ORNG KITCHEN – A casual twist on fine dining

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Located on Min Ye Kyaw Zaw Road in western downtown close to UMFCCI, ORNG Kitchen opened early this year. Chef ORNG is a repat to Yangon after several years of study and work in Scotland and London. It is clear from what he presents through ORNG Kitchen that he is passionate about food and about making fine dining more accessible to Yangon foodies.

An unassuming façade leads to a cosy restaurant interior reminiscent of an upscale French café. The red carpet, proper napkins, candles and loungy music make for a romantic setting.

The menu focuses on favourite Mediterranean dishes and diners can order A La Carte (starters from 5,000Ks and mains from 13,000Ks) or opt for the five-course tasting menu (30,000Ks excluding wine). We chose the latter and were very pleased when our servers delivered a basket of warm, homemade bread with salsa, garlic butter and vinaigrette.

The canape served for hors d’oeuvres was a light and warm tomato chutney topped with crispy fried fish skin – an exciting introduction. A creamy pumpkin amuse-bouche was a tasty way to start the culinary journey.

The meal continued with a pre-starter of creamy mushroom ‘tart’ topped with a perfectly poached egg. The plate was delivered from the kitchen with great care taken in the presentation and arrangement of the ingredients and set high standard for the rest of the meal. The starter of filo-wrap braised pork neck, sautéed tongue and apple puree was a sophisticated twist on the traditional pork chops with apple sauce though a tad salty.

The wild mud fish should win prizes for its presentation. The creativity and care involved in the making and placement of the arch of crispy bread and the delicate placement of minute yet flavourful sauces and other ingredients are well worth the effort for an impressive display. The fish is poached and then roasted which keeps the meat juicy and light- just as it should be. Overall, we both agreed, this was probably the best part of the meal.

The main dish of Australian beef tenderloin with potato fondant and sautéed veg was next. The meat was tasty and served deliciously rare though perhaps waiters should take diners preference of how well they would like it cooked for those who like their meat medium-cooked or well-done. The potato fondant was surprisingly flavourful and added good variety to the textures of the dish.

Lastly we tried both dessert choices offered on the tasting menu. The mango and vanilla panna cotta was good –creamy and not too sweet or fussy. While the dark chocolate fondant was a tad too dense for me after eating so much already, I couldn’t resist the homemade strawberry ice cream it was paired with – delightfully zesty and good to offset the heaviness of the fondant.

Chef ORNG’s recommended red wine paired perfectly with the food and is a promising sign of a soon-to-be-launched wine menu. Another motivation for me to visit again soon!

Address: Min Ye Kyaw Swar Road Yangon

Phone: 09 771 195020

Opening hours: 12:00PM – 3:00PM, 5:30PM – 9:30PM

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