The two of us were really excited to see an Australian cafe in Kuala Lumpur and The Forum at Signature Serviced Suites & Studios, Desa Sri Hartamas certainly reminded us of Melbourne and Sydney. Sure enough, the coffee is sourced from Axil Coffee Roasters in Melbourne. We had some skepticism about their prana chai (RM16) but it made for a good cuppa warm goodness.
As the cafe is a month old, they have NO credit card machine so make sure you bring enough cash (hopefully they get one soon). The menu is also not confirmed but they did say they hope to get a menu locked down next month, as well having the menu change every few months.
Service throughout the meal was good but there’s room for improvement (e.g. giving everyone a menu, preparing the table in advance since we booked) that should come in time. The staff are all friendly and eager to please.
Bright and airy in the day time, the cafe is perfect date spot at night though the one downside was that it can be quite noisy (there was a birthday party upstairs and the sound of their laughter echoed everywhere :/).
The calamari (RM19.50) was crispy but not as flavourful as it could have been. The waiter was honest and said for our group (of six) we should order two.
The garlic bread (RM5) was inoffensive – I would have preferred more garlic but the others were fine.
Lobster bisque was reasonably priced at RM24.50 with a reasonable taste. Portion size is good for a starter, in preparation for their generous portion sizes for the mains.
The forum salad (RM19, pomegranate, mango, orange, walnuts, couscous, rocket, butterhead salad and balasamic) was refreshing, light and easy on the eyes. A tad more dressing would have been nice.
The salmon mousse wrapped in beef bacon, topped with caviar and accompanied by edamame and lemon dill aioli (RM23.50) was really pretty. Full of flavour, this is something I would order again.
The Australian rack of lamb (RM52.50) was nicely spiced and extremely tender – the knife cut through as if it was butter. No complaints here.
The pan-seared Norwegian salmon (RM36.50) was another smooth dish – the fish was cooked to perfection. I liked the addition of couscous and the dill and lemon aioli which was also featured in the salmon mousse starter.
The half roast chicken breast (RM23.50) was also done well, though some suspected it may have been pan fried gently first. Nice herb crust and tomato salsa.
The spicy prawn marinara (RM38) certainly impressed – look at the size of the prawns! Well worth the money. Hopefully they maintain this standard – too many outlets end up serving miserable shrimp sized prawns after a while.
The shimeji mushroom risotto (RM24.50) is vegetarian – the vegetable stock provides a different flavour from the normal chicken stock most risottos use. While it looks like a small portion, it was very filling.
The burger… Wow. The Forum Burger (RM28.50) is unlike most where the patty is harder – their medium well Australian beef patties are so soft (some said too soft) but I loved it. The truffle mayonnaise, the onion compote and the cheddar cheese on top… Noms. I didn’t realise there were mushrooms since the flavour of everything else was overwhelming but when eaten alone, the small shimeji mushrooms were succulent.
For dessert, I had the watermelon granita, topped with candied orange peel, rambutan and strawberry slices (RM14.90). The passionfruit jelly underneath was a nice touch; something silky to break through the ice.
The salted caramel bread pudding (RM16.90) was a little dry and the traditional vanilla element was missed by all. Still, those who love their caramel will be pleased. The strawberry compote was really delicious though.
The colourful citrus jelly came with a scoop of vanilla ice cream (can’t remember the price) but wasn’t anything to shout about. You could taste the fruity flavours but one comment was that konyaku jelly or even agar-agar would have been more tasty.
I didn’t try the coffee creme brulee (RM12.90) but it looked well done and none was left!
Their pink lemonade tart (RM3) is beautifully shaped – love the rose motif – but also nothing to shout about flavour wise. However it is very pretty and I’m sure many social media fanatics will love to take pictures of it (and The Forum in general).
At first when we saw the chocolate chip cookies and milk on the menu we had our doubts. After being burned by too many small, burnt or packet-mix cookies we wondered whether it was worth RM11.50. Our worries were washed away when they arrived piping hot, fresh from the oven (they make them fresh so expect a 15 min waiting time). Didn’t even need the milk – they were so gooey!
As we were holding a birthday party, The Forum surprised us all with a slice of their berry chocolate cake and one rose lemonade tart! The cake was light and fluffy – not too heavy and not too sweet.
Location: Ground Floor, The Signature, Jalan Sri Hartamas 22, Desa Sri Hartamas, Kuala Lumpur
*It’s next to the Shell petrol station. When you pay, make sure you show your receipt at the Sky Lobby (in the other building) so you get a fixed rate.
Opening Hours: 11am – 11pm every day
Website: Coming soon