Thursday, July 02, 2009

Japanese Food @ Kuriya, Bangsar Shopping Centre, Kuala Lumpur

teeny weeny mentai cheese avocado spring rolls (RM22)

Third time lucky - that's how many times it took us to get to Kuriya, the new Japanese outlet in Bangsar Shopping Centre. Sean of
Eat Drink KL had enthusiastically mentioned to me about this place hence, it crossed my mind to check it out last Saturday when we were searching for food. Sadly, since it was too late, we didn't make it for their lunch session, and ended up having a lazy lunch cum tea at Alexis instead. Vowing to return, we made an effort to revisit on Sunday and our luck fell through as they unexpectedly closed due to unforeseen circumstances. Hence on Tuesday, when we decided to give it the third try, I was a little hesistant on what we will discover here. On hindsight, we're lucky we ended up here on Tuesday, since it is the day the fresh fish is flown in from Tokyo - definitely way much better than Saturday or Sunday.

making soba noodles - slicing them into thin strands after rolling them out

Kuriya is huge in Singapore with branches everywhere on that red little dot of an island. Here in Klang Valley, they also run Ichiban Boshi at Pavilion, where they make their own soba noodles. On that day, I visited here, I managed to catch them going through the last part of the noodle making i.e. the cutting of the soba noodles. I caught a little on the camera just before I got a gentle reprimand from the management of the restaurant to stop snapping pictures. Guess it is a trade secret? They don't make that many noodles (about 15 portions for that night) and it's super fresh - within 10 minutes from the time they cut it, I was slurping down my noodles. If you want to see the whole process of soba making, see this link to
a class taken in Tokyo.

1. the condiments, 2. noodles so good, 3. yummy stuff

The best way to enjoy fresh noodles - just plain and cold with the tsuyu dipping sauce (RM18). I wanted my kamo seiro noodles with duck but decided I better eat it plain since Splashie Boy is not very into duck meat. One can't help to compare it with the other place in town that does fresh soba noodles aka Kampachi. While this one pales in comparison with Kampachi - a little less bite in the noodle strand probably indicating less buckwheat flour used, it was still very good noodles compared to packet ones. I especially liked the fact, I could order (by special request) the hot water the soba noodles are cooked in (sobayu). Once you finish with your soba noodles, you can add the water to the tsuyu dipping sauce and drink it down like soup. As the soba noodles are cooked in the boiling water, it retains some of the nutrients in the water making it healthy and tasty to drink.

the gorgeous tai (seabream) sashimi

Feeling very adventurous, we ordered the mentai cheese avocado spring rolls (RM22) - teeny weeny rolls filled with creamy avocado, very little cheese and a bit of mentai. Not much taste on its own, it needs the spicy wasabi mayonnaise dip on the side to give it a little oomph! Also sampled was the wagyu kushiyaki (RM16), tender wagyu beef slices with peppers that we thought was average tasting. The yakitori (RM5) wasn't too fantastic either hence we doubt we'll return for their skewers.

milking the tai fish to the bones (literally!) - 1. slightly tangy ginger soy sauce dip, 2. sashimi array, 3. tai fish head soup with miso, 4. deep fried tai bones.

Unlike other restaurants in town, Kuriya seems to offer a great deal when it comes to preparing the fresh fish flown in from Japan. For our fresh tai (seabream - RM150 for a fish), we enjoyed it prepared 3 ways. First, it was prepared sashimi style, pieces of delicate fish for us to enjoy with a tangy soy sauce ginger dip. Once we finished the gorgeous sashimi pieces, it was time to whisk the fish away and cook the fish head in a miso based broth. Sweet and tender, I reckon it would be better plain with konbu seaweed as the miso tends to be slightly overpowering (I once had an excellent tai fish head soup in Sushi Dokoro Maeshima with just seaweed). Last but not least, the bones were deep fried till crunchy giving you loads of calcium. A little care is needed when you eat the bones though as they're not very fine and can be a little too thick to chomp them down.

Overall, we had a great experience here and definitely won't mind returning to try the other items. A very modern and pretty place, I especially liked sitting outside facing House & Co, as one could hear the trickling water sound from House & Co's new water feature that is very soothing. Incidentally, if you do visit here, remember to take the "disco-like" glass lift near Chillis - very psychedelic with the blueish light.

Lot T2
3rd Floor
Bangsar Shopping Centre
Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 03-20939246

(Pork free. Restaurant is located at the same level as House & Co and Grand Imperial Restaurant.)

*Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here is entirely based on my personal tastebuds and may vary for others. This review is time sensitive; changes may occur to the place later on that can affect this opinion. The reviewer also declares that she has not received any monetary or non-monetary compensation from this place for writing the review.

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The Pondering Introvert said...

Omg this is depressing, can see cannot smell cannot eat.

Precious Pea said...

OOoo....that bream looks good!

boo_licious said...

Sorry Vampy!

Precious Pea - bream was so fresh and delish with the tangy dip.

PureGlutton said...

The seabream is sooo mouth-watering! I want the head!

thule a.k.a leo said...

good la... felt like those fish imported in just for you.. lol!!!
Will drop by BSC one day... less crowd which is perfect for me and my baby!

boo_licious said...

pure glutton - I normally don't eat fish head but I enjoyed this one.

Leo - BSC definitely is quieter now with the renovations but parking can be limited on B1.

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

definitely need to try the bream since u n sean tried it!

Chefspiration said...

I can tell you love Japanese food ;) That seems to be whatyou blog about most often...hee hee...looks like you had a great meal tho!

Sean said...

gosh, you definitely made better use of your bream that we did. we thought it could only be cooked TWO ways!
hmmmm, we went on a saturday, but thought it would be OK cos most places fly their fish in on fridays? or least tues and fri for places that have twice-weekly deliveries. bah.

Bangsar-bAbE said...

I never knew this place existed! And I live so nearby... *shy* 0_o

Anonymous said...

Cigar Stores

Rarebeet said...

third time a charm eh? Sounds promising, I like the fish done three ways. Waste not want not. Let me know if you need a date next time you head over :-)

Ciki said...

yup2. i also read this on seans. looks good;)

backStreetGluttons said...

We have been told the presence or not of expatriate Japanese diners is an excellent way to judge a Japanese restaurant ( or... what masakmasak thinks of the place ! )

true or not ?

we believe it is high time you have your own domain name ( US10 only annually ! ) let us know at , we can assist you, fees foc ! your present Blog will look exactly the same, only name shorter

lainieyeoh said...

wow. wow. just...i left before it opened, but i didn't think i'd be missing out on THIS much

boo_licious said...

Joe - choices is quite limited, they had aji and toro also, if yr budget permits.

Alexandra - LOL, yeah I'm always happy with Japanese food hence the frequent visits to the restaurant to get my fix.

Sean - Sat shld be fine but I was a little doubtful abt Sunday hence in hindsight, at least they were not opened that day. Didn't know they could do the bream that way until they enthusiastically told me. Good find, love the fresh soba and sashimi here.

Bangsar-babe - just opened so I guess you have not heard. Saw the flyer downstairs saying 22/6 opened and Sean told me abt this place.

Thxs Ravi.

Paps - we must start our Thursday dates can be my BF cube!

Ciki - yup, good stuff esp with the bream.

bsg - I did see Jap expats here, but this was definitely not teeming with them so I guess not very genuine but still enjoyable. Hmm, if I ever do need my own domain, will definitely contact you guys.

lainie - awww, never mind, can come back and try??

Unknown said...

ahh.. i was wondering whether the kuriya is the same as the one in Singapore, didn't know they expanded into Malaysia too

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