Chef Joel’s Takeover @ Locus, Damansara Jaya

  • Sumo

Thanks to my birthday luck! I won a seat from @setthetables to dine in Locus during my birthday month! Many thanks to SetTheTables and Locus for the arrangement too!

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Small but cosy and inviting. Locus is more than just a dining place.

Located in Damansara Jaya where the sister’s places LI and Provisions are nearby too, Locus serves a unique space that made chefs walk out from their usual workplaces to curate special collaboration menu on the Kitchen Takeover. It allows the diners to have a closer chats with the chefs and hosts. I like this idea! You get to understand the chefs, the menu and their works more! Also, you get to make new friends with your neighbours during the sessions.

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It was a collaboration back then in early January. Locus hosted Chef Joel, the head of the kitchen team in Coley Cocktail Bar to team up with Locus for this special event. Chef Joel specially crafted this menu inspired by Japanese culture, combining both the western and eastern culture for the few nights here.

Chef Joel X Locus

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Usual me, a glass of white to start. The bright and cheerful Ziyan recommended this good stuff to us!

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Burnt edamame, Amaebi, Lemon
Beautiful starter. Edamame, sweet shrimps, touched with lemon zest and garnished with fennel flowers, all assembled on a piece of crispy wanton skin. We had it all at one go, mixing all the ingredients in our oral cavity. Chewing them, blending them … It was tangy, sweet, nutty burnt and crisp.

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Chef surprised us with something that was not in the night’s menu! It was his special bonito hummus with natto, garnished with sesame seed and spring onions and served along with Nori Flat Bread. This whole combination was extremely umami bursting! The umami and the savouriness from the bonito, natto and nori, the aroma from the garnishing condiments, all bound so well together! And that glass of white wine Ziyan recommended went well with this hummus and bread!

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Beef tongue carpaccio, Shiso chili soy
Beef tongue was braised, thinly sliced; topped with lots of herbs and dressed with shiso (perilla) soy and ponzu dressing. When it came to me and I was like… is this portion really for a single pax LOL. Fan of beef tongue me has no complaint on this. I like this creative layering; chewy crunchy beef tongue layered with bitter-ish herbs, and ended with the citrusy note from the dressing.

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Grilled fish, Kaffir lime kosho
Fish was grilled to perfection and paired with kaffir lime kosho to elevate the richness of the fish; while a squeeze of lime gave a tang to the fatty grilled fish. The pickled daikon perfectly cut off the grease leaving on the palate before moving to next.

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Kinoko mazegohan, Soy cured yolk, chestnuts
Dosed with lots of kinoko mushroom and stuffed with chestnuts, the flavour was so clean with a touch of sweetness from the chestnut. Ahhh, this bowl of rice was soooo aromatic! A stir of the soy cured yolk made of Macao egg gave a creamy rich mouthfeel to each rice grain. How I wish I could tapao them and pack as next day’s lunch. LOL. sooooo good!

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Buckwheat crepe, Sesame Kombu, Black garlic macadamia
Chef incorporated kombu in making the cream and rolled it inside the buckwheat crepe; final touched with the Okinawan brown cane sugar and shaved macadamia. It was an innovative combination; with a sweet umami nutty note at the front and a light hint of garlicky at the end. Quite a brave move it was, touching up a dessert with garlicky hint.

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As I thought the dinner came to an end, but no… Chef Joel dished out the Matcha Ichigo Daifuku from Spacegrey. Thin layer of matcha mochi stuffed with sweeten red bean paste and strawberry; chewy, sweet, juicy madness. I was full, but I still had it all into my stomach! Yumzzz! Such an omotenashi sweet ending to the meal.

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Real omotenashi with Tea to end.

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But… chef was asking… anybody want some udon?! The tempting aroma filled up the air as chef was preparing this udon. The scent of dashi was so good. Ahhh, sadly I couldn’t get ‘em go into my stomach anymore but I still managed to try one single strand of chewy udon. I think I need another session just for this udon. LOL

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Chef Joel and Chef Lim

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Great night with fun team! And I made new friends!

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72, Jalan SS22/25, Damansara Jaya,
47400 Petaling Jaya
Opens from Thursday to Saturday
6pm to 11pm

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