I’ll admit we arrived at Alva KL with minimal expectations.

It would be too easy for a restaurant that comes with such captivating views to drop the ball with its food. After all, the panoramic view of the iconic KLCC Twin Towers and TRX Tower at the top of Ascott Star KLCC already does a lot of the heavy lifting in the restaurant ambiance, providing a memorable backdrop for patrons.

I’m glad that we were proven wrong.

There are indoor and outdoor seating options but if you choose anything other than outdoor, you chose wrongly. Outside is where the magic happens, with the sunset changing the hues and contrast in the canvas of the sky with every passing hour. 

I had come with every intention to abstain from alcohol consumption. I won’t wait till the end of this article to tell you that I failed, horribly, because the handcrafted cocktails served were delightfully light on the palate and well balanced.

  • Far East Journey Cocktail (RM48): Irish whiskey, chrysanthemum tea, asam boi, port wine
  • Creamsicle Brew (RM38): Rum infused pandan, espresso, heavy cream
  • Citrus Sunset (RM52): French vodka, elderflower, orange marmalade
  • Rising Star (RM56): Rum infused pandan, starfruit, pineapple, bitters
  • Stardust Sip (RM48): White wine infused chamomile tea, cuban rum, yuzu, tropical diced fruits, star anise

Our favourites were the Far East Journey Cocktail (it’s their signature for a reason), and the Citrus Sunset (sweet, refreshing, really easy to drink). 

It’s not an overstatement to call the Truffle Chips (RM18) addictive. I could munch on these for hours. The truffle was mild and not overpowering, which was a relief because we find that dishes that are too truffle forward are very monotonous in flavour.

Amazing Nachos (RM29) were nothing much to shout about, it’s nachos. The Tiger Prawn Poppers (RM38) however had a light batter, and packed a punch of heat with its seasoning.

The prawn poppers were a close contender to the addictiveness of the truffle chips—our table greedily went for seconds on both. 

I’m not a salad girlie, so the 5 Star Crispy Salad (RM28) was a refreshing change from salads that are just more greens upon greens.

The star fruit slices, juicy prawns, and jackfruit dressing were a welcoming sight, eating this salad didn’t make me feel like a grazing cow, for that I am grateful.

The thick Seared US Scallops (RM36) each sat on a bed of taro fritter, so each bite had more chew and depth. Now, we’ve heard of the Asian deep fried taro cakes with scallops, but this take on scallops with taro was a different one.

This combo, with the classic French beurre blanc sauce, is a modern take that we’d have over and over again.

I truly wished I had more to say about the Garlic Prawn Pasta (RM49) other than that it was cooked perfectly al dente and that the grilled tiger prawns were juicy. But the Spinach Risotto (RM20) with the Thai Style Cuttlefish (+RM15) stole the show with its creamy savouriness contrasted against the crisp glazed cuttlefish.

For RM35 (the risotto with cuttlefish add on), this was a good dish worth coming back for.

For mains, the Atlantic Miso Black Cod (RM83) was a very memorable one. First off, it’s cod, who doesn’t love the delicate, buttery, naturally sweet, taste of cod? Secondly, it’s grilled to perfection, look at that char.

I mean, seriously, f*ck carcinogens but this is exactly how I want my cod to be, every single time.

Australia Lamb Short Ribs (RM48) tasted a little too gamey for some others at our table. Being the carnivore that I am, I didn’t mind it at all, but I do understand it is an acquired taste for most.

I also appreciate that it wasn’t completely doused by sauces or gravies, so that the lamb taste could shine on its own. 

Above The Cloud Tiramisu (RM20) was a modern interpretation of the dish, which I don’t know if Italians would frown upon and call blasphemy, but I for one really loved it.

The crispies sheets wrapped around the mascarpone and almond sponge, giving it a textural contrast that is rare in the usual classic dish.

If I had remaining calories for only one dessert at Alva KL, this would be it.

The Coconut Panna Cotta (RM18) had the right amount of wobble, it was smooth, creamy, coconutty (I apologise for the plainness but it’s the first word that comes to mind for the flavour), not too sweet, slightly pandan scented, with just a bit of tartness from the fruits on top.

It’s everything that I want in a panna cotta. 

Unfortunately we didn’t have the stomach space to try the Aussie Lamb in Brioche Bun (RM59), it’s one we will keep for the next time we have a date with the 99th floor of Ascott Star KLCC. 

Disclaimer: The restaurant is not actually on the 99th floor, it’s located one level above the 56th floor. But I guess there’s nothing wrong with this little harmless exaggeration. 

Alva KL

Address: Level 99, Ascott Star KLCC, 1, Jalan Yap Kwan Seng, Kampung Baru, 50450 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Contact: 010-303 0099

Website: https://instagram.com/alvakl_

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