Restaurant : Mayhem Saveurs Asiatiques
Chef & owner : May
Event: Kamayan Feast for foodies and bloggers
Restaurant type: Asian, Asian-fusion, Vietnamese, BYOW
Prices: $6-$14 entrées, $16-$24 mains, $40/person for the Kamayan Feast
Date: Wednesday May 30th 2018
Table of: 8
I had the pleasure of experiencing my first ever Kamayan Feast at Mayhem, along with some fellow foodies and bloggers! After having dined at Mayhem in April and LOVING it, I saw their photos go by of their new Kamayan Feast and told myself: I need to eat this. After getting in touch again with May, the chef and owner, she invited me along with a bunch of other foodies and bloggers so we could try out her Kamayan! Present at the dinner were: @randomcuisine, @lecuisinomane, @normbelanger, @mtl.foodie, @montrealesque, @hangryinmtl, @eating_mtl and of course, myself, @elisebgravel.
So, the question on everyone’s lips: what is a kamayan? A kamayan is a traditional Filipino meal that is eaten with your hands, as kamayan quite literally translates to “with hands” from Filipino. It features a huge spread of various marinated and grilled meats, vegetables and rice. However, the way May does it at Mayhem is a bit different, as she features not only 1, nor 2, nor 3, but SEVEN different Asian cuisines in her Kamayan Feast! You’ll find foods from all corners of Asia, like: Cambodia, Korea, China, Thailand, Laos, Philippines and Vietnam.
Upon our arrival, we were seated at a table full of banana leaves, already prepared for our feast to come (side note: you can apparently buy frozen banana leaves from Asian grocery stores – who knew?). We were also served some virgin sangrias which were excellent; probably the best sangria I’ve ever had and definitely the best virgin sangria I’ve had. It was very fruity, sweet and delicious. Plus, with a little added of Listel-Gris, it was perfection (Mayhem is a BYOW resto, so its normal I brought my own wine. Also, the Listel is a rosé that’s a touch sweet and fruity, so it went very well with the sangria).
As starters, we were served a bowl of fried dumplings and Vietnamese imperial rolls. The imperial rolls were excellent; generously filled with a delicious filling and perfectly crispy on the outside. Of course, these were served with a traditional Vietnamese spring rolls dipping sauce made of: fish sauce, sugar, water, vinegar and chillies. The dumplings were also very good; I loved the filling, which was similar in taste to the spring rolls and the outside was more like a deep-fried wonton than a pan-fried dumpling. These were served with a delicious peanut butter dipping sauce.
And then at last, it was time for the Kamayan Feast to begin! The first part consists of laying down a bed of sticky rice, upon which a mountain of protein was layed. There was lemongrass beef skewers, Korean fried chicken, 5 spice BBQ ribs, fried fish with red curry sauce, papaya salad laotian style, longanisa (Filipino sausage), viet-cajun shrimps and mussels, bok choy and steamed corn! Everything was absolutely amazing and delicious. I do have a soft spot for Mayhem’s lemongrass beef skewers, which I also got to eat last time, as these taste like the grilled beef you’ll find in combination dishes in Vietnamese restaurants (if you’ve ever been to a real Vietnamese resto, you know what I’m talking about). The beef was tender, sweet and super flavourful and nicely grilled. The Korean fried chicken was amazing, absolutely delicious! The wings were covered in a delicious batter and fried, then covered in a sweet and spicy sauce. They were juicy, moist and so good. The 5 spice BBQ ribs were also very good, super tender and juicy and not dry at all. The pork was very well seasoned and full of flavour and just fell off the bones. Surprisingly (to me, because I’m picky with fish), the fried fish with red curry sauce was very very good. The fish had a nice and flaky white meat and was covered in a crispy deep fried batter. The curry sauce put on top was delicious; not overpowering at all, just the right amount of spices and flavours. The Laotian style papaya salad was also very good, nice and crunchy and not too spicy. It added some nice refreshing touches to this very protein loaded meal. I really liked the longanisa (Filipino sausage), which were full of flavour and had this really good sweet taste to them. And finally, we had some Viet-cajun style shrimps and mussels which were also excellent and nicely seasoned.
For dessert, we were treated to May’s dessert of the week: a spicy brownie with chocolate and pink peppercorn ganache and a vanilla ice cream. This brownie was absolutely delicious, rich, moist and chocolatey. I liked the little touches of spice and heat, which were not too pronounced at all; just present enough to give the slightest tingle to your taste buds.
Again, I had another amazing dinner at Mayhem. This was my first time ever experiencing a Kamayan Feast and I couldn’t have imagined a better place to do so! Everything about the Kamayan was absolutely delicious and well prepared; because of personal preferences, I’d have to say the lemongrass beef skewers, the Korean fried chicken and the fried fish with red curry sauce were my favorites, but everything was so good. The entrées and the dessert were excellent as well; it was just a great evening full of delicious food and amazing company. A big thank you to May and her team for inviting us to experience Mayhem’s Kamayan Feast and also thank you to everyone who accepted the invitation! I will definitely be back for more 🙂
UP NEXT: My restaurant review of Pizzeria Bros (Delicious Italian pizzas ready in under 2 minutes!)
*This restaurant post does not contain my usual restaurant review criteria of restaurants, as this is a sponsored post where I was invited to the restaurant as a guest.
*All photos and comments are mine