KITA no ZEN (Hokkaido Ichiba/北海道) Japanese Restaurant @ The Gardens, Mid Valley Megamall

The last time I sat down to scribble a new post on my blog was around a shameful 8 months ago. It is giving me pangs of uneasiness to remember the time period when I last posted.  The backlog of photos awaiting to see the light of day has been inching closer to push me off the edge. Heck, I lost most receipts and recollection of the dining experience has been on a gradual decline. On that note, I began going through the tons of photos which  I’ve taken and  decided to catch up on the lost times and re-ignite my blogging engine once again!

I’m gonna kick off with this lunch we had at this favorite Japanese joint to many in The Gardens Mid Valley which has an extensive menu covering the familiar Japanese items like sushi, yakimono, nabemono, sashimi, makis, agemono, nabemono and most of all, the smooth and rich Hokkaido ice cream which is available at their Hokkaido Ice cream counter or one can either have it in Kita No Zen itself. 

We arrived at half past one and there was a short queue at the entrance which was bearable , otherwise I would have made a u-turn and opt for another restaurant as I don’t believe in standing in the queue for hours just to get a miserable table, regardless of how good the food is. I just don’t have that patience. 

All the four of us went for their sets except for C and each of the sets are served with namasu, miso soup, chawan mushi, fruits, Tsukemono (漬物) and a bowl of rice.  The chawanmushi (茶碗蒸し) was surprisingly smooth, silky and brimming with chicken, shitake mushroom and kamaboko at the bottom. Miso soup (味噌汁) needs no introduction, being a dish synonymous with Japanese cuisine and is one our their main staples. Tsukemono (漬物) (Japanese pickles) that come in many colorful varieties with names such as Beni shoga (ginger pickle), Bettarazuke (Japanese radish pickle), Gari (young sweet ginger pickle) and Nasu Karashizuke (pickled eggplant) were served as a side dish accompanying the sets.

Unagi Kabayaki Zen @ RM 38.00 (鳗蒲焼膳) ~ Thick, juicy and well-marinated slabs of eel were perfectly grilled in terriyaki sauce, with its juice retained, and none of the cold, fishy taste. Good stuff! 

Teppanyaki Zen @ (鉄板焼膳) RM 30.00 ~ Diced-cut beef steak was generously portioned, served with pan fried cabbage slices, bean sprouts and loads of fried garlic, more than enough to scare a vampire away! I specifically requested mine to be done in medium rare but sadly, it came overdone, chewy and tough while the other set which was supposedly done in medium tastes much tender. Nevertheless, it was tasty all the same. 

Chāhan (チャーハン) ~ Garlic fried rice came with my set of Teppanyaki Zen which is rather bland, tasteless to be precise!  I never had high expectations on Japanese fried rice anyway. 

Kaizen Miso Shiru (海鮮味噌汁) @ RM 20.00 ~ C had this assorted seafood & vegetables miso soup served on claypot consisting of tofu, enoki & shiitake mushrooms, sizable fresh prawn and mussles. The broth was filled with sweetness from all the mixed ingredients. Flavorful and nice!

Salmon sushi (サーモン寿司) @ RM 19.00 ~ Fresh!

Salmon sashimi zen @ (サーモン刺身膳) RM 22.00 ~ I ordered the Salmon Sashimi  for E which came with seven equally sized sashimi pieces with a melt in the mouth texture which got our thumbs up. He just love super fresh, buttery and sweet salmon in any form and will not get tired of eating it. 

Toro Salmon Sashimi (トロサーモン) @ RM 30.00 ~ This picture certainly does not do justice to this plate of 6 pieces thickly sliced salmon fatty belly which comes in beatiful marbling and melts almost instantly in your mouth. The buttery thick salmon belly sashimi slices dipped in soya sauce and smeared with a smidgeon of wasabi for that extra kick is such a delight to relish! I can have this all day! 

Choco banana crepe (チョコバナナクレープ) @ RM 9.80 ~ Crepe with 3 scoops of chocolate ice cream & banana, topped with almond & chocolate slice which is smooth and not overly sweet. The crepe on the other hand is a little soggy. Not too bad for the price. 

Hokkaido Ice Cream (北海道アイスクリーム) @ RM 3.80/40ml ~ Dark chocolate (ダークチョコレート). Needless to say, Hokkaidao ice cream is a must try at KNZ as their ice cream is smooth, rich, and flavorful, with the use of high quality Hokkaido milk. The taste was silky smooth, somewhat different where you won’t find in other premium ice-creams. I wouldnt say it’s absolutely brilliant but it’s definitely good. 

There’s probably more to explore in the menu but in the meantime we were perfectly happy with the selections we’d tried as the food is always exceptionally good. There’s definitely a lot of heart put in the dishes here and prices are also kept reasonable to not put a hole in your pocket. For a mere 245.20 inclusive of a 10+6%, all of us left KNZ with a smile of satisfaction on our face. 

  • Hokkaido Ichiba @ The Gardens Mall
  • T-201, 3rd floor, The Gardens Mall
  • Mid Valley City
  • Lingkaran Syed Putra
  • 59200 Kuala Lumpur.
  • Tel – 603-2283 1060
  • Mobile – 012-612 1060
  • Business hours – 1000-2200
  • GPS Coordinates
  • N03°07.165  E101°89.962
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This entry was posted in Japanese, Mid Valley, Sushi, The Gardens and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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