Sunday, September 1, 2013

Karuizawa Kogen @ Menara TA One, P Ramlee

A Japanese restaurant & bar with quirks that might not be everyone's cup of sake.

Hidden on the ninth floor of Menara TA One, Karuizawa Kogen has a cover charge of RM75 per person for every entry. That keeps this place somewhat exclusive, with a clientele dominated by Japanese businessmen (on a Monday night, there were four or five occupied tables).

Also note that friendly female members of Karuizawa Kogen's service team will take a seat beside you at your table even before you manage to order; no worries though, they can be informed politely that their presence won't be necessary.

The list of liquor is extensive, though there's predictably much more by the bottle than the glass; we opted for some umeshu (RM25 before taxes), as well as umeshu mixed with whisky (RM28 for a single, RM48 for a double) ...

... plus a trio of shochu, comprising ho, kuro kirishima & tantakatan.

Karuizawa Kogen is affiliated to Ozeki Tokyo, the long-enduring restaurant on this building's street level; customers can order some of the latter's specialties, possibly the likes of mentaiko spaghetti & hijiki seaweed udon ...

... or perhaps the jumbo futomaki & steamed steel-bowl rice with seafood ...

... or simmered spicy konnyaku & sliced tomatoes topped with tosa vinegar jelly.

Come right in, leave your coat on any wall; there are hangers everywhere.

Choose a window seat with a Petronas Twin Towers view; that's the most coveted space here.



Karuizawa Kogen,
Level 9, Menara TA One, Jalan P. Ramlee, Kuala Lumpur.
Open 8pm onward daily.

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26 comments:

  1. Hmm, I think this is not my kind of place, hehehe.

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    1. CK: heheh, ya, i'm not sure whether i will ever return here, though it was a bit interesting to visit once =)

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  2. I love the ambiance here, Sean! The wicker chairs and pillows are nice. The recess lighting is wonderful!

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    1. Linda: you're right, there's actually something soothing about this place, and you pointed out some of its cool traits =)

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  3. hmm.. cottage environment with japanese fusion food.. the place looks cosy though.

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    1. Jean: ya, true, it's quite comfortable here. overall, it's a rather unique place, heheh =)

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  4. Oh my – yes – yes I could most definitely go there...

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    1. Cquek: hope you enjoy it! there are definitely some people who are fans of this place, heh :D

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  5. RM75 cover charge per pax! Nope...I rather spend the cash on good food =)

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    1. Ulric: heh, and i guess especially since the food here can be ordered downstairs at ozeki tokyo without a cover charge =)

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  6. Wow, expensive, i'm not too sure if i'm willing to pay for the cover charge fee although the place looks cool... not too wallet-friendly eh?

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    1. Ken: yeah, i didn't quite believe it at first when the hostess said there was a RM75 cover charge. but since we were there already, and we wanted some drinks and the place seemed pleasant enough, we figured, OK, let our wallets take the hit =)

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  7. nice venue and food to celebrate the independance day~ =D

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    1. Mr lonely: heh, this wasn't actually a merdeka day visit, but hey, maybe it might have been a good spot to see the fireworks =)

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  8. Yea I think the cover charge may stop a lot of ppl from going here. But others will like it for its exclusivity.

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    1. Baby sumo: true, it has its plus and minus points. But I guess the management would have weighed all that in balance, heh =)

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  9. Well I guess it's targeted to a specific demographics in this city and the exclusivity will sell to them. It certainly has the appeal.

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    1. Kelly: yeah, the japanese businessmen who were here did sound like they were enjoying the evening. lotsa booze on their tables and a fair amount of laughter in the air. and i guess the cover charge seems less exorbitant when converted into the yen =)

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  10. Definitely to keep the rowdy (or 'less behaved' - u know what i mean :P) crowd out.
    And with ermm 'female escorts', this place truly has a target clientele. :)

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    1. Rebecca: heh, yeah, i guess they have a strategy, and maybe that strategy is quite lucrative for them. it's a peaceful place, i wouldn't mind hiding out here from time to time if i could escape the cover charge somehow :D

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  11. interesting concept with a cover charge!

    umeshu and whisky. I think i can reward myself that combination tonight...at home...hehehe

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    1. Missyblurkit: ya, we had no idea there was a cover charge until we had already entered and sat down at the table :D heheh, sounds like a nice reward, and at least there won't be a cover charge at home, heh =)

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  12. and do they serve Karuizawa whiskies there?

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    1. Eiling: ooo, i'm actually not sure. didn't study the whisky list, since it looked quite pricey, the bottles, heh :D

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  13. yeah right.. the chick sitting next to you would be an absolute waste of time :P OK, food looks superb and I do like mentaiko and could eat it daily, if it weren't so blardy fattening :P

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    1. Ciki: haha, well, yes, we didn't really require the conversation :D yikes, i actually didn't realize mentaiko was calorie-laden. i guess i've been trying to remain blissfully ignorant this whole time, hahah =)

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