Discover The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi’s Top-Notch Dining Experiences
· 25 July 2023
Enjoy a relaxing holiday filled with great food and drinks at The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi
The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi is a magical spot. The setting’s vivid colours change throughout the day – from dawn to dusk. Wake up early to blushing pink skies that turn bright orange, just like the colour of fresh egg yolks. On clear days with cloudless blue skies, go for a fun kayaking session in the open sea, or swim in the inviting pool.
At night, you’ll witness a surreal green glow in the horizon, reminiscent of aurora borealis (but in the tropics). Local fishermen head out for squid fishing and use a type of green light to attract these nocturnal sea creatures. The sky will be illuminated with a striking green hue, depending on the number of fishing boats out there.
Wildlife is abundant here too. Nestled in an ancient rainforest, the resort is home to 30 or more species of birds. If you’re lucky, you may spot majestic hornbills up in the trees. These large birds are said to be faithful to their partners for life. Families of monkeys may show up too from time to time.
What’s special about The Ritz-Carlton Langkawi’s rooms and villas are the views of the surrounding rainforest and ocean. The sophisticated interior is woven with contemporary Malaysian décor and plush natural materials. A highlight here are the spacious beachfront villas boasting outdoor terraces and private pools for you to take a dip in any time of the day.
The resort offers four distinct dining experiences – each one overlooking the sparkling Andaman Sea. The talented culinary team expertly and passionately craft their menus for discerning guests. From the finest dim sum and Chinese fare at Hai Yan to boldly flavoured local dishes at Langkawi Kitchen, one will never go hungry here.
At Hai Yan, Langkawi’s only fine dining Chinese restaurant, you can enjoy lunch or dinner topped with stunning water views. The beautifully designed restaurant is perched on stilts over the sea and boasts spacious overwater decks. As you step in, you’d be immediately captivated by the atmospheric interiors decked in dazzling chandeliers and intricate lanterns. Besides the main dining area, there are two large private rooms ideal for an intimate dining experience with family and friends.
Helmed by Executive Sous Chef Jay Goh, the kitchen at Hai Yan rolls out well-executed dishes. Dim sum is particularly excellent. Order everything from steamed dumplings to bamboo charcoal buns with salted egg yolk custard. Or munch on fried beancurd skin roll with prawns and cheddar cheese, and pan-fried mushroom buns with dried porcini mushrooms.
The a la carte menu features a selection of traditional and modern Chinese creations. Specialties include Hai Yan roasted duck with crisp skin, accompanied by homemade pancake, leek and cucumber. There’s a host of seafood delicacies like wok-fried prawns with salted egg yolk, curry leaves and chilli or lobster done two ways: wok-fried with ginger and scallion, and pan-fried with XO sauce. You can enjoy your meal with fine teas, wines or a tropical mocktail made with pineapple and coconut.
More specially handcrafted drinks can be had at Horizon, a modern chic bar next to the adults-only infinity pool. Built on stilts on a rocky outcrop, the ‘floating’ open-air loungey setting exudes a relaxing vibe. This is the perfect spot for sunset drinks. Sip creative cocktails like the Hornbill made with vodka infused with star anise and cinnamon along with Campari, Cointreau, orange, pineapple and calamansi. Beautifully presented in a birdcage, the recipe pays homage to the fascinating native hornbill that you will see around the resort and Langkawi Island.
Another bird-inspired drink is the Junglebird – a concoction of mezcal, aperol, lime, sugar and pineapple. The bar fuses a smoky twist on Malaysia’s internationally recognised classic cocktail concocted in 1973. Or go for the refreshing Botanist gin combined with fresh herbs and spices from the resort’s garden. While sipping the cocktails you can tuck into Southeast Asian-inspired bites like crab curry spring rolls or chicken satay.
After your pre-dinner drinks, make your way to Langkawi Kitchen whose exterior is inspired by the Longhouse architecture of indigenous Borneo tribes. The menu offers satisfying Malay and Indian cuisines. Start with a comforting soto ayam – with grilled chicken breast, hard-boiled egg, vermicelli, peanuts, bergedil and sambal kicap. And then dive into creations like ayam kapitan or Nyonya style chicken curry with spicy coconut gravy, potatoes, lime leaf. Or local rendang itam comprising coconut braised beef with chilli paste, lemongrass, and galangal. There is a range of tandoori specialities to boot. Save room for the superb desserts such as warm kueh bingka with teh tarik ice cream and coconut sauce or the creative pisang bunjut – banana and chocolate crispy bag with banana compote, honeycomb ice cream and chocolate sauce.
The Langkawi Kitchen also serves an outstanding breakfast spread with all manner of pastries and unique cheeses (think: rendang cheddar and kerabu cheese), local noodles, nasi lemak and kueh, along with free-flow mimosa, bellini, espresso martini, and mocktails.
For lunch by the pool, head to Beach Grill which serves Western and Asian favourites. Some items are injected with a delicious twist. A must-try is the slurp-worthy pappardelle with coconut braised wagyu beef ragout. Other one-dish specialties include laksa with prawns or Nasi Goreng Pantai – wok-fried rice with seafood, poached egg, fried anchovies, torch ginger flower, fried king prawn, chicken sambal ijo and fish crackers. There are healthy poke bowls and plant-based creations too, like kofta curry made of chickpeas dumplings, tomato masala sauce, pistachios, cauliflower pakora and coconut rice.
Fun activities for foodies
Guests can also sign up for a fun cooking class at the resort’s grounds. The professional and friendly team of chefs will guide you through the class near the herb garden (the Nibong Garden was created by the resort’s staff during the pandemic). Choose either the Green Egg (Malay & Western cuisine) or Outdoor Cooking (Malay cuisine) experiences. The chefs will demonstrate how to prepare a few dishes and you’ll get to taste your own creations at the end of the session, which typically lasts for about three hours. Note: The four-course Green Egg Experience is RM650 per person; the Outdoor Cooking Class is RM550 per person or RM990 per couple.
It is undoubtedly tough to pack up and leave this stunning resort after a few glorious days. A luxurious stay here not only offers respite from life’s stresses, it will also warms your heart (and belly) and enriches your soul.
For more information, visit: The Ritz Carlton Langkawi
Text by: Amy Van