Received a call one fine day, from my favourite’s toddler‘s dad, Robert. He wanted to ajak me to try out this Japanese restaurant at Prince Hotel. While I’m not really a big fan of Japanese food, I gleefully agree when he told me about the “buy 1 free 1” promotion for American Express cardholders.
The restaurant is designed like a traditional Japanese garden, with lots of wooden materials and bamboo decorations. The ambience there is very cosy and gives you a sense of calmness.
Ok as I mentioned earlier, the “buy 1 free 1” Amex promotion is only valid for their Kaiseki set, a 7-course meal, which is priced at RM98++.
There were 4 of us + little Kay Lee on that occasion, so we ordered 4 sets of the Kaiseki. We wanted to order some other items from their menu, but the helpful and friendly waitress warned us about the huge portion of the Kaiseki.
While waiting for the food to arrive, I took the liberty to roam the restaurant to snap pictures. At first I was slightly wary, worried that they might not like me taking pictures everywhere. But turned out the staff there are more than happy for me to do so.
Also snapped few photos of the staff at the kitchen preparing food:
The first course served was the Foie Gras Teriyaki. A generous portion of duck liver, glazed with sweet teriyaki sauce, this dish will definitely scores with all foei gras’ lovers out there. It is nicely done, with the right texture that melts in your mouth. And I was glad it wasn’t overcooked or burnt as foie gras tends to when grilled due to its high content of fat.
Up next is the Kanpachi, Hon Maguro & Shake, a sashimi trio. It is made of three different types of fish, namely the amberjack, tuna and salmon. Each type came with 2 slices, served with wasabi and shoyu (Japanese soysauce). The salmon tasted alright, not much different from the salmon sushi you can get in Japanese sushi bars. The tuna fillet is slightly chewy but my favourite of the trio would have to be the sliced amberjack (kanpachi). The taste is heavenly and it was so nice to bite it slowly before swallowing it all in.
After the two “heavy” dishes, it’s time to relax abit with the Nameko Abura Abe Miso Sup. Kekeke…as you can guess from the name, it’s actually miso soup. Not unlike the usual ones but this one was cooked with some good ingredients. Together with the soya bean paste soup, you will find butter mushrooms, dried tofu and some vegetables. I thought the miso soup was a tad too salty but simply loves those smooth tofu.
By now most of us were pretty stuffed, especially Emily, and the “feeling-not-so-well” Robert. While Kay Lee was still happily playing with herself on the baby chair.
After bringing Kay Lee to walk around the restaurant, and using her as a bait to talk to waitresses there, I resumed the eating binge with the fourth item. This Saba Teriyaki is similar with the earlier Foie Gras Teriyaki, but instead of duck liver this time it was mackerel fish. And just like the foie gras, it was very tasty.
The waitress suggested we had some of the mackerels done some other way as we already had the teriyaki sauce grill with the foie gras. So two of the mackerel were done differently, although I can’t seems to recall the name.
And once again we are served with a bowl of soup each. This Oden is basically boiled assorted fish cakes, radish and egg, served with special broth. Unlike the salty miso soup earlier, this one is very sweet, obviously nicely absorbed the sweetness from its ingredients. Two thumbs up for this!
Ok now even me was slowing down at this point, but there was no respite for us as we were served with a huge plate of Yaki Udon. It is actually very similar if not the same, with the famous Tako-yaki (Japanese octopus balls). The thick udon noodles are stri-fry together with slices of octopus and prawns, together with other ingredients like green onion, mushroom, and egg. What fascinated me is the bonito flakes they sprinkled on top of the noodle. The heat from the stir-fry noodle pushes the thinly-sliced dried smoked bonito fish. Makes it look like as if the “thing” is still alive when served to you. Nice touch!
Finally, we were served with the dessert, the Shiratama Zenzai. It is actually rice cake dumplings, with red bean paste, served on crushed ices, and with a slice of strawberry and a choc stick to enhance the taste. Like this one too.
Overall, I feel Taishojin does serve nice authentic Japanese food. With the cosy ambience and a certain degree of traditional feel to it, it’s a great place for Japanese fine dining’s experience. The Kaiseki set meal is worth its price tag, some might say even without the fantastic “buy 1 free 1” promotion, while the restaurant’s menu also offers extensive choices of Japanese delicacies, albeit with a relatively high price (2 California rolls priced at RM23++ for example). One thing for sure, all of us left the place a happy person, including the little Kay Lee!
So if you are a hardcore fan of Japanese food, or an American Express cardholder, quickly make your way to this restaurant. This Kaiseki set is actually a limited period promotion, and it ends on the 30th of May.
Taishojin Japanese Restaurant
Address: Level 2, Prince Hotel KL, Jalan Conlay, 50450 KL.
Telephone: 03-2170 8888 Fax: 03-21708808