Friday, July 8, 2011

Tatsu

Talk about a transformation: when we last visited Tatsu, it was brightly lit but bland-looking. Flash forward four months later, an extensive but expensive refurbishment has made this restaurant sparklingly sleek and stylish.
For comparison, our earlier entry on Tatsu: April 1, 2011.

Some customers might recall having eaten here when this outlet was still called Benkay, once upon a time. But ever since Nikko Hotel turned into the InterContinental earlier this year, it's fair to say, the times they are a-changin'.

Tiny tuna rolls with cucumber, tobiko & mayo. Fresh and flawless, with vivid flavors that lingered both on our tongues and in our memories. The triumph of a terrific eatery: even the complimentary starters would be worth paying for.

Tuna trending: tuna & avocado marinated in sour plum paste. We loved how these recipes were deceptively simple, successfully supplying fascinating tastes and textures.

You can tune a piano, but you can't tuna fish: tuna & trifoliate citrus leaves with wasabi sauce. Another delicate preparation that deserved complete concentration to savor its complexity. Subtly spicy instead of being sinus-stinging.

Who says drinks at Japanese joints have to be dull? Check out Tatsu's Sapphire Rose (umeshu shochu, grapefruit juice, cincau) & Ichino Cherry (ichinokura sake, maraschino liquor, orange juice, lemon cordial, grenadine).

Wine-based cocktails, extremely enjoyable: B&B Empire (red wine, cognac, dom benedictine, orange juice) & Kir (white wine, creme de cassis).

A dessert cocktail with a real difference: Tamano Hikari sake with dark chocolate. Is it any wonder that we probably drank more than we ate?

Only a short stop this time, but we'll try to be back for more.

Tatsu,
InterContinental Hotel, Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur.
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22 comments:

  1. So many new Jap restaurants!
    Cocotei, Tenjin, Hanare, Riki-Ya, Matsuba, Gonbei, Tatsu.. I'm gonna start in tht order! ;p

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  2. tng: heh, that's a good list to start with! they're all really nice, but i think i would rank my preference for now as hanare at the top, followed by tatsu, tenjin, riki-ya, coco.tei and gonbei san :D

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  3. What a fantastic change...food-wise and of cos booze-wise...u must be jumping for joy :P

    I deduce that prices are Tenjin-like...

    Gotta bump this and Tenjin to d top of my queue...hahaha...

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  4. ulric: yep, i think there'll be strong buzz about tatsu in the near future. based on the menu selection, i'd rank this above many other hotel japanese outlets (zipangu, kampachi, iketeru, etc) and also above tenjin. but yeah, prices aren't pleasant: that tiny bowl of tuna with avocado was RM25++ for a few spoonfuls. brace yourself for the bill to exceed more than RM100++ per person...

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  5. I aredi blasted RM500 (3 pax) at Coco.Tei noming sashimis and makis...need to wait b4 another repeat performance...hehe...

    Hmmmm...Tatsu looks ideal for a romantic dinner...hahaha...

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  6. that tuna & avocado looks really tempting

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  7. I've always pooh-poohed dessert cocktails - alcohol just don't make sense sweetened - but sake and dark chocolate sounds ridiculously sexy!

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  8. ulric: yikes! must have been lots of sashimi, since makis on their own shouldn't exceed RM80 per person :D and yep, delicate japanese food + dim lighting = perfect for romance! =)
    ky: heheh, i think we've managed to confirm that avocado goes really well with any type of sashimi! :D
    min: it was definitely one of my favorite cocktails this year (but i'm biased, cos i lurve sake-based cocktails and i think there aren't enough of them in KL)! smooth, memorably flavored (dark chocolate worked much better than regular chocolate would have) and, yeah, very seductive!

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  9. "You can tune a piano, but you can't tuna fish"?? you're getting my vote for best quote of the year..lol!

    wow that dessert cocktail looks really yummy. Wonder if there's anything with milk chocolate..can that be done? =D

    - Adam

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  10. Adam: heh, that quote is actually the title of a 1970s album by one of my favorite pop bands, REO speedwagon (u're forgiven if u haven't heard of them, cos u're probably way too young!) :D and yeah, chocolate and booze do gel well together. I think The Library has white chocolate cocktails! =)

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  11. What a change from the previous visit! Ive only been there when it was still Benkay :P Guess I have LOTS to catch up with! hehe

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  12. Iamthewitch: it does feel like an upgrade/improvement! the head chef is still tetsuya yamagida, who has been with this hotel since late 2009, but he has revamped the menu to include nearly 80 percent new items :D

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  13. The restaurant looks so much nicer now! Looked a little tired in your last entry.

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  14. Baby sumo: yaaa, it was kinda old-fashioned and sterile-looking previously, but now it looks like it's finally in the 21st century! :D

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  15. Noted on the order!
    Nw I need to line up the buddies that wil go w me!

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  16. Tng: for me, I'd like to return to tenjin! And to hanare for their omakase, since that changes fairly regularly =)

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  17. Place looks spanking new & almost sparkling! Those tuna rolls had me salivating, man!

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  18. Pureglutton: oh yeah, I think the renovation of this restaurant must have cost millions! but it looks terrific =) and yeah, our trio of tuna treats was terrific too, heheh

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  19. unexpected, they join MIGF this year!
    anyway, I want to try cuisine gourmet by Nathalie that also joins >.<

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  20. fui: heheh, the list of restaurants participating in the MIGF seems rather short this year. wonder if they'll add some more later :D

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  21. Ya, not so attractive as I wish to try Senses but they quit :-(

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  22. Fui: hopefully the other restaurants will offer interesting menus =)

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