For spa addicts and beauty obsessives, a single step inside La Rose restaurant, spa, and hotel is enough to spur the saliva glands. Herb oils and massage music have an instantly relaxing effect.
Delicate wooden chairs and tables and a white, spacious dining room add to the holistic atmosphere.
Feeling ready for a detox rather than indulgence, I warm up with a smoothie. The chilled ‘fruit buzz’ balances a refreshing mint taste with the full flavour of ripe lychees. It’s hard to refrain from gulping the drink down.
A choice of 12 different set menus ranging from $9 to $19 offers eight Asian options and four Western. I pick Khmer option “A2” (10$).
The first course is toasted sweet corn with shallots and looks unspectacular. But by keeping it simple with only a few finely chopped shallots and chives and hints of omelette strips accompanying the corn, the dish is tasty and unfussy.
This chef is a genius with corn.
Also the green beef curry as second course is gently cooked. Again the maximum is made out of few veggies, bell pepper and onion, and tender beef.
The warm and sweet soup-like Khmer desert is made of green beans, gelatine and coconut milk. After a light, healthy meal, it’s a suitable treat.
The only downer at this pure health is the little over-eager staff that comes closer and closer to your table as closer you are to finishing your dish. Once you put down the cutlery the waiters are standing right at your shoulder: a little less than zen.
To contact the reporter on this story: Julius Thiemann at [email protected]