Steakhouse denies serving Najib lavish meal

Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak attends the plenary session of leaders at the 27th Asean summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Nov 21, 2015.
Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak attends the plenary session of leaders at the 27th Asean summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Nov 21, 2015. PHOTO: REUTERS

PETALING JAYA • A popular steakhouse in Kuala Lumpur has refuted claims that it served Prime Minister Najib Razak thousands of ringgit's worth of premium wagyu beef, Malaysian media reported yesterday.

The move by Me'nate Steak Hub came after a blog post alleging that Datuk Seri Najib and his wife Rosmah Mansor were served 2kg of Matsusaka wagyu beef costing RM19,284.80 (S$6,450) for dinner went viral last week.

The post, whose author was not named by the media reports, claims that the details of the meal were divulged by the chef behind the dinner, and is accompanied by a photo of a purported receipt from Me'nate Steak Hub.

Also shown was an order listing the meal as having been prepared for Mr Najib's official residence in Sri Perdana last Thursday. The post has been shared more than 14,000 times on Facebook, Malaysiakini news website reported.

Many netizens criticised Mr Najib for supposedly enjoying a lavish meal at a time when ordinary Malaysians were feeling the pinch from the rising costs of living.

Refuting the allegations that it served premium beef to the premier, Me'nate Steak Hub said the receipt was fake, as the beef was not in the restaurant's inventory system.

"The said price is not the same as the standard price used at all of our outlets. Besides, our price has its own coding, which is different from (the one shown in) the viral photo," the firm said in a statement, according to The Star newspaper.

The supposed dinner included 2kg of Matsusaka wagyu beef, marinade, vegetables, fries and fruits.

There was also a photo attached of the couple being served by a man in chef attire.

Me'nate was quoted by The Star as saying such an order was "absurd", as the premium beef should be eaten on its own, without side dishes.

"We can also confirm that the chef does not work for us. We are very disappointed for having been dragged into this irresponsible political persecution," it said, adding that it would take legal action against those who had spread the "lies".

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 25, 2016, with the headline 'Steakhouse denies serving Najib lavish meal'. Print Edition | Subscribe