Best Places To Eat In Kuala Lumpur – Kinjuku SetiaWalk Mall Review
Update – Sadly this place has closed down.
“Tim, when you visit Kuala Lumpur, I will introduce you to this place where they serve good Japanese food. Plus, you can order as much as you can eat.”, gushed my friend from KL. Locals definitely know where are the Best Places to Eat in Kuala Lumpur, and my friend was referring to Kinjuku at SetiaWalk Mall.
We visited the Japanese Restaurant as my friend promised. And here is the review where I share with you about this unique Japanese Restaurant, the food and service, Asia Travel Gems’ final opinion, and how to get there.
Tip: Don’t miss Watching the Video! (shown further down)
Kinjuku is actually a true blue Japanese restaurant with its origins in Shimbara town, Japan. It was founded in 1994. The restaurant is named after the founder and chef, Kinjuku Takahashi. He has more than 30 years’ experience in Japanese cuisine.
In Shimbara, the restaurant mostly serves fresh sashimi, sushi and sakae. In Malaysia, the menu has been adapted to suit the tastebuds of Malaysians while retaining the essence of the recipes and spirit of Chef Kinjuku.
Authentic and traditional Japanese furnishings adorn the entire restaurant. Most of the décor were imported from Japan to create the true Japanese ambience for the customers. One worthy note is the Shoji door that is truly made in Japan and shipped specially from Japan for this restaurant front.
Kinjuku at SetiaWalk – The Overview & Rankings
Meals Served: Lunch, Dinner
Dining Choices: Dine In, Reservations, Takeout
Family Friendly: Yes
Food: 4.0 out of 5.0
Service: 4.0 out of 5.0
Value: 4.0 out of 5.0
Atmosphere: 4.0 out of 5.0
Prices: $$ out of $$$$$
Asia Travel Gems Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0
Kinjuku at SetiaWalk – The Video
We arrived a bit earlier than the time of reservation. So, we walked around SetiaWalk to see what the place is about. Then we headed to the restaurant, and had our sumptuous meal. Watch the video to see what SetiaWalk look like, the exterior and interior of Kinjuku as well as all the yummy Japanese food we had.
Kinjuku at SetiaWalk – The Buffet!
The restaurant is so comfortable that after we were seated, we started chatting and forgot to order the food and drinks. Fortunately, one of us had the sense to remind everyone, and we started to do that.
We looked through the menu, and selected what we would like to have on an order form. Then we gave the form to the friendly waiter. This is a buffet, and we can order as much food and drinks, and as many rounds as we like. Of course, we must not waste food, and must finish everything we ordered.
And the best part is the endless servings is at an attractive and affordable price of MYR70++ per person only! That’s around USD18 (before tax) only! Please do note that this is the price on January 2018. Kindly note that prices can differ in future.
Soon enough, the food and drinks are served.
The first dish served was the Chawanmushi. It was pleasant enough. I do find the texture a little thick. And it was not soft enough.
Next came the Sashimi Platter. The range of sashimi was not wide, but still, it was good enough. More importantly, they have all the types of sashimi we wanted. We ordered the Salmon Sashimi (but of course), Abari White Tuna Sashimi, Maguro Sashimi, Tako Sashimi, and the Shime Saba Sashimi.
All the sashimi tasted very good! Of course, we cannot expect the freshness that one would get at a Japanese restaurant that is situated by the sea. Taking that into account, the sashimi was great! I highly recommend ordering this. My friends and I had a few rounds of this platter.
A quick shout to the Fresh Oysters (a glimpse of them in the photo above). They are so good! If you like Oysters, you must have them!
Chuka Idako – Marinated Baby Octopus
This dish was surprisingly good. The sauce used to marinate the baby octopus was flavorful, and not overwhelming. Just the right amount. The baby octopus was cooked well that resulted in the near perfect texture.
This was decent enough. To me, it was nothing spectacular. I stuck to the sashimi.
I found the Shisamo a little too burnt. I could be spoiled because I have tasted excellent Shisamo in Japan before. So, to me, this was all right but could be better.
The Salmon Carpaccio proved a true delight. I am not a fan of carpaccio dishes but this won me over. I was surprised how good this was. Some places serve this dish with too much garnishing and sauce. At Kinjuku, they have done it right. The result was very enjoyable.
