Continuing with our food exploit at Avenue K, the mall that’s connected by KLCC via underground LRT station, we sampled the food offered by Tokyo Pastry, a Japanese themed restaurant that offers mostly Western menu inspired by Japanese style cooking, or is it?
Update 11/12/2018 – This place has since closed down
Tokyo Pastry, Avenue K
Situated at the mezzanine floor, the restaurant got its cue from European style bakeries in Japan, with the menu that has very little resemblance to traditional Japanese cuisine that we are familiar with.
The restaurant is often quite busy over lunch time on working days, but if you want to enjoy a quiet meal here, the best time is during dinner or over the weekends, when the mall isn’t swarmed by office crowd.
salmon salad, spicy mushroom spaghetti, Tokyo burger, pan seared chicken
We started with their salmon salad (RM 22), pretty generous amount of gravlax wrapping chopped mango & greens make for a rather healthy start of a meal, or a meal in itself if you want something light. This is probably the go-to healthy choice for the dieting hipsters, but I do quite like it.
Spicy mushroom spaghetti (RM 19) is a pretty straight forward pasta dish with a few types of mushroom in a spaghetti that comes with a bit of a kick, mainly for the pepper used.
Tokyo burger (RM 20) comes with that green tea infused bun that looks a bit radio active but tasted rather good with its generous slab of chicken cooked with teriyaki sauce. There’s a small side of salad and fries too.
If you want more protein in your meal, the pan seared chicken (RM 23) may just do the trick. A big slab of chicken seared with chef’s homemade sauce, plus some vegetable and potato. Simple and pretty satisfying.
matcha mitsu, Japanese cheese cake, tiramisu crepe
Granted, I didn’t have the chance to to try the pastries above, however, as the name suggests, Tokyo pastry pride themselves in their cakes and crepe, the matcha mitsu (RM 16), Japanese cheese cake (RM 13.95), and tiramisu crepe (RM 14.95) all looked the part and I trust that they are up to the challenge in taste department.
raspberry lychee soda, latte, espresso & milk
Tokyo pastry also serve up more than competent coffee. The latte and espresso with a side of milk that I tried were as good as any. For a bit more refreshing taste, the raspberry lychee soda should suffice as well.
When it comes to street food in Malaysia, most people often cite Penang right off the bat, but for those who likes something perhaps more comforting, Ipoh street food is a great alternative. If you’re in KL looking for a taste of what Ipoh has to offer, Avenue K’s Ipoh Market Street (non halal) should be in your short list.
Ipoh Market Street, Avenue K
Walking out from KLCC LRT station, take a right turn and keep walking towards the end, you’ll find Ipoh Market Street on your right. The diminutive entrance opens up into a pretty decent size dining hall with a menu filled with a good selection of dishes hailed from the city that was famous for tin mining.
One thing to note – Ipoh Market Street at Avenue K is a non-halal restaurant.
Ipoh curry mee
The signature dish here is the Ipoh Curry Mee (RM 11.90) that comes with chicken stripes, roast pork, mint, lime, and your choice of noodle. I thought the broth does pack a punch and the inclusion of roast pork made everything that much better. Definitely satisfying for someone who wants a jolt over lunch, I liked it.
Ipoh white coffee, market street soft boil egg on toast
The soft boil egg on toast (RM 4.90) was my favorite dish over the tasting period. In fact, I went back a week later to specifically order this and savior it slowly. Perfect soft boil eggs on perfectly toasted bread, as simple as they are delicious.
The Ipoh white coffee (RM 4.50) here is one of their specialty, and always with proper thick foam too. If you like full bodied creamy coffee, this would definitely satisfy.
Ipoh caramel custard egg, spicy chili crispy pork fried rice
Ipoh caramel custard egg is something that seems sorta out of place at this “kopitiam” style restaurant, but I thought the dessert was more than decent, like most dishes we tried here.
Other than noodle dishes and light meals, Ipoh Market Street also serve “tai chao”, or hot wok style of meal from 5-10 pm daily. We only managed to try their spicy chili crispy pork fried rice (RM 11.80) and it was pretty decent, though I’d want to have the portion to be a bit smaller so that the pork to rice ratio is higher tho, but for those with a big appetite, it is definitely not a bad thing.
Avenue K is greeting year 2018 CNY celebration with the campaign themed ‘Bloom of Grandeur’, which transform the mall into a garden of beautiful blossoms. The ground level is set up with 13 CNY booths offering a variety of festive treats and goodies.
We were invited to the launch for this month-long event that will lasts from 19th Jan to 25th Feb. Other than CNY booths, there’s a series of CNY themed workshops from crafting paper lanterns to designing CNY cards made from AngPows for kids aged 4-12.
Flower Power CNY At Avenue K
From 19/1 to 15/2/18, spend a minimum of RM 388 (max 2 receipts) and you get to join the AK Prosperity Draw with Asia Miles and be one of the five lucky winners to walk away with 60,000 Asia Miles points redeemable for a pair of return tickets to Hong Kong and RM 1000 Shoes Gallery by Parkson gift vouchers. There are also consolation prizes of RM 500 (x5) worth of cash vouchers to be won.
