One of the best meals we had so far this year was at Sasagawa Japanese Restaurant. The restaurant is located on Level 2 of Sheraton Imperial KL, and has been open for over a year. I'm so glad that we finally came here to dine, as the food is simply fabulous!
Named after its Executive Chef Hitoshi Sasagawa, the restaurant brings to KL diners an authentic Japanese dining experience. Chef Sasagawa hails from the picturesque coastal city of Niigata, Japan, which is renowned for their sake and quality rice. One of his biggest achievement was to train under Iron Chef Tadachma Ota in Osaka for five years.
For the month of July, the restaurant will be running a promotion whereby diners can enjoy the Tsuki Kaiseki Set along with a complimentary drink (value up to RM80) for RM200 nett. This is a fantastic deal, as the set itself usually costs RM250 (not inclusive of the drink).
July Promotion - Tsuki Kaiseki Set
The staff gave some recommendations on which sake to choose to go with the Tsuki Kaiseki Set. Hubby settled for the Mironokura Jyunmai Ginjyo (RM75), an aromatic sake served in a traditional wooden cup.
I had the Yuzu Wine with soda (RM35), a light and refreshing drink.
A kaiseki is a traditional multi-course Japanese meal with the perfect balance of taste, texture, appearance and colors of food. The Tsuki Kaiseki Set comes with 6-courses, including appetizer, sashimi, sushi, fish, meat and dessert. The ingredients may vary, depending on the availability of produce. Sasagawa takes their cuisine very seriously, importing fresh food from Japan five times a week, to give diners the best, freshest and most authentic dining experience.
Upon arrival at the restaurant, we were ushered into one of five private rooms in the restaurant. Service from start to finish was exemplary; the waiting staff was very knowledgeable about the dishes and produce and could answer all our queries.
To start, we were served a trio of appetizers - deep fried and marinated amberjack (hamachi), tuna belly, and handmade tofu.
Next came one of my favorite courses of the evening, the sashimi platter, featuring five types of fish, namely bluefin tuna (maguro), oval squid (aori-ika), amberjack (hamachi), seabass and sweet prawn (botan ebi). So fresh and tasty!
By now, my tastebuds were dancing in joy. And then, the sushi platter arrived and boy, it was sure a treat for the eyes and palate! The sushi were beautifully presented - there was fresh salmon with ikura, scallop, oval squid with uni, bluefin tuna, botan ebi, and hamachi. I totally enjoyed this.
The fish course was a unique experience too, whereby we were served a hotpot shabu-shabu with hamo (pike eel) fish, which is commonly found during the summer months in Japan. The dashi soup base was clear and light, and we got our first taste of an unusual plant called junsai (water shield) which had a jelly-like texture. We were told to first add the Kyoto spring onion, matsutake mushroom and tomato into the broth, then dip the eel in only for a few seconds as it cooks quickly. The eel's flesh was sweet tasting and we enjoyed drinking the soup too.
The meal gets even better with the meat course - two cubes of the most buttery Wagyu beef. Ah, I'm in heaven! Our hostess tells us that they serve Miyazaki A5 Wagyu here at Sasagawa... only the best for their customers!
To end our meal on a sweet note, we were served a lovely mochi ice cream, with brown tea.
Other than the Tsuki Kaiseki Set, we also got the chance to try four of Chef Sasagawa's signature dishes. In Japan, it's often said that you can judge the quality of a restaurant by its dashimaki. Chef's Original Dashimaki (RM30), Japanese rolled omelette with dashi was fluffy and delicious, served with some grated radish to help with digestion.
The Chef's Original Chawanmushi (RM35) features silky smooth steamed egg custard with a creamy sauce, topped with eel. The topping may differ depending on seasonal ingredients.
We also had the fish soup (RM32); on our visit, the chef picked out a giant hamaguri clam. The broth gets its milky colour and flavour from the clam - simple and good!
The simmered rice dish with snapper (RM50) was cooked tableside, so guests can enjoy the aroma of the rice as it cooks. The restaurant uses rice from Niigata, where Chef Sasagawa originates from. The rice is topped with dashi, mushrooms, onions and snapper slices and cooked for precisely 18 minutes. Once the rice is ready, our hostess plates it up and tops it with ikura and spring onions.
We had a fantastic meal here, and are already planning to go back to try their lunch offerings next.
Opening times: Lunch 12.00-2.30pm, Dinner 6.00-10.30pm daily.
Location: Sasagawa Authentic Japanese Cuisine, Level 2, Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur, Jalan Sultan Ismail, 50250 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: 03-2602 3288
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