If you have ever been to Huckleberry in Damansara Heights, you would know that many people frequent the cafe in the mornings for a pick-me-up latte or their perfect French pastries (possibly the best you can find in Malaysia, because it is professionally prepared by French baker Christophe). The freshly baked bread commands queues and in the beginning, when Huckleberry had first opened, it was a hotspot for locals to head to for brunch. They were only opened till about 6PM in the early days. It's also a dog-friendly cafe, making it popular among the dog-lovers.
But as of a couple of months ago, they started offering dinner service too, with a completely new menu. Referencing Huckleberry Finn, the famed literary character, the namesake establishment has chosen to serve American fare to their dinner guests.
Alcohol and alcohol-spiked drinks, like milkshakes, are also available during the night hours. Those who like to perch on bar stools while sipping cocktails will find comfort here in their expansive alcohol menu. The dinner menu is extensive and offers plenty of hot dogs, burgers, pizzas and the like - food you would easily find at an American diner. However, the hype surrounding the breakfast doesn't carry into the night. But more about that later.
The summertime milkshake (above) and the peanut butter milkshake are good examples of their spiked milkshakes with alcohol in them. But as a firm believer that dairy and alcohol shouldn't mix (no matter how good Baileys is), I stuck to my guns and ordered a real (virgin) milkshake.
I went for the naughtiest sounding milkshake I could find on the menu - the red velvet milkshake. Served with a red velvet soft cookie, the red velvet milkshake is an easy favourite. It isn't too sweet, just the way I like it. And if course, like everything else in Huckleberry, it is great for photo-taking.
While the drinks maintain the standard that I have grown quite used to at Huckleberry, the same, sadly, cannot be said about the dinner food... I don't normally like to write things like these... but I feel like I have a responsibility to my readers as well as the restaurants/cafes/establishments I write about, to tell the truth. Not for the sake of bashing in any way, but more so for constructive criticism in hopes that there will be improvement in the future.
Let me begin with the food I thought was all right and doesn't need much improvement (or any at all). The chips and guac - decent. Not much to say about it except that it is a good dish to start a meal off with, especially if you're with friends and just want something crunchy to munch on while waiting for mains. Visually, it upholds Huckleberry's standards of presentation.
I actually liked the Korean (K-Pop Frenzy) chicken wings very much - the seasoning and marinade are different from the other Korean places I have tried. It is spicy and has a good kick and it'll leave you wanting more. It is exactly what spicy Korean chicken wings should do. It is also a generous portion that can easily feed a table of 4 as a side order.
Once we hit the hot dogs... the tastes, perhaps, were rather subdued compared to the Korean spicy wings because of its lack of spices in comparison. I was sure to cleanse my palate multiple times in between dishes with water, to make sure they were working well. But I didn't fancy any of the hot dogs I tried that evening. Upon checking with one of my dining partners, I found that he shared similar sentiments that many dishes were lacking seasoning. Sometimes a little more salt and pepper goes a long way in bringing out the tastes of the different ingredients, and we felt that taste was muted for many dishes. However, presentation at Huckleberry After Dark is still on point thus far...
I find it a pity that even though they look so palatable and the general inspiration for the menu is unique and could go really far to fill the American diner niche in Malaysia, execution is something that they have to work on. The tastes of the dishes are still in its infancy stage and with further experimentation in seasoning, I do believe this menu could soar to great heights.
Little can be said about the tacos as well... Perhaps just a wee bit more salt could have made it a lot tastier. But after adding some tabasco sauce, it seem to lift the taste a little.The fish tacos fared better than the beef.
However, the pizzas, no matter how good they look, had to be the most disappointing of the lot. I believe a little dash of Italian herbs into the tomato base would have greatly improved the overall taste of the pizza. Again, we felt like salt and pepper was lacking.
The saving grace this late in the meal was in the pulled beef burger - the beef was soft and tender and had plenty of taste. The overall burger was full of flavour and could easily be one of the best dishes of the night.
Would I go back again? Yes. I would. Service is good. The drinks are utterly fantastic. And I do hope that the kitchen continues to strive for greater results. I am always willing to give places like this a second chance.
Huckleberry After Dark 2G & 4G, Jalan Medan Setia 2, Plaza Damansara, Bukit Damansara