For those spending up to RM 288, there’s the AK Wheel of Prosperity in which you get to spin and win prizes. With RM 188 in a single receipt, you’ll get to redeem exclusive AK Ang Pow packets.
The highlight of the event will be on 23/2/18 where there will be a Lion Dance Money Showering session, yeap, literally having acrobatic lion dance throwing money to shoppers. There’ll also be fire crackers lighting ceremony followed by dotting of the lion’s eyes. Then, there’s ‘Rolling in the wealth’ segment in which there will be rolling of mandarin oranges from the main entrance of the mall, to ensure that prosperity will flow into the building. All in all there’ll be 8 pairs of lion performing on the day. It’ll be quite a sight.
Dolly Dimsum with special CNY menu including yee sang
Of course, since this is a food blog, what I am particularly interested in this period is what some of the restaurants are doing. For this, we were invited to Dolly Dimsum for their special CNY menu.
CNY special menu at Avenue K
For the CNY period, Dolly Dimsum, which is one of the few halal dimsum restaurants in the city, offers a special set of CNY menu priced at RM 62++ per pax (6 pax group dining). The good thing is, the limited time dishes in the menu is also available ala-carte basis, and we got to give them a try.
scallop dumpling, golden kamquat dumpling, lucky 88 noodle, szechuan tofu
The dishes include a yee sang (RM 65) with plum sauce & fresh salmon. Scallop dumpling (RM 17.8) which was one of my favorites, huge chunk of scallops with a base of prawns underneath too.
Then there’s the Lucky “88” Noodle (RM 36.8), fried yee mee with really generous amount of crab meat, prawns, and again those delicious scallops that I absolutely love. Then there’s also the Schezuan Tofu (RM 23.5) that comes with really soft tofu, chicken, and the sauce that has a bit of those szechuan kick, tho personally I probably want it a bit more spicy.
nian gao with fresh coconut, lunar blossom mocktail
For sweeter ending, there’s the Golden Kamquat Dumpling (RM 9.9), basically mung bean paste wrapped in mochi skin. Their version of nian gao, called Happiness Kuih (RM 11.8), is one of the rendition that I actually find not overly sweet while still carrying that unmistakable CNY spirit, I think having fresh coconut coating was the right way to go.
In my previous job, I had the opportunity to travel to East Malaysia on quite a few occasions, and one thing that stuck in my memory is that there are whole different sets of restaurants and popular dining areas in Borneo than what I’m used to in Peninsular Malaysia, and one of the more prominent one that I remember till today was the ubiquitous SugarBun.
SugarBun Borneo Asian Food at Menara Hup Seng
Well, now you can find SugarBun right here in KL at Menara Hup Seng (opposite Shangri-La KL & behind Mercedes) to get a taste of what Borneo’s most successful franchise restaurant has got to offer. They are also opening their second outlet in Klang Valley at Ara Damansara on 15/10/2016. So if you’re into some no-nonsense Borneo cuisine, keep reading.
Sabah Giant Garoupa Mee Hoon Soup
While started out as an ice-cream parlour back in 1979, over the years SugarBun has expanded its offering to include many dishes sought after by Sarawakians & Sabahans alike. On the outside it looks a little bit like fast food joint or even a food court, but what they offer is rather different from what you may expect.
I had the opportunity to try some of their dishes a couple weeks ago, and I gotta start with my favorite – Sabah Giant Garoupa Mee Hoon Soup (RM 28). Cooked with generous portion of Sabah giant garoupa slices, the deceptively simple dish carries a broth thick with seafood sweetness that will satisfy anyone who loves seafood. The fish slices too were perfectly cut and came with chunks of those springy garoupa skin that I really enjoy. At RM 28 it is certainly not a “fast food” friendly price, but this is not fast food and you definitely get a more than decent value from the quality of seafood offered.
You can also order this as a soup to go with rice.
Sabah Giant Garoupa Fried Rice
Another rendition that utilise the same awesome seafood is the Sabah Giant Garoupa Fried Rice (RM 20). Deep fried giant garoupa meat is served on top of pretty fragrant fried rice, very simple and satisfying. I think a few chili padi with soya sauce should come with this, but they do offer sambal, which compliments the dish quite well.
authentic Sarawak Laksa
Laksa Sarawak (RM 12) is arguable the most famous streetfood from Borneo, and at SugarBun Borneo Asian Food, they have a version that is authentic and true to its origin. You get the shredded chicken, prawns, strips of omelette, bean sprout, and of course, those thick meehun. Haze loves it, and she’s like the no. 1 fan of any type of laksa.
If you’re looking for a certified halal version of authentic laksa Sarawak, this will definitely fit the bill.
