Astana

Today we go to Bukit Jalil. Not exactly known for its food culture, it is quite easy to overlook this place. I’m glad to say that I haven’t. Randomly enough, it was quite the odd way that I found out about this place: I googled “horse meat Kuala Lumpur” (yes, yes I did). And now you know the primary reason for this endeavor.

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Restaurant exterior
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Interior View

What’s So Special About This Place

Horse. Central Asian and Russian Cuisine. I think the novelty of all three things as far as Malaysia is concerned is enough reason for this place to stand out.

How to Get Here

You can take the old LRT (Sri Petaling Line) and get off at the Bukit Jalil station, then either go for a ~15 minutes walk, or cab it (we paid a bit more than 4RM).

 

Budget

Main dishes, which by Malaysian standards are quite generous in terms of portions, are around 15RM, give or take. Snacks/desserts/drinks start from 2 bucks. All in all, I believe you really do get your money’s worth. The full menu along with the pricing can be found towards the end of this post

What have we ordered

The short answer: Horses. And other stuff too.

As we were a group of five, we ended up ordering Beshbarmak, which seems to be the restaurant’s flagship dish. It comes in two sizes, a small one (for individuals), and a large one that is meant to be for 2-3 people.

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Beshbarmak, with beef on the outside and horsemeat on the inside

Beshbarmak is mainly made up of four things : beef tongue, horsemeat, a soft layer of a floury thing (seems to be referred to as pasta/noodles, but it doesn’t exactly look like either as this is more flat and bread-like) as the meal’s carb, soaked in what I assume to be onion sauce (Central Asian/Russian readers, feel free to correct me). I won’t call it a complex dish, but it was a nice way to get our feast started, and allowed us to savour the horsemeat in particular. The horsemeat was virtually fat-free, and quite tender, and the accompanying noodles and sauce (which is slightly salty and soury) fused in quite well.

There are other options if you wish to have something with horsemeat by the way. I have personally tried Plov with Kazi (on a separate night; this is one place I believe you need to visit multiple times), which is a rice-based dish that also includes quail eggs. Aside from Kazi, there is also an option to have Plov with beef tongue. Naryn is another option for those who would prefer noodles

 

 

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We then went for a couple of dumbling-like dishes. First up was Manti, which can be compared to chinese dumplings, with cured beef. For those who have been to Saudi Arabia (where there is a population of Saudis who are ethnically Uzbek), it is also known as Mantu. I would advise to have that with some chilly sauce.

Next up was Vareniki, another steamed dough, this time stuffed with mashed potatoes and served with a sour-ish creamy side (has a resemblance to labna). I suppose this would a vegetarian option

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For those who are more interested in things more likely to be considered as “normal”, have no fear. Shashlik, which looks and tastes a lot like Kebabs, are one such option. Another choice would be Gulaysh, which is basically pan-fried beef served with fried potato cutlets. For those who prefer bread over other carbs, the traditional bread is a must try.

 

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The menu also has quite a few snacks and desserts. I took quite a whole bunch really, and while they were all quite nice, I particularly liked the Oreshki, which looks like a nut, with a toffee filling. You can wash your food down with some of the usual things such as tea and milo, or you can go for some of the in-house specialties; I personally went for Compot, which is a traditional berry mix.

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Verdict

Food: 4.5/5
Main reason I am giving it such a high score is the novelty of the menu. Many of what we have ordered here is just not easy to find around Klang Valley (I’m not even sure if there are other options).

Service/Ambience: 4.5/5
Waiters are polite and attentive. Preparation time was satisfactory and within the promised time ranges. The overall setting of the place is nice and quite. Overall, this is a place that can be visited multiple times without things getting boring (and considering the size of the menu, I would actually say a single visit is not enough).

Menu

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