Monday, September 10, 2012

Malaysia Food Blog - Tony Roma's @ The Curve - Ribs, Seafood, Steak

Location: Petaling Jaya, Selangor

Despite claiming myself as a food blogger, I am quite stingy with my own budget for dinner with the exception of celebrations, discounted vouchers, or if I had no choice. Waltzing myself into Tony Roma's when I was visiting Kuala Lumpur was due to none of the above reasons (it was just a random pick), and I am still surprised that I did so while I am typing out this article.

According to official sources, Tony Roma's started out in North Miami, USA, back in 1972 with baby back ribs as its specialty. With its success, it started floating out of the continent and Malaysia was graced with a few of its outlet, with all of them concentrated in or near Kuala Lumpur.

Welcome to Tony Roma's, famous for "Ribs, Seafood, Steaks", none of which I had tried in the establishment. I wonder if I am qualified for sharing my experience here, but what the heck... ^_^"

Having said that, any restaurant which displays "Ribs, Seafood, Steaks" directly under its name surely will not be a cheap choice for dinner. And it wasn't. The price tag on Tony Roma's menu should not be shocking to patrons of western restaurants in The Curve. Unfortunately, I was not one of those. Still, the experience is well worth the price as I found out after I was done with my heartache.

The shopfront of the restaurant screamed at being of American origin despite the Malaysian flag hanging over the entrance. The dark interior is to emulate the feel of most American bars.

One does not simply waltz into Tony Roma's. At the entrance is a small waiting area with tall-backed wooden benches for your comfort while awaiting to be seated.

The interior of Tony Roma's is darker than most restaurants I patronized. Even so, the lighting is still ample and provided a soothing effect for one to relax himself into his dinner or to enjoy an earnest conversation with friends and family. Seated at a corner of the restaurant allowed me to watch over all, lending me a feel of being a boss. ^_^"

Tony Roma's American origin is quite obvious in the way the restaurant's interior is designed. A dark interior served as a reminder to those American dramas portraying bars. Even so, there is ample lighting for patrons to see their surroundings, to navigate around, and to avoid throwing a wink at the wrong person by mistake.

One could choose to be seated at the cozy sofas near the wall or on comfortable wooden chairs on wooden tables scattered across the middle of the floor, as long as the choice is there. If you are there to watch sports matches, football especially, then you may want to get a seat facing the TV hanging on one of the walls. Other items to grace the irregular brick walls apart from the TV are framed black and white shots of restaurant or dining themes to accentuate the feel of an American establishment with decades of history behind its success.

Gracing the walls of irregular bricks are framed black and white shots of restaurant and dining themes, accentuating the impression of a successful American establishment founded decades ago.

It would be interesting to say that the beverages of Tony Roma's most intrigued me. With names like Caramel Apple Cooler and Cranberry Mojito, it would be hard not to have my interest piqued, especially when I had no idea what the name meant without the details offered below each item. Oh, those are mocktails by the way...

Intrigued by the choice of beverages offered on their menu, I gave Mint and Fruit Dream  (RM12.90) a try. The tangerine combination of orange and strawberry juice, paired with pure cane sugar, gave an exquisite taste in which you couldn't differentiate the individual taste of the ingredients. It is refreshingly cool with mint and not too sweet. The slice of orange wedged on the glass is very appropriate in a tropical country like Malaysia, and would be best if the surrounding is a beachfront...

This piece of bread was served up front when we placed our order, which I guessed will come as the starter of any main dish which is ordered. The intriguing ball f yellow which comes with the bread in a paper cone is not ice-cream...

...it is actually a ball of butter to be spread across the bread.

The bread itself was hard and tough to split open with a knife. This is my handiwork after repeated trials to split it open and spread butter in it. Nevertheless, this is essential to fill your tummy while waiting for the main dish, as some of the main dish could take quite a while to prepare. The hard ball of butter spreads easily on the bread though. The bread would have been better if each bite does not feel softer only compared to rock. Or maybe this is how bread should be...

A piece of bread was served in a paper cone as starters, with a ball of hard butter riding along the interesting holder. One may even mistake the ball of butter as ice-cream. The bread was not as nice though, with an exterior that is tough and difficult to slice open, each bite hard to the teeth, each tear off the bread difficult.

I chose Mojo Chicken as our main dish and was not disappointed by the dish. "Mojo" is related to magic, and I would agree with the taste of this dish being magical. Lined with tropical pineapple, the slightly tangerine taste crunching with each bite makes you hunger for more.

Mojo Chicken (RM34.90) is a grilled chicken breast basted with brown mustard sauce, but more noticeable are the pineapple salsa topping and citrus, giving each bite a crunchy and slightly tangy taste. The chicken breast is well done, each bite mouth-watering, with the flesh slicing off easily with each cut. The rice will be welcoming to a starch-based Asian diet, while the greens served to balance out a meaty dish. Dining on this is befitting to a tropical country where pineapple is one of its main agricultural harvests.

If I had the chance to go back for more, I will have to try their steak or ribs next time, and definitely to try other mocktails choices offered on the menu. Despite the price tag being hefty to me, I do not find it opposing, just that a stingy person like me will not patronize the establishment very often, reserving it for occasional luxurious indulgence.


Note: This piece is written base on experience of dining in Tony Roma's located in The Curve, Petaling Jaya. There are restaurants operating in other areas as well as other countries, and dining experience in this article should not be treated as the same as in those other outlets.









Suitable for:            Some may find this a casual dining spot, but not for me. It would be a place worth spending a night out with your loved one though, especially if there is a celebratory occasion.
Cost:                             Definitely not cheap. Prepare at least a RM50 note per pax.

Website:                     Tony Roma's Malaysian website and Menu

Contact:                      +603 - 7728 7833
Address:                       Cineleisure G-29(II), G-32 & G-33, Ground floor, Mutiara Damansara, 47800 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
Operating hours:   Mon - Sun (10.00a.m. - 10.00p.m.)




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