For those who wants something on the go, SugarBun’s fish burger (RM 9.50) should fit the bill. The patty is made from pollock and together with their blend of sauce and slices of fresh cucumber, made for a pretty satisfying meal you can enjoy while being vertical. I also thought their bun was pretty soft and airy too, which is a plus.
the classic – Borneo Eco Fish Meal (tilapia)
Another notable fish related dish is the classic Borneo Eco Fish Meal (RM 20). Here you get a portion of rice, some acar, and a properly deep fried tilapia fish with some sambal and dark soya sauce on the side. This felt like something you get from a mom & pop restaurant than an air conditioned chain restaurant, in a good way, of course.
This was actually the first dish I had at SugarBun many years ago when they came to West Malaysia (at PJ SS2 if not mistaken), and I’ve always enjoyed it.
If comfort food is what you crave for, the Chicken Mushroom Claypot Meal (RM 14) should be on your short list. You get a side of rice with a clay pot full of chunks of chicken and black fungus in herbal soup, not entirely different from grandma’s kitchen.
To complete their almost-fast-food image, SugarBun offers broasted chicken (RM 12) with or without saucy kano (RM 15). I had to google a bit, but broasting is a cooking process that combines broiling and roasting, which is distinctly different from deep fried. The result is a lighter crust and less oily product. I thought they taste pretty good.
If you want to get a taste of what Borneo has got to offer right here in KL, this is definitely the place to go.
P/S: this post is brought to you by SugarBun
Address: SugarBun Borneo Asian Food Level 1, Menara Hap Seng, Jalan P. Ramlee, Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.152761, 101.707296
Tel: 03-2022 0003 Hours: Mon – Fri 7.30 am – 8 pm, Sat 10 am – 2 pm
We Malaysians love buffets, but more often than not, most buffets around Klang Valley offers a variety of many different cuisines, much like the cultural make up of the country, which allows us to sample many varying dishes at the same time. Now that’s not a bad thing, but sometimes, you just want to concentrate on (mostly) one single cuisine, and you want it buffet style.
If that’s your calling and your choice of cuisine happens to be Japanese food, then Tatsu’s Saturday dinner buffet may just be something you want to check out.
Authentic Japanese Buffet at Tatsu
The Saturday dinner buffet featuring authentic Japanese cuisine started at on the 6th of August and will run through 26 November 2016. We were among the few fortunate invitees to be sampling the spread on the first day of its offering at Intercontinental Hotel.
The all-you-can-eat deal is priced at RM 118 nett per adult and RM 69 nett for children between age 5-11 years.
Sushi or Sashimi anyone?
The spread is concocted by Assistant Chef Tommy Kuan and comprises of some 75 items, and obviously, we got the night started at the raw bar with some sushi & sashimi.
Here you find a selection of salmon, tuna, and butter fish sashimi in pretty generous cuts. There’s ebi, tamago, inari, sake, and maguro sushi as well as some sushi rolls to pick from. Quality are more than decent, though lacking some of the more premium ingredients like amaebi or otoro, this is to be expected at this price point I suppose.
onsen egg, baby octopus, and other small dishes
Other dishes from the “appetizer” bar includes those perfectly prepared Onsen eggs, salad, baby octopus, and a selection of small Japanese vegetable dishes which I really enjoy.
some pre-cooked Japanese dishes too
For those who likes pre-cooked items, there are a few selections too. Udon, soup, chawamushi, edamame, spicy tofu, miso soup, and even Japanese curry. To be honest, these aren’t my usual dishes to go for in a buffet such as this, because what I really enjoy more is up next…
made to order teppanyaki dishes
The live teppanyaki cooking!
Here you pick the ingredients (salmon, prawns, squid, butter fish, chicken, beef, mushroom, vege etc) and have the chef cook on the spot. They’re usually ready in 5-10 minutes and then you can enjoy the piping hot teppanyaki dishes. I thought their chicken teppanyaki was particularly delicious.
In addition to teppanyaki, there are also a selection of “ala minute” dishes you can order to be served to your table. These includes ebi tempura hand roll, California hand roll, salmon teriyaki, saba shioyaki, sanma shioyaki, chicken teriyaki, sawara teriyaki, tempura moraiwase, and kaki furai.
Some of these dishes tend to get tepid & tired looking on a buffet spread if they’ve been left there for a while, so having them freshly made to order is a great idea.
beautifully crafted desserts
Then of course, there’s Japanese desserts such as shiratama zenzai (red bean soup with mochi), manju (traditional Japanese confection), and assortments of ice cream, including one of my favorites – black sesame flavor.
fresh fruits, black sesame ice cream, onsen eggs, Haze & KY
I really enjoyed the buffet spread, and though it offers pretty decent value for the price at a up class hotel restaurant in the heart of KL. If you’re up to some authentic Japanese buffet, do not that the last day to enjoy this at Tatsu is at the end of November 2016, don’t miss out.
Address: Tatsu Japanese Cuisine
Intercontinental Hotel 165 Jalan Ampang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.159767, 101.718045 Tel: 03-2161 1111 Web: www.intercontinental.com