Sunday, October 2, 2011

Gonbei San

Back to Gonbei San. Earlier entry: March 11.

Kicking off this round with sea urchin. A sizable serving of the ocean's golden gem; subtly sweet but also beautifully briny, as uni uniquely is.

Mentaiko mania! Roe is always a treat, whether in Japanese cuisine or nasi kandar.

Sunomono Moriawase (vinegared seafood, seaweed & cucumber with sesame seeds). Refreshingly tangy and perky, with a mild pickled flavor.

Seaweed roll of tuna belly, garlic & chives. Melts in the mouth, not on the chopsticks.

Tamago Yaki. Warm, light and pillow-soft. Healthier than regular fried omelets too.

Yellowtail steamed in rice wine. Delectable; the eyes have it, glutinous & gooey.

Mixed tempura, comprising kisu (sillago fish), shiitake mushrooms, eggplant & prawns. Competently executed, but not the most memorable moment of our meal.

Teppan prawns. Creamy crustaceans _ smoky, savory & superbly succulent.

Dobin Mushi (soup with ginkgo nuts, chicken, shrimp & trefoil herbs, served in earthen pot). Blazing-hot broth, though not terribly flavorsome.

Crisp, fresh salad to keep things healthy.

Gonbei San boasts KL's best selection of Japanese liquor by the cup. Here's the Saiba Kome Shochu & 7-year-aged Okinawan Mugen No Utage Awamori (30 percent alcohol, yay!).

A creative cocktail, Bloody Mari-Chan (shochu, tomato juice, togarashi), as well as Kozutsumi Kuri Shochu, made using Tanba-Guri chestnuts, reputedly Japan's best.

Gonbei San,
Starhill, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur.


  1. I m heading for their lunch buffet soon...courtesy of Groupmore :)

    Thanx for d heads up :D

  2. Ulric; i haven't tried gonbei's buffets before, but I have a feeling that it's better than jogoya's =)

  3. It better be...they called it their fine dining lunch buffet :D

  4. Ulric: yeps I think gonbei would focus on quality over quantity

  5. The tamago looks really smooth and nice. And mentaiko with nasi kandar???

  6. Michelle: heheh, somehow the mentaiko here reminded me of the fish roe used in nasi kandar ... But in a good way! :D

  7. Havent revisited Gonbei ever since they had their makeover. Might pop there one weekend :)

  8. Baby sumo: ya, it's a decent outlet, with super-friendly service. frankly though, I kinda think the makeover made very little difference. It looked the same to me, heh :D

  9. I was in Starhill just last night and thinking about this place. Thanks for the update.

  10. Ms Tindall: heheh, great & hungry minds think alike! perhaps we'll even bump into each other here sometime =)

  11. The sea urchin looks really nice, we should go there one day! :)

  12. @ulric ... surely it *has* to be better than the rubbish that is Jogoya, lol.

  13. CK: heheh, yeah, i love sea urchin also, but it's so expensive! can only eat once in awhile...
    timing: heheh, someone sure hates jogoya! but yeah, i guess there's a big difference between gonbei and jogoya :D

  14. yup - that groupon offer is sure crazy.. so many sold!

  15. timing: U never know...but in Gonbei's case I m assured :)

    Rebecca: Yea...almost 5500 myself d Ril's Steakhouse groupon at d same time :D

    Sean: I hope u dun mind d comments...*sweats*

  16. rebecca: heheh, i still haven't tried getting any groupon deals yet! though was tempted by the brazilian wax offer :D
    ulric: it's not spam, and as long you have something constructive to say, it's fine, heheh :D

  17. OMG the uni and mentaiko is enough to kill me already!!! slurps!

  18. Eiling: yeah, very simple stuff, without accompaniments, but very tasty and satisfying on their own! :D

  19. "Melts in the mouth, not on the chopsticks."

    Waitaminute, have I been unaware of this sushi-melting-on-chopsticks scare till now? How fortunate that Gonbei San's fare are made of sturdier stuff then!


  20. kenny: aiya, in our tropical climate, melting sushi is not an unusual phenomenon lah. you just haven't noticed cos you're always in air-conditioned places, heheh :D

  21. Good food but I think bad service, looking forward for the next visit...

  22. Fui: sorry to hear about the bad service u encountered. It's usually good for me. Hopefully it'll be better for u next round =)

  23. However I would like to put my comments on my experience during my lunch with Groupon Vouchers.

    There was not enough food portion served on the buffet tables as most serving plates are empty. Diners will have to ask the chef for refills where the chef seems reluctant.
    I asked fore more oysters and the chef asked me 'Didn't you too some earlier?'. Does that mean that I can only have 1 portion or there is a timing for refills?!
    I asked for more honeydew and the chef said 'No more' !!! Is this a buffet or what? and it was only 1:45pm and the lunch was supposed till 3pm.

    As advertised on Groupon as a Fine Dining Lunch was in fact quite true; very small portion, insufficient servings, limited choice, long wait for food to be replenish.

    Variety of food was also very limited comparing to the normal buffet that Gonbei had.

    I will say that this offer is not worth for the money even with Groupon discounts.