Trattoria La Bonta @ Gleneagles Kuala Lumpur


Hospitals aren't exactly known for their quality (or quantity) of delicious food. I'm pretty sure a hospital is the last place you expect to find a quality meal. So it was with great surprise when I found myself invited along to a food tasting session at Trattoria La Bonta, located at the new Annexe B of the Gleneagles Hospital along Jalan Ampang.

Yes, that's right. Tucked away in a discreet corner of the newly renovated Annexe B of Gleneagles, Trattoria La Bonta is one of those restaurants that doesn't impose itself on your memory the first time you see it. But don't let its humble look fool you. Trattoria La Bonta boasts of one of the healthiest menus available in Malaysia; fitting of its position as a restaurant in a hospital. Their menu includes their signature cold pressed juices, a wide variety of salads, soups to nourish the soul, and a selection of pastas. In short, food that is a class above the standard hospital fare everyone comes to expect.

Walking into Trattoria La Bonta is an experience in itself. The cavernous space opens up to a restaurant that doesn't abide by the "cosy", hipster cafe concepts that have saturated the market. The open kitchen allows for you to see the scuttling chefs and kitchen hands preparing your meal on the spot, although the metallic sheen and spotlessness of the kitchen does bring to mind images of a surgeon's prep room.

Y'know, because they're really going with the hospital theme.

But don't let the humble look of the restaurant fool you. Beneath its spacious interior Trattoria La Bonta prides itself on its delicious and extremely healthy offerings. The name "Trattoria La Bonta", which may be a mouthful to pronounce with our Malaysian tongues literally means "goodness and plentiful". More like goodness me, the choices here are seriously plentiful! And sometimes I've been accused of exaggerating the smallest of facts. I can assure you that I am not exaggerating when I say that their menu is the size of a table.

Among some of the offerings that I managed to taste test were the soups, salads and pastas.

Mushroom soup and Pumpkin Soup.
Creamy, warm and surprisingly filling, these soups aren't your run-of-the-mill store bought soups. They say that everyone should always have a bowl of soup to help them warm their bellies, and these serve as excellent appetizers for your meal.

Warm Quinoa Salad with Passionfruit vinaigrette.
I had never tried quinoa before this, and it was quite a treat. The only way I can describe quinoa is "rice, but not rice." It's a healthier alternative to rice, I'm told, and may be an acquired taste for some people, but this salad, mixed with the tangy passionfruit vinaigrette (a fancy word for dressing sauce) will really whet your appetite for more.

If that's not your thing, Trattoria La Bonta even offers you the chance to build your own salad. This sounded insane enough because of the wide variety of choices you get to put into making your own salad. Sauteed mushroom Japanese cucumber tofu salad with blue cheese dressing? Bring it on!

The Tom Yam Goong Vermicelli Pasta is one of their best sellers, for good reason. Its mixture of the classic tom yam goong herbs and spices will literally bring you back to the streets of Bangkok. It's so Thai that you won't get Thai-erd of eating it. Add in the veggies and the fresh prawns and you have yourself a winner.

Tom Yam Goong Vermicelli Pasta

Served with fresh pasta, sauteed vegetables with Asian herbs and spices, accompanied with garlic toast.
Like the salads, you have the option to build your own pasta. Choose a pasta, choose a sauce and choose whether you want to have more add-ons to make your pasta the tastiest of the lot. I ordered a spaghetti pesto with an add on of their delicious poached organic Garoupa fillet and it was just amazing. It's something I've never even imagined I would be able to do in a restaurant. Think of it as you being a Pasta Masterchef, without the actual cooking, stress and cleaning up afterwords.

Spaghetti Pesto with sweet basil, toasted walnuts and parmesan cheese

With a Poached Organic Fillet of Garoupa.
You can finish off your meal with a dessert choice of Crème Brûlée, and homemade cookies and brownie cupcakes for those sweet tooths among you.

Crème Brûlée

Pair your juices with some homemade cookies and brownie cupcakes.

Speaking of juices, the cold pressed juices at Trattoria La Bonta were at another level. You know how everyone's everyone is sharing about their health juices and how much healthier you can get by drinking a bottle a day? Well, with some classics such as the Miracle ABC (Apple, Beetroot and Carrot), and the Cucumber Cleanser (Cucumber, Mint, Lime Juice and Honey) in their repertoire of juices, it's clear that they're in the running to be among one of the best juicers in the Malaysian market.

In fact, that's not even the most insane thing. There's even an option for you to mix and match your own juice! Don't like beetroot but you still want your own Miracle ABC? Take out the Beetroot and add in some Blueberries! Want your Cucumber Cleanser to have more greens? Add in Celery and Cilantro! The possibilities of mixing are endless.

Beetroot Zest

"This is in a hospital, right?" you may be asking (because a dozen other people have asked me the same thing when I mentioned where I was. Yes, Trattoria La Bonta is located inside a hospital. It's not a gimmick either, like the restaurant that lets your eat make-believe poop from toilet bowls. Imagine this; no other restaurant would even think of opening a branch in a hospital. There are too many factors at work against them, like the stigma of eating at a hospital for one.

The reason they opened in a hospital is mainly to give doctors, nurses, patients and their visiting family members another place to get their healthy food fix. Too often visitors to a hospital are forced to either hang out at a Starbucks or the hospital canteen because that's the only other place to get something to eat and drink. With a fully fledged restaurant running right inside the hospital, people can get a proper meal. Or rather, a healthy menu with juices, salads, soups and pastas that fit right into everyone's healthy lifestyle.

So if you ever find yourself hoping for a nice meal, pop over to Trattoria La Bonta @ Gleneagles Hospital to get your healthy fix. Don't let the fact that it's located in a hospital turn you down though; there are people who love having their meals in trains, airplanes and even ships!

More information about Trattoria La Bonta @ Gleneagles Hospital below:

Trattoria La Bonta

Lot 3 & 3A, Block B, Gleneagles Hospital Kuala Lumpur, 282, Jln Ampang
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Phone Number: 
03-4266 3868


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