Never have I ever thought there will be a day where I’d actually step into an European fine dining restaurant in Penang. Nevertheless, I’ve always been curious in terms of the quality and service compared to KL as it’s a norm for me to either have local food, my grandma’s cooking, or at most, café food when I’m back in this island. Since it was Mr Gadget‘s birthday, I wanted to make it a little special and for us to experience one of the best fine dining restaurants, Farquhar Mansion in Penang on this special occasion. This trip was also extra special for us since we traveled all the way up north for our pre-wedding shoot.
Farquhar Mansion is located along Lebuh Farquhar, George Town, right across Eastern & Oriental Hotel, where we spent our 3 nights stay at. I was told parking is limited, and it can be a pain some days. So, it was good that we didn’t have to stress over that, and just walked over from the hotel.
Farquhar Mansion is spread across 2 floors in one of the Mission Place buildings. The ground floor was an intimate setting; very dim lights, jazz music, plush velvet chairs, perfect for a romantic evening dinner date.
We both decided on the Chef’s Tasting Menu which cost between RM238++ to RM298++, depending on the main course you order. Farquhar Mansion Chef’s Tasting Menu consist of 3 starters, 1 main and 2 desserts. Of course, we also had a bottle of red wine to celebrate this special day. Wine may cost anything from RM238++ for a bottle of Italian Chianti, up until thousands, catering to those who enjoy the high-ends.
To begin, we were served fresh, SOFT, warm multi grain bread with truffle butter. This is something I’m very particular of, especially coming from a nice “atas” restaurant. I find it very important to at least get the simplest thing right. I was already impressed with Farquhar Mansion.
The start of our course was Amuse Bouche (just in case you’re wondering, it actually means bite-sized food served before your meal); 3 different items. One was the Sweet Potato Ball in Soy and Charcoal Crumbs, second was the Tomato and Feta Cheese, third was the Basil Cone with Salmon Tartare, Cod Fish Ball and Ikura. They tasted pretty average to me except for the Basil Cone with Salmon Tartare. I like that one.
First appetizer served was Mushroom Terroir (portobello mushroom, dehydrated mushroom, asparagus, parmesan cheese espuma [foam]). This was really good especially when drizzled with truffle oil that enhanced the flavour and aroma.
Second appetizer was a dish known as Grouper which was a consommé (seafood emulsion, pan-seared scallop, clam, prawn, grouper belly, garnished with cress, with focaccia bread and caviar on the side). It was quite nice, and didn’t taste too “fishy”.
Third appetizer was Foie Gras (complement by grape chutney, port wine emulsion, apple then garnished with cress, crisp and wakame [seaweed] palova). This is not Mr Gadget‘s favourite, but I’ve always enjoyed its smooth texture and rich flavour. Farquhar Mansion actually prepared this dish so well. Pan-seared until golden brown and melts in your mouth.
Mr Gadget‘s choice for main course was non other than Black Angus Tenderloin (served with beef cheek tortellini, potato cream, onion jam, baby corn, cherry tomato and beef jus).
My choice was the herbs crusted Premier Australian Lamb Rack (served with ravioli, summer vegetables, garlic puree, and lamb jus) which happens to be their signature dish. The lamb was really good. Tender and didn’t taste gamey at all.
Unlike most restaurants tasting menu, they had two desserts instead of one; 32 Months Aged Parmesan Soufflé, and Pina Colada Cheese (pineapple, coconut and caramelised pineapple). The soufflé was a savoury dessert. Fluffy and airy; some sort like eating a cloud of cheese. The Pina Colada dessert was a creamy custard, but I didn’t think it tasted anything like the popular tropical cocktail. Nevertheless, it was still okay. But nothing out of ordinary though.
The team in Farquhar Mansion also threw in a birthday dessert for Mr Gadget since they knew we were here for his birthday celebration (happy lah this boy, got extra dessert for his super sweet tooth).
We were also shown around the upper floor where the lounge and VIP rooms were. The theme and feel at the lounge is quite different to the ground floor dining area. Ground floor seemed to lean towards classic colonial, whereas the upper floor was more contemporary, colourful and a little bit quirky. Plus, there’s a live jazz performance at the lounge over weekends.
It was a wonderful dining experience in Farquhar Mansion and we absolutely loved it. It was way better than what I’ve expected. The team was very thoughtful and also made it memorable for us. We were intrigued by the exceptional service and most importantly, my birthday boy had a good time!
What was good about Farquhar Mansion:
- Service was exceptional – our server had an extensive knowledge of the food. She was also very friendly, thoughtful and professional
- Intimate, relaxed and romantic ambience
- High quality delectable food, elegantly prepared
- Different section/areas catered for small groups/private functions
- Weekend jazz performances
What was bad about Farquhar Mansion:
- Unappealing placemats – should be removed entirely or replaced with something more elegant
- Design of fittings and furnitures – should go fully colonial style or turn it into a posh, aesthetic modern place
MISSGETABOUT SCORE: 8.5/10
Farquhar Mansion’s Details:
Website: Farquhar Mansion
Address: No.33 Lebuh Farquhar, 10200 George Town, Penang.
Tel: +6019 528 8933
Online Reservations: Farquhar Mansion
Facebook: Farquhar Mansion