KUALA LUMPUR: To many people, healthy food is perceived as unappetising. New restaurant Savor in Desa Sri Hartamas, however, is on a mission to change this misconception.
This charming eatery, also known as Savor of Life, offers guests a wide selection of hearty and healthful plant-based dishes, to benefit all parts of the body, tastebuds included!
“A lot of the time, when people think of vegan food, they think of Chinese or Indian cooking. But here, we have Western and local cuisines. We have some Thai, some Korean, Italian, Indonesian and more,” co-founder Peter Lee told FMT Lifestyle.
“The idea is that when people come, they have many options to choose from. They can come every day and not get bored with the menu!”
Lee founded Savor with husband-and-wife David Ng and Beverly Thien in 2019. The trio never planned to get into the F&B business: they originally started in the lifestyle coaching field, where they advised clients on wellness and the fulness of life.
Realising food plays a major part in maintaining one’s health, the trio pivoted into becoming an online health food delivery company. However, they realised that this model was not enough to truly help people to the fullest.
“By just delivering food, we never got the chance to talk to customers. But in a restaurant setting, we get to exchange personal stories with people, especially those concerned about their health,” co-founder Ng said.
The trio, therefore, decided to start a restaurant, and opened its doors in October. Savor is a delight for healthy eaters, with plant-based soups, pastas, power bowls and desserts all on the menu. Everything is vegan, with no cheese, dairy or egg served here.
A good way to start a meal here is with the Laab Nam Tok: their vegan version of this popular Thai delicacy is a succulent medley of plant-based meat, aromatic herbs and crunchy sticky rice powder. Wrap portions in romaine lettuce for an extra crunch.
The Javanese Meatball Bakso is another great choice, its robust meatballs crafted from high-fibre mushroom stems.
Also try the Shitake Bak Kut Teh, a flavourful blend of two kinds of mushrooms, accompanied by carrots and tofu puffs, and immersed in a tangy mix of Chinese herbs and spices. Then wash down your meal with a fragrant pot of flower tea.
Western food lovers may enjoy their vegan takes on beloved delicacies, such as the Lasagna Neapolitana and the Hungarian Beefless Stroganoff. While not completely like the real thing, the meat alternatives here are definitely delicious, and can be enjoyed by even the most committed carnivores.
One highlight of the menu, however, has to be the well-named Silky Decadence, a luscious dessert featuring silken tofu, dark chocolate and fruit accompaniments. Its ingredients may seem unusual at first glance, but blend well together for a truly enjoyable taste experience.
Ng explained that Savor has welcomed all kinds of customers: both regular, long-practising vegans, and casual diners who wanted to give plant-based dining a try. Preparing a menu to satisfy both groups could sometimes be difficult, but he viewed it as a rewarding challenge.
Its founders are definitely serious about helping customers with health: on Saturdays, usually considered a peak dining time, Savor does not serve food. Instead, it conducts events such as health talks, screenings, and healthy cooking demos at its event space. Most of them have free admission.
Ng commented that Savor had been enjoying a good reception since its opening, from both vegans and meat lovers alike. He and his team hoped to serve a wider selection of dishes in future, such as vegan versions of Japanese sashimi.
“There truly are a lot of benefits to a vegan diet nowadays, and we hope we can help everyone achieve the quality of life they aspire to. I hope people won’t just think of us as a good plant-based restaurant. But more as a good restaurant, which happens to be plant-based,” Ng concluded.
38G, Jalan 28/70a,
Desa Sri Hartamas,
50480 Kuala Lumpur
10am-9.30pm (Sundays to Thursdays)