It has been a while for me to post some restaurants that I have been visiting, although I am still out of all places to try good food! (so I can never ever slim down, sad case T^T)
This time we found a rather quiet, secluded Italian fine dining – Maio Italian Restaurant which is hiding behind M-Suite Hotel near Danga Bay, Johor Bahru. The restaurant can be access via M-Suite Hotel or you can go through a small road beside M Suite Hotel to reach its private parking. It is a small bungalow surrounded by a “mini jungle” or garden.
As this was a gathering and birthday celebration for my cousin and friend, I had pre-booked a table for 12 persons. It was a 12-person candle light dinner, haha! The place and decoration of the restaurant is romantic with dim light and very peaceful atmosphere. The main hall of the restaurant is not big, so we conquer the whole restaurant that night, haha!
So we brought our own birthday cakes for the birthday boy and girl. The restaurant put the fireworks on the cake as a candle for us, and the whole restaurant staff came out together with the cakes singing birthday song! (Fireworks really works nice with birthday cakes and song!) The reason why we always bought birthday cakes outside rather than directly order from the restaurant that we dine in is becos we always have a very seasonal preference for cakes.
First we have Humble Beginnings’mille crepe (becos we were so in love with it, we bought it whenever there were birthday celebration and whenever we felt like eating), then we had too much of the mille crepe until we were kind of sick of it, we shifted to Mine Cake Shop’s yam-flavoured layer cake with different designer outlook (although the cake looked differently outside, but the content is still yam cake. They also sell yam-flavoured cake in small row,so yea of cos then we had it whenever we felt like again. so until we were so sick of it, we shifted again). Then we changed to Moonlight’s red velvet and some other cheesecake. Then this time we have our craze over Verbena’s fruit cake, oreo cheese and pandan kaya. They are really nice!!!
Candle light dinner with the little handsome boy! (He is too handsome so I cant show you his face!!!)
Italian bread with balsamic vinegar and olive oil is the typical appetizer for Italian cuisine, I love the warm bread especially! We have also ordered the onion soup and mushroom soup. Both soups were tasty and flavourful. It was full of small mushroom chunks in mushroom soup. And of cos, Onion soup was full of onions (haha! very lame!) However for me the onion soup was a bit too salty. But! the pastry on top is crispy, it tasted nice in dipping into onion soup and tasted nice while eating it plain. Please take note that the soup is served in a big portion. For me if I finish one pot of soup by myself, I will not be able to eat anything else anymore. So my advice is that “soup is always for sharing”.
Aglio Olio with cookie stick + topping: BBQ Chicken
There are a variety of toppings for the aglio olio, there is a choice of plain aglio olio as well. The aglio olio tasted above average than some very expensive cafes in Johor Bahru. The best part is the BBQ Chicken, they have the best BBQ Chicken slices or chunks in JB. Tender and succulent, thoroughly marinated as it tasted flavourful not just surface but the meat inside.
Pulled Beef Carbonara with asparagus, cookie stick
This is a very cheesy and creamy dish, if you really love slimy creamy cheesy stuff then you can try it. If you are not, then better dun order this unless this is for sharing cos if you dun like extra creamy cheesy food, then it might be hard for you to finish the whole plate. Overall, the dish is quite average but the asparagus here is so damn nicely cooked. It is not raw, but still crunchy and juicy and no bitter taste! (Frankly speaking, I can barely find restaurants which cook better asparagus than Maio in Johor Bahru so far)
The lamb shank is considered as average, as normal very soft. Some people do not like the meat smell of lamb or mutton, then I suggest that you may opt for their other selection such as angus beef steak. Becos this is lamb shank there is of cos lamb smell (some people just like the meat smell). Their angus beef steak is on with certain standard as well. And, there is asparagus again!
The meat is firm and juicy, and I prefer this more than lamb shank. I prefer the sauce of this more than the sauce of lamb shank too. and no doubt, this is slightly more expensive than lamb shank.
It is a “going to finish all food” photo. Look to the left of the picture, im actually trying to say that their pizza is very good too! haha! A variety of pizzas are available and a selection of toppings for the pizza can be added. The pizza is thin-crusted and it can be taken as a delicious appetizer through sharing.
Last but not least, we are served with Italian dessert- Almond Pana Cotta! It is really sweet, it at first tasted something similar as Creme Brulee just without the caramel on top. Although It is really sweet, do try it slowly. Although the texture is similar to Creme Brulee but it taste differently when you have more. The aroma of almond slowly appeared and filled your mouth (although it is still very sweet but I love almond! I just do not have a sweet tooth)
** The price is average for fine dining, considered as relatively affordable. Average price is about RM 100++ to RM 150++ per person for our dinner plus drinks.
Dinner: 6.30pm – 10.30pm