Salmon Sushi Roll
Another dish that was not to my liking. The taste was rather bland. Back to the sashimi.
Soft Shell Crab Temaki
I like Soft Shell Crab Temaki a lot. At every Japanese Restaurant that I dined at, I would order one to try. And this was a delicious choice. The portion was big and generous. The crab was very good, well done and tasty. I could actually taste the different layers of textures – the seasoning, the flour fried to a crunchy crisp, and even the crab meat.
The Butterfish Mentaiyaki was much better than the Salmon Shioyaki. The sauce blended well with the taste of the Butterfish, and was not overwhelming.
This delicacy took us by surprise. You should hear the chorus of oohs and ahhs. Everyone agreed it was very good. This dish is usually served cold. At Jinkuku, the chef made it a hot variation. And the result was pure delight!
Deep Fried Salmon Fins
The hits just kept on coming. This was another great dish. The fins were fried to perfection; crispy on the outside, hot, tender and juicy on the inside. And the taste was delicately light that made it so flavorsome.
This was another fried selection done superbly. We were beginning to suspect their fried dishes were all good.
I spoke too soon. The Ebi Tempura was a bit of a let down. The taste was all right. The only issue was there was a little too much flour. At the same time, we appreciated the extra touch where they sprinkled bits of fried flour all over the tempura. Maybe they are good at deep fried food but not tempura?
Haagen Daz Ice Cream
Having Haagen Daz Ice Cream as part of their dessert menu meant that our expectations were high. And we were rightfully pleased. There were three flavours offered – Blueberry, Coffee and Banana Chocolate Brownie.
All three flavours were heavenly. We particularly liked the Banana Chocolate Brownie. And this is saying much because I do not like Banana Ice Cream. Haagen Daz’s Banana Chocolate Brownie has made me a convert.
Tip: have the better valued dishes first, e.g. sashimi and fresh oysters. Then move on to fried dishes later
More From The Menu
Of course, the menu has more selections than what we ate as shown above. There are appetizers such as Edamame, Salads, Gyoza, various choices of Shioyaki, Teriyaki, Moriawase, more choices of Temaki, Sukiyaki, Nabe, lots of types of sushi rolls, Teppanyaki, Donmono, Noodles like Soba, Ramen and Udon, all kinds of fried foods, Maki, and so much more.
There is also a wide selection of drinks and desserts.
Kinjuku at SetiaWalk, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Asia Travel Gems Final Word
My friend told me that there were many bad reviews of Kinjuku on the Internet. I did a bit of research and found that to be true. But most of the reviews were of one particular Kinjuku branch.
I do not know what happened at that branch or why the food and service there had such reviews. But I believe in personally trying out a product or service I review, and share my honest experience with all of you.
Also, it must be noted that the bad reviews were written long time ago. Perhaps Kinjuku listened, and made some improvements since? Plus, there were more positive reviews out there than negative.
And as a representative of Asia Travel Gems, I can sincerely tell you that this particular branch of Kinjuku deserves the rating of 4.0
The restaurant was clean and neat. There was ample space with decent dining furnishings. The mood and style might not be purely Japanese, but that was okay. We were there for the food.
The service was good. The staff were friendly and responded quickly. Whenever we did a friendly wave to get their attention, they arrived promptly, with a smile and ‘yes sir?’
The food was prepared and served in just the right time. Nothing was delayed. Although they did have some orders wrong. But that was only because of just simple mix-ups. Nothing serious.
The food was very good. See the above section for the review of each dish. Overall, it was tasty, fresh enough and some even surprised and more than delighted us. There were one or two that did not meet the mark. But that is all right, unless you are there just for those choices.
How To Get There?
SetiaWalk is located at Pusat Bandar Puchong. There are buses and trains to this place. You can search on Google Maps for directions on how to get there via bus or train.
Alternatively, you can take taxi, Grab or arrange for hotel transport to this location. This will take anywhere between 40 minutes to slightly over an hour, depending on traffic. I recommend this choice.
Address of Kinjuku:
D-05-G, Block D, Setia Walk, Persiaran Wawasan, Pusat Bandar Puchong, 47160, Puchong
Phone Number: +60-3-5879-7816
In case you need to contact them, you can visit their Facebook Page, and drop them a message. They do respond.
If you have ANY questions about this review, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.
Thank you for reading this.
Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,