Ben’s @ KLCC – More Than Just A CafeAugust 4, 2011 | 16,537 views
Home-Made Salt Beef Sandwich (RM23.90/USD8) – A warm, tummy-filling fare that’s guaranteed to put a smile on your weary face. TGIF in a few hours already … persevere, dear gluttons.
“Ben’s KLCC was launched April 15th 2011 and is modelled after a Manhattan townhouse. The menu concentrates on international cuisine, ranging from refreshing appetisers and yummy salads to hearty East and West main courses, delicious snacks and luscious desserts.”
(Excerpt from http://www.suriaklcc.com.my/dining/restaurants/bens/)
Ben’s; the flagship cafe under the BIG group (responsible for various popular outlets, ie: Plan B, Ben’s General Food Store, T Forty Two, etc) reminded me of Delicious by Ms Read the most. From the warm lighting, rustic setting with plush sofas, the cakes counter that’s bound to break a diet or two, and the overall marriage of Eastern and Western influences in the dishes offered.
“It is a place that entices people to visit with their friends and families, sharing good food and precious moments; building rituals.” (from their official website)
The menu was a delight to browse through with the ‘hand-written’ names. Though once again… too many items spoil the fun. Took us forever to settle for two dishes out of the gazillion choices.
I have not been eating in KLCC since donkey years. Okay, aside from a brief meeting last week at Aseana Cafe, the last I remembered was a lightning quick lunch at Burger King late last year.
California Pizza Kitchen has closed (or moved) and gave way to Ben’s. Initial impression?
Chic, stylish, warm, comfortable, strategic location overlooking the fountain below, and contemporary without being overly prestigious nor imposing.
A place where you can walk in for a casual brunch or tea in your shorts and sandals. And you won’t get reprimanded or dagger eyes staring down at you.
Thick, fluffy with a slight chewy texture; the country white bread went perfectly with the generous slab of salted beef almost in a pulled/shredded manner and melted cheddar cheese. The sandwich came with sides of four colour chips and an appetizing mix of greens served with a tangy vinaigrette and various nuts.
First thing’s first. Ben’s has been around for a good four months now. And they should know better than to leave their customers idling around in front, being subjected to the signboard bearing the words; “Please wait to be seated/ushered to your seat”.
And we could not walk to the table of our choice albeit the many vacant ones that late afternoon.
At least, station ONE dedicated usherer for this mindless task.
Not being unimaginative or contemplated with generic fries, Ben’s took things a step further by serving the sandwich with four-coloured chips; being tubers in nature.
Good concept to have customers browsing through their very extensive menu covering everything you can ever imagine; from 14 types of salads to 12 types of sandwiches and 16 types of pastas. And bear in mind that most of the items sounded way too funky/fusion, yet you can’t help but be lured into ordering one or two out of the ordinary items.
And that’s how we ended up with this Golden Soft-Shelled Crab Spaghettini (RM21.90/USD7)
If this is your first dining experience, expect more or less the same portion and variety like Delicious’s. Fresh ingredients, hearty portions and better leave some stomach space for desserts.
We initially intended to; since the array of desserts (walk over to the counter deeper inside the premise and drool away ….) tempted the hell out of me. But I held my ground and decided better to leave desserts towards the end of the meal.
And we were stuffed, this being more of an in-betweener of a meal rather than a proper lunch, we did not expect a sandwich and a pasta could be so rewarding.
Heavy Asian influence in this one; being a cross between Kam Heong (spicy and savoury) and Nai Yau (butter cream style), with two chunks of soft-shelled crabs to boot. A little ‘jelak’ (more than enough) towards the last few bites, so consider ordering the other sauces if you’re not fond of buttery, calorie-laden ones.
Then you can’t help but wonder; will I be back? The answer is a definite YES. If I am around KLCC. But they have an outlet in Pavilion too.
Most mains are priced at around RM20 each, and desserts around RM10 each. They have Traditional English Afternoon Tea for Two at RM49.90 per set. Pork-free.