, but was also quite enjoyable on its own. One of their more commercially enjoyable ranges.

Sanchoku Wagyu Trio Cuts | Raising The Steaks | Food For Thought

The Raising The Steaks Chef’s Table at Flock Experience

This dinner taught us some interesting things about beef, from learning how to tell the difference between the Angus versus the wagyu, to between the tenderloin and the sirloin. The dinner also taught us that fattier doesn’t mean better, it all really boils down to how you use them. With fattier cuts, sometimes less is more. From using the hot stone for thin grilling to raw beef for carpaccio, the many ways to enjoy the different cuts was definitely the highlight of the night, and in addition to that, the company was stellar, making the dinner all the more enjoyable.

For more information about premium beef, see Classic Fine Foods.
For more information about Penfolds wines, see Penfolds.


Flock
W Hotel Kuala Lumpur,
121, Jalan Ampang,
50450 Kuala Lumpur
+6012 347 9088
Opening Hours:
Monday to Sundays, 6.30 am to 10.30 pm; 12.00 pm to 2.30 pm and 5.30 pm to 10.30 pm

| PHOTOGRAPHY: CHLOEE LEE | WEBSITE: FLOCK |

Nicholas Ng

Nicholas Ng is a restaurant critic, travelogue and opinion columnist which is curated on Food For Thought. He has been a freelance writer for 10 years and has previously worked as a lawyer. He currently is the Principal Counsultant of A Thoughtfull Consultancy.

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