Monday, March 8, 2010


The way I see it, Japanese cuisine has now become as common and acceptable as yong tau foo. Except for being more expensive, it's easy to understand the logic behind the acceptance. There's something for everyone - grilled, raw, fried.....they've covered it all. Be it authentic or not, there is at least one Japanese restaurant in almost every shopping mall but sadly, none serving Chettinad banana leaf rice.

Having said that, I do like Japanese food, especially when it reminds me of the good times in Japan. Sometimes, it's not about the creativity but more importantly, how similar the taste is to the real thing. I'm still in search of Japanese curry with a dense taste of chocolate (yes, it's quite common there) that I tried at the Matsuyama train station.

Last Christmas, I found a good reason to lunch at Kirishima, after noticing it at a birthday lunch from the neighbouring Delicious. A glance at the huge menu revealed rather reasonable prices (think Yuzu) and interestingly, there was almost nothing noticeably fusion.

Inaniwa udon is sort of like my Harajuku kway teow (whatever that means...I just felt compelled to include the line) and when permissible, a must-order. What's nice about Kirishima's take was the inclusion of the optional yuzu peels to the cold soy sauce dip - an exemplary attempt. It certainly added a refreshing taste but obviously, it should be done before applying the wasabi, which will instantly kill whatever good taste there is in the dip.

There must be a reason why unagi don is such a hit in Japan and some rice-loving countries. I think it's the combination of the richness of unagi, the sweet soy sauce and glutinous texture of Japanese rice. In general, eels are cooked kabayaki style, with constant glazing of the sticky, sweet soy sauce. So, I thought it would be fun to try the steamed version instead. Hence, the choice of the Unagi Seiro Mushi. When not grilled, it lacked the charred flavour but was compensated with the unmasking of the more natural, sweet taste of unagi. What could have been better was the offering of a larger slab of the eel.

This restaurant is located in the city centre yet somehow feels like a secret hideout that has yet to be discovered. That day, while the town was quietly celebrating Christmas, Kirishima was filled with loud laughters, mostly coming from a table of friends celebrating Christmas with good food and company. It was a joyful brunch indeed.

Kirishima Japanese Restaurant
Lot 1.2. 1st Floor
Dua Annexe
211 Jalan Tun Razak
50400 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: (+603) 2162 8127


J said...

Conrad chocolates! I want.... :(

Yinz said...

Brings back good memories :) How time flies, would love to catch up again when you're next back in KL!

ai wei said...

hah! another good jap place to go. honestly, i never know there is this good hidden one in dua annexe

Cumi & Ciki said...

didju like the brains at the main entrance.. didju ? huh huh? LOL

mimid3vils said...

I'm a hardcore fans of unagi but never try steamed unagi before. I know I will prefer kabayaki style more coz I'm a 重口味person :P

qwazymonkey said...

I like my Unagi BBQ and char siu...only char eel! LOL

Love the shot of the soup! So artsy. I'm in love with it, and the photographer too!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Y'know, I've been to that Delicious outlet so many times, but have yet to step into Kirishima. I'd like to visit this place just for the inaniwa udon. :-)

Nic (KHKL) said...

j, oh, i forgot to thank snow white for the chocolate!!! nice.

yinz, sure sure! let's meet up again for makan! so many new places to choose from these days!

ai wei, agree. this is really like a hideout right in the middle of town! give it a try, ya! :D

cumi & ciki, huh, what brains ar? i didn't realise it leh...more reasons to return, i guess. :D

mimi, actually, i'm also a 重口味 person! :D but i thought it'll be interesting to try the steamed version. hehe.

qwazymonkey, char eel, char siu! they rhyme! haha. awww, thanks for the compliment, dude! :D

lyrical lemongrass, yessssssh! and we talked about it since, ermmm....2009, i think. good to know that's another inaniwa udon fan! :D

qwazymonkey said...

@LL @Nic We've been talking about since Kenny Mah's birthday last year!

Nic (KHKL) said...

qwazymonkey, ya lor! too bad you couldn't make it that day. let's do another monkey's day out! me iz back this may! :D

Extreme Power said...

I like jap food. Just came back. A380 jap food nice too.

Nic (KHKL) said...

Extreme Power, woah, A380!!! that's so cool! i'd wanna try Japanese food up in the air as well